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28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

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28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby polter » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 14:30

The Rugby Europe Trophy season kicks off with Poland verses the Czech Republic at the Marketa speedway stadium in Prague on the 28th October.
Poland could have finished last season in 2nd place after their win over the Dutch in Lodz but a depleted team lost to the newly promoted and surprise package Swiss in Warsaw. This meant they finished 4th, an improvement of one place from the end of the previous campaign.

This will be the first game in this divisions for the Czechs for a couple of years after their demotion. They had won the division below relatively easily, then pretty much steamrollered the Maltese in the play-off and the Hungarians in the World Cup qualification round. From what I remember of watching those games, the Czechs can call on a group of solid front-five players, have a well-balanced back row and size and power in the centres. If the Swiss were anything to go by, then the Czechs should quickly feel at home in this division.

The main talking point in Polish rugby in the last few months has been the departure of their coach Blikkies Groenewald. The South African had come to the end of his contract with the Polish Rugby Union and an agreement could not be reached on an extension. This was met with pretty much universal disappointment from the Polish rugby public. Although the results of the national team had not been spectacular it was clear his knowledge, experience and overall efforts to improve the standard of rugby throughout the country were having an effect. It was particularly disappointing that Blikkies could not have been kept on in a kind of consultancy role as, for example, Brendan Venter has played for certain English clubs, but such is life at this level. His role as the 15-a-side coach has been taken by Stanisław Więciorek who is the current record Polish cap holder with 65. He had effectively been a number 2 to Blikkes and has had previous coaching experience with Pogon Siedlice where he managed to take a young team to the league final a few seasons ago. More recently, he has had experience coaching Lublin in the top Polish league.

An interesting comparison in the coaching set up can be made by looking at the Czechs. Their main coach was during the promotion campaign was the ex-Poland coach Tomas Putra. He is probably best known for getting Poland up to 25th in the world ranking partly by recruiting French born players with Polish heritage. It looks like he continued a watered down version of this policy with the Czech national team and the Czech Rugby Union had recently advertised on Rugbydump.com that they were looking for players with Czech heritage to play for them and if you go through the preliminary squad there are a fair few based abroad. In addition to this, it looks as if they have also employed some South African expertise in the form of coach Phil Pretorius. The irony will not be lost on Poland if they were to be beaten and look at what they could have had…

Poland will be keen to win this one as the rest of the season looks pretty tough for them with another 2 away games against the Dutch and the Swiss. This then leaves home games against the Moldovans and then easily the best team in the division in the form of the Portuguese. Moldova looked a shadow of their former selves last season. They were often missing key players, but the “Golden Generation” they had for many years also looked to be coming to an end. That said, if Poland want to move forward they need to be consistently looking like a side comfortably in the top half of the table and not rely on some other side having a disastrous campaign to keep them up.

Club rugby in Poland has moved to a March to November calendar this season and there have been some changes to the clubs normally at the top of the league table. The traditional power-houses of Lechia Gdansk and Arka Gdynia have been replaced by Ogniwo Sopot and Pogon Siedlce. These two clubs, along with the perennially strong Budolani Lodz, will be the teams most likely to contest the national final to be played on Polish Independence day this November 11th. The initial Polish squad announced reflects this and there have been recalls of a few players from these form clubs previously left out – namely the winger/centre Rokicki and scrum-half Janeczko. The backs are still centred on the Sevens team that has competed in the Grand Prix series with Gdula (Siedlce) and Szczepański (Sopot) being notable performers. Poland have also added another Georgian prop Robizon Kelberashvil to the already capped Toma Mhedlidze. A notable absentee is the captain of the sevens team, the scrum half Dawid Plichta. Also missing are Poland’s two French based flankers Mateusz Bartoszek and Alexander Nowicki. However, Alexander’s brother Jędrzej who plays for the Le Creusot club is included as is the winger Andrzej Charlat who scored the match winning try against the Dutch.

Preparation for this game saw the Poles easily beat a European select team in September that also doubled as the 60th anniversary celebration of the Rugby Union. The Czechs had a much tougher match losing 45-10 to the South African Barbarians. I’ve just finished watching this game and if the Rugby Europe Trophy ever wanted to follow the Guinness Pro 14 and invite this South African side to take part they would be title contenders. The team had all the technique of the Portuguese but with an almost Moldovan sized pack.

