International Rules to hit Saigon today
Posted by Vietnam Swans on October 6, 2012
The much anticipated International Rules match between the Reds and Whites will happen this afternoon at RMIT in Saigon.
Irish John Redmond gives us a preview of the big match and in the process clearly demonstrates that the brilliance of Swannies on the key board is unparallelled.
Ali v Frazier, Palmer v Nicklaus, Prost v Senna, Bjorg v McEnroe, Ireland v Australia. These are the battles, the rivalries and the hate filled occasions in sport that are simply irresistible to watch. A history of hate, envy and even a touch of respect have fueled these rivalries for years and this weekend plays hosts one of the most infamous; the International Rules.
The International Rules will take on the same format as previous scratchies at RMIT with the Reds facing the Whites.
Much has been said in recent weeks on whether the Australian boys will be able to cope with the skill level and kicking ability of the Irish players who will have the advantage of using a round ball this weekend. However, this will not hinder the enthusiasm and aggression that will be shown on the pitch both during and probably after the game.
If the Reds are to overcome a very strong Whites team, they will be looking to a lot of their key and more experienced personnel. One of the players the Whites will have to be wary of is Nathan Milner. A very direct runner from the half back line with excellent distribution skills, Nathan has the ability to run teams inside out and to cause trouble all over the pitch. His style of play is a mixture of ball playing centre half Marty Clarke and Kerry half back legend, Tomás Ó Sé.
With Nathan’s enthusiasm for getting forward, there may be gaps left in defence for the Whites to exploit. Travis Fallon will look to step into this void in order to prevent this from happening. An intimidating centre back, known as ‘The Butcher’, he enjoys mincing the opposition given the first opportunity. With his ability to nullify full forwards and innate knack of getting in front of his attacker, ‘the Butcher’ has drawn comparisons with the late Cormac McAnallen, a truly inspirational full back of the early noughties.
Stepping into the midfield berth is Captain Fantastic Luke “Dukesy” Creamer. Despite his incompetence at skulling drinks, Dukes has all the necessary attributes to excel at International Rules. Having lived in Belfast for a year, Dukesy has an understanding of the game that will be key to opening up the Whites’ defence. His capacity for scoring goals at vital times is similar to Sean Cavanagh, Tyrone’s midfield maestro.
Finally, the Reds will need Irish Brian to be in form in order to dictate the pace of the game. With his direct running and flair for picking up the loose ball, Brian has often been likened to a young Brian Dooher. Brian works his socks off for the team and scores the odd sensational point and the Reds will be relying on his knowledge of the game to see them through difficult periods.
The Whites, who are currently leading the scratchies, so far this year, must continue to work hard and dictate the pace of the game if they are going to come out triumphant.
Sean Milner will be given licence to roam in the half forward line and unleash some of those beautiful left footed strikes that have proved invaluable this year. With his penchant for kicking scores, Sean could easily resemble one of the Brogan brothers who are renowned for the point scoring ability.
Supplying Sean with the ammunition for scores will be Dave O’Shea. With a name like O’Shea it is no wonder that Dave has all the attributes to dominate this game. With his supernatural fitness and his capacity for picking up a breaking ball, Dave is sure to keep Dukesy on his toes. Arguably the greatest Gaelic footballer of all time was a midfielder from Kerry named Jack O’Shea. Coincidence?
Tasked with taking the Reds backline to the cleaners will be Mega Brett, renowned for his turn of foot and electrifying skills. The Reds may have to double up on Mega in order to deny him time and space on the ball. His directness and accuracy with both feet in front of the posts have drawn similarites to Mickey Linden, who was recently named as one of the best Gaelic footballers of all time.
An important factor of the Whites’ defence will be whether they can deal with the high ball into the area. With Phil Ghasseb likely to take up the full back role, the Reds’ forward line could soon find that the long ball hard to come by. A strong and uncompromising full back, Phil could be a long lost brother of Armagh’s hard man, Francis Bellew.
This game has been eagerly anticipated for weeks (at least by the Irish lads anyway) and will be a fascinating event. There are vouchers up for grabs for the HOS (Heart of a Swannie) and BOG (Best on Ground), alongside other prizes and perks. So get yourself out to RMIT for a mega game and enjoy.