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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:12 am 
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Scrum half is the position that I don't get the most. It's a hugely important position with regards to the teams attack and gameplan, and yet he's only given 1 other scrum half any gametime at all, and even that was 2 minutes (and that scrum half was likely never really 3rd choice, but more a youngster to check out). He's not even had a 3rd one regularly in camp, it's just bizarre.

Arguments over Haskell, Hartley, Armand etc, is opinions in personnel, but that 3rd scrum half (whoever he'd pick) just seems like a hugely risky oversight, especially since there's no way he goes to a world cup with just 2.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:16 am 
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Despite his 22/23 - I'm really not convinced by him.

There, I've said it.

No doubt he's done some good things - but things have worked out for him rather fortunately.

He seems to treading the familiar track of past England managers - getting more conservative with each game - and maintaining faith in players long after they've passed their SBD.

This 6N could be the litmus test.


A bit harsh.

However it is quite hard to say how much is the players available and how much is the coach. Many said Woodward just got lucky with a golden generation.

Some adversity would be good in a way - we haven't actually seen how this team reacts to a couple of losses - more media criticism etc - as they have so rarely lost.

If the camp appears happy and the results are right then you have to big up the coach.

If he's a lucky coach all the better. Lancaster always seemed to just miss out.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:18 am 
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maintaining faith in players long after they've passed their SBD.


I wouldn't go with that either.

He's shown a lot of faith in Cole but I don;t think you could level that elsewhere.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:41 am 
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SamShark wrote:
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maintaining faith in players long after they've passed their SBD.


I wouldn't go with that either.

He's shown a lot of faith in Cole but I don;t think you could level that elsewhere.


Possibly at Hartley also. I don’t buy the schtick that Care and Youngs aren’t international quality 9s and Robson (or anyone else available) is being unjustly omitted from the 23. It would be genuinely interesting to find out who EJ sees as 3rd choice 9 and what he is trying to achieve by not adding one to the squad. My theory is that he’s trying to give motivation to the other 9s in the AP to work like hell on their games and seeing who emerges as the outstanding candidate, but who knows.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 11:42 am 
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Care's box-kicking has always been a lottery slightly biased towards the shittier end of quality

But his most annoying flaw is his consistently floaty/loopy passes. They aren't inaccurate but they often take an age to reach their target. It's fine when an opposition is tiring or on the back foot but against a fresh team it's a recipe for either hospital passes or intercepts


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:22 pm 
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ovalball wrote:
SamShark wrote:
He's a funny fuc*er Jones isn't he? I'm not really inclined to criticise at the moment because I'm neither a professional coach or in receipt of his win record, but there are some players he just doesn't rate.

I assume shit loads of invisible (to fans) stuff plays into it like heavy duty stats, personality and temperament, performances in training, relationships with other players etc.

And you don't ever really know if he's playing with a straight bat.

The back row thing really interests me. He's been more inclined to use (or hold as reserve) our locks to cover those positions. There's clearly an issue with how highly he rates certain players.

Fair play to him though - he can recall Mike Tindall if we keep winning for all I care.


Despite his 22/23 - I'm really not convinced by him.

There, I've said it.

No doubt he's done some good things - but things have worked out for him rather fortunately.

He seems to treading the familiar track of past England managers - getting more conservative with each game - and maintaining faith in players long after they've passed their SBD.

This 6N could be the litmus test.


Who is on your list?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:32 pm 
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I don't agree that Eddie is getting more conservative with each game either. If anything he seems to be pushing the boat out more as time goes on.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:38 pm 
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Hartley, Cole, Hask and perhaps you could throw in the incumbent FB and SH, although it might just be that they're shiit rather than being past it.

This scrum half issue is really starting to get worrying. There is no reason not to pick Robson, unless he's some sort of pariah within the England camp (which I highly doubt, seems like a nice guy).

Some of Eddie's selections are just completely baffling. If it doesn't pay off in the 6N, I hope he swallows his pride and makes the right picks for the next squad training sessions.

Smith is the real day by the way. Obviously Ford/Faz are going to be the FH up to and including the 2019 RWC, but I genuinely think Smith could get ahead of them after that. It's rare you see kids that young playing so maturely and standing out with their talent. Reminds me of another FH who came through around 20 years ago now....


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:39 pm 
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Who was the 3rd SH during the Dawson and Bracken era - was it always Gomersall?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:40 pm 
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englishchief wrote:

Smith is the real day by the way. Obviously Ford/Faz are going to be the FH up to and including the 2019 RWC, but I genuinely think Smith could get ahead of them after that. It's rare you see kids that young playing so maturely and standing out with their talent. Reminds me of another FH who came through around 20 years ago now....


A word of warning is to look at Cipriani who also seemed to be destined for greatness.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:41 pm 
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SamShark wrote:
Who was the 3rd SH during the Dawson and Bracken era - was it always Gomersall?


Arguably Austin Healey for a period? Nick Duncombe and Harry Ellis were also around towards the end of Dawson’s international career.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:42 pm 
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Talking of scrum halves, Sarries have signed Nick Stirzaker on loan from the Rebels. Anyone?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:45 pm 
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englishchief wrote:
Hartley, Cole, Hask and perhaps you could throw in the incumbent FB and SH, although it might just be that they're shiit rather than being past it.

This scrum half issue is really starting to get worrying. There is no reason not to pick Robson, unless he's some sort of pariah within the England camp (which I highly doubt, seems like a nice guy).

Some of Eddie's selections are just completely baffling. If it doesn't pay off in the 6N, I hope he swallows his pride and makes the right picks for the next squad training sessions.

Smith is the real day by the way. Obviously Ford/Faz are going to be the FH up to and including the 2019 RWC, but I genuinely think Smith could get ahead of them after that. It's rare you see kids that young playing so maturely and standing out with their talent. Reminds me of another FH who came through around 20 years ago now....


Alex King?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:46 pm 
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Plastic Sarrie wrote:
Talking of scrum halves, Sarries have signed Nick Stirzaker on loan from the Rebels. Anyone?


When I watched the super rugby he was excellent-
Best 9 in oz easy. Pretty sure he's England qualified, no idea if he's been capped?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:48 pm 
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DragsterDriver wrote:
Plastic Sarrie wrote:
Talking of scrum halves, Sarries have signed Nick Stirzaker on loan from the Rebels. Anyone?


When I watched the super rugby he was excellent-
Best 9 in oz easy. Pretty sure he's England qualified, no idea if he's been capped?


Very poachy name though.

I prefer poaching people with more English sounding names.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:50 pm 
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SamShark wrote:
DragsterDriver wrote:
Plastic Sarrie wrote:
Talking of scrum halves, Sarries have signed Nick Stirzaker on loan from the Rebels. Anyone?


When I watched the super rugby he was excellent-
Best 9 in oz easy. Pretty sure he's England qualified, no idea if he's been capped?


Very poachy name though.

I prefer poaching people with more English sounding names.

I was at school with a stirzaker who's dad taught us physics you racist plum 😉


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:51 pm 
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SamShark wrote:
He's a funny fuc*er Jones isn't he? I'm not really inclined to criticise at the moment because I'm neither a professional coach or in receipt of his win record, but there are some players he just doesn't rate.

I assume shit loads of invisible (to fans) stuff plays into it like heavy duty stats, personality and temperament, performances in training, relationships with other players etc.

And you don't ever really know if he's playing with a straight bat.

The back row thing really interests me. He's been more inclined to use (or hold as reserve) our locks to cover those positions. There's clearly an issue with how highly he rates certain players.

Fair play to him though - he can recall Mike Tindall if we keep winning for all I care.


I find it hard to criticise or disagree with Eddie- he's winning and upsetting people 👍🏼

Robson is a better passer than both youngs and care- but Eddies a man arch troll, shame he's too busy to post on here.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:52 pm 
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happyhooker wrote:
SamShark wrote:
DragsterDriver wrote:
Plastic Sarrie wrote:
Talking of scrum halves, Sarries have signed Nick Stirzaker on loan from the Rebels. Anyone?


When I watched the super rugby he was excellent-
Best 9 in oz easy. Pretty sure he's England qualified, no idea if he's been capped?


Very poachy name though.

I prefer poaching people with more English sounding names.

I was at school with a stirzaker who's dad taught us physics you racist plum 😉


He sounds like he should be playing for the Miami Dolphins


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 12:52 pm 
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Petros wrote:
Joost wrote:
Has Maunder been injured? Chiefs’ website says he’s only played 22 minutes of rugby this season :?

Nick White has established himself as Chiefs no 1 SH, his replacement of Chudley made a big difference v Tigers


I think Townsend is the best 9 there, but they've got to many.

White
Chudley
Maunder
Townsend

Etc


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 1:02 pm 
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happyhooker wrote:
SamShark wrote:
DragsterDriver wrote:
Plastic Sarrie wrote:
Talking of scrum halves, Sarries have signed Nick Stirzaker on loan from the Rebels. Anyone?


When I watched the super rugby he was excellent-
Best 9 in oz easy. Pretty sure he's England qualified, no idea if he's been capped?


Very poachy name though.

I prefer poaching people with more English sounding names.

I was at school with a stirzaker who's dad taught us physics you racist plum 😉


It’s actually an old Anglo-Saxon surname, with origins in Lancashire!


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 1:37 pm 
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Chuckles1188 wrote:
I don't agree that Eddie is getting more conservative with each game either. If anything he seems to be pushing the boat out more as time goes on.


I don't think he is moving in either direction. But England may look more conservative, but really they just haven't clicked in 2017 like they did in 2016. Their 2017 felt more like wins came from opposition mistakes, good fortune in bounces and last minute big moves that worked except against the first team that really took it to Jones England side in Ireland. I'm not saying that is the full story, but equally I can see how it felt that way.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 1:54 pm 
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I think you might be succumbing to the nostalgia filter a little bit in suggesting that England "clicked" in 2016 in a substantively different way than we did in 2017. When England won the Grand Slam everyone was in agreement that we were tallest midgets and it was a poor year, most people expected us to be whitewashed in Australia, and the November clean sweep was generally considered plausible but a long shot. England didn't have a single game in 2016 where the general reaction was that they had been a complete side throughout. Lots was ascribed to luck, and good teams winning ugly. The major difference between 2017 and 2016 is that we had Ireland away in 2017


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:16 pm 
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eldanielfire wrote:
Chuckles1188 wrote:
I don't agree that Eddie is getting more conservative with each game either. If anything he seems to be pushing the boat out more as time goes on.


I don't think he is moving in either direction. But England may look more conservative, but really they just haven't clicked in 2017 like they did in 2016. Their 2017 felt more like wins came from opposition mistakes, good fortune in bounces and last minute big moves that worked except against the first team that really took it to Jones England side in Ireland. I'm not saying that is the full story, but equally I can see how it felt that way.



Scotland?? I felt we clicked that day.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 3:41 pm 
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Chuckles1188 wrote:
I think you might be succumbing to the nostalgia filter a little bit in suggesting that England "clicked" in 2016 in a substantively different way than we did in 2017. When England won the Grand Slam everyone was in agreement that we were tallest midgets and it was a poor year, most people expected us to be whitewashed in Australia, and the November clean sweep was generally considered plausible but a long shot. England didn't have a single game in 2016 where the general reaction was that they had been a complete side throughout. Lots was ascribed to luck, and good teams winning ugly. The major difference between 2017 and 2016 is that we had Ireland away in 2017


Yep. With the exception of the Scotland game I 100% agree.

Our series win in Australia was amazing, but more off the back of some heroic defensive displays than complete performances.

I enjoyed the Argentina tour for entertainment value and ‘finding a way to win’ but that wasn’t our first team and I thought we were no better than OK in the AIs.

The results ensure that we’re justifiably ranked 2nd in the World but our performances don’t really reflect that.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:19 pm 
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englishchief wrote:
Hartley, Cole, Hask and perhaps you could throw in the incumbent FB and SH, although it might just be that they're shiit rather than being past it.

This scrum half issue is really starting to get worrying. There is no reason not to pick Robson, unless he's some sort of pariah within the England camp (which I highly doubt, seems like a nice guy).

Some of Eddie's selections are just completely baffling. If it doesn't pay off in the 6N, I hope he swallows his pride and makes the right picks for the next squad training sessions.

Smith is the real day by the way. Obviously Ford/Faz are going to be the FH up to and including the 2019 RWC, but I genuinely think Smith could get ahead of them after that. It's rare you see kids that young playing so maturely and standing out with their talent. Reminds me of another FH who came through around 20 years ago now....


I think Ford is living on borrowed time. He is struggling and Smith/Lozowski could easily displace him.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:31 pm 
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terryfinch wrote:
englishchief wrote:
Hartley, Cole, Hask and perhaps you could throw in the incumbent FB and SH, although it might just be that they're shiit rather than being past it.

This scrum half issue is really starting to get worrying. There is no reason not to pick Robson, unless he's some sort of pariah within the England camp (which I highly doubt, seems like a nice guy).

Some of Eddie's selections are just completely baffling. If it doesn't pay off in the 6N, I hope he swallows his pride and makes the right picks for the next squad training sessions.

Smith is the real day by the way. Obviously Ford/Faz are going to be the FH up to and including the 2019 RWC, but I genuinely think Smith could get ahead of them after that. It's rare you see kids that young playing so maturely and standing out with their talent. Reminds me of another FH who came through around 20 years ago now....


I think Ford is living on borrowed time. He is struggling and Smith/Lozowski could easily displace him.


Can't see that happening any time soon. The Ford/Farrell axis has worked pretty well. Ford would be in more danger from Farrell being moved to 10 and someone like Teo getting the 12 shirt. I really don't see why you think he is struggling, he's streets ahead of the 2 you mention.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:32 pm 
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I think if fit t'eo plays 13.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:36 pm 
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DragsterDriver wrote:
I think if fit t'eo plays 13.


In Eddie's team - I agree, because he trusts the Ford/Farrell partnership. But he's really a 12, isn't he ?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 5:54 pm 
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Cipriani reportedly close to agreeing a move to France.

Quote:
It is closing in on crunch time for Wasps and Danny Cipriani.

The talismanic fly-half had stated that he would wait until January to make a decision on his future and his lack of inclusion in the recent two-day England training camp for the Six Nations will not have improved Wasps’ chances of retaining him.

There is interest from several Top 14 clubs in Cipriani’s services, including Lyon, Stade Français and Toulon, and they have the means to offer him a more lucrative deal than Wasps can, with the English side eager not to jeopardise the overall quality of their squad under the salary cap by overpaying at a single position.

Should he choose to make the move across the Channel, no one could blame him.

He has been one of the form fly-halves in the world game over the last three or four years, but the timing of his resurgence and maturing as a rugby player has unfortunately coincided with the rises of Owen Farrell and George Ford as England’s preferred playmakers.

Beyond the duo of Ford and Farrell, Eddie Jones has looked to blood fly-halves who have the ability to play multiple positions, such as Alex Lozowski, Henry Slade and Piers Francis, whilst the next genuine challenger for the 10 jersey seems to have been found in Marcus Smith.

As a result, no one would begrudge Cipriani heading to France and setting himself up for his future after rugby, but it does leave Wasps in an interesting spot.

Back in December, Wasps director of rugby Dai Young said that should Cipriani move to France, he would likely look to bring in a centre next season, with Jimmy Gopperth capable of moving back to 10.

The New Zealander will be 35 years of age at the beginning of the 2018/19 season and injuries can begin to occur more often later in a player’s career, potentially making Wasps’ fly-half depth next season look worryingly thin.