Czech squad below:
15 Jan Čížek, Michal Schlanger
14.Karel Berounský Pavel Pytela
13. Jirka Pantůček, Matyáš Hopp
12. Aleš Stejskal, Dali Samet
11. Jan Rudolf, Daiel Stárka
10. Jan Kučera, Martin Cimprich, Martin Kovář
9. Zbyněk Schütz Marek Šimák, Albert Aaron Froněk
8. Vojtěch Havel Michael Krizanek
7. Marek Loutocký*** Radim Hutnik
6. Dan Hošek, James Faktor
5. Robert Trefný, Václav Monček
4. Jan Puma Olbrich, Fanda Vohánka
3. Martin Havlíček, Štěpán Pekař
2. Matouš Hodek, Karel Vazač, Vojtěch Mára
1. Adam Leitmančík, Michal Prusa Pavel Šíma, Emilio Calderoni

Joined the group on the 19th October:

Pavel Stastny 3
Jirka Frank 4

Most likely to join for the Polish game:

Ondřej Kutil 2
Hubert Dřímal 2
Anthony Kent 1

Poland Squad:

Ogniwo Sopot- Marcin Wilczuk, Stanisław Powała-Niedźwiecki, Piotr Zeszutek, Grzegorz Szczepański
Master Pharm Budowlani SA Łódź- Łukasz Kujawa, Adrian Ignaczak, Toma Mhedlidze, Michał Mirosz, Patryk Reksulak
Lechia Gdańsk- Sebastian Kacprzak, Marek Płonka Jr. Kewin Bracik
Pogoń Siedlce- Rafał Janeczko, Daniel Gdula, Tomasz Rokicki
KS Budowlani Lublin- Robizon Kelberashvili, Wojciech Król, Piotr Wiśniewski, Jakub Bobruk
KS Budowlani Łódź- Paweł Poniatowski
Arka Gdynia- Szymon Sirocki

Players from French clubs: Jędrzej Nowicki (Le Creusot), Andrzej Charlat (CS Beaune)

Reserve Players: Adrian Chróściel, Dawid Dybowski, Mateusz Plichta, Mateusz Mrowca

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby getienne » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 17:22

Czech squad with (Caps/Tries/Points), to the best of my knowledge:
(before the test vs South Africa Barbarians)

15 Jan Čížek (5/1/5), Michal Schlanger (29/3/15)
14.Karel Berounský (3/-/-), Pavel Pytela (?/-/-)
13. Jirka Pantůček (9/1/5), Matyáš Hopp (?/-/-)
12. Aleš Stejskal (20/7/35), Dali Samet (?/-/-)
11. Jan Rudolf (?/-/-), Daiel Stárka (?/-/-)
10. Jan Kučera (4/-/-), Martin Cimprich (?/-/-), Martin Kovář (10/-/-)
9. Zbyněk Schütz (12/2/10), Marek Šimák (5/-/-), Albert Aaron Froněk (?/-/-)
8. Vojtěch Havel (24/7/35), Michael Krizanek (?/-/-)
7. Marek Loutocký (14/16/80), Radim Hutnik (?/-/-)
6. Dan Hošek (4/-/-), James Faktor (?/-/-)
5. Robert Trefný (?/-/-), Václav Monček (?/-/-)
4. Jan Puma Olbrich (7/2/10), Fanda Vohánka (?/-/-)
3. Martin Havlíček (12/2/10), Štěpán Pekař (?/-/-)
2. Matouš Hodek (2/-/-), Karel Vazač (?/-/-), Vojtěch Mára (17/2/10)
1. Adam Leitmančík (?/-/-), Michal Prusa (16/-/-),Pavel Šíma (?/-/-), Emilio Calderoni (5/2/10)

Joined the group on the 19th October:
Pavel Stastny (49/4/20)
Jirka Frank (13/1/5)
Most likely to join for the Polish game:
Ondřej Kutil (20/5/25)
Hubert Dřímal (2/-/-)
Anthony Kent (?/-/-)

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby thx » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 19:43

The departure of Blikkiesa Groenewalda was a big disappointment. Some players, whom are now missing, said that they wanted still working with Blikkisem. This play with Czech, it could be the most important game for both sides. Maybe game with Moldova will be next, but play others team, especially abroad, will be very hard.

