Sunday, 5 February 2012

Frustration Stations

Scotland got beat by England at home.  I behaved very well and didn't scream abuse at my TV set mostly because I didn't want to induce a coughing fit and a little bit because I didn't want to terrify MC.  After all my efforts to instill in him an understanding if not a love for the game, it would probably be detrimental to have him perceive rugby turn his pregnant missus into a homicidal maniac. 

Bring back the mighty Patterson.  What's with this commentating on the sidelines and 'retirement' nonsense?  He should be mandated into each game: made to provide a National Service - actually, I'd settle for him just keeping Dan Parks off the pitch.  Such a shame they can't keep Parks on the sideline until he's required for a kick at the posts.  No one can deny the man can kick a ball from a considerable distance, but I'm concerned he can only do so when no-one else is taking a running lunge at him at the same time.  His boot is otherwise a liability during play.  Too often does it hand possession like a well wrapped gift to the opposition but yesterday an English player managed to charge down the ball off the end of Dan's boot and score a try within two paces.  There's a good reason that man plays for Cardiff when he's not playing for Scotland - best to put most of Wales and England in between him and the north.    

The English squad were a bunch of uncapped newbies and should have been squashed as such.  No such luck.  Please note that I hold no particular angst against the English side.  Indeed, I suffer as much despair when we get gubbed by the other 4 nations involved in this particular tournament.  Although the national subconscious is trained to shy away from being slapped down by the old enemies, I have to say it is always more horrifying to be beaten by Italy.  One particular year I treated my Dad and brothers to tickets to the Scotland-Italy home game.  We gave away 3 tries in the first 7 minutes.  That day we left the stadium, went to Rose Street to watch the rest of the day's matches and spent a happy several drunken hours pretending we were actually Irish to overcome our shame. 

One of my earliest childhood memories is of being sat down to the rugby with my Dad and taught to shout "Come - on - ie Blues!!  You're running the wrong way!"  How very sad that as I approach 30 I am preparing to train my as yet unborn child in much the same terms. 

The Six Nations has begun: welcome to frustration stations. 

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