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 Post subject: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 4:36 am 
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I've been pretty depressed for a while, so how about something completely different? One of rugby's great mega events has just started in NZ: The British and Irish Lions Tour! :rbg: They only visit us once every 12 years and alternate between Australia, NZ and South Africa, and they consist of the best rugby players the English, Scots, Welsh and Irish can muster. They come over to the host nation to play against our Super Rugby teams once each, and then play three test matches against the national team. In this case, the almighty All Blacks! :rbg:


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 Post subject: Re: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 5:07 am 
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Sorry to hear you've been feeling down. I'm all too familiar with depression. :|

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 Post subject: Re: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Sat Jun 03, 2017 5:37 am 
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CWS wrote:
Sorry to hear you've been feeling down. I'm all too familiar with depression. :|


I'm feeling a bit better, so long as I don't turn on the news. That, and I have a new job. It ain't ideal, but it puts food on the table.

I'm also thinking that maybe I was a little overexcited for the Lions. :? Their first game was tonight and matched against the Provincial Barbarians, a team that's a mongrel hodgepodge of professionals and amateurs from the provinces.

Result: Lions win 13-7

Not a good start. The Barbarians were meant to be easy pickings. Instead, the Barbarians fought tooth and nail while the Lions seems covered in cobwebs. To be fair though, the Lions haven't gotten much time to get used to each other, and they only arrived in NZ a few days ago, so jetlag might have been a factor. But then again, the Barbarians have been similarly disadvantaged by not having enough practice time themselves. The Super Rugby teams must be licking their chops right now.

The next game is on Wednesday against the Blues, the Super team representing Auckland and Northland. They haven't been all too good in recent years, and people have been expecting the Lions to steamroll them. But if tonight was any indication, the Blues would wipe the floor with the Lions. :(

Don't get me wrong. I like my home team to win. But it's only meaningful if the Lions put up a fight. We don't want a boring tour. But this is New Zealand. When you come here for a rugby game, you're up against the greatest rugby nation on Earth. I'm not being arrogant, it's a proven fact with decades of success to back it up. We want to be taken seriously, we want to be challenged.


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 Post subject: Re: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 5:35 am 
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British & Irish Lions vs Blues
Result: Blues win 22-16

After that godawful match in Whangarei, the Lions played much better this time, but it still wasn't enough. The Blues are now the first ever NZ Super Rugby team to beat the Lions. Odds are, they most certainly won't be the last. After all, the Blues are our weakest Super Rugby team. :lol: Most of the time they were leaning on or two of their star players, and the Lions came so close to winning a narrow victory with just nine minutes to spare. But since life isn't fair, the Blues scored a try in the last five minutes to win the game.

I imagine the once proud Lions are positively dreading the rest of the tour, since it only gets harder from here. The next match is on Saturday against the Crusaders, who represent Canterbury, Marlborough, Tasman and the West Coast. A team who has won more Super Rugby titles than any other, and could smash most international teams. After tonight, if the Lions had a video of the Crusader's game against the Highlanders that happened just last Saturday, they'd be shitting bricks right about now and would sail as far from the South Island as humanly possible. :lol: I do not envy them right now.

Though I should be more fair to the Lions. They're victims of an insane tour schedule. Normally you have a minimum of five or seven days rest between games, but in this tour most of their play-offs are only 3-4 days apart. :? The fuck were the organisers thinking?


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 Post subject: Re: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 7:06 am 
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It's only now I've thought that maybe not everyone understands who these teams are. Well, I'm a stupid dickwaffle, aren't I? :oops: I'll give you a quick rundown since I doubt anybody here wants to be turned off by excessive rugby trivia.

British and Irish Lions: A team with a rich pedigree and history going back to Victorian times. Composed of the best players from the English, Welsh, Scottish and Irish rugby unions that go on tour every four years, alternating between New Zealand, Australia and South Africa. Usually, they're a formidable team who tend to win most, if not all, their matches agains the local teams and are usually more than a mtach for the host nation's team.

NZ Provincial Barbarians (BaaBaas): Not of any real consequence. They're a mongrel team slapped together on the quick, and most of them are amateurs who play for the fun of it. Most have actual jobs like running shops and shearing sheep. Some of the guys were still on the job until the middle of the day before prepping for the game. And yet, they came close to beating the Lions, whose players literally have multi-million dollar salaries. :lol: Shows big money does not equal quality gameplay.

Blues: The Super Rugby team representing Auckland and Northland. Named after the fact that they're always depressed because they're our worst Super team. Against their Super team competitors in Australia and South Africa, they're passable. Compared to the other Supers in New Zealand, they suck, and their glory days in the 90s are long over. After tonight, with their momentous win over the Lions, they feel relevant again. Almost.

Crusaders: The Super team representing Canturbury, Marlborough, Tasman and the West Coast. Named after the locals who are descended from Protestant settlers who worshipped rugby as their god. They most certainly do not suck. They are awesome. In fact, they've won the most championship titles of any Super team internationally, and many prominent All Blacks started out in their team.

Highlanders: The Super team representing Otago and Southland. Named after the locals who are descended from Scottish settlers, and fly into a rage whenever Braveheart and Mel Gibson are uttered in a single sentence. A few years ago, these guys sucked balls. But today's another day, and now they've enjoyed a resurgence. Just last Saturday they played a spectacular match against the Crusaders that stands in stark contrast to the tepid Lions/Baabaas match played on the same day. Oh, and the Lions have to face these guys after the Crusaders are done.

