Thursday, 27 June 2013

Best blog of a month

I  am pleased to inform you that the Polish version of my blog has won "Best blog of a month" award. Thank you all for your votes!

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Lions beat Melbourne Rebels

British and Irish Lions defeated Melbourne Rebels 0:35 (0:14). The result could have been even better but was affected by quite a lot handling errors. It was the last chance for players to impress Warren Gatland before the starting XV is chosen for the Australia tests. The players were aware of the stake and put in an excellent performance. Owen Farrell as well as back row players Sean O’Brian, Toby Faletau and Dan Lydiate played very well. Worth mentioning are also Simon Zebo, Ben Youngs Sean Maitland, Richie Gray and Manu Tuilagi who has just recovered from injury.

On Saturday Lions face Wallabies in a hugely important match. In the first game the team was very lucky and claimed narrow victory. One more win is needed to make the tournee successful. Australia showed that they will not give up easily. So it looks like quite an exciting game is ahead of us. 
Below you will find game’s infographics. 

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Sunday, 23 June 2013

Australia - Lions 0:1

British and Irish Lions started the series with victory. They defeated Australia in Brisbane 21:23. The game was very good and entertaining. I was impressed by George North who scored a beautiful try after 60-meter run. In the Wallabies’ team a special mention goes to the veteran Will Genia and Israel Foloau - extremely talented debutant who was chosen the man of the match.

Kicking from a tee was a key to success. In one of my previous posts, I have mentioned that this could be very important element of games. Leigh Halfpenny was very effective, he succeeded with 5 out of 6 attempts, hosts managed to convert only 4 out of 9 chances.

In the final minutes of game and on two occassions, Kurtley Beale was very close to stealing the win. His first kick went wide and he slipped during the second one. Lions and their spectators survived dramatic moments and luckily for them the score remained unchanged.

Congratulations to Lions for their first test win and big respect to Wallabies who proved they can be very difficult to beat. I am looking forward to the next games which, I’m sure, will be interesting.
Below you will find infographics with detailed match statistics. 

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Friday, 21 June 2013

Rocky writes for

“Rocky writes about rugby” teamed up with a very interesting blog The first guest post which introduces highly popular British and Irish Lions infographics has been published today. I’m sure that our cooperation has a bright future and will be beneficial for both sides.

You can find the full set of Lions statistics here

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Lions defeated by Brumbies

Brumbies claimed a historic victory defeating British and Irish Lions 14:12. They were very well motivated and controlled the game for most of the time. Strong defence and effective lineouts contributed to great success.

Lions had seven players who were not included in the original team. They joined as injury replacements. Even “the Welsh wizard” Shane Williams put on the Lions jersey. Although he was close to score a try in the first minutes of the game, he couldn’t steal the win. The visitors were not gelled enough and didn’t quite get the plan of how to break the solid defence. Lions’ bench which arrived in the second half added some flow to the game and had a positive impact but it was too late to get back the game.

I’m sure that fans and team would love to finish the tour unbeaten but this loss is not a big drama. The most important is success in the test games with Wallabies. First match will take place on Saturday.
Below you will find statistics from today’s game.

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Sunday, 16 June 2013

Lions beat Waratahs

British and Irish Lions have another win under their belts. This time they defeated Waratahs 17:47. Australians played well and the game was more challenging than previous ones. Drew Mitchell had a very good day and was one of the best players on the pitch. In the tourists' team Leigh Halfpenny was absolutely fantastic - he scored two tries and 21 points! Debutant Simon Zebo who joined the team 4 days ago was also on fire. Jonathan Davies and Paul O’Connell showed excellent performance as well. 

The next game takes place on Tuesday when Lions will clash with Brumbies but the true challenge is the first test game with Wallabies on Saturday. I hope that Lions will keep performing high and finish match on the right side of the scoreboard.

Below you will find statistics from the Waratahs game.

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Friday, 14 June 2013

Rugby statistics – blog’s new section!

I have a surprise for my readers and followers. Today, I would like to present you with a brand new section of my blog which I hope you will like. I have compiled detailed statistics from British and Irish Lions tournee which consists of four games played so far. I hope I have included most essential elements of matches and I that fans who look for reliable information will find it interesting.
Rugby statistics - Lions v Barbarians
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Rugby statistics - Lions v Western Force
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Rugby statistics - Lions v Reds
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Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Another big win for Lions

British and Irish Lions kept their winning streak alive and won another game in a big style. The rivals were severely defeated as Lions scored 10 tries and didn’t lose any points. Despite ambitious performance, players from New South Wales and Queensland Countries couldn’t make any harm to the visitors. They are not the top rugby elite and had only two training sessions together. Some of them had starts in the Super 15 under their belts, others are semi-professionals, so the big score 0:64 (0:38) wasn’t  a surprise.

