Football v Rugby and a European clean sweep for the provinces.

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Sunday was an interesting sporting day of contrast. We had the ‘super derby Sunday’ of premier league football, the over marketed over hyped sporting let down that is the sky sports sponsored game. And we had another round of European rugby that had all of the Irish provinces in action, with things to prove.

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Provincial bias, Contracts, Furniture and Pay Scales

With a tear in my eye it is time to put the green jersey in the wash and it is time to switch back into provincial mode. My beautiful retro blue jersey with an extra starched, standing at attention collar is ready to be worn again with obnoxious and loud pride.

But this morning has been spent looking at our neighbours from the west. Munster rugby has been in the headlines lately. Managing a debt on the stadium and the bleed of players is taking a headline above the play on the pitch.

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November wrap up, the old old enemy and the future

And so it with a tear in my eye that I say goodbye to the November internationals of 2017. My favourite part of the sporting year is over again. Last year we have the All Blacks initiating gang war on the turf of Lansdowne road to close it off, this year we had a professional and stubborn Argentina side in our closing match.

Going into the game and after team selection I thought Ireland would run over the visitors. I thought that the mixture of experience around the team with the new caps would prove too much for a weary, well-travelled Argentina side who would want to go home and sleep for a while.

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November Internationals, The other old enemy, Sending a message and newbies.

And here we go!

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The final weekend of my favourite part of the rugby calendar is upon is and it has been massively positive for Ireland but we come up against the other old enemy this weekend, the 1 team that I cannot emotionally handle losing to anymore, the well-traveled Argentina.

Argentina comes in to this match at the end of a season where they have added more flyer miles than a Ryanair pilot on their frequent flyer card. An ageing team along with a massive amount of long haul flights (over 50 this year) may result in a wilting team. But they want to finish their season on a high; they always want to put one over Ireland. In 16 meetings, Argentina have only won 6 but they have won 2 of the important games in the world cup and these always stick in the craw.

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Ireland v Fiji, New Faces and a frustrating weekend.

Another emotional weekend of Irish sport is behind us.

Ireland took on the mighty Fiji in Lansdowne road on Saturday night and it was a game of 3 halves. Don’t let my ordinary level maths confuse you. But it was a game of 3 halves.

The team selected kept only 2 started from the previous week against South Africa (Conway and Toner) and 13 starters none of which had 15 caps or more. A brave move from King Joe. I think most expected maybe 4 or 5 new caps to start with a mixture of experience and newbies on the bench, but Joe showed confidence in his entire squad here which was a massively positive move and sent a great message to his team.

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Springboks, New faces, results and Bright Futures

Well, that was unexpected. The might Springboks marched into Dublin with their heads up after running the All Blacks thisclose two weeks ago. They had the mind games going all week by talking up Ireland and being overly complimentary. Knowing that Ireland rarely stand up to the tag of favourites, the ‘Boks where needling through niceness all week. A Gatland-esque technique that has worked before.

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