Ruck Marks

Ruck Marks

About four or five months ago, The Mole became interested in finding a way to analyse and attribute value to the work done by each player at ruck and breakdown. Continue reading

Errors And Omissions Dwelt On

"And that's my gameplan, gentlemen." Who's going to tell him? "Shit gameplan, cap'n." Good man, Prop Number One!

“And that’s my gameplan, gentlemen.” Hmmm.

Neither coach covered himself in glory at the weekend. While Ben Mowen’s shutdown of Mike Phillips was a highly successful tactic, that has to be balanced with Deans’ selection of James O’Connor as outhalf and placekicker.  Continue reading

No Tigers In Captivity

What do you get when you cross a Lion with a Tiger? A liger ... bred for its skills in magic. I remember when I was hip.

What do you get when you cross a Lion with a Tiger? A liger … bred for its skills in magic. Geoff Parling is Napoleon, Tom Youngs is Kip.

Aviva Premiership champions Leicester Tigers were equalled only by RaboDirect Pro12 winners Leinster in terms of the number of their players selected in the original party by Warren Gatland for his touring Lions; both saw six players called up to ‘the ultimate honour in northern hemisphere rugby’/a HSBC-sponsored travelling jamboree to clobber understrength provincial teams for the amusement of sauced-up tourists and ex-pats.

While the Leinster-based players had been flagged as contenders for a number of years on the strength of back-to-back Heineken Cups and previous experience [incredibly, this is Brian O’Driscoll’s fourth tour, while Rob Kearney was a standout four years ago in South Africa and Jamie Heaslip played every minute of that test series], a couple of Leicester players made the squad in a very hard way, emerging from obscurity over the space of one very arduous and ultimately rewarding season.  Continue reading

Chopper

Gatland has difficult choices ahead of him in terms of filling the backrow positions for the first test ... but he'll probably have even more sleepless nights over the same issue before the second test

Gatland has difficult choices ahead of him in terms of filling the backrow positions for the first test … but he’ll probably have even more sleepless nights over the same issue before the second test.

Judging by how Warren Gatland has been selecting his Lions teams thus far, there’s a strong chance that the lad who played the least rugby of anybody in the squad during the 2012-13 regular season [a mere 584 minutes, and all of them in the Pro12 for a perennial basement outfit] could be the first name on the teamsheet for the most important game of the tour.  Continue reading

LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS [Little Bit Of Time For Actually Talking About The Match That’s Currently On] LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS etc.

Dylan Hartley and Rory Best went  head to head last Friday night and there was only one - LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS

Dylan Hartley and Rory Best went head to head last Friday night and there was only one – LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS LIONS

The Mole was recently moved to speak out in defense of Sky Sports in a social situation. Suffice it to say that said defense went down just about as well as Randy Marsh’s appearance on Wheel of Fortune. Ohhhhhhhh. “Naggers”. Continue reading