Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

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Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by SirJohnnyEnglish on Mon 22 Dec - 18:21

First topic message reminder :

Home teams to be named by midnight on Tuesday
Away teams to be named by midnight on Wednesday
Tactics to be provided by midnight on Thursday
Predictions by 22:00 hours on Sunday

London Irish v London Welsh
Location - Madejski Stadium
Light Cloud, 4 Degrees, 8mph S Winds

London Irish
Manager - Prop

01. Ben Franks09. Lee Dickson
02. Ken Owens10. Dan Biggar
03. Henry Thomas
04. Dean Mumm11. JP Pieterson
05. Devin Toner12. Jaime Roberts
06. Kelly Brown13. Conrad Smith
07. Sam Warburton (c)14. Adam Thompstone
08. Ben Morgan15. Brice Dulin
16. Tom Lindsay 17. Tom Court 18. Will Collier 19. Tom Savage 20. Scott Higginbotham 21. Rory Kockott 22. Owen Williams 23. Rob Cook
Set piece: We have picked a strong scrummaging front 5 who all bring carrying bulk to the game. From kick offs we will look to go 2 passes in before hitting our direct runners. We will look to scrummage low (which all of our props are known for doing) and scrum straight to prevent the wheel. Our lineouts will be simple and we will look to bring the ball down before feeding 9.

Backrow: We feel we have a well balanced back row with a tackler, a carrier and a jackler and all 3 will be used for their main attributes. We have confidence in them all to do their jobs with Brown looking to get in their 10’s face.

Breakdown: We will look to be controlled here with the tackler and 1 more player committing initially to the breakdown. Warburton will play the McCaw role and sweep behind the breakdowns picking and choosing when he will attack for a penalty or a turnover. We will use the call “fire ball” which will be when Wasps under commit to their ruck and we will look to blitz past the ball for the turnover. We will adopt the hold and roll technique to take them off their feet at the breakdown and ‘tactically’ hold them down to slow them getting to the next ruck.

Half Backs: Biggar will stand flat initially to give Roberts and our pack runners the chance to get over the gainline. Dickson has shown how well he can control a game and he will use these skills to control the tempo and slow the ball down if needed.

Outside Backs: We look at Biggar and Smith to pull the strings and find the gaps for our strong runners, if it is not on and the wind is blowing in our advantage then we will look for deep kicks to go off  the field and put pressure on their lineouts.. If it is on we will look to ship it wide to our speedsters. We will look to have a lot of movement off the ball to prevent us being easily read. There will be runners off of 12 and 13 when available and the ball will be shipped to the wings quickly to allow them to get the advantage in the race to the line. We have international experience in the back 3 and will look to exploit this with angled running and confusing the oppositions defence.

Bench: Impact in all areas especially being able to bring on Higginbotham and Franks who will all make an impact against tired defences and with Kockott and Williams be able to pull the strings to make the gaps available.

Defence: Smith, Warburton, Brown, Morgan, Biggar and Roberts have all shown recently how strong they are in defence and making the intiial big impact hit. We also know how good the Wasps centres are so will look to prevent tem offloading the ball by double tackling them. We will look to blitz with Brown in their 10’s allowing Biggar the opportunity to drop back and cover with Cook for any kicks ahead. We will defend inside-out and spread the line. Bell is a strong defender and we will use this to our advantage to prevent anything going out wide.

Overall: This will be a controlled performance. We will look to hit the ball up twice and suck in defenders by going the same way till we run out of space, we will then flash across and look for quick hands against their pack who will be stuck defending the centre channels. Our carriers will come round the corner in 3’s to prevent the opposition knowing where the ball is going. We have a strong team on show and backs who are able to control a game well and defend strongly without allowing any gaps to appear. There won't be much of a home advantage for Wasps as it is their first game so this is basically on neutral ground. We have good form coming in after a good draw against a strong Bath team and then back to back high scores against Cardiff Blues who have shown they are no push overs.

 London Welsh
Manager – CJ

01. David Kilcoyne09. Tawera Kerr-Barlow
02. Dave Ward10. Francois Trinh-Duc(k)
03. BJ Botha
04. Jamie Cudmore11. Napoliono Nadolo
05. Sitaleki Timani  12. Kyle Godwin
06.  Ashley Johnson13. Casey Lualala 
07. James Haskell c.14. Mark Cueto
08. Victor Vito15. Chris Pennell
16. Richardt Strauss 17. Nathan Catt 18. Sepoke Kepu   19. George Skivington    20. Ross Rennie  21. Ben Spencer  22. Remi Tales 23. Ross Chisholm

As usual we will focus on winning the breakdown, with Ward and Haskell acting in tandem, supported by the rest of the pack where necessary, only committing the numbers we need to allow the rest to be options in attack or defence until an opportunity to turn over comes along. Ward to chase the ball

In attack, we will build slow ball with driving mauls and carries in groups from our pack, crash balls off 10 and a high, chased kicking game.

