tehgraun has a big pic of Jonny Wilkinson on its front page (webpage, haven’t seen the paper version) with the headline “The man with the golden boot”. Were we watching different semi-finals? His kicking wasn’t actually that good last night; and while the drop-goal he landed at the end wasn’t bad at all, (i) it wasn’t a match-winning kick of the kind to get properly excited about, and (ii) the kind of possession England had at the time meant that he was pretty much assured of a regulation drop-goal opportunity some time around that point in the match.

Pretty scrappy game, I thought, especially after it settled down after a very high-tempo opening fifteen minutes or so. I’m not sure that England deserved to win it, but I know that France didn’t, and I’m sorry we didn’t really see Michalak get to do anything special.

2 thoughts on “Rugby”

  1. You are being unduly stingy Chris:

    Wilkinson’s DG made a big difference to the dynamics of the game because it meant that France couldn’t snatch victory themselves with a drop or a pen.

    This England team had recently been humiliated 36-0 and were playing France in France. It was a fantastic achievement to do what they did. (I might add that the message boards at L’Equipe were in no doubt that les Rosbifs (ou les Roses) were deserving winners.)

  2. Stingy? Maybe, though in general I’m not feeling stingy about this England team. I was *seriously* impressed watching them against Australia, partly because it was so much fun watching the English forwards absolutely terrorise the Aussie scrum, to the extent that they obviously didn’t even want to be awarded any scrums themselves. I didn’t see England play that well last night; and I stick by my view: neither side really deserved to win (by, e.g., playing out of their skins), but France deserved to win less than England did.

    Point taken about the drop goal, although given the poverty of the French efforts earlier in the game at dropping goals, I doubt there was too much risk of that in the last few minutes.

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