6 and Out

Cassandra-like, I predicted a couple of days ago that in addition to the plethora of players already ruled out, there are likely to be more casualties before the 6 Nations kicks off!

Unfortunately it turns out I was right – Wales have lost Rhys Webb for the whole of the Championship – and because he is off to Toulon at the end of the season, he may even have played his last game in the Welsh shirt.

In a further bit of bad news for Eddie Jones, it has been reported that Maro Itoje has been unable to train at the England camp in Portugal and may be doubtful for the Italy game.

I suggest that all the coaches shuffle down to Superdrug tout suite and buy them out of cotton wool.


A Worst Appendix

As an addendum to the catastrophic decision to hold a referendum, David ‘Kamikaze’ Cameron has now stated that “Brexit is not as big a fuck up as I thought it would be despite my bleeding awful campaigning” – or words to that effect –

This bollox provided instant mileage for the Daily Express and Mail together with their mindless readers.

Cameron’s statement is the equivalent of Napoleon suggesting that his winter sojourn to Moscow was a gentle ramble


What a twat!

Stat Attack

With just over a week to go here are some statistics on the 6 Nations

 3– England will chase a hat-trick of titles, a feat never achieved in the history of the championship or its predecessors the Five Nations and Home Nations Championship.

28 – England have won the tournament more times than any other nation, leading nearest challengers Wales by two. The same is true for Grand Slams, 13 to 11.

26 – former Ireland captain Brian O’Driscoll holds the career record for most tries in the tournament.

8 – record try total by a player in an individual tournament, shared by England’s Cyril Lowe in 1914 and Scotland’s Ian Smith in 1925.

89 – England’s Jonny Wilkinson set a record points total for the tournament in 2001.

557 – the career record belongs to Ireland’s Ronan O’Gara.

65 – O’Driscoll also holds the record for the most appearances in the competition. Italy’s Sergio Parisse is on course to equal the mark if he appears in all five games this year.

18 – England players either absent or doubtful for the start of this year’s tournament due to injury.

67 – France’s Camille Lopez was the leading points-scorer in last season’s championship. England’s Owen Farrell (63) and Wales full-back Leigh Halfpenny (62) were the only other players to crack 50.

100% – Ireland fly-half Jonny Sexton had a perfect nine-from-nine record from his kicks at goal.

103 – Ireland forward CJ Stander was the runaway leader in number of carries, with France’s Louis Picamoles his nearest challenger on 71.

432 – Mike Brown, one of those doubts for England’s opening game, led all players in metres gained.

Lopez won’t be adding to his points total this year as he is out injured for the whole of the tournament and Mike Brown has to recover and hold off Anthony Watson for the 15 shirt if he is to have a chance of leading the metres gained stats in 2018

Bonus Balls

In a U-turn that makes Mayhem look like a she’s in a straight jacket and stuck in a drainpipe, John Feehan has suddenly decided that bonus points are a good thing after all –

The Six Nations will use bonus points on a permanent basis, abandoning a planned three-year trial after just 12 months.

Last year was the first time bonus points – awarded for scoring more than four tries or for losing by seven points or fewer – had been used in the tournament’s 125-year history, with the trial supposed to continue for both the 2018 and 2019 Championships.

There were 11 bonus points scored in last season’s Six Nations, although none of them affected the final standings. And John Feehan, the Six Nations chief executive, says the first year’s trial was so successful that bonus points have been adopted permanently.


“We are going to retain bonus points for the foreseeable future,” said Feehan. “We have reviewed it, considered it and decided to keep them. We said originally we would trial it for three years. We are one year in and have pretty much already made that decision.

“We believe on balance it worked quite well. I wouldn’t say it was fundamental but on balance we feel it worked. If nothing else it is a change in mindset and I feel that is the positive out of it.”

I notice he’s still hedging his bets a bit though!