Well, a steady little 8-miler on Sunday out towards Blackrock and back. 10-minute miling which has become a pretty standard sort of pace for me on my longer runs. Occasionally I’ll step it up a notch but, at this early stage of base training, there’s really little benefit. I listened to a Fighting Talk episode and the beginning of Phedippidations 160 (I think). A bit chilly out there.

Swansea 2 – 3 Birmingham on Friday evening. Another game pulled out of the fire and we still lie in second place.

On Saturday we had 18 in our young Crusaders’ training group and we had a good session before cutting it short as it was getting wet and cold. I’d prefer an indoor venue for the winter for the young ones.

Then a first for me on Saturday afternoon – a trip over the river to Croke Park to see Ireland play Argentina at rugby. Everything about this historic but recently rebuilt stadium is impressive. It is the fifth largest in Europe and on this occasion there was a crowd of 65,000 against a capacity of 82,000. My ticket took me up many steps to a few rows from the top and, on turning around, the view of pitch and stadium is awesome (and a little vertiginous). The match itself was dour enough until the good guys pulled away in the last quarter for a 17-3 win.

With existing bad blood between the teams (Argentina beat Ireland in the recent World Cup) it was unsurprising that several impromptu fights broke out. And of course the crowd would rise as one as if at a boxing match urging on Jerry, or Hayesy or whoever to ‘give him another belt’. The Irish are not known for backing down if violence breaks out. But sensibly the officials just let the boys get on with it and kept 30 players on the pitch.

Compare with soccer where you only have to look sideways at someone these days to get into trouble with the ref.

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