I must say, give credit where its due. England played an awesome and disciplined game. They did not go slack after a fairly good lead at half time, they kept going to get a humongous cricket score. Ashton, whether liked or not did very well and ensured that spirits stay high throughout the game with his six tries.

France vs Ireland, if that is the discipline and game skill that France is going to display throughout the remainder of the series, well, they won't get far. Ireland was not playing that good, yet they almost managed a draw with France, shame on them!

The rest, as Davey mentioned, will depend on the "best" of the total bad skill display we saw thus far. May the best "worst" team get into third... :)

My predictions, I'm still keeping it as is for the 3rd round. I'm sure we will see who's who then.

Will it be Scotland to thwart them again?

Not if the Scots play like they did against Wales, no.

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@HG - no not if they play like that. But we both know how fragile a dominant English side can be. Overconfident or other teams just seem to raise their game. Like I mentioned before, it's the one game that the Celts look forward to and want to win. Mind you, didn't do much to raise Wales' game. :(

Yeah, I just keep trying to convince myself that this is 'another 2004 team' which will not do the usual England thing and just get lazy/go to sleep/turn off like they usually do after a good game or two.

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OK, round 3.

Italy vs Wales
England vs France
Scotland vs Ireland

My prediction: wins for all away teams, although It/Wa and Eng/Fr will be close methinks.

Italy 16 - 22 Wales
England 18 - 20 France
Scotland 3 - 32 Ireland

I agree that the England/France match should be close, but with Johnson pretty much leaving the side alone (apart from Sheridan coming back after injury) and the home advantage I reckon France will find it hard to scrape a win out of it. In fact, I'm pretty concerned, looking at the French side, that they are going to be going for a boring kicking game to try and counter the new found English dynamism and flair for running the ball.

As for Italy/Wales that's also going to be close if Italy can find the kind of form they did at home against Ireland. Or not close at all if they play like they did against England. But then the same could be said about Wales at the moment, up and down like a whore's drawers both of them.

Scotlnad/Ireland I'm in total agreement that, on current form, Ireland look like walking all over the Scots.

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Eng/Fr - should be hell of a game. Scrums should be very interesting. I think Sheridan is over-rated. I'll probably be forced to eat those words, but I don't see him as a dynamic modern prop. England have plenty of talented young guns, but I suppose you need a cornerstone against the French front row.

You reckon flair has shifted across the Channel or was that tongue-firmly-in-the-cheek stuff? :)

Italy 23 - 20 Wales
England 26 - 15 France
Scotland 10 - 22 Ireland

Lets see how far I'm off here. I agree with Davey's comments. It is going to be a tough weekend.:)

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Oh gawd Andre, that's suicide weekend with those results. :(

Hehehe, Yeah I know you're a huge Wales fanatic, but I still think that Italy has the upper hand. I must say though, I went and searched some more predictions, it seems I might be wrong, sooooo _ _ _ Italy 20 - Wales 23.

The other 2 matches I seem to be fairly in with what the rest of the world thinks, AND I have made the predictions before my search.;)

I'll sponsor your beer for next week if my first prediction of Italy (23) vs Wales (20) proofs to be incorrect.:)

>You reckon flair has shifted across the Channel or was that tongue-firmly-in-the-cheek stuff?

I do believe, with Flood and Youngs plus Ashton and Foden, that England has actually found a decent amount of flair. It might not always show across the full 80 minutes, but it's certainly there.

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Hate to admit it, but England have improved in the back division of late. I still think it'll be down to the quality of possession that each team will get from the forwards though. Pretty evenly matched up front IMO.

@Andre - I'd rather you kept your money and Wales win by hook or by crook. Half a point would suit me!

If you carry on like this, I might be converted to a wales supporter. I'll then have a beer (or few) on you (and Davey, he loves it) which ever way the game goes. I will add my little bit of support to Wales though.;)

That's it, England can get stuffed: give Flood and Youngs back to the Tigers. After that poor display tonight against the Sharks, I think we need them more :)

Club before country, that's my motto. Especially after a few too many pints of Spitfire. Actually, I'm not sure you can have too many Spitfires...

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Spitfire?! You call that dirty bathwater beer? You gotta be joking. Felinfoel's Double Dragon is sweeter than ambrosia (not the custard!).

Country before anything, that's my motto. I'd have given 20 years of my life to don the Welsh rugby jersey - just once - but I see your point. Domestic rugby goes down the chutes for a couple of months during the 6 nations,and then again during the Autumn internationals. Do the top players actually play any club rugby anymore?

Good job the Welsh clubs have bought so many foreigners to plug the gap. God forbid that we should try to develop some home grown talent and get some strength in depth. Foreign has-beens on a meal ticket and retired Welsh internationals who still want to make a killing - they've done a good job of clogging up the system for years. Well done the regions!

