Mike Tindall takes aim at Wales after predicting Ireland's downfall
Mike Tindall would like to think he was proved right about Ireland. Next up, 2019 Grand Slam champions Wales.
Back in November, when Ireland were following up a Guinness Six Nations Grand Slam, a winning Test Series against Australia and beating world champions New Zealand, Mike Tindall was the voice of caution.
Ireland had great forwards and a simple, effective game-plan but he felt they were lacking invention and needed simply every cog to be working correctly to beat the opposition. His comments were scoffed at, in Ireland at least, at the time but Joe Schmidt's side came unstuck in the year's championship.
Wales were the worthy winners, and took home a third Grand Slam in Warren Gatland's tenure while they were at it. In the eyes of many, Wales have now surpassed Ireland and England as the northern hemisphere's best World Cup hope.
On JOE UK's House of Rugby, however, Mike Tindall was not following that narrative.
The former England captain, and World Cup winner in 2003, joined host Alex Payne and Mirror rugby correspondent Alex Spink on the latest episode and had some emphatic comments to make about the Welsh.
Tindall dismissed comments, which he attributed to Stuart Barnes and Stephen Jones, about England lacking the mentality to win the World Cup as "bullsh*t'. He feels England have just as good a chance of becoming world champions as Wales.
"There is no way that Wales are going to win the World Cup," he declared.
"Look, I proved my point right about Ireland. I'll stick my neck on the line now.
"Unless Wales change the way they play, they will not win the World Cup."
Spink asked if that is because Wales do not score enough tries and Tindall replied, "Yes".
"I don't not care if they do win," he added, "because I'd be happy to be proved wrong. I'd be happy for a northern hemisphere team to win a World Cup.
"But I don't think, watching them play through that Six Nations... playing the sort of rugby which could bore literally anyone to sleep...
"As much as they've won, on the back of that [game-plan], I don't think they can go to a short format tournament, over six weeks, seven games, and deliver just on defence."
Tindall acknowledged that some of the previous World Cup winners did, in fact, lift the Webb Ellis trophy after basing their game-plans around stingy, strong defence.
Wake the Welsh.
This will cause a stir.
Episode 25 sees Alex Payne joined by Mike Tindall and Mirror rugby reporter Alex Spink to discuss Danny Cipriani, trust between players and journalists and playing with a broken hand.