Saturday, 8 October 2011

Da iawn Cymru #rwc11

Shane Williams scoring the first try
Well done Wales.

Of course there will be debates over whether Ireland kicking those two penalty opportunities early in the first half would have changed the way the match panned out. But a 12 point win was not in most people's estimates of the way the first quarter final would go.

However, one thing that is certain after this match. Both Brian O'Driscoll, Ronan O'Gara, Gordon D'Arcy, Donncha O'Callaghan, Paul O'Connell and many of the others in the Ireland squad will not be there in 2015. There will be experienced young heads like Tommy Bowe and Kieth Earls on the wings, Johnny Sexton at Scrum Half. But Ireland had entered this world cup as one of the oldest teams, many of the figureheads knew this was most likely going to be their last chance to win the world cup.

After a slow start against the USA, but then there was that win against Australia. Suddenly from being talked about as a team that might struggle to get out of the pool we were being talked about as a team that could go all the way to the final. Then when we demolished Italy in the second half of the last pool game it was set up for the semi final of the two in form Northern Hemisphere teams to send one of them away home in the half of the draw that now guaranteed a six nations finalist.

Wales of course only just lost out to South Africa in the first game. But like Ireland also kept building on their start. Theirs of course was not a slow start and indeed many consider they were actually cheated of a winning three points by the match officials. We haven't even seen who Wales will play next weekend but I already feel that we will be hearing Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau* being sung by the vast traveling Welsh Male Voice Choir in red at Auckland in the final.

* Land of Our Fathers

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