Faster ball will be spun wide with FTH attacking the line and standing flat and Godwin and Pennell as second distributors. Laulala and the inside ball to our carriers in the pack and the blindside winger will be used as a primary phase 1 run, then using our fetchers we will recycle the ball for our wave 2 runners of the backrow, Godwin and the open wing. Lots of work coming into the line by the back 3. If they try to blitz us, we have kickers at 9, 10, 12 and 15 to chip and grubber through and the two wave approach is ideal for countering the blitz.

Look to send AJ, Haskell, Vito and Timani at their wingers with the ball down the blind side of rucks to really test their physical and mental mettle and look to break the tackle and offload into support. Support is vital and part of Ward's role We will also look to engineer one on ones for our wingers, who are powerful runners who also have an outside step, against theirs to really test their weak defence.

We will chase all kicks, run them back where possible and take on all points on offer. Kicks will be high and for possession which we will aim to use quickly. I'd like to see us taking quick lineouts and where possible getting the likes of AJ or Vito in a position to help run it back.

Lineout:  We will keep to simple ball off the top and compete on every opposition throw.

Scrum- use as a restart for attacking ball off the base. If we are struggling, we can shore it up with our sub props.

Defence- blitz led by Laulala, with TKB sweeping and the pack ready to scramble. Fringes kept tight

Huge power in the pack so look to bully and sap their pack with an aggressive physical approach

Overall- sap their pack with mauls
Clever committal to the breakdown
Run it back and attack in 2 phases
Run the ball at their wingers
Chip over the blitz

Sale Sharks v Leicester Tigers
Location - AJ Bell Stadium
Light Cloud, 3 Degrees, 8mph S Winds

Sale Sharks
Manager – SJE

01. Marcos Ayerza09. Danny Care
02. Benjamin Kayser 10. Johnny Sexton
03. Davit Zirakishvilli 
04. Brodie Retalick11. Simon Zebo
05. Dave Attwood 12. Kyle Eastmond
06. Peter O' Mahony13. George Pisi
07. Matt Todd14. Semesa Rokoduguni
08. Louis Picamoles15. Willie Le Roux
16. Jack McGrath 17. David Paice 18. Rabah Slimani 19. Matt Garvey 20. Matt Kvesic 21. Kieran Marmion 22. Beauden Barrett 23. Nick Abendanon
We will play an expansive, high intensity offloading game looking to create space and break the defensive line. Mobility, physicality and handling is key to our approach.

- Fast ball is crucial. Mobile pack and physical midfield to clear out rucks and ensure quick ball. We will look to get over the gain line off all carries to make it easier to do so.

- Commit the defence. Sexton will play flat on the gain line to pull in defenders before releasing runners while Care will look for opportunities to snipe around the base always committing defenders.

- Change the point of attack. Numerous playmakers across the backline comfortable at coming in at first receiver allow us to change the point of attack and leave the opposition guessing.

- Back three always involved. Wingers to track the ball off their wings looking for the inside ball or offload. Payne to join the line from fullback looking for mismatches and to create overlaps.

- Attack from the scrum. Strong technical front row backed up by a powerful second row will look to build a platform for Pickles, Care & Sexton. An area we will look to target if winning.

- Mix it up at the lineout. Five genuine jumpers gives us a strong attacking platform. Look to use both the rolling maul and ball off the top to keep the defence guessing.

- Straight line blitz defence. Focused on winning the gain line collisions and driving the ball carrier back. Line speed is crucial. Care will sweep behind the line to cover chips and grubbers.

- Target the breakdown. Committed to the breakdown with POM & Todd fetching for the ball, supported by the rest of the pack when needed. We will always look to turn the ball over.

Leicester Tigers
Manager – LukeLovesLuka

01. Gethin Jenkins09. Kahn Fotuali'i
02. Agustin Creevy10. Tusi Pisi (k)
03. Owen Franks
04. Nathan Hines (c)     11. Matt Banahan
05. Victor Matfield12. Billy Twelvetrees
06. JMF Lobbe13. Mathieu Bastareaud
07. Francois Louw14. Drew Mitchell
08. Thomas Waldrom15. Mike Brown
16. Stephen Moore 17. Alex Corbisiero 18. Cencus Johnston 19. Kearnan Myall 20. Tom Johnson 21. Micky Young 22. Brock James
23. Rene Ranger


We will look to play high tempo, high intensity rugby. We have, throughout our XV, big line breakers to make the hard yards and tie up defenders creating space in wider channels for Pisi to exploit.

