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    The Insects

    Nobody here seems to rate them, they're a cracking side in excellent
    from.

    They have possibly the best back in the tournament- 8 internationals
    with a front row to rival Leicester.

    They also have tonnes of pace behin with the likes of Abbot and
    Lewsey.

    I think them and Leicester have to be joint favourites for the whole
    thing.

    They had a great win against a good Castres side at the weekend.

    #2


    I agree and can't see Leinster beating them or coming anywhere near them.


    On another note and slight controversial, is it possible that Llanelli were in a slightly handy group??


    Are Toulouse over the hill?? After all Leinster did beat them down there last year and as was found out in the semi, they were a long way off winning the thing so maybe Toulouse are no great shakes anymore.


    Ulsterhammered them atRavenhill and they were again beaten at home by Llanelli. I mean Ulster are no where near a HEC winning team after all so that kind of form doesn't look too good.


    As I said, Ulster are not a HEC winning team. I would imagine they would struggle to beat one of the Italians on the road and they have even started losing home games at fortress Ravenhill over the last few seasons. If any team has any notions of winning the HEC then they would expect to bebeating the likes of Ulster.


    Regarding London Irish.........It's unlikely that they will even qualify for next years tournament (although they might by default if the frogs don't turn up) and winning 6 out of 12 in the GPL is hardly HEC winning form (I understand the ML comparison with Munster but let's get real here)


    Llanelli only barely beat Toulouse, Ulster and London Irish at home. As pointed out above, none of these teams, currently, set the world on fire so you would expect Llanelli, as the top Welsh side, to be beating them, probably by more if they have hopes of winning the HEC.


    On a side note, In the EDF cup, which the Welsh seem to be taking reasonalby seriously, they are in a group with Newcastle and Harlequins and have won 1 out ot 3 games. Again. Not world beating stuff.


    So. I honestly think they are not as good as people have made them out to be. Beating a former great well on the way down, perrennial underachievers and GPLno hopers does not a HEC winning team make.


    Should be a good game at Stradey but I fully expect Munster to beat them. And well I should. What kind of a supporter would I be if I didn't expect any less! [img]smileys/biggrin.gif[/img]
    It happened, and I was there.
    4.48pm, Saturday 20th May 2006.
    What does grease taste like? Is it like chicken?

    Comment


      #3

      I reckon the Scarlets are very happy just to be in the Quarter finals.... And by not moving from Stradey, they want to give themselves the best edge over the european champions to get to the semi........ This is the first HEC qf they are in for a long time.....

      Ballyman, you raise some good points, Saying that, I believe they are a very good side, worthy quarterfinalists, some people here have them as favourites, I, and most bookies would think otherwise... Looking forward to the game immensely now...... after the doom and gloom and soul-searching this site has gone through for the last few days, and will continue up to the Welsh match, and we see how our forwards perform...



      (Edit... apologies JoeGlum, I wandered completely off topic....... Wasps are a great side.. not to be underestimated anywhere on the pitch.... possibly weak at the 10 area and can be exploited there.... sounds familiar..!!)

      He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck either, but a real duck that was actually lame. Maybe from stepping on a land mine or something.

      Comment


        #4


        Wasps were bossed up front by castre who are not a great team this year. Reckon Leinster can get parity at scrum time, should be better in the lineout and at the breakdown although Worsley has been in good form. Leinster would be my slight favourites because Wasps rush defence is vulnerable to talented players like contepomi and Darcy/BOD who can break tackles and get in behind them.


        A lot will depend on who comes out of the 6 nations with the bragging rights.
        The only difference between me and a madman is that I'm not mad.
        - Salvador Dali (1904-1989)

        Comment


          #5

          Originally posted by Ballyman

          I agree and can't see Leinster beating them or coming anywhere near them.


          On another note and slight controversial, is it possible that Llanelli were in a slightly handy group??


          Are Toulouse over the hill?? After all Leinster did beat them down there last year and as was found out in the semi, they were a long way off winning the thing so maybe Toulouse are no great shakes anymore.


          Ulsterhammered them atRavenhill and they were again beaten at home by Llanelli. I mean Ulster are no where near a HEC winning team after all so that kind of form doesn't look too good.


          As I said, Ulster are not a HEC winning team. I@@@@SPAN style="font-weight: bold;"> would imagine they would struggle to beat one of the Italians on the road and they have even started losing home games at fortress Ravenhill over the last few seasons. If any team has any notions of winning the HEC then they would expect to bebeating the likes of Ulster.@@@@/SPAN>

          [img]smileys/biggrin.gif[/img]
          I think you will find that our record against Italian sides away from home is pretty good esp in the last few seasons when the italian clubs were better than they are now. I would agree that Ulster are not an HEC winning team (wish that we were) but surely if any team has notions of winning the HEC then they would expect to be beating ANY opposition.

          Comment


            #6
            Back to the topic of the Wasps v Leinster game, my money would be on Wasps - just. Their ground (can't remember the name) like all football grounds is on the narrow side and they will use Dallaglio, Worsley and Shaw etc to grind it up the middle - exactly the place where Leinster are at their weakest.

            Comment


              #7


              Originally posted by joeglum
              Nobody here seems to rate them, they're a cracking side in excellent
              from.

              They have possibly the best back in the tournament- 8 internationals
              with a front row to rival Leicester.

              They also have tonnes of pace behin with the likes of Abbot and
              Lewsey.

              I think them and Leicester have to be joint favourites for the whole
              thing.

              They had a great win against a good Castres side at the weekend.







              Excuse me - I have already told everyone who would listen that Wasps will win this year's HEC.





              New infraction avoidance policy: a post may be described as imbecilic, but its author should never be described as an imbecile.

              Comment


                #8
                I don't do it often but I agree with Old Dog. Nobody has been talking about Wasps, not even Sky and yet they have just methodically and quietly won their group. My money is on them.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Once you get in behind their rush defence they're very vulnerable. Make no mistake, they played a French side who are in the bottom half of the table, and we won much more convincingly against a similarly sized pack in Agen. Stephen Jones was falling over himself in the Sunday Times to praise Wasps but it's not as good a result as it looks.

                  Comment


                    #10


                    Abbot left Wasps at the end of last season and signed for Harlequins. Leinster achieve parity up front? Payne/Bracken, Ward, Vickery/Bracken? Away and bark. Leinster will win if they beat the rush defence and get about 35%+ possession, if its a slogfest i wouldn't fancy Leinsters chances.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Red Hand Hero


                      Abbot left Wasps at the end of last season and signed for Harlequins. Leinster achieve parity up front? Payne/Bracken, Ward, Vickery/Bracken? Away and bark. Leinster will win if they beat the rush defence and get about 35%+ possession, if its a slogfest i wouldn't fancy Leinsters chances.


                      That about sums it up nicely. I think this year is the hardest so far to pick out a winner of the HEC partly as we've seen somany different sides to many of the top teams that you can't say which side will turn up on the day. Provided the conditons aren't like they were in Gloucester i see leinster sneaking this one. Yes they will get minced in the srums but Wasps' back row talents are over-rated. Only Worsley is at his peak. JOC, D'allaglio, Rees, Leo are decent but Leinster back row is just as good. King is past his best, Cipriani's dodgy and Sackey is plain rubbish. Though wasps don't leave many tries in, with semi-decent ball the leinster backs should do enough damage to win it.

                      Comment

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