Rugby World Cup 2019

scottyno

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Dec 7, 2008
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Japan looked awesome and a very worthy Quarter Finalist. Thank goodness the match was played.

Now, more NBC Sports complaints - 2 of the QFs (Ireland v. New Zealand, Wales v. France) are PPV only, and they are now gouging us at $35/match. If I knew what matches will be free to air, it would be really helpful in terms of whether to buy into the package now, especially with an option to get the rest of the tournament plus 6 Nations and EPCR for $145. Probably still better off paying for the one-off on Ireland match, then waiting to see how much of 6 Nations might end up free over the air, but I may make a foolish decision.
You can get all the non world cup stuff for $80 for the season at any time, so impulse buying it all now only saves you $5 even if you pay the $35 for 2 matches, pretty sure they wouldn't put the semis or the final on gold only. (Or if you have another friend who also likes rugby you can probably get away with sharing an account and split the cost)
 

HoyaSoxa

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Dec 4, 2003
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PPV only as in not even on NBC gold or whatever it’s called?
Two QFs are on NBC Gold package only. If you have already paid for the full package, you would have them. If not, you are now paying $35/match.

You can get all the non world cup stuff for $80 for the season at any time, so impulse buying it all now only saves you $5 even if you pay the $35 for 2 matches, pretty sure they wouldn't put the semis or the final on gold only. (Or if you have another friend who also likes rugby you can probably get away with sharing an account and split the cost)
This is clearly the right approach, especially given there is no way I am going to watch all of the QFs. I just don't know why they wouldn't price the rest of the RWC + Six Nations at around $100, to give it some value.
 

HoyaSoxa

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Dec 4, 2003
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US TV situation update: my programming guide now shows 3/4 matches will be live on NBC Sports Network, and Ireland v. New Zealand will be shown at 2:30 pm ET Saturday. Assuming I can make it to Saturday afternoon without spoiling the result for myself, I am getting pretty excited for this lineup of matches now.
 

HoyaSoxa

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Dec 4, 2003
1,149
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US TV situation update: my programming guide now shows 3/4 matches will be live on NBC Sports Network, and Ireland v. New Zealand will be shown at 2:30 pm ET Saturday. Assuming I can make it to Saturday afternoon without spoiling the result for myself, I am getting pretty excited for this lineup of matches now.

Update: Blergh

Not only did Ireland completely no-show (the match was over when Mo'unga kept Sexton's kick to touch in play at 10-0), NBC Sports inexplicably had the England-Australia match in the slot where the Comcast guide had told me to expect Ireland-New Zealand, so rather than risk spoiling the result by searching for another way to watch, I ponied up the $35 to watch that abomination on tape via NBC Sports Gold.

I don't know where Ireland go from here, but I do think they need to start moving on from their dependency on Sexton. As much as he claims to want to be rugby's Tom Brady, and as great as he has been at his best, there is no way he will be leading Ireland past the QF in 2023. There are some promising younger backs from this squad (Carbery, Larmour, Stockdale, Ringrose) who will need to become stars, but the pack has real problems with age, with only James Ryan under 25, and Furlong seeming like the only decent bet to still be a part of the next world cup set-up among the front row.
 

Bellhorn

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Aug 22, 2006
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I have a feeling this will be similar to 1995 (the first RWC I ever watched) for England, where "woohoo, we beat Australia, we rock!" turned into "oh shit..." after about five minutes of Jonah Lomu and co.
 

Stanley Steamer

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Jan 11, 2012
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I have a feeling this will be similar to 1995 (the first RWC I ever watched) for England, where "woohoo, we beat Australia, we rock!" turned into "oh shit..." after about five minutes of Jonah Lomu and co.
I agree, without knowing much about rugby. But there's a reason why they play the games.
I watched the Wales v France match, the only QF I saw, what with terrible TV times, and was pleased to see such a close one, a cool finish. Most of the results have been routs. I'm pretty sure Wales would get utterly decimated by NZ, but I haven't seen England play yet.
I like being able to see the game played at a high level, even as I try to figure out the rules and strategy. It's a special sport for sure.
 

Spacemans Bong

chapeau rose
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Nah, England-New Zealand will be a good game. Both semifinals will be, actually, despite Wales completely being written off after their shitshow vs France.

Nigel Owens being referee for England-NZ is a bad sign for England. For all his fame as the openly gay bantersaurus referee who does Emirates Airline commercials and such, he's kind of an overrated referee. A real show pony who doesn't sweat the details in the breakdown. This is going to let New Zealand disrupt all the ball and relieve the pressure England's pack could put on them. Not that NZ can't do the same to England - they're picking loads of lineout jumpers (putting Scott Barrett at 6 and moving Ardie Savea to 7, in addition to Retallick, Whitelock and Read) in the 23 to capitalise on England's one real weakness: George Kruis and Maro Itoje are really their only good lineout jumpers in the squad.

Both games are going to be total fistfights. Wales-SA will be like watching Jake LaMotta (Wales) take hit after hit. They're going to defend to within an inch of their lives on that one.
 

SydneySox

A dash of cool to add the heat
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Sep 19, 2005
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SydneySox must be delighted with how the Wallabies committed hara kiri like that. Suicidal rugby as Larry Dallaglio put it.
It was the best outcome ever. Game's tearing itself apart publicly. I don't hate rugby (though it's a pretty shit sport that benefits from a few rule changes that make it rugby league) I just hate the institution of the wallabies. Everything that's wrong with the desperate monarchist silvertails.
 