- Big focus to attack at all lineouts. Use Hines or Lobbe at the front and Matfield off the top as our three key options. Shortened lineouts with Waldrom in midfield as crash or decoy option.
Matfield and Hines to look to steal and really give Kayser problems.

- Play an offloading game. We see the offload as our big weapon and our carriers will all be looking to offload in contact, continuing our forward momentum.

- Attack all scrums - Front row of Franks, Creevy and Jenkins to look to really get the shove on, particularly targeting the Sale Zira/Kayser channel.

- Gigantic XV made up of massive line-breakers, used in the tight to tire down the Sale defence. Primarily using Waldrom, Basteraud and Creevy, plus the likes of Louw, Franks, Lobbe and Banahan to get us over the gainline. Add to that the likes of Moore, Corbs and Ranger off the bench.

- Look to win battle at the breakdown - Lobbe and Louw, supported by the likes of Bastareaud and Jenkins, to really look to get into the breakdown and give Sale problems.

- Fotuali'i to look to snipe around the fringes and keep us going forwards all the time.

- In attacking play, we will play with the option of 2 first receivers in Pisi and Twelvetrees.
We want to control the game, mixing up the point of our attack consistently.

- We will look to employ a blitz defence, focusing on a quick line speed to hit the ball carrier before he gets to the gainline, and look to win the collisions in defence. Fotuali'i to sweep behind with an eye on short kicks.

Pisi to kick all penalties.

Bath v Exeter Chiefs
Location - Recreational Grounds
Light Cloud, 5 Degrees, 9mph S Winds

Bath Rugby
Manager – inthefastlane
01. James Slipper 09. Fourie Du Preez
02. Richard Hibbard 10. Charlie Hodgson
03. Charlie Faumaunia
04. Graham Kitchener 11. Christian Wade
05. Alexandre Flanquardt12. Christian Lealifano
06. Liam Messam 13. Michele Campagnaro
07. Luke Wallace  14. Nopolini Nalaga
08. Sean O'Brien 15. Stuart Hogg
16. Mikey Haywood 17. Benn Robinson 18. Jake Cooper Wooley 19. Luke Romano 20. Liam Gill 21. Richard Wigglesworth 22. Alex Goode 23. Damian De Allende

Overall: We are gonna be looking to play front foot rugby. Look to overwhelm Exeter in the loose. We will play a high tempo and really look to get some big carries in. We feel we have a real advantage in the set piece so look to real attack of this.

Scrum: Look for our unit to set a strong platform. Our props have been well rotated so will be fresh. We will try to set a base, controlled by SOB which he can attack off.

Lineout: We will look to switch up the lineup with Kitchener, Messam, SOB and Flanquardt  options in the lineout. Flanquardt will run the lineout with Kitchen offering an easy banker ball. Look to get up into the air quickly and down for a quick maul. Look to compete on the opposition throw as we have a great number of options. Try and starve them of quality ball from the lineout.

Breakdown: The breakdown is an area we really see ourselves as able to dominate. We will look to get men to the breakdown quickly and clear out so SOB, Liam Gill and Liam Meszam can try and disrupt opposition ball.

Defence: Blitz Defence looking to really put pressure on the Quins decision makers. Try to stop the ball from getting to the centres. Focus on gain line collisions and driving back in the tackle. FDP to sweep in behind.

Attack: Our half backs will control our rugby. FDP and Hodgson can play what they see and put the rest of the back line in strong positions. Lealifano can act as an extra playmaker from the 12. We have strong runners who can get over the gainline throughout the side with a very dynamic pack and a big back line. Look to get the big carriers involved as much as possible. The likes of Tameifuma, Slipper, SOB, Hibbard and Messam will try and wear down defences by looking for gaps. The likes of Wade, Nalaga and Campagnaro will be looking for gaps created that they can exploit. Look to counter attack kicks if possible. Look to play with a high tempo and get the ball moving across the back line. Look for chances to offload.

Kicking: Hodgson will be our chosen place kicker. Any kicks will not be aimed towards their back three. We will chuck in the occasional grabber to chase. LLF, Hogg and Hodgson all have the boots necessary to try and put us in a good position territorially if need be.

Substitutes: Our subs will look to keep a high tempo.

