Posts Tagged ‘Toulouse Olympique’

Ouch

March 12, 2009

I started watching the Widnes-Toulouse game whilst cooking dinner, meaning that I wasn’t giving it my full attention. Even so, as I was simmering down my Chilli Con Carne*, I couldn’t help but notice that Widnes appeared to be running riot very quickly. Then the time came when my food was finally ready, and so I stopped watching and started eating. When I started watching the game again, it was 40-0 to Widnes… and it wasn’t even half-time yet.

Watching the bits of the game that I did, it seemed perfectly clear to me that Toulouse were not up to the defensive standard required. They barely dominated any tackled at all, and the few that they managed to get a bit of momentum in were often ruined by some sloppy discipline. Most worryingly for them their wide defence was horrible and Widnes kept finding a way through it. 

Of course Toulouse have some excuses, the most pertinent of which is that they’d basically not played a game in months until their cup game at Sheffield last week, and if ever a team looked undercooked it was this Toulouse team who really should have prepared better for the standard of the Championship. Also, Widnes looked almost as tasty as my Chilli and I think that Paul Cullen will instill some extra direction into them once he comes fully on board (he was in an ‘observational’ capacity tonight, although he looked fairly communicative with John Stankevitch whenever the cameras cut to him) although we’ll have a better idea of their standing within the Championship after their game with Halifax next week. It’s possible that Toulouse have gotten the hardest task out of the way, and frankly the only way from here is up. 

*very tasty with sour cream and cheddar

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All Kinds of Crazy Stuff Beginning Today / Tomorrow

March 12, 2009

Through taking my eyes off the ball, I’d completely failed to notice that two competitions will be starting up in the next 24 hours, meaning that there’s even more Rugby League to watch. I call this a Good Thing.

First off, later this evening sees the start of the Co-Operative Championship, as Widnes Vikings get to take on Toulouse Olympique. The Championship should be especially interesting to watch this year, as we get to see just how the clubs manage to cope without having any promotion to aim for in the immediate future. Of course a Grand Final appearance is one of the requirements for promotion into Super League, and the clubs that genuinely hope to get a license will be planning for it right now. Widnes will undoubtedly be one of those teams aiming for the top flight, and so it will be interesting to see how they get on against a club that many feel the RFL are hoping to fast-track into Super League. It will also be interesting to see at what level Toulouse will compete at, because if they perform at a high level in the Championship in the next three years I would imagine they will be aiming for a Super League place as well.

Then tomorrow morning (evening local time) the best Rugby League competition in the world kicks off, as the NRL begins its 2oo9 season. I must admit that I’ve not followed the NRL so much in the last few seasons. This isn’t out of any belief about its entertainment value or anything like that, it’s just because Setanta took the rights from Sky and I don’t have Setanta. However, I hope to watch a lot more of it this year. I had indeed hoped to be able to get an Aussie Sports subscription, but due to their stupid online payment system I’m not sure I’ll do that after all. If they don’t want my money, then that’s their problem. Still, I’m sure I’ll find a way… Manly Sea Eagles start as favourites (rightly, after their performances over here) but given that they seem to be trying to self-implode at the minute, they might not be the safest bet…