Connor Eastgate and Jacob Umaga are two further options in Wasps’ senior academy, but neither player has had much senior rugby experience outside of the A League and Anglo-Welsh Cup.

Wasps’ recruiting strategy over the next few months will be interesting to watch, with many of the notable fly-halves coming off contract, such as Dan Carter, Finn Russell, Dan Biggar and Simon Hickey, having already publicly agreed deals to move to other clubs, whilst many more have verbal agreements in place, with official confirmation to come shortly.


The idea of Wasps moving Gopperth back to 10 and then leaning on Jacob Umaga is not a happy one for me


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 6:15 pm 
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England U20s named - Ben Curry included

Quote:
England U20 EPS Squad 2017/18

Forwards:
Josh Basham (London Irish)
Ben Curry (Sale Sharks)
Beck Cutting (Worcester Warriors)
Ben Earl (Saracens)
Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)
Ted Hill (Worcester Warriors)
Dino Lamb (Harlequins)
Sam Lewis (Leicester Tigers)
Sam Moore (Sale Sharks)
Joe Morris (Worcester Warriors)
Gabriel Oghre (Wasps)
James Scott (Worcester Warriors)
Alex Seville (Gloucester)
Marcus Street (Exeter Chiefs)
Toby Trinder (Northampton Saints)
Henry Walker (Gloucester)
Tom Willis (Wasps)

Backs:
Rory Brand (London Irish)
Will Butler (Worcester Warriors)
Aaron Chapman (Bristol)
Ali Crossdale (Saracens)
Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints)
James Grayson (Northampton Saints)
Tom Hardwick (Leicester Tigers)
Gabriel Ibitoye (Harlequins)
Ben Loader (London Irish)
Jordan Olowofela (Leicester Tigers)
Tom Parton (London Irish)
Tom Seabrook (Gloucester)
Joe Snow (Exeter Chiefs)
Ben White (Leicester Tigers)
Matt Williams (London Irish)


Irish - 5
Worcester - 5
Tigers - 5
Saints - 3
Sarries - 2
Gloucester - 2
Chiefs - 2
Quins - 2
Sale - 2
Wasps - 2
Bristol - 1

As always, pick out the lads from your club and tell us why they're the next big thing in English rugby


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 6:18 pm 
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...Tom Willis' brother is pretty good


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 6:21 pm 
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Chuckles1188 wrote:
...Tom Willis' brother is pretty good


Tom is higher rated than Jack was at the same age, potential captaincy option (maybe not this time round, think he's in for 2 years).

Will Porter is unfortunate not to be involved, but he got injured in an A-league game, very handy scrum half.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 6:22 pm 
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Chuckles1188 wrote:
...Tom Willis' brother is pretty good


Indeed but just turned 21. JAck seems to manage a lot of turnovers in his, generally short, stints and hasn't looked lost in the AP or the ECC


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 7:26 pm 
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Ryan Mills has signed a new contract with Worcester. Great news!


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 7:27 pm 
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openclashXX wrote:
England U20s named - Ben Curry included

Quote:
England U20 EPS Squad 2017/18

Forwards:
Josh Basham (London Irish)
Ben Curry (Sale Sharks)
Beck Cutting (Worcester Warriors)
Ben Earl (Saracens)
Joe Heyes (Leicester Tigers)
Ted Hill (Worcester Warriors)
Dino Lamb (Harlequins)
Sam Lewis (Leicester Tigers)
Sam Moore (Sale Sharks)
Joe Morris (Worcester Warriors)
Gabriel Oghre (Wasps)
James Scott (Worcester Warriors)
Alex Seville (Gloucester)
Marcus Street (Exeter Chiefs)
Toby Trinder (Northampton Saints)
Henry Walker (Gloucester)
Tom Willis (Wasps)