Exeter Chiefs Chief

Manager – Fluxy

01. Wyatt Crockett09. Connor Murray
02. Sean Cronin10. Camille Lopez 
03. Jamie Johnston
04. Patrick Tuipulotu11. Tom Varndell
05. Paul O'Connell (c)12. Luther Burrell
06. Carl Fearns13. Adam Ashley-Cooper
07. Justin Tipuric14. David Strettle
08. Toby Faletau15. James O'Connor
16. Dimitri Szarzewski 17. Richard Barrington 18. Mike Ross 19. Michael Paterson 20. Yannick Nyanga 21. Chris Cook 22. Toby Flood 23. Alex Dunbar

General Game plan

Fast paced game based around high intensity in defence, offloading, and dynamic carrying and rucking. We will play a high paced counter punch style of rugby away from home.
When we gain possession our plan is to control attack with quick clean ball be it from set piece or turnover. After that look to control the pace of the game and go through the phases. Lopez will look to play flat and look to get our back line into the game whenever possible and keep the high tempo going throughout.
Big point is to match them man for man, in our style of play. Looking to control the ball for periods will result in frustrating the Sale side giving away penalties for us to capitalise on. 

Set piece - Control the set piece and use it to restart our game plan and create point of attacks. POC to marshal the line-out and get quick ball from our dynamic jumpers. At the scrum Crockett & Cronin will look to get the squeeze on and target Faumaunia, who is prone to the odd collapse of the scrum and look to keep the opposition back row tied into the scrum giving Murray and Lopez more time and space to work in. 

Pack & Breakdown - Look for strong carries from our pack, tying in the opposition defence to create overlaps for our backs. We’ll be looking to keep the ball alive and look for the offload when on. Our back-row will target the breakdown and look to blow through the ruck and past the ball. Clean ball will be generated either by blowing through the ruck and past the ball and a long presentation of the ball to keep it away from opposition defenders. Murray will look to sweep up any turnover ball getting us on the front foot. We’ll look to win the collision with big our physical pack and dominate the opposition pack in the contact.

Defence - Look to neutralise the opposition early on and allow our back-row to dominate affairs. Using the defensive banana drift defence to push the attackers towards our inside defence, with Murray sweeping in behind to guide defenders to plug holes and covers any kicks in behind. If an oppo player gets held or brought down this allows the second man to get over the ball quickly to at least compete and slow opposition possession. Tipuric will look to target the opposition fly half early on and pressure his kicking. 

Backs - Look to get the ball in hands of the backs and the back three especially, as they have the pace and finishing ability to worry any defence. Utilise the pace and size of Burrell\AAC to crash through the line, using our 'league/slider move' developed from last season to break the line. AAC/Burrell/Strettle are big quick guys and will be able to mix and match the opposition defence, either catching Lealifiano's weaker inside shoulder on a a run against the grain, or exploiting the concentration of Campagnaro in defence. Or even generate a two on one with JOC joining the back line and providing the extra man to either put a winger away or go himself. 

Key Points

Pressure on the 8-9-10 axis look to isolate SOB him from his backs and also force him to take up scrappy possession. He hasn't played eight much recently for, so we will look to isolate and turnover possession as well as kill the Bath momentum.  
Scrum & Line-out – Target throughout, if weakness seen heap pressure and generate penalties. Crockett to exploit Faumuania and pile in on him with Cronin. Cronin & POC had a strong period together over the AI's and proved that his darts are more than capable at this level
Quick Rucks - with their big pack we will look to set rucks quickly and keep their pack on the move to tire them out. As well as to keep moving the point if attack with ball in hand with clever offloads and pops to keep Bath guessing. 
Physicality & Dynamism – Win the collision and target rucks to drive through opposition. We have a big physical, but also mobile pack. Supported by some high energy forwards off the bench.
Targets in Defence - Campagnaro is not a renowned defender and small in comparison to our centres, therefore Lopez will try to angle runners off his weaker shoulder to break the line.
Breakdown – The back five to be a nuisance in in the breakdown and either get over the ball or get past the ball and make the opposition cleaners a nightmare by having to make them drive our forwards even further off their ball, or steal if the are limited numbers competing. 
Backs – Classy running options and two of the most prolific finishers in the AP in Strettle & Varndell, so they we will get the ball in their hands and they will take any opportunity. Especially targetting Wade and Hogg who can get lost positionally and aren't known for their defending. 
Build a Score - Lopez and JOC to share kicking at goal responsibilities with JOC taking the longer ones. Any penalty within their ten metre to be kicked at goal to keep scoreboard ticking. Unless ten metres from the line then we kick for the line-out

Gloucester Rugby v London Wasps
Location - Kingsholm
Thick Cloud, 5 Degrees, 10mph S Winds

Manager – anonmattyt

01. Wood09. Perenara 
02. Strauss 10. Cipriani 
03. Mas
04. Etzbeth 11. May 
05. Robson 12. Toomua 
06. Alberts13. Kurindrani 
07. Salvi 14. Folau 
08. Heaslip 15. Dagg
16 Beast 17 Luke Cowan Dickie 18 Ousthuizen  19 Gray 20 Croft 21 Robson 22 Carter 23 Walker

TARGET BREAKDOWN– We have a big mobile physically strong bunch and will hit rucks with venom. We will Send numbers in and try and effect turnovers or Disrupt ball.we believe the likes of  Heaslip Etzbeth Alberts Salvi and Shas physicality and the power to swamp their backrow.Backed by our  front 5 and this is an area we will flood.

