Handbags Gentlemen, Handbags

But what we want to know is who won?

They have faced each other in battle many times, but the rivalry between the Royal Navy and French Marine Nationale on Wednesday night erupted in pitched fighting not on the sea, but the rugby field.
A match between the two navies in the southern French city of Toulon was marred by a large punch up which at one time appeared to involve almost all the players on the pitch and several on the touchline.
Video of the fight showed many of the Royal Navy, in grey, and French navy, in blue, trading blows and grappling during the melee in the centre of the field in an annual match nicknamed Le Crunch.

Two props were sent off after the clash, one from each side, and the match continued, but the combat failed to inspire the British side captained by Ben Priddey and the match ended in a heavy 28-6 defeat.
Match officials said last night (Thurs) they were compiling a report into the brawl. Naval sources said it was a yet unclear who threw the first punch, but players could face disciplinary action.
One Naval source said: “It kicked off a bit during the match, but they calmed down and the match was finished. They all went for a drink afterwards and there were no hard feelings.”

Ah, the game of rugby won then.

13 thoughts on “Handbags Gentlemen, Handbags”

  1. Compare and contrast the good sense and nobility of spirit of these jolly jack tars (including \spit\ the froggies) and the pampered scions of the so-called elite at Emory college USA (your previous story).

    @ JuliaM – good point well made!

  2. Bloke in North Dorset

    I presume its still the same, when I was in the Army getting sent off in any sport was a serious offence and you’d end up in from of the OC/CO on a charge. I can’t remember which offence in Army Act, probably the catch all Section 69, and it would normally result in a fine as well as the sanction imposed by the sport.

  3. “How exactly do you distinguish ‘a large punch up’ from the game of rugby anyway?”


  4. So Much For Subtlety

    JuliaM – “How exactly do you distinguish ‘a large punch up’ from the game of rugby anyway?”

    When the violence stops and starts with the ref’s whistle, then you have a game of rugby. If they ignore the ref then it is a riot.

  5. At Toulon I’d expect the French to scuttle their team had the game not been going their way.

  6. The fracas has overshadowed what should have been the main talking point of the game: the panache shown by the French backs.

  7. Good joke, Ironman
    French backs are supposed to have numbers on them, not white feathers. Maybe there’s some tradition in the Marine.

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