Saturday, 10 March 2007

Result Italy 23 - Wales 20

Lets consider the Strategic advantages/dis-advantages of each team going into this game

For Wales a win would have meant avoiding the wooden spoon and a potential humiliation of a white wash sealed by their arch enemy England. Why is this strategic advantage!! The cornered man/army will fight twice as hard as the man/army with an escape route. This situation would have given them some extra drive against the Italians. Now against England on Saturday they will fell even more cornered and will fight much harder as there is no escape route and no second chance.

For the Italians they had done better than before in any 6 nations by winning away from home. This however, meant win or lose they could still hold their heads up high and claim progress at the end of the tournament. This was a potential dis-advantages for Italy as they had an escape route. This was nicely counteracted by the offer of £15k per player if they beat Wales, plus the sell out of all the remaining games with their country men and women fully behind them. They knew they could beat Wales and they had all the reasons to want to beat Wales as well.

Now to the game itself.

The Welsh forwards did complete better than expected and Italian backs also played better than expected against the Welsh. The turning point was the substitutions in the Welsh and Italian forwards. This gave the Italian forwards the clear advantage supplying them with the penalty and and the penalty kick for the line out resulting in the try.

Discussed before about using the expected to met the expected and the unexpected to win. This refers back to the unorthodox and the orthodox methods discussed in the England vs France preview. So you use the expected to met the expected and the unexpected to break the expected.

"Use standard methods to meet everyday challenges
Use unexpected methods to win big breakthroughs"

When Pez chipped the ball over the Welsh line you could see it was an unexpected move as it caught the defense on the back foot. Everyone expected Italy to keep the ball in the forwards trying to use their strength to barrel it over the line. The fact the try was under the posts resulting in a 3 point margin was critical to the controversy that surround the game in the last 10 seconds. Overall even a draw would have been disappointing for Wales and still left the Italians with their best 6 nations so far.

No comments: