Rugby Venn: Jamie Noon
Continuing this blog's latest obsession with piss-taking via lo-rent infographics, here's Jamie Noon explained via a venn diagram.
Rugby Chart: Mark Robson is SHIT, proved by science
Rugby Chart: Stuart Barnes' Commentary
Exclusive: RFU branch out into "Old Skool" dance music with England Club Classics album
The RFU, no strangers to maximising revenue streams (no matter how embarrassingly),have today announced the release of "Maul It Up: Club Classics", a compilation of orginal dance tracks that celebrates the history of English rugby's greatest period.
"Nostalgia is an untapped market in England rugby," said Hugo Twatbatch, RFU Money Facilition Elite Director, "The reason for this is that the most profitable type of nostalgia up to now is related to the 1970s and 80s, a time when we were, let's face it, an embarrassment. However, the 1990s and early 2000s are now being brought onto the field, and this is a time where we can exploit good memories."
"The best way to do this is to release an album of 90s Old Skool Dance, Club Classic-type anthems, themed around the great England sides of that time."
See the full tracklits and back cover after the jump.
Scrum-halves fall victim to one of science's most difficult concepts: a straight line
Following the first proper outing for the new scrum laws at the weekend, it is clear that every international scrum half has no idea what a straight line is. As one coach said after the game, "Once we get that sorted out and the half-backs put the ball in straight we're sure the free kicks and penalties awarded will decrease".
This patience from coaches is understandable because, as we all know, a straight line is one of the most difficult things to fathom in the the history of science. Only last year, Stephen Hawking admitted that he was happy with his grasp on how the universe began, but if you asked him to drive his special chair in a straight line he would be utterly baffled by the mind-pickling complexity of it.
So, to assist those poor nines who are trying to get their heads around this most difficult of concepts here is some help to grasp it
1. A straight line is what Jamie Noon always ran. Always.
2. A straight line is what David Lemi never runs. Ever
3. Still confused? See the below diagram:
Still confused? You are Andy Powell, and I claim my £5 prize.
Bath Rugby are off to Poland to be more like Darth Vader, or something like that
Bath head coach, Mike Ford, has confirmed that his squad are off to Poland to train at the Magic Castle Of Wales Grandslammery.
The West Country side hope to improve on last year’s showing by spending some time weeping in exhaustion on the side of a Tatra Mountain and of course they will experience the much-feted cryotherapy chamber, as used by the all-conquering Wales side.
"Everyone knows that immersion in some kind of inexplicable environment is essential in modern rugby training,” said Ford, “ First it was ice baths, now it’s cryotherapy. I’ve not actually seen a cryotherapy chamber but I imagine it is like the one that Darth Vader had in Star Wars when he wanted some alone time. This means our players can get fit and, as an added bonus, enhance their dark side.”
“Let's see what those bastards at Gloucester think about that, eh?"
Gloucester were unavailable for comment.
Peeking inside the Wallabies' "logistics camp"
We know that Quade Cooper hasn't been invited to it, but we are still in the dark about what a "logistics camp" actually is. Wonder no more, our mole in the camp has shared the schedule with us.
Day 1: How to pack your kitbag efficiently, including specific workshop on those tricky spare boots.
Day 2: Getting to the team bus on time, a practical guide for the headphone wearing modern pro
Day 3: The Wal-Mart model of distribution planning and how it relates to line-outs
Day 4: Group exercise - Getting from Hillingdon to Liverpool Street via Alperton On the London Underground
Day 5: Michael Dell keynote speech "Why slow ball is killing your points profit margin, and how outsourcing your forwards to Malaysia will solve it"
Day 6: Group exercise - "five deliveries with only four vans" Problem solving exercise, followed by eye-wateringly tangential and patronising explanation about how this very much relates to how you can use your outside backs better.
The Rugby Lexicon: The alternative dictionary from the game
More installments for you to use in your day to day discourse with people who will invariably have no bloody idea what you are on about, but that's because they're fools. Or James Haskell.
Northsdad (n) - behaviour dictated by high emotion. "After years of being seen as nothing but a person who spent his days stroking J-Lo's arse or hanging around her house in pyjamas waiting for her to come home, it came as no surprise that Ben Affleck's speech after his Oscar for Argo was a complete northsdad." E! Hollywood Reporter, February 2013.
Howley (v) - make a slow start. "Unlike his predecessor, who Howleyed around the Vatican for the first few months, Pope Francis has cracked on with kissing feet and waving at people and stuff. Not that this changes my views at all." Richard Dawkins.
Fofanawing (n) - inexplicable decision. "O'Gara receives the ball, and he chips the ball across his own 20metre line! Ireland lose possession and O'Gara flushes the colour of putrid Ribena as his team mates look at him with a mixture of hatred and amazement that he would make such a fofanawing at this stage of the game" Andrew Cotter, Scotland vs Ireland commentary, Six Nations 2013.
Inverdale (v) - talk excessively about England. "One of the main reasons we want independence is that the present political discourse has a tendency to inverdale when we would rather be talking about Scottish issues, like Buckfast and the lack of recognition for the songcraft of Wet Wet Wet" Alex Salmond.
Zanni (v) - attract deserved praise belatedly "After years of playing small venues, soul singer and songwriter Solomon Burke zannied in the years before his death." Me, just now, because it's true.
bloodandmud.com's candidates for the Ireland job
Declan Kidney is gone and the IRFU are on the look out for a new head coach for the national team; a coach that can implement what is now surely the Ireland Transitional Period v3.0, the latest iteration in a soul-splinteringly long process. Here are this blog's obviously very serious suggestions.
Jeremy Davidson - Has a coaching CV more repellant to recruiters than one written in Comic Sans. However, Jeremy went from being a "meh" selection to Player of the Tour in 1997 Lions, so past form is nothing when it comes to what he can achieve. Also has a kindly face, speaks French and could wear Buzz Lightyear costume at press conferences to raise a nostalgic, Lions documentary laugh.
Martin Johnson - Won't stand on ceremony, literally. Face and attitude to serve as antidote to Kidney's friendly approach of smiling a lot of the time if IRFU want a change in PR. Crushing inevitability of his first selection being more moribund than an undertaker's 'to do' list if they'd prefer to maintain Declan's conservative transition approach. Outside chance of dwarf-throwing.
Mike Ruddock - Decent CV and chances of success; but this is likely to be followed by Jamie Heaslip ranting at George Hook on the TV in a dodgy brown leather jacket.
Trevor Brennan - Playing experience at home and abroad, has also run a bar for years so is well versed in people management. All of which he will ignore when he chins every single person in the squad and press within one hour of his appointment.
Ronan O'Fucking Gara - National treasure reaching the end of his playing career, already knows the squad, and most importantly will provide a rich seam of material for the likes of this blog. Just think, as a coach he could perfect his "banana cross-kick chip" tactic in the defensive 22; pioneer the "anti-blitz" defence, based mostly on falling over; and spend every press conference in a self-righteous, purple-faced funk. A shoo-in.
Now! That's What I Call Lievremont & Saint-Andre's Utterly Barmy Selections Greatest Hits
We are all having a good chuckle at Michalak's selection at 10 for the match in Dublin this weekend, and that got us to thinking: can you make an entire team of barmy selections from the Marc Lievremont and Phillippe Saint-Andre period? Well I've had a partially successful stab at it. Your comments and additional suggestions/corrections are welcome.
15. Yoann Huget (Saint-Andre, 2013) - Yoann Huget is a winger, but not an international class one. As a full back he's worse than that.
14. Wesley Fofana (Saint-Andre, 2013) - The best centre in Europe grazing on the wing. Excellent.
13. Francois Trinh-Duc (Lievremont) - If he's not arbitrarily dropped he's out of postion. Trinh-Duc is perhaps the most abused player in France in terms of selection.
12. Benoit Baby (Lievremont, 2009) - Selected when Yannick Jauzion was available, that's mental enough to warrant inclusion.
11. Maxime Medard (Both, Various Years) - Medard is a full-back and there have always been wingers that are better than him in the 11 or 14 shirt. That hasn't stopped both Marc and Phillippe continuing to ignore this.
10. Damien Traille (Lievremont, various) - Traille was a decent 12 with a decent boot, and that was it. How anyone could class him as an international 10 is something that will trouble historians for years. He also spent some time stinking up the 15 shirt.
9. Sebastian Tillous-Borde (Lievremont, 2009) - Perhaps the worst example of the many when some no-mark was selected while Morgan Parra and his insouciant genius languished on the bench.
8. Sebastian Chabal (Lievremont, 2011) - This is not a bad selection in itself, but it becomes one when you consider that this pick meant that the incomparable Harinodoquy was pushed to 7 then you realise that Mad Marc pretty much weakened two positions at once.
7. Ibrahim Diarra (Lievremont, 2008) - A player as average as Diarra being selected at all is inexplicable in itself (this was his only cap), but he was selected ahead of Julien Bonnaire. I'll repeat that: HE WAS SELECTED AHEAD OF JULIEN BONNAIRE!
6. Matthieu Lievremont (Lievremont, 2008) - Marc and his brother Thomas had both won international caps,but the other brother Matthieu had not. Then Marc picked him for two caps based on nothing more than we assume their mum told him he had to so Matt didn't feel left out of the chat at family gatherings.
4. It's harder with the front 5 isn't it?
3. Suggestions welcome
1. Lionel Faure (Lievremont, 2008) - Selected ahead of Jean-Baptiste Poux, who was up to that time owning Europe with Toulouse.