Lions took full advantage of the „match-training” conditions. The team tried interesting combinations. Stuart Hogg, who normally plays as a full-back, had a chance to try his luck as a fly-half. The incredible Scottish player was simply amazing. He managed to play on a new position as if he was doing it every day. Brian O’Driscoll also deserves a special mention; he was one of the best players on the pitch. Lions’ attacking power is certainly huge. Fans had a chance to see a nice piece of rugby especially in the backs’ game. Forwards dominated scrums, which is a good omen before the tests with Wallabies. Lineouts were not so good, Warren Gatland’s team needs to work on the communication and become more clinical in this area.

Although it was a one way match I think it added extra spice to the tournée. It linked with a long tradition of touring but what is even more important it gave Australian players perhaps one in a lifetime chance to face the best European players. This priceless experience will be a cheery on the cake of their careers.

Waratahs are  the next team which will challenge Lions. The game will take place on Saturday.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

Lion’s third victory!

British and Irish Lions have been victorious third time in a row. On Saturday, the 8th of June, they beat Queensland Reds in Brisbane. The game was definitely most challenging so far. Warren Gatlands’ team had to face a strong and motivated opponent. In the first half, Lions were forced to defend as the hosts were in control. Luke Moralan’s scored a fantastic try and Reds were leading 7:3. The visitors managed to catch up by the end of the half time which finished 7:16 for the Lions.

In the second half, the game slowed down and rainy weather caused some technical errors on both sides. But 50 000 spectators could not complain as both teams were very ambitious and produced an entertaining game.

The key player here was Owen Farrell who followed Leigh Halfpenny’s steps and didn’t miss a single kick. Great effectiveness of both kickers is a good sign for test matches with Australia. Points scored from the tee can be crucial. 

The only concern the team needs to deal with are injuries. Manu Tuilagi and Tommy Bowe – who will be replaced by Simon Zebo – suffered from injuries and I wish both players quick recovery. There is little time for it, though, as the next game is on Tuesday. British and Irish Lions will then face combined teams of NSW and Queensland.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Lions outclassed Western Force

It was a great beginning for British and Irish Lions who started their tournée on Australian soil. They beat Western Force 17:69! High victory is no surprise as the team from Perth did not pick their strongest XV due to Super 15 match this weekend. It is a shame as the game did not have to be so one-sided. The dates could have been arranged better too as Western Force had bye week ago. 

Despite weaker opponent, Lions deserve praise. They did what they were supposed to do. They clearly dominated all areas of the game and despite some errors, can still be happy about how they played. Lions put forward a completely different XV to Barbarian’s game and scored 9 tries. Centres  Brian O’Driscoll, who scored 10 points, and Manu Tuilagi, were a real threat to the opponents’ defense. Leigh Halfpenny showed great composure and precision when kicking. The Welshman scored 9 conversions and two penalties, most of them from difficult positions next to the touch line.

Apart from O’Driscoll, try-scorers were Jonathan Sexton, Tom Croft, Jamie Heaslip, Mako Vunipola, Tommy Bowe, Owen Farrel and Geoff Parling. High victory over Western Force is a good sign for future games. The team should become more gelled and victories will greatly influence its confidence. As I wrote in one of my previous posts, the team which is full of talented players, has a good chance to win the series. Let’s hope injuries will keep away from Lions. As it stands now, the only concern to the physios is Cian Healy. With leg injury he may not be able to take part in future games.

I think the supporters are pleased to have watched an interesting game. The atmosphere on stands with about 35000 fans was much better than last weekend in Hong Kong. 
Lions are facing Reds in the next game this Saturday.

Monday, 3 June 2013

Blog of a Month Award

I am pleased to inform you that the Polish version of my blog has been nominated to the Best Blog of a Month Award. To win I need your help! Please could you  vote for me on this site  - choose option 2 r0cky-rugby.
Thank you :)

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Lions start with big win

British and Irish Lions started their tournée with a big win, beating Barbarians 59:8. The game took place in Hong Kong in extremely difficult weather conditions. High humidity and temperature made this match a tough test for many players.

The idea to play in Hong Kong was controversial and caused some mixed feelings among the fans and experts. Although, from the commercial point of view the spot might seem perfect, both the atmosphere on stands and the weather could have been better if the game had been played elsewhere. It is a rare opportunity to see the clash between Lions and Barbarians. The Saturday’s game was their second game ever (the first one took place in 1977) so it is a shame that the stands were not full.

The game was quite decent but one could notice that the players are not used to such humidity and high temperatures. Barbarians showed a much better performance comparing to their previous game, however, the Lions were undoubtedly better. British and Irish Lions scored 8 tries. They played well and surely the fans will optimistically look forward to new games. High victory in difficult conditions should boost the team’s morale. The next game is on Wednesday and Lions will then face Western Force. It is Barbarians second high loss – a week ago they were beaten by England 40:12. Still the players deserve a mention for their ambitious playing. Their Joe Rokocoko was one of the best players on the field.