TARGET 9 10 channel- Get our big runners in to the channel and look to get in behind. We also want pressure here as Smith has shown he can be got at

Half backs- perenara will look to threaten around the ruck but his job is to give it to cips who will dictate. Cips Will challenge line and kick When necessary. We want to play high tempo and Off front foot vl. We will do this by using runners off ten to smash holes and look to flood.

General- We've selected a team packed with power and physicality. We  want to use  our carriers in the pack and will use this to dominate and get front foot ball. We believe this  will give is the upper hand. We will use this to sap Wasps energy. We see them struggling with our power. When its on we will play an offloading game. When in behind We will Flood through with our quick Backs targeting mismatches

Line out– We have options galore in Etzbeth robson  Alberts heaslip etc and will use this to disrupt. On our ball we will mix It but as game progresses go Off The top more To Get in to there backline

Kicking options - with Cips , Dagg and toomua we have great options to dominate kicking game when needed and also have fantastic options for exiting when under pressure.

Defence- Blitz defence with high intensity and big hits, looking to drive past the ball player if the ball hits the deck. Scrum half to sweep behind the defensive line.

Bench- Game changing bench with More ball carriers and attacking backs. Our intention is to use it as required

Manager: Ozzy3213    

01. Joe Marler09. Aaron Smith
02. Bismarck du Plessis10. Aaron Cruden
03. Dave Wilson
04. Alun-Wyn Jones (c)11. Bryan Habana
05. Sebastien Vahaamahina12. Ma'a Nonu
06. Jerome Kaino13. Robbie Freuan
07. Steffon Armitage14. Anthony Watson
08. Duane Vermeulen15. Tim Nanai-Williams
16. Tom Youngs 17. Paul James 18. Euan Murray 19. Romain Millo-Chluski 20. Marcell Coetzee 21. Ben Youngs 22. Henry Slade 23. Marland Yarde

Basic Game Plan
In dry conditions we will be looking to play a possession based game, going through the phases and continually shifting the point of attack.  We will play sensibly in our own half though, and will use the boots of Cruden and Watson if it is not on to run the ball.  When using the boot we will kicking for touch and looking to contest the lineout.  We will not kick to their back three.

In defence, as always we will be running a blitz defence.  Our focus will be on the gainline collisions and driving back in the tackle.  Line speed and no dog-legs will be key components for us.  Smith will sweep in behind the defensive line to counter any chips/grubbers.


  • Lineout.  Nothing flash. Hit our front and middle jumpers and ensure that we secure their ball.  On Irish ball put pressure on through AWJ and Vahaamahina, who are athletic lineout jumpers.
  • Scrum.  Target Nick Wood. We see him as the weak link in the scrum and Wilson will look to stay square and utilise his power to drive through him.  Kaino will pack down on the tighthead side and stay bound in to add power against him.
  • Breakdown.  When we carry in, we will flood the breakdown rucking well past the ball to free it up quickly and go again.  In defence, if we have made a passive tackle and the carrier has momentum we will not overcommit, but will maintain a strong defensive line.  If we win the collision and knock the carrier back we will look to get the second man in hard over the ball to turn it over.  Key for us is being selective.
  • Attacking Play.  We will be looking to play a Super Rugby type offloading game, with the ball shifted on to the support runner just prior to the point of the tackle with the defender already committed.  We will constantly look to shift the direction of play and pull their defenders out of position to create gaps.  Smith to look to snipe around the fringes and keep us going forwards all the time.  

Harlequins v Northampton Saints
Location - Twickenham Stoop
Light Cloud, 4 Degrees, 7mph S Winds

Manager – Steven_Sharks

01. Tony Woodcock09. Ruan Pienaar
02. Tatafu Polota-Nau10. Steven Myler (k)
03. Kieran Brookes
04. Bakkies Botha11. Jack Nowell
05. George Kruis12. Jan Serfontein
06. Mamuka Gorgodze13. Robbie Henshaw
07. Michael Hooper (c)14. Yoann Huget
08. Damien Chouly15. Rob Kearney
16. Rob Buchanan 17. Steven Kitchoff 18. John Afoa 19. Pieter Steph Du Toit 20. Tom Wood 21. Karl Dickson 22. Quade Cooper 23. Jonathan Joseph


