It’s a World Cup exit for Scotland, but enter our new ‘15-a-side’ column!
BLOWN AWAY: What a remarkable job the Japanese authorities did to get that game played on Sunday. After all the talk of protests and law suits it is important to remember that it was just a game, and that people lost their lives in typhoon Hagibis. None of the “experts” thought it would go ahead but what a game it was.
JAPAN 28 SCOTLAND 21: What an advert for running, open rugby. Two teams gave their all, and produced the best game so far in the tournament. Japan were unstoppable in that first half and brought back memories of Barbarian-style Rugby. They are serious contenders and deserve great credit. What a contrast to computer-obsessed coaches, negative forward play and packs of muscle-bound automations.
REMEMBER WHEN?: Older players must rub their eyes in disbelief at certain aspects of the modern game, especially the line-outs and scrums. Lifting in the line- out was once a penalty offence, while now it is an art form. Hookers don’t hook any more and the scrum half passes the ball into the back row if he can manage it. Players try to run through people instead of trying to beat them and the endless arrival of water-carriers must be placing a serious drain on the wells and reservoirs of the world.
SUPER SIX: Hands up anyone who can explain and justify the new Super Six tournament. How on Earth can we have six teams of semi-professional rugby players in the country- and three of them from Edinburgh? Not one Glasgow team and none north of Stirling. As for the end of season games against Welsh club sides- don’t even go there!
LAST SATURDAY’S GAMES: Alloa 27 Grangemouth 38 Dumfries 72 Falkirk 12 Bo’ness 18 Dunfermline 40 Broughton 13 Linlithgow 15
WALK, DON’T RUN: Walking Rugby continues to grow in popularity and Linlithgow’s sessions attract a good turnout. The rules are basically modified touch rugby. Players of both genders take part and tries are scored by crossing the goal-line. We hope that Grangemouth will be starting a group soon.