Backs:
Rory Brand (London Irish)
Will Butler (Worcester Warriors)
Aaron Chapman (Bristol)
Ali Crossdale (Saracens)
Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints)
James Grayson (Northampton Saints)
Tom Hardwick (Leicester Tigers)
Gabriel Ibitoye (Harlequins)
Ben Loader (London Irish)
Jordan Olowofela (Leicester Tigers)
Tom Parton (London Irish)
Tom Seabrook (Gloucester)
Joe Snow (Exeter Chiefs)
Ben White (Leicester Tigers)
Matt Williams (London Irish)


Irish - 5
Worcester - 5
Tigers - 5
Saints - 3
Sarries - 2
Gloucester - 2
Chiefs - 2
Quins - 2
Sale - 2
Wasps - 2
Bristol - 1

As always, pick out the lads from your club and tell us why they're the next big thing in English rugby


No Neecastle or Bath?


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 8:42 pm 
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openclashXX wrote:

Irish - 5
Worcester - 5
Tigers - 5
Saints - 3
Sarries - 2
Gloucester - 2
Chiefs - 2
Quins - 2
Sale - 2
Wasps - 2
Bristol - 1

As always, pick out the lads from your club and tell us why they're the next big thing in English rugby


Partially nicked from the youngsters thread yesterday:

Tom Parton (19) - Currently on loan playing full back for London Scottish in the Championship. Played Eng U20s last season in the 6N and JWC. Comfortable playing across the backline but primarily a 10 or 15. Quick with a decent skillset. Looks a bit stronger now than he did getting run over by a few big Kiwi lads in the JWC final last year.

Rory Brand (19) - Played U20s in the 6N last year, despite being suspiciously Scottish (moved down in his early teens). Quick 9 with a highlight reel step.

Ben Loader (19) - Next LI wing off the production line. Big and quick. Younger brother won a football world cup with England U17s last year so will be looking to do the household double.

Matt Williams (19) - Outside centre, no relation to Johnny. Decent all rounder

Josh Basham (18) - Lock/Back Row playing for Eng U18s last year. Nice hands and seems fairly highly rated at the club. Doubt he'll feature too much this year given how stacked the back row is


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 8:55 pm 
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Looking through that squad Earl, Curry, Moore and Willis represent a ton of firepower in the back row. Definite area of strength again.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 9:46 pm 
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SamShark wrote:
englishchief wrote:

Smith is the real day by the way. Obviously Ford/Faz are going to be the FH up to and including the 2019 RWC, but I genuinely think Smith could get ahead of them after that. It's rare you see kids that young playing so maturely and standing out with their talent. Reminds me of another FH who came through around 20 years ago now....


A word of warning is to look at Cipriani who also seemed to be destined for greatness.

Smith doesn't seem a D*ckhd. :)


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 9:49 pm 
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Scrumhead wrote:
Chuckles1188 wrote:
I think you might be succumbing to the nostalgia filter a little bit in suggesting that England "clicked" in 2016 in a substantively different way than we did in 2017. When England won the Grand Slam everyone was in agreement that we were tallest midgets and it was a poor year, most people expected us to be whitewashed in Australia, and the November clean sweep was generally considered plausible but a long shot. England didn't have a single game in 2016 where the general reaction was that they had been a complete side throughout. Lots was ascribed to luck, and good teams winning ugly. The major difference between 2017 and 2016 is that we had Ireland away in 2017


Yep. With the exception of the Scotland game I 100% agree.

Our series win in Australia was amazing, but more off the back of some heroic defensive displays than complete performances.

I enjoyed the Argentina tour for entertainment value and ‘finding a way to win’ but that wasn’t our first team and I thought we were no better than OK in the AIs.

The results ensure that we’re justifiably ranked 2nd in the World but our performances don’t really reflect that.

An awful lot of this is down to players staying fit, particularly key ones.

It hasn't happened over the last 15 months and that may be a fairly large reason.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:21 pm 
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Alan Gaffney gave his first interview on Saints TV. Apparently the players are just lacking a bit of confidence, and West is a top coach still. Targeting 4th


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