Game Plan

In the opposition half we are going to play our usual patient balll retention game where we look for our forwards to get us over the gain line and tie in defenders before we unleash our outside backs into the wider spaces. We have deliberately picked players who can get us across the gain line regularly in our pack with TPN and Gorgodze specifically brought into the side for the physicality with they offer around the park. They will look to carry off 9 and 10 taking the ball in pace. Our front 5 and Gorgodze will work in pods of 3 to ensure we have support to the breakdown or to provide an option to offload. Hooper and Chouly will have freedom to carry in the areas they see as most effective so they can have the biggest impact. They will especially be looking to target the midfield of Northampton where we feel we can punch some holes or draw Daly infield to create space out wide. The tempo of our game will be controlled by our half backs who will know when to really speed up our game and when its necessary to slow it all down.

In our own half we will look to get ourselves into the other half of the pitch. We see the dangerous players in the Saints back three but they are much less dangerous facing their own try line in their own half. Pienaar, Myler and Kearney's kicking game will be key to getting territory in the opposition half. We feel if our kick chase is good enough to force the Saints back three into a kicking duel we should come off the better more often than not. It will be important to use a variety of kicks to keep the Saints players guessing.


We will employ and out to in defence and prevent Ford and Giteau getting the ball into the wider channels where Saints are dangerous. This defence will be lead by Serfontein and Henshaw. We will look to be really physical with their 10/12/13 axis in attack and defence.


Hooper will do his usual job of looking to target the turnover ball in the wide channels with his pace getting him their first. We will look for all of our pack to legally slow the ball down and counter ruck when we have a good defensive line set.

Set Piece

We will look to use the driving line out more that we usually do in this game to tie in the Saints pack and try to get some forward momentum before getting the ball to the backs again looking to isolate Daly and draw him out of position. We will vary between a simple drive and a shift drive to entice the Saints back row to get involved. Botha at the front is a simple option but we will mix it up between our back 5. When we do use a short line, Chouly, Hooper and Serfotein will provide crash ball options with George Ford and Giteau the defenders we want to target.

Key Points

Getting across the gain line - We have picked a side with big carriers and really want to control the collision. With Goneva, Manoa, Fofana, Tuilagi, Hartley and the Vunipola's in the starting line up Saints are deprived of many of their big carriers and have less get out of jail cards in terms of getting across the gain line. We are going to look to be physical from the start in both attack and defence.

Play in the right areas - No messing about. We want to get the ball into the Saints half where they are much less dangerous. Kick to spaces or towards touch. Chase has to be in a line and not staggered to force the Saints back three to kick it back.

Target the Saints midfield - Get Serfontein, Hooper and Chouly running hard at Ford, Giteau and Daly. Get over the gain line, recycle quick ball, exploit the space out wide.  

Stop Saints going wide - Use our out to in defence to stop Saints getting wide easily. Henshaw will lead this defence and Pienaar will sweep behind. We want Ford and Giteau to be trying big, risky, looping passes if they want to get the ball wide.

Get at Simpson -  If we can get to Simpson and stop him getting into a rhythm then we make defence so much easier. This takes time away from Ford and Giteau and allows us to press up from out to in much more effectively. Not giving Saints easy ruck ball is key to this.

Bench We have quite deliberately picked a bench which allows us the option to really open the game up if we are behind. With Cooper and Joseph we can take advantage of the spaces which appear as fatigue sets in.

Northampton Saints
Manager: Dammit Chris

01. Thomas Domingo09. Joe Simpson
02. Rob Webber10. George Ford
03. Ramiro Herrera
04. Jonny Gray11. Julian Savea
05. Courtney Lawes12. Matt Giteau
06. Julian Bonnaire13. Elliot Daly
07. Chris Robshaw14. Tommy Bowe
08. Sergio Parisse(c)15. Ben Foden
16. Elliot Dee 17. Mako Vunipola 18. Logi Mulipola 19. Manu Samoa 20. Billy Vunipola 21. Niko Matawulu 22. Weslie Fofana 23. Vereniki Goneva

We've put a strong run together and will look to build on this away at Harlequins. Our game plan is around generating quick ball to get our backline attacking Quins and ensuring we dominate the lineout and the territorial kicking battle. We will play at a high intensity/tempo and keep the ball moving around the park to tire the home team's defence before rolling off the impact sub bench in the final 25/30mins of the game.