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby polter » Tue, 24 Oct 2017, 10:40

The Poland match day 23 are below:

Ogniwo Sopot: 
1.Marcin Wilczuk
2.Stanisław Powała-Niedźwiedzki
3.Piotr Zeszutek
4.Grzegorz Szczepański
 
Master Pharm Budowlani Łódz SA
5.Adrian Ignaczak
 
Pogoń Siedlce
6.Adrian Chróściel
7.Dawid Dybowski
8.Maciej Panasiuk
9.Przemysław Rajewski
10.Daniel Gdula
11.Tomasz Rokicki
12.Rafał Janeczko
 
Lechia Gdańsk
13.Kevin Bracik
14.Sebastian Kacprzak
 
Arka Gdynia
15.Szymon Sirocki
 
Budowlani Lublin
16.Robizon Klberashvili
17.Wojciech Król
18.Piotr Wiśniewski
19.Jakub Bobruk
20.Jakub Kamiński
 
Skra Warszawa
21.Sebastian Kostałkowski
 
KS Budowlani Łódź
22.Paweł Poniatowski

Le Creusot
23.Jędrzej Nowicki

Most notable are the lack of Master Pharm Budowlani Lodz players which will definitely weaken the team. One of the most interesting match ups would have been the effect of the 2 tight-head props, namely Mhedlidze for Poland and Štastný for the Czechs, but now it looks like only one will play.

There is still the prospect of seeing how the 2 number 8s do. On one side you have the more bulldozer type player in the form of Piotr Zeszutek for the Poles, while the Czechs have the more rangy Vojtěch Havel, both of whom may well be captaining their sides.

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby Tarara » Tue, 24 Oct 2017, 13:20

I see that Polish player Charlat wasn't released by his French club Beaune. Same goes for teammate, Croatian lock Toni Grle (supposedly Baune plays important match this weekend).

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby vis maior » Thu, 26 Oct 2017, 14:57

Updated Czech squad:

1 Emilio Caldaroni, RC Sparta Praha
2 Matouš Hodek, RC Tatra Smíchov
3 Pavel Šťastný, RC Praga Praha
4 Daniel Hošek, RC Praga Praha
5 Jiří Frank, LC Méditérranée XV (FR)
6 Vojtěch Havel (C), RC Tatra Smíchov
7 James Faktor, H.A.C. RFU (UK)
8 Marek Loutocký, RC Lannemezan (FR)
9 Marek Šimák, RC Tatra Smíchov
10 Jan Kučera, RC Mountfield Říčany
11 Daniel Stárka, RC Tatra Smíchov
12 Karel Berounský, RC Tatra Smíchov
13 Aleš Stejskal, RA Olymp Praha
14 Martin Cimprich, RC Říčany
15 Petr Čížek, RC Praga Praha
16 Anthony Kent, Belenenses RC (POR)
17 Vojtěch Mára, RC Tatra Smíchov
18 Martin Havlíček, RA Olymp Praha
19 Robert Trefný, RA Olymp Praha
20 Michal Križánek, RC Sparta Sparta
21 Zbyněk Schütz, RC Dragon Brno
22 Mohamed Ali Samet, RC Praga Praha
23 Pavel Pytela, RC Sparta Praha

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby polter » Fri, 27 Oct 2017, 05:17

Polish starting line-up and reserves:


Zawodnicy
01) Marcin Wilczuk - Ogniwo Sopot
02) Adrian Ignaczak - Budowlani Łódź SA
03) Sebastian Kostałkowski - Skra Warszawa
04) Wojciech Król - Budowlani Lublin
05) Dawid Dybowski - Pogoń Siedlce (debiutant)
06) Marek Mirosz - Pogoń Siedlce
07) Stanisław Powała-Niedźwiecki - Ogniwo Sopot
08) Piotr Zeszutek (kapitan) - Ogniwo Sopot
09) Rafał Janeczko - Pogoń Siedlce
10) Jędrzej Nowicki - Le Creusot (debiutant)
11) Tomasz Rokicki - Pogoń Siedlce
12) Grzegorz Szczepański - Ogniwo Sopot
13) Kevin Bracik - Lechia Gdańsk
14) Szymon Sirocki - Arka Gdynia
15) Przemysław Rajewski - Pogoń Siedlce (debiutant)

Rezerwa
16) Adrian Chróściel - Pogoń Siedlce
17) Robizon Klberashwili - Budowlani Lublin (debiutant)
18) Sebastian Kacprzak - Lechia Gdańsk
19) Paweł Poniatowski - KS Budowlani Łódź
20) Piotr Wiśniewski - Budowlani Lublin
21) Daniel Gdula - Pogoń Siedlce
22) Jakub Kamiński - Budowlani Lublin (debiutant)
23) Jakub Bobruk - Budowlani Lublin

A mix of young players and some returnees who have had good form in the Polish league such as Rokicki Mirosz and Janeczko.

