Sunday, November 05, 2006

Stop Your Messing Around

Gloucester 21 – Saracens 12

Last night’s match was in no way a classic but the fireworks that lit up the Gloucestershire heavens didn’t distract this punter from a quietly compelling eighty-odd minutes that may prove reasonably important come next spring. I am pleased the tyro Lamb returned to form. A below par performance against Agen last week led to some doubting the lad’s talent but each of Gloucester’s tries, both scored by an energetic Rudi Keil, were as a result of keen thinking and elegiac passing from Lamb. I was thrilled for Keil too. It has taken the affable African a while to win the supporters over so to hear his name being chanted yesterday delighted the sentimentalist in me. Simpson-Daniel’s return was another positive. The young prince enjoyed little time on the ball last night – perhaps a good thing as he returns from a nasty injury – but his elegant presence always reassures me. I still reckon he is Gloucester’s best back ever. I must mention the skipper Bortolami again. What great business it was to deliver the charismatic Italian to Kingsholm! His controlled reading of the game, his mastery of the basics, his utter commitment, his shrewd and influential captaincy skills all impress greatly. And one day he’ll get a pass on the wing! His exotic bow to the shed after the match was a moment to treasure. I think he likes us too.

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