We've picked a really strong scummaging unit to take the game to Quins, they've picked Brookes to start and we will look to place him under pressure at every scrum, we will also target their hooker to secure penalities at scrum time. The lineout is the area we will look to dominate - we have five excellent jumping options and on our own ball will look to generate quick ball to attack off of. We will target the Quin's hookers throwing at lineout time and use Lawes athleticism to disrupt the home teams set piece. This is an area we feel we can take advantage of. Lot of experience in the pack with Webber, Robshaw, Bonnaire and Parisse all leaders.

Attack/Kicking Game:
We've recalled Giteau to the starting XV as we want to really beat Quins on the tactical kicking front, early on we will look for the corners and seek to test the Quins lineout both defensively and offensively. With our jumping options we see this as a great attacking platform. Our midfleld is full of creativity and off quick ball will look to find ways of bringing our strike runners from the back three into the game, by attacking at speed and bringing both Savea and Bowe off their wings. We also want to target the 12/13 defensive channel of Quins, which is very new and an area we will exploit.

We will look for Robshaw to play the same game against Hooper as he did over the Autumn, mark him out of the game and slow him down at every opportunity. We have a really mobile pack and will look to support Robshaw in numbers and set up strong defensive lines around the ruck area.


As always a really aggressive defence with fast line speed and closing down the Quins halfbacks. We want to force them into mistakes and handling errors. We will have Simpson sweep in behind the defensive line.

Key Points:
* On the back of three wins in a row against Tigers, full of confidence.
* A strong pack that can target the set piece, the lineout is an area we can especially go for in both attack and defence, putting pressure on the Aussie's lineout throwing and with Domingo, Webber and Herrera we will look for penalties come scrum time - again targeting TPN and Brookes.
* Aim to dominate the territorial kicking battle with Ford/Giteau axis, make sure we are in the right areas to pressurise Quins and force the errors - if we get joy in the lineout we will just keep this tactic going.
* Strongest impact bench we've had to finish extremely strongly, we will have played expansive rugby and will look to have tired Quins and then bring on our big ball carriers.

Newcastle Falcons v Saracens
Location - Kingston Park
Light Cloud, 3 Degrees, 12mph SWS Winds

Newcastle Falcons
Manager – Bambam

01. Matt Mullan09. Nick Phipps
02. Dane Coles10. Owen Farrell (k)
03. Carl Hayman
04. Brad Thorn11. Charlie Sharples
05. Geoff Parling12. Jean De Villiers
06. Dan Lydiate13. Jonathan Davies
07. Richie McCaw14. Charles Piutau
08. Kieran Read (c)15. Ben Smith
16.Rory Best 17.Soane Tonga'huia 18.Matt Stevens 19.Ed Slater 20. David Ewers 21.Greig Laidlaw 22.Gareth Anscombe 23. Rob Miller

Set piece - We have picked a strong set of scrummagers up front, backed up by a strong second row. Particular focus on Chiocci, Hayman has spent plenty of time scrummaging against him in training, and we have selected Thorn to give Hayman maximum help in targeting Chiocci with the shove from the second row, look to work on the channel between loosehead and hooker. We think Mullan can then attack JDP. In the lineout, Parling to call with Thorn and Read as secondary jumpers. Plenty of ball off the top going straight to JDV to run at Foley, who gets hidden at international level. Look to compete on their ball with Parling leading this

Breakdown - Lydiate is in the team to make his chop tackles, we think they will look to use Denton as the primary carrier, aim to chop him down behind the gain line with McCaw immediately going over the ball, similar to how Lydiate and Warburton work for Wales. Denton doesn't tend to offload, so we think he is an ideal target for this tactic. Backed up by Read we think we can get an edge at the ruck.

Kicking - primarily look to keep ball in hand in their half, in ours we have kicking options throughout the back 3 and with JD to take pressure off Farrell. Use grubbers in behind the wings, as well as high balls to test their back 3 with our excellent chasers putting pressure on.

Attack - Phipps to look to snipe whenever the defence over commits, to keep them honest. We will look to target the Foley/Fekitoa channel, with Fekitoa rarely playing 12, look to use JDV's experience and power to tie them in, then give JD and the back 3 a chance to go at Mermoz. Smith to pop up at first receiver at times to give us a 2 sided option in their 22

Bench - a load of carrying options and pace off the bench in Anscombe and Miller. Laidlaw on to help control the game if we are up

Key points

Haymans to go after Chiocci

Target Foley/Fekitoa channel in attack

Lydiate to look to chop Denton down behind the gainline as a primary target for turnovers

Manager – Pooly

01. Xavier Chiocci09. Francois Hougaard
02. Guilhem Guirado10. Bernard Foley
03. Jannie du Plessis
04. Patricio Albacete11. Miles Benjamin
05. Louis Deacon12. Malakai Fekitoa
06. Brad Shields13. Maxime Mermoz
07. Callum Clark14. Juan Imhoff
08. Dave Denton15. Matt Tait
16. Jamie George 17. Nick Auterac 18. Tom Francis 19. Julian Pierre 20.  21. Henry Taylor 22. Lee Byrne 23. Tom Taylor


TARGET BREAKDOWN – We're strong in this area we’ll look to target turnover ball and slowing opposition attacks.