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby getienne » Fri, 27 Oct 2017, 18:39

Polish Squad with (Caps/Tries/Points), to the best of my knowledge
Zawodnicy
01) Marcin Wilczuk - Ogniwo Sopot (41/1/5)
02) Adrian Ignaczak - Budowlani Łódź SA (5/-/-)
03) Sebastian Kostałkowski - Skra Warszawa (1/-/-)
04) Wojciech Król - Budowlani Lublin (?/1/5)
05) Dawid Dybowski - Pogoń Siedlce (0/-/-)
06) Marek Mirosz - Pogoń Siedlce (15/3/15)
07) Stanisław Powała-Niedźwiecki - Ogniwo Sopot (24/1/5)
08) Piotr Zeszutek (kapitan) - Ogniwo Sopot (11/2/10)
09) Rafał Janeczko - Pogoń Siedlce (12/-/8)
10) Jędrzej Nowicki - Le Creusot (0/-/-)
11) Tomasz Rokicki - Pogoń Siedlce (20/8/40)
12) Grzegorz Szczepański - Ogniwo Sopot (4/4/20)
13) Kevin Bracik - Lechia Gdańsk (3/-/-)
14) Szymon Sirocki - Arka Gdynia (14/3/15)
15) Przemysław Rajewski - Pogoń Siedlce (0/-/-)
Rezerwa
16) Adrian Chróściel - Pogoń Siedlce (24/1/5)
17) Robizon Klberashwili - Budowlani Lublin (0/-/-)
18) Sebastian Kacprzak - Lechia Gdańsk (6/-/-)
19) Paweł Poniatowski - KS Budowlani Łódź (8/-/-)
20) Piotr Wiśniewski - Budowlani Lublin (2/-/-)
21) Daniel Gdula - Pogoń Siedlce (6/-/6)
22) Jakub Kamiński - Budowlani Lublin (0/-/-)
23) Jakub Bobruk - Budowlani Lublin (2/-/-)

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby victorsra » Sat, 28 Oct 2017, 14:19

Czechia 19-14 Poland - FT
Brazilian Rugby News: www.portaldorugby.com.br

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby IanCleverly » Sun, 29 Oct 2017, 23:40

Little article going into the difficulties of selection problems at this level:-

http://www.dziennikbaltycki.pl/sport/in ... ,12621143/

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby RugbyLiebe » Mon, 30 Oct 2017, 07:35

IanCleverly wrote:Little article going into the difficulties of selection problems at this level:-

http://www.dziennikbaltycki.pl/sport/in ... ,12621143/


So if google translate works correct, they are suffering from the problem of having a calendular season were the final phase is at the same time as national team games + as most of their players are amateur, that they are not released by their employers.
How to grow rugby worldwide?
Look at the world ranking in July. Teams ranked 1-10 have to play one team from 11-20 (they don't play in a regular competition) away the next year. 11-20 play 21-30 away and so on. Yes, it really is that simple.

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby polter » Wed, 01 Nov 2017, 22:17

If anyone is planning to watch the Czechs in the fantastic city of Prague, then the Marketa stadium is easy enough to reach by taking a 10 minute or so walk from the second to last metro station on the west bound green line.

I'd say this result puts Poland in survival mode for the rest of the season as this was one of the games they should have targeted for a win as realistically the only other reasonable bet for win points will be their next game against the Moldovans in Gdansk. I'm sure they will be keen observer to see how the Moldovans do against the Dutch at home, who also play the Swiss and Portuguese in Moldova and the Poles and the Czechs away. It may well come down to who can pick up bonus points here and there.

The Union web site described the Polish team that played in Prague as experimental for whatever reason, but the Poles will need to get their best players out if they want to stand a chance of staying up. The scrum was weak with the Czech tight head Šťastný having a particularly good day, especially when the Czechs moved the also heavy number 8 Loutocký to the right flank on every Polish put in.

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby rey200 » Thu, 02 Nov 2017, 10:14

Poland has a very difficult schedule... they have to win against Moldova to avoid relegation.

I don't know to which extent the newspaper from Northern Poland speculates, they actually say that the non-release by employers is just a cheap excuse to have rested players in the league's final phase. Don't know if it is true.

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Re: 28th Oct: Czech Republic vs Poland - Rugby Europe Trophy

Postby NedRugby » Sat, 04 Nov 2017, 06:24

I think you may be thinking a bit too pessimistically to suggest that Poland will be struggling to avoid relegation on the strength of just one game in the whole division. The Czechs have traditionally been comfortable at this level and if I recall correctly even got promoted to the top flight for a single term. It seems that they have returned to their former level. I think that this will be a very competitive league. Portugal will probably be the strongest again but the rest could all beat each other. So in a sense all might be involved in a struggle against relegation and it will take a few more results before a pattern emerges. It's going to be fascinating.

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