Was it really 6 weeks ago that Saracens took their game to new levels by shutting out Leinster in the Heineken Champions Cup Final. It was a ruthless show of how to close out a pressure game from behind – a true International game in club jerseys.
It may have appeared that Round 6 of the Heineken Champions Cup and Challenge Cup was confirming known truths about Irish dominance and the resurgence of Toulouse as well as a brooding Saracens who look very tough and menacing at full strength.
The Rugby world has been so busy this season it has been hard to keep up. Here is what has caught my eye so far
It’s World Cup Year (almost), and rugby seemingly makes headlines on a daily basis. Journos are back to their editors with begging bowls for more space – they will get it too.
I played for a Champion Club in the 80’s, the serially successful Bath who won multiple Knock Out cups and in fact never lost a semifinal or a Final.
We all thought that the International season was over but we were wrong – even hardened cynics doffed their caps to some incredible contests at the Quarter Final stage of the European Champions Cup Rugby Competition.
Wasps and Exeter played out a wonderfully competitive top of the table clash last Sunday, and if it had been another team Wasps could have scored 40. Exeter’s patient processes look less menacing now, while Wasps operate with pace and panache.
I made a late decision to go to West Wales for the Scarlets Toulon match at the weekend because I had a feeling about it and also to support the stunning impact that Scarlets have had on the competition.
Who would be a Lions coach?! After the Champions Cup Semi Final in Dublin, Andy Farrell’s face was wreathed in an unfamiliar smile as Saracens withstood the Munster fire and progressed to the Final in Edinburgh.
It used to be that once the Six Nations was over, sell out rugby grounds were at a huge premium and confined to major finals. No longer, as has been proven since England were squeezed out of a Double Grand Slam by a highly disciplined Irish team. Consider the following