Tokyo Sox

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Feb 16, 2006
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According to my English colleague, who knows a lot more about these things than I do, England could have beaten any and all comers the way they played vs NZ. "As fine a performance as I've seen." Pretty shocking result and now I'm all in for S'Africa because my many English colleagues will be just insufferable if they win the whole thing.

I went to Wales/RSA last weekend, fantastic match with Wales just not quite being able to get there in the end. The South Africa defense has been amazing the last two matches, though it was vs Japan & Wales and I assume England will present a tougher test. But they've been incredibly, impressively stingy from what I can tell with my amateur spectator eyes.

Also, I'm fairly sure this guy Faf de Klerk is literally insane.faf.jpg
 

Spacemans Bong

chapeau rose
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I love Barnes' face there. "Oh my!"

England were fuckin' great on Saturday, they really were. They did so much right tactically it's untrue. Didn't fall for the dummy runners, used their offloads, attacked NZ's lineout rather than the other way around. Itoje and Underhill were phenomenal, and Tom Curry wasn't far behind. They made Kieran Read look old and way past his prime, Ardie Savea did very little except fall over for a try, and they made the ABs do something very rare, which is panic and substitute Sam Cane for Scott Barrett. Beauden Barrett looked like an idiot trying to run things out of his 22 -- the ABs didn't just get outfought, they got outthought and that's very rare. It's the best England performance anywhere since 2003.

Can they lose to SA? Yeah, sure. I think far too many people (noticeably not the bookies -- England are only favoured by 5) just expect that to be the way England play now. It's not impossible that was their peak, and SA have huge, bastard forwards, will probably kick better than NZ did, and are certainly not going to do dumb shit like try and run it out of their 22 (even with a fit Cheslin Kolbe). A lot of people decided Wales are shit because they struggled to beat France, and therefore SA are also shit, without remembering that Wales are just bastards to beat. They don't quit, and Alun Wyn Jones's chutzpah in taking the scrum rather than the easy three and getting a try out of it was the on-field tactical decision of the tournament. Huge, brass balls for doing so.
 

Spacemans Bong

chapeau rose
SoSH Member
It was the best outcome ever. Game's tearing itself apart publicly. I don't hate rugby (though it's a pretty shit sport that benefits from a few rule changes that make it rugby league) I just hate the institution of the wallabies. Everything that's wrong with the desperate monarchist silvertails.
I have immense respect for the Wallabies: two titles, four finals, and something like six out of nine semifinals is a pretty good record for a country where rugby union is the fourth most popular sport. It helps the vagaries of the GPS and its relation to the Australian class system don't bother me in the way half of England's squad going to public schools does. And John Eales is a republican.

But their business strategy seems rely on being the USFL to the NRL's NFL, and it's bizarre and weird and lazy.
 

jercra

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Jul 31, 2006
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I love Barnes' face there. "Oh my!"

England were fuckin' great on Saturday, they really were. They did so much right tactically it's untrue. Didn't fall for the dummy runners, used their offloads, attacked NZ's lineout rather than the other way around. Itoje and Underhill were phenomenal, and Tom Curry wasn't far behind. They made Kieran Read look old and way past his prime, Ardie Savea did very little except fall over for a try, and they made the ABs do something very rare, which is panic and substitute Sam Cane for Scott Barrett. Beauden Barrett looked like an idiot trying to run things out of his 22 -- the ABs didn't just get outfought, they got outthought and that's very rare. It's the best England performance anywhere since 2003.

Can they lose to SA? Yeah, sure. I think far too many people (noticeably not the bookies -- England are only favoured by 5) just expect that to be the way England play now. It's not impossible that was their peak, and SA have huge, bastard forwards, will probably kick better than NZ did, and are certainly not going to do dumb shit like try and run it out of their 22 (even with a fit Cheslin Kolbe). A lot of people decided Wales are shit because they struggled to beat France, and therefore SA are also shit, without remembering that Wales are just bastards to beat. They don't quit, and Alun Wyn Jones's chutzpah in taking the scrum rather than the easy three and getting a try out of it was the on-field tactical decision of the tournament. Huge, brass balls for doing so.
Bear in mind that I've only been watching rugby for a about a decade and as an American with English teachers about the game. England looks amazing on defense to me but still sloppy with the ball on offense. For those who know the game better, is that going to be a bigger struggle against SA than they've faced? And does England have the speed to stop the SA kicking game (have they played a great kicking team yet) and do they have the size to handle SA's maul? Sadly, after watching every televised match I'll be somewhere with a DVR for the finals so won't be able to watch.
 

Spacemans Bong

chapeau rose
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Bear in mind that I've only been watching rugby for a about a decade and as an American with English teachers about the game. England looks amazing on defense to me but still sloppy with the ball on offense. For those who know the game better, is that going to be a bigger struggle against SA than they've faced? And does England have the speed to stop the SA kicking game (have they played a great kicking team yet) and do they have the size to handle SA's maul? Sadly, after watching every televised match I'll be somewhere with a DVR for the finals so won't be able to watch.
These are all legit questions. A lot depends on how well England executes — they were just perfect last Saturday. If they step back a bit, SA can definitely win this game.

I expect the Bokke to try and play it tight and I think Eddie will plan for England to be fairly expansive to try and put them under the cosh early and force them out of that game plan.