We at RWU wish to join the rugby world and the world at large in expressing our sadness over the death of Nelson Mandela. RIP Madiba.
CARDIFF, WALES – After a two month layoff, Heineken Cup rugby returns, with the third round of fixtures. Effectively, it will be the first weekend of a home and home series for all parties involved, as the same teams will face each other next weekend as well. Tonight, Cardiff takes on Glasgow at Cardiff Arms Park, as the Blues will hope to distract Welsh rugby supporters from the continued exodus of their star players. Richard Hibbard shocked the world on Wednesday by announcing that he will be suiting up for Gloucester next year, meaning that Wales has lost another one of their Lions stars.
This season, Rugby Wrap Up is dedicated to providing you with our “expert” opinions on each round of fixtures. As a quick reminder, the Six Pack now consists of West Ghana’s Rugby Rain Man Junoir Blaber, England’s knight of the realm Jamie Loyd, The English East Midlands Machiavellian Rugger Nick Hall, the infamous Ireland National, Declan Yeats, the Irish Born-Castres residing, lean(ish), mean(ish) writing machine, James Harrington and contrived Kiwi Co-Host, Johnathan Wicklow Barberie.
Thus far, JWB has his nose in front, with an 18-6 record. He’s closely dogged by Blaber and Harrington at 17-7, while Hall and Yeats trail at 16-8. Loyd has the indignity of bringing up the rear, with a shameful record of 15-9. For each round of fixtures, the Six Pack provides one pick of the week, and their justification for each. This weekend’s fixtures have the panel largely in agreement, so the picks of the week will be a vital tool for separating the best from the rest.
Blaber: Ulster desperately need the points. They are in a tough group and if they hope to make the quarters, they need to win, get the bonus point, and run up their point differential: don’t be surprised if they win by 20. Now watch the unoriginal, contrived Kiwi Barberie steal my pick and explanation…
Hall: My preference for picking against the French continues, and the fact that I get to pick Leicester to do so is icing on the cake. Should be a solid win for a Tigers outfit that finally has a squad rounding into a bit of fitness.
JWB: The Italians will mistake the pale, pink-blotted skin of their soft-spoken hosts as a sign that a warm welcome and friendly match is at hand… But Ravenhill and its frozen Irish fans will ensure the visitors’ slaughter.
Harrington: Having witnessed Castres‘ home form in person, it’s an easy call for me.
Loyd: I took the easy way out…it’s as one sided a match-up as can be. Saracens need the points, following the shock loss at home last round, and no better team for them to use to lick their wounds than Zebre.
Yeats: The Mighty Men of Munster in Fortress Thormond are too strong for those froggy softies from the south of France.
Now that the Six Pack have made their picks it is time for the games to begin. Lets see who will be able to hold their head high come next week.
That’s it for now… feel free to comment below, look for and “Like” our Facebook Rugby Wrap Up Page and follow us on Twitter @: RugbyWrapUp, Junoir Blaber, DJ Eberle, Nick Hall, James Harrington, Cody Kuxmann and Declan Yeats, respectively.