Andre - there's a bit of Welsh in you, I can sense these things - you have a dragon's fire in your belly and love your rugby. I reckon some boyo stayed on after Rourke's drift and fertilized the native stock. :) Het jy dink dat jy die wêreld beker wen?

Het jy dink dat jy die wêreld beker wen?

If we were playing, sure enough, we would have spoiled all predictions here. As far as the world cup goes, we have some of the best players in the world, so yes, I think we will. One of our lead players, Bakkies Botha, however (traitor) has signed a 2 year deal with Ireland from the end of this season, so yes, as far as your comments above, I agree. I think its all about money these days and not the spirit anymore as it use to be 10 years ago. Dankie vir die support!:)

As far as the love goes, most definitely, I am a sports fanatic, Rugby being first, Cricket 2nd, Motorsports (bikes, rally and F1) 3rd, Gholf 4th, Pool/Snooker and then the "other stuff".

I am a huge Stormers supporter (involved in some major sponsorships with them) (now Welsch as well ;), braveheart's Wallice and all...) and of course a Springbok to the bone. Its a few hours until kick off for most games, so my wife will be cursing me again. I will have to switch between 4 games in a 5 hour period, ouch! The first to watch is of course my new found team, Wales vs Italy at 14:30. Then at 5, the England vs France game AND the sharks vs Blues games. Then, at last, the main game, Stormers vs Lions. Tomorrows game between Scotland and Ireland will be nice ending to my "busy" weekend.

Weekends are the same here :)

Work during the morning - then the afternoon is taken up with watching the live matches followed by those I recorded at the same time (ESPN HD, Sky Sports HD) and often I'll even throw one of those 'highlight round up' shows into my night time viewing.

Of course, if the Tigers are playing at home then the family are happy as I'm out of their hair for half a day. I spoil it when I get home and watch the match again, having recorded it of course!!!

I spoil it when I get home and watch the match again, having recorded it of course!!!

and a few beers stronger than when you left I guess.:)

CRAP, I just tuned in to find that the game will not be streamed in S.A., only the England vs France game. Will see if I can find an online stream, DAMN!!!

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OK Andre, I might have found a solution. http://zattoo.com/

You just need to register. No payment.

Look for S4C - the Welsh language channel. If you don't mind the Welsh commentary. Else, you can find a radio broadcast and turn the commentary down!

As I'm in the UK, I can't attest to it working in SA. You could try it though.

Thanks a stack. It seems the problem was with our broadcasters, no signal. Has been fixed and I'm watching as we speak.

Hows that first 15 minutes, Wow. I must say, both sides defenses is extremely weak. It seems that Wales is now pulling it together (32nd . minute) Lets hope for the best...

Zattoo is also not registered in S.A. as yet, can not download, but, as per above, don't despair. I'm in on the action. I thought we were all wrong with our predictions, but it seems that the first part of scoring has now leveled out, we might be close.:)

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Too close. Wales rubbish again. My prediction: 16:22 result 16:24. Not bad.

Yeah, I must say, it was scrapyard material! I watched the sharks and blues play, which are provincial players, and I'll tell you, the game they were playing was much better than the international standard of these two teams.

If you looked at possession, Italy was suppose to win. Then again, half of Italy's score came from stupid errors by the Welsh. If they want to get somewhere in this series, they really need to pull it together.

Enjoy the next one. I see that Sharks is giving the Blues a hiding, good for them!

My predictions (BOTH) was out) You're buying the beer.;)

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I don't mind buying the beer, but I ain't happy. Bloody shambles again. England are winning at the moment. Best game of tournament so far. Our house is screaming bleu murder. Allez les Bleus!

Trust me, after a few beers you won't worry anymore. Might throw a glass or two, but all to "redeem" the Wales team, I'm sure.

Wow, what a game just finished. England, on their home turf, well done. Not what I expected at least. Palmer deserved man of the match.

In the same breath, my favorite, Stormers just scored a try on THEIR home turf against the lions, putting them 1 point ahead. The Lions have not won a game against us in exactly TEN years. This was the closest they ever got. Still 8 minutes left though, lets see.:)

And so we won again! Stormers 19, Lions 16 in the 84th MINUTE!

The perfect song for the Lions, Italy and France can be found here - ;)

So You Win Again!. Hehehe.

Now, obviously, I had a few beers and such, Now I am going to get as one of our (newest mods), WASDted.:)

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Nice one.

Thanks. You're still up? Mind you, its only 20:00 by you, 22:00 by us. Still going strong, for about half an hour or so....

Me and some mates are lanning right now, yeah I know, its suppose to be for the "younger" ones, but then so are we...