Stranger Fruit

Something to look forward to

i-23c4253772fd7533cd131744e83ab8cb-irfu[7].jpg With the ASU football season winding down, it is time to turn to other things. So why not rugby? The Irish team are favorites for the coming Six Nations Championship, after winning the Triple Crown last year, and a series of victories over South Africa, Australia and the Pacific Islanders which left them the #5 ranked team in the world (bizarrely behind two teams that they beat fairly handily).

The first home game will be played in Croke Park, the fourth largest stadium in Europe. This is fairly significant as the Gaelic Athletic Association (governing body for Gaelic Football and owners of the stadium) had long prevented “foreign games” such as rugby and soccer from played in their stadium.

Fixtures are:

  • Feb 4: v Wales
  • Feb 11: v France (last years winners)
  • Feb 24: v England
  • Mar 10: v Scotland
  • Mar 17: v Italy

Good stuff to look forward to next year! Any other rugby fans out there?

Comments

  1. #1 ArtK
    November 28, 2006

    I’ve gotta ask, then, what “Gaelic Football” is, if it isn’t soccer?

    I haven’t watched much rugby, but it’s been fun when I’ve had the chance. My sons and I were in the park one day and got to watch a match with a couple of local teams. Makes those guys in the NFL look like sissies.

  2. #2 Richard Carter, FCD
    November 28, 2006

    Used to play rugby at school – tight-head prop. Knocks soccer into a cocked hat. My headmaster was a former captain of Wales.

    Although my other half’s parents were both Irish, I hope you won’t take offence, but COME ON ENGLAND! (Althought the current world champions are totally rubbish at the moment.)

    (In answer to ArtK’s query, Gaelic Football is hurling without the sticks. Have you ever watched hurling? Awesome!)

  3. #3 John Lynch
    November 28, 2006

    Gaelic football is a little like a cross between soccer & rugby. Probably best to read more at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gaelic_football – it’s quite the game (I miss it … and hurling, of course)

  4. #4 John Lynch
    November 28, 2006

    Richard,

    Was a wing forward (and occasional full back) myself.

    > COME ON ENGLAND!

    You’ll get banninated for that sort of thing, you know.

    Who was your headmaster?

  5. #5 gengar
    November 28, 2006

    The Irish are looking a good bet for the 6 Nations – their win against Australia was especially impressive. Much as I hate to admit it, England have got to the point where it seems a waste to throw things at the screen when they’re being inept – I’d run out of ammo within five minutes.

    I surprised myself by getting into rugby at secondary school, am now a semi-retired flanker/wing-forward.

  6. #6 ArtK
    November 28, 2006

    Thanks for the sports lesson and the link.

    Just to keep the mix up, I’ll stand and sing “Hen Wlad” on Feb. 4.

  7. #7 J-Dog
    November 28, 2006

    For all us Rugby fans – A link to the sports equivalent of The Onion. Excellent!

    http://groups.northwestern.edu/womensrugby/links_thebrushback.htm

    So John – Did you play?

  8. #8 John Lynch
    November 28, 2006

    J-Dog:

    > So John – Did you play?

    Yes, for six years in secondary school: wing forward (and occasional full back). Then I took up rowing crew.

  9. #9 Sean
    November 28, 2006

    Thanks to some friends of mine who hail from New Zealand, I’m a fan of the All Blacks. According to this on their web site, Ireland is ranked #3 in the world as of 11/27.

    In addition to the rugby that’s played on grass, there’s also wheelchair rugby which is a different game altogether. It’s played on a basketball court but falls somewhere between a standard rugby match and an all-out smash up derby. To learn more, go to this flash site for the movie Murderball and click on the icon labeled “The Game.” Twenty-one countries including Ireland, New Zealand and the U.S. have national wheelchair rugby teams.

  10. #10 Cassie
    November 29, 2006

    So, I love rugby. My best friend actually plays on the women’s team at University of Wisconsin Stout… “when in doubt, go to Stout!” No one else probably gets that…
    Anyway, on to my real point, seeing the world “hurling” somewhere on this page reminded me that my favorite obscure sport season is almost here – Curling! It’s way harder than it looks, and cracked tailbones are a common occupational hazard. I acutally will be playing on a league when I go home for winter break. Anyone else curl?

  11. #11 John Lynch
    December 4, 2006

    > Anyone else curl?

    Only in a ball … while grading :)

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