Rugby 2018


#2204

At least if you have a grandparent of the nationality then there’s some link, tenuous but a link, this is bullshit. Honestly puts me right off the international game - they’d want to be careful about allowing too much of this.


#2205

Sexton is well past his best now, physically. Zebo would look alot better if he had a team around him like some of the less great players did in 2009 etc.
International sport player selection became a huge mockery under St Jack, say no more.
Alot of islanders want to have a life in NZ anyway, there’s a huge population of them like Irish in Britain. So if they can do it from a young age through being very talented in sport, why not? The issue is more about the social fabric they have both on the islands and in the NZ communities they come too. Do the clubs and NZRU etc do things to support and develop that in constructive ways?


#2206

Sexton is still the top out half in our hemisphere. Has had his injury issues obviously but he always seems to return stronger (as a player) does he not? Zebo is very limited (great under the high ball, and great turn of pace obviously), and Munster have a queue of wingers in their squad that will fill whatever void he will leave. It’s the right move for all parties really. Zebo needs to butter his bread and that of his family going forward. Also his Father is from Martinique, so there’s a cultural connect there too.

R.e NZ. It’s blatant poaching, even the Kiwis don’t deny it! I spent some time down there. Was working with a guy who had played underage rugby. He said he packed it in at 14/15 as he was facing off against lads of 90kg (islanders more so than Maori). And that’s the guts of 15 years ago!


#2207

Sexton certainly not well past his best, as evidenced by his performances against NZ for Ireland and Lions, and with Leinster so far this season.
Top outhalf in northern hemisphere definitely.

Residency rule is changing to 5 years and fully agree that it needs to change. I can’t imagine anyone particular likes seeing project players representing Ireland (except for Munster folk of course).


#2208

All four provinces have had their fair share of project players and they will continue to sign overseas players whether they’re eligible for Ireland or not, taking places of any potential emerging talent.


#2209

Do the IRFU and Nucifora not have some control over this? Didn’t Pienaar effectively have to leave Ulster because of guidelines/caps that are in place?


#2210

Yeah. Nucifora controls whether or not they can sign non-Irish eligible players. There’s only supposed to be a max of one per position in the country.
However I’m not aware of such a thing being in place for project players, in fact it seems to be actively encouraged.

So whether they’re eligible or not is a major factor in it.


#2211

Sexton and Farrell nearly at the same level . Sexton marginally ahead
I’d expect Farrell to move ahead in 2018

Sexton by far the best Irish out half of all time


#2212

Better than Jack Kyle when you saw him play?


#2213

Better than ROCK in that legendary Leinster Colleges final? Or was he scrum-half for that?


#2214

Strangely enough even before my time :blush:

But I am mystified at those that say Kyle was the best . I’d say he wouldn’t be in the next parish if he was playing today


#2215

Clearly you can only compare talent across the generations, not prep. I still think Liam Brady is the most skillful Irish soccer player I’ve ever seen.


#2216

Soccer is essentially the same game just players are better conditioned and faster .

Rugby union isn’t the same sport anymore with the physicality and rule changes


#2217

And of course professionalism


#2218

I know what you’re saying, but Sexton is brilliantly skillfull. So is Ringrose. Neither are very physical players relatively speaking. It’s all relative, to each era. The players overall may get bigger, faster etc but the more skillful player is still the more skillfull player.
Even at the end of his time at the top level Brady was written off as not physical enough and so on. But it was as much to do with the way the game was going in British football. It’s all relative. And it changes. Any look at the archives of 80s and 90s top level soccer shows more physicality than the current era.


#2219

Brady was one-footed …


#2220

Wish I had his bad foot :joy:


#2221

Sexton has become a class player over the years. But I am not sure if he would have had the nerve that O’Gara showed towards the end of the Wales game in 2009. Then again, O’Gara had to work hard throughout his career to attain that level of nerve. I think O’Gara probably had to work harder on his game than Sexton would do now, especially on his defence. That said, although he wasn’t the best tackler, O’Gara still never shirked responsibility in the tackle. Sexton has great natural strength and speed and good hands but I think in basic footballing skills, O’Gara was that bit better. His cross-field kick in Croker for Shane Horgan’s try against England and his chip and chase for O’Driscoll, again against England, late on in Twickenham (was it 2004 or 2006?) that led to Horgan again, winning the game with a corner flag touch-down - I’m not sure if Sexton would have had that level of footballing skill.

Two other worthy mentions are Ollie Campbell and Paul Dean. It would have been interesting to see either of them in the professional era. Dean was a great passer, albeit a sh*t kicker and was great with the ball in hand.

Nobody mentioned above could match either Jonny Wilkinson or Dan Carter, for me.


#2222

Sexton has game managed two Lions teams . ROG was never good enough to be a test lion starter


#2223

Your spot on there !