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September

Rugby World Cup Pool Play

Pool play has been completed and now eight teams are though to the next stage of the Rugby world Cup in France. Southern Hemisphere teams were clearly dominant taking first place in all four pools. The Pacific Island teams won the hearts and minds of fans with their dazzling speed and ball skills and the passion with which they play the game. Samoa were expected to do well but were overshadowed by the Tongans who notched up two wins, gave the South Africans a scare and the English a run for their money as well. It was however the Fijians who made it into the quarter-finals.

Pool A

Defending World champions England failed to impress in their initial outings but made it through nevertheless to a quarter-final berth where they will meet Australia in Marseille. They were much improved, in their final pool match against a physical Tongan side, Jonny Wilkinson putting in a fine performance proving yet again that he is more than just a boot. South Africa dominated the pool as expected, routing the English 36-0, posting big scores against U.S.A. and Samoa though the Tongans came close to a major upset as the Africans rested some of their top players. Samoa performed below expectations notching up a single win against lowly rated U.S.A. and losing against the less favoured Tongans for the first time in 11 outings. The Tongans held on depite having only 13 players on the field in the dying stages to post an historic win against their Pacific rivals. U.S.A. competed well. In their encounter with South Africa, Takudzwa Ngwenya outpaced Brian Habana to score one of the tries of the tournament so far.

Left: Finau Maka

Tonga, weak on resources and funding were by far the the biggest surprise package in the world cup playing an all round game with pride and passion. Massive No. 8 Finau Maka has become something of a poster boy of the 2007 world cup with his distinctive fro and powerful charges down the field.

Pool B

As expected Australia dominated pool B with only the Welsh putting up any real opposition. Japan displayed great speed and ball skills against physically much stronger teams, losing a tight contest with Fiji and managing a 12-12 draw against Canada scoring the equalizing points well into injury time. The draw was enough for some pundits to call for coach John Kirwin to be retained for life!Fiji managed the upset of the tournament in a thrilling match that would see them through to a quarter-final berth against South Africa and the Welsh eliminated from the tournament. When Fiji raced away to a 25-3 lead early in the game many would have sensed something special in the making. A Fijian player, sin binned towards the end of the first half allowed Wales back into the game but the Fijians persisted pulling off a major upset. Unfortunately for Fiji, inspirational first five-eighth and rugby world cup veteran Nicky Little who had so much to do with Fiji's success will take no further part in the tournament, leaving the field due to injury. Welsh coach Gareth Jenkins was sacked the following day.

Pool C

In pool C New Zealand continued the trend of southern hemisphere dominance with few teams able to offer more than token resistence. Scotland battled it out with Scotland in the final pool match to see them into the next round where they will meet Argentina. Portugal were clearly the weakest team in the tournament with only a handful of professional players in their squad but they won the crowds by playing with pride and passion. Romania have slipped from their heyday in the communist era when they were a force to be reckoned with. They notched up a hard fought win against Portugal, tested the Italians and their pushover try against the All Blacks after sustained pressure in the forwards was a highlight of pool play.

Pool D

Pool D has been dubbed the "Pool of Death" with Ireland, France and Argentina all in line for higher honours. The opening match of the world cup saw the home team go down 12-17 to Argentina in a match they were expected to win. Ireland were disappointing. Going into the final match against Argentina they needed to win with a bonus point to go any further in the tournament, a task which they fell well short of. Georgia notched up their first win in world cups against Namibia and went close to a major upset losing 10-14 against Ireland. They along with Tonga were among the most improved teams at the 2007 world cup.

So at the end of pool play the quarter finals look like this:

Australia Vs England
(Saturday, October 6, Marseille)
New Zealand Vs France
(Saturday, October 6, Cardiff)
South Africa Vs Fiji
(Sunday, October 7, Marseille)
Argentina Vs Scotland
(Sunday, October 7, St. Denis)

Giving More than 100%

This is a strictly mathematical viewpoint....it goes like this:

What Makes 100%? What does it mean to give MORE than 100%? Ever wonder about those people who say they are giving more than 100%? We have all been to those meetings where someone wants you to give over 100%. How about achieving 103%? What makes up 100% in life?

Here's a little mathematical formula that might help you answer these questions:

If:
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Is represented as:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26.

Then:

H-A-R-D-W-O-R-K
8+1+18+4+23+15+18+11 = 98%

And

K-N-O-W-L-E-D-G-E
11+14+15+23+12+5+4+7+5 = 96%

But,

A-T-T-I-T-U-D-E
1+20+20+9+20+21+4+5 = 100%

And,

B-U-L-L-S-H -I-T
2+21+12+12+19+8+9+20 = 103%

AND, look how far ass kissing will take you.

A-S-S-K-I-S-S-I-N-G
1+19+19+11+9+19+19+9+14+7 = 118%

So, one can conclude with mathematical certainty that While Hard work and Knowledge will get you close, and Attitude will get you there, it's the Bullshit and Ass kissing that will put you over the top.

Rugby World Cup Quiz

Test your rugby knowledge:



U.S.A. Today - Neb. state senator sues God in protest

Imelda's New Shoes

Former Philippine First Lady Imelda Marcos (78) was famous for her enormous collection of shoes, numbering around 1,220 pairs. Recently recieving treatment for pain in her knees which made walking difficult, she now gets to boost her collection with a new pair of orthopedic shoes.

Fifty Years On The Road

On the road was first released in September 1957. A hardback copy sold for $3.95 back then while a first edition now might go for $8,000. How does "on the Road" stack up 50 years later?

The Guardian - America's first King of the Road
Christian Science Monitor - Fifty years later, 'On the Road' still beckons
New York Times - On The Road Again
Pop Matters - After 50 years, Kerouac's 'On the Road' still matters

Inscrutable Missives

The latest doggerel from the hordes.....

Subject: [ .*:.-[+ +!-!*] :.*:. ]* )+[!-. :(

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Cool Facts for Wednesday, September 12th

# 571 - Uncategorized Fact
Grapes explode when you put them in the microwave.

# 1017 - Uncategorized Fact
Pretzels were originally invented for Christian Lent.

# 2437 - Inventors Fact
The power lawn mower was invented by Ransom E. Olds (of Oldsmobile fame) in 1915.

# 2199 - Geography Fact
Adolf Hitler had planned to change the name of Berlin to Germania.

# 1357 - Uncategorized Fact
There are 293 ways to make change for a dollar.

From Fact Library

Rugby World Cup

Result: France 12   Argentina 17

The rugby world cup kicked off in Paris' Stade Francais with a loss for the home side against Argentina. France asserted dominance in the forwards but were let down by poor handling in the backs. The Puma's staunch defense was carried them through for the win in what many will consider an upset. "The Pool of Death" also includes the All Ireland team whom France will probably need to beat to have a chance of going through to the next round.

France 12: David Skrela 4 pens.
Argentina 17: Ignacio Corleto try; Felipe Contepomi 4 pens. Ht 9-17.


IRB world rankings
Rugby World cup 2007