Maori All Blacks: These guys aren't a Super team. They're made up purely of indigenous Maori players, and one can argue they're a relic of a more racist colonial past. Except, nobody in their right mind would disband them, not when they have such a long history. This team was the forerunner to the modern All Blacks, and many of their players go on to become All Blacks themselves. And I dare you to underestimate them. The Lions lost to them in memorable fashion during the last tour in 2005.

Chiefs: The Super Team representing Counties Manukau, Waikato, Bay of Plenty and Taranaki. Named after the Maori chiefs of the area who wanted British settlers to stop stealing all their land, fought a war, crowned their own king and I have no fucking clue where I'm going with this. :? They're okay. A solid record, some wins, some losses. But like most other Super teams, they've improved a lot recently. Just last year, they thrashed a touring Welsh team 40-7.

Hurricanes: The Super team representing Wellington, Manawatu, Hawke's Bay and East Coast. Named after the fact that the gale-force winds around Wellington never fucking stop. Seriously, just try watching a plane try to land. It's horrifyingly fascinating. Anyway, they're the current Super champions, coming from a season that has contained unparalleled success for them. They're the team to beat right now... or the team to lose to, if you're the Lions.


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 Post subject: Re: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Thu Jun 08, 2017 1:06 am 
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snowman1989 wrote:
It's only now I've thought that maybe not everyone understands who these teams are. Well, I'm a stupid dickwaffle, aren't I? :oops:
Nah, it's kind of hard to pre-emptively consider what one might fail to take into consideration due to the limitations of personal perspectives, or to guess in advance what others may or may not know about a given topic. ;) I often wonder if I go overboard with some of my own fandom-centric postings, in that respect...anyway, very informative!

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 Post subject: Re: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 4:54 am 
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British & Irish Lions vs Crusaders
Result: Lions win 12-3

What the fuck happened? :? No, what the fuck happened?! NO, SERIOUSLY.... o_o

Crusaders fans (and me too, for that matter) are in a bit of shock right now. This was the best of the Super teams, and it's been a long time since they were defeated on home turf. What's more shocking to me is the fact that not a single try was scored by either side. What the fuck?

European style rugby tends to have a bit more emphasis on kicking goals, which are worth 3 points, while down in New Zealand (and other Southern teams) we emphasise tries, which are worth 5 points. Down here, we firmly believe that scoring tries is the surest (and most fun) way to win a game. Another difference is that down here, we like to have more free-flowing aggressive movement and ball passing, while Europeans like to slog it out in tough, tight formations and defences. Apparently, the Lions picked out their best players for this game and had them on a hard defence strategy to deny the Crusaders any chance of getting a try. To me, that isn't rugby. It's just boring, and cheap. :x The Lions won't have won more fans with this performance, even if they did win.

The Crusaders aren't off the hook either, they conceded way too many penalties and their discipline tonight was for shit. I'm wondering where that other Crusaders team went that won so memorably last week. I still can't believe the fucking Baabaas fared better than the goddamn Crusaders! Ugh, is this real life?

Well, next game is on Tuesday against the Highlanders. But even though the Lions have beaten the top dog of Super Rugby, they ain't out of the woods yet. The rest of the Super teams are still formidable opponents, not to mention the Maori are coming up, and the All Blacks are waiting in the shadows. The Lions are still a century too early to be facing them, even with the improvements they've made.


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 Post subject: Re: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 6:12 am 
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snowman1989 wrote:
British & Irish Lions vs Crusaders
Result: Lions win 12-3

What the fuck happened? :? No, what the fuck happened?! NO, SERIOUSLY.... o_o

Crusaders fans (and me too, for that matter) are in a bit of shock right now. This was the best of the Super teams, and it's been a long time since they were defeated on home turf. What's more shocking to me is the fact that not a single try was scored by either side. What the fuck?
Maybe the Lions lulled them into a false sense of security with those last two mediocre matches? :lol:

(This is the half-joking and uninformed guess of someone who did not watch the game, and has never watched a rugby match at all for that matter.)

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 Post subject: Re: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 7:03 am 
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CWS wrote:
Maybe the Lions lulled them into a false sense of security with those last two mediocre matches? :lol:


Possibly. ;) Could also be that they held their best players in reserve, ones that were meant to be used to counter the All Blacks, and used them to beat the Crusaders. The Lions did have the worst tour start in living memory, they might have needed the morale boost of a win.

As for never having seen a rugby game... well, it's simple. You know gridiron? Just strip off the armour, lengthen the game to 80 minutes and have the game go on non-stop with half-time at 40 minutes. Oh, and make the field a bit bigger. And make the players learn proper tackling so that they don't bash into each other like barbarians. You have rugby. 8-) The All Blacks have some highlights of matches on their Youtube channel, but it's not the same as watching a full game. :(


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 Post subject: Re: British and Irish Lions Tour 2017
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 1:37 pm 
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snowman1989 wrote:
As for never having seen a rugby game... well, it's simple. You know gridiron? Just strip off the armour, lengthen the game to 80 minutes and have the game go on non-stop with half-time at 40 minutes. Oh, and make the field a bit bigger. And make the players learn proper tackling so that they don't bash into each other like barbarians. You have rugby. 8-) The All Blacks have some highlights of matches on their Youtube channel, but it's not the same as watching a full game. :(
I don't actually know gridiron, either (but I do follow you). :lol: It's not a nationalistic thing with me or anything; I've just never been interested in sports, in general.

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