This blog is one year old today.
Not much of a milestone in blogging terms, you may say. But I've enjoyed blethering away about my favourite sport for the past year. Whether anyone else is reading is immaterial!
I'm looking forward to the rugby-fest that presents itself on Saturday: three games on the trot. Need to stock up on beer and take the phone off the hook!
Jason Robinson's training injury is a bit of a worry, having been scoring well since his return to international duty. Let's keep the fingers crossed it's nothing serious. I'll stick my neck out (no pun intended) and make a few predictions:
Scotland vs Italy, 15:00, Murrayfield
The Scots are on a roll from last time round, and Italy have now lost two in a row. Plus, the Scots have home advantage, even if the ground will be far from a sellout. I think if Italy were to beat anyone this year it would most likely be Scotland, but I'm not sure they're fired up enough yet. So, Scotland to win.
Ireland vs England, 17:30, Croke Park
The clash everyone's talking about. Brian O'Driscoll, fit for this game, thinks Wilkinson will be a big influence (he's not wrong). England looked relaxed in training yesterday, according to reports. If they can keep their composure, they may upset the party at Croke Park. But Ireland's midfield are more of a threat than either Scotland or Italy have been - so Andy Farrell better be on his toes. I think Ireland will win, but not by much. Actually, I don't mind either way as long as it's a great game and doesn't get swung by iffy refereeing decisions.
France vs Wales, 20:00, Stade de France
The Welsh are smarting from two losses, and basically have nothing to loose by going to Paris and doing a number on the French. Captain Raphael Ibañez is worried about Gallic complacency, which could indeed by their undoing. But do Wales have the bottle at the moment? I think not, so my money's on France to win.