General - We'll be playing a structured physical game from the off, look to smash the opposition back and get into the rucks/maul's and drive through. We'll look to tie the opposition in and then get at their backline, more so in their half. Look to keep it tight in the forward pack and grind through work. Looking to move the opposition pack around and then use big carrying options to punch holes through the opposition defence.

Scrum - Look to get a platform from the off with a strong scrummaging unit. Strong front 5 with big locks will look for the big push once the ball is in and drive the opposition back. Our TH and Hooker will look to target LH and try to get between him and Hooker to allow LH to work on TH If no weakness seen will use as restart.

Line out – Look for quick ball off the top with the world class line out options and experience. Will allow SH good clean ball and have big carriers running off the 9 at angles.

Defence - Blitz defence with high intensity and big hits, looking to drive past the ball player if the ball hits the deck. physical pack that can look to get at the collision and breakdown allowing a chance to slow down/steal ball. Put pressure on SH's basics and force him into errors, Shields the expert here. Scrum half to sweep behind the defensive line.

Attack - Keep things simple in our own half then look to unleash backs in opp territory. Scrum half to dictate play from the breakdown and runners on his shoulder. Huge carrying backrow to get us over the gain line after front 5 set a platform. Midfiels to run angles off the 9/10, allowing us gain line breakers. Look to keep opposition guessing with clever lines through midfield. Wingers will look to track the midfield combo and get the end of little offloads in contact. Back 3 to keep things honest and come looking for work.

Last edited by SirJohnnyEnglish on Mon 29 Dec - 17:28; edited 2 times in total


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by LukeLovesLuka on Wed 31 Dec - 17:17

Cheers, Mrs getting ready allowed me 10 mins Wink


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Ozzy3213 on Wed 31 Dec - 17:55

No worries buddy.


London Irish 30 (T:4 C:2 P:2)
London Welsh 22 (T:2 P:4)

Sale Sharks 28 (T:3 C:2 P:3)
Leicester Tigers 23 (T:2 C:2 P:3)

Bath Rugby 24 (T:3 C:3 P:1)
Exeter Chiefs 28 (T:3 C:2 P:3)

Gloucester 27 (T:3 C:3 P:2)
Wasps 28 (T:3 C:2 P:3)

Harlequins 26 (T:3 C:1 P:3)
Northampton Saints 27 (T:3 C:3 P:2)

Newcastle Falcons 30 (T:4 C:2 P:2)
Saracens 23 (T:2 C:2 P:3)

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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Wed 31 Dec - 18:09

That's a cheeky away win Pete


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Ozzy3213 on Wed 31 Dec - 18:19

Hell yeah it is.

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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by prop_lyd on Wed 31 Dec - 18:38

Yahoo I won a league game!!!! Now to get royally pished!!

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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Wed 31 Dec - 21:06

At least I can't be blamed Very Happy


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Guest on Wed 31 Dec - 22:49

Thought It was still open as per your post. Was about to predict ?


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Guest on Wed 31 Dec - 22:55

Said open until Wednesday. Wanted to predict ??


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by ChequeredJersey on Wed 31 Dec - 23:14

Well won  Prop, wouldn't say no to Matt rescuing me a BP though Wink

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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Guest on Wed 31 Dec - 23:31

CJ you are probably correct. Can't understand why its finished?


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Wed 31 Dec - 23:34

It's been open all week to be fair, we need to get back up to speed


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Guest on Thu 1 Jan - 9:17

Sgt_Pooly wrote:It's been open all week to be fair, we need to get back up to speed

If it says open until Wednesday so it should be open.

hard to penalise me for not predicting and for me to miss the cash for predoing if we change the rules without informing people. It's like saying teams in by Tuesday and then penalising them for not being in on a Monday

Not sure my predos will change anything but even so. CJ your game was the only one I had completed.


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Guest on Thu 1 Jan - 9:30

Done pete by the way. A close one.
If I was predicting I would have had you sneaking the game


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 1 Jan - 9:40

Cheers mate, thought it would be a tight one and until the last couple of predos it was draw, which I would have been happy with.

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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Thu 1 Jan - 9:52

anonmattyt wrote:Said open until Wednesday. Wanted to predict ??

They were open till Wednesday, there was no time specified. You won't get fined as you did one prediction.


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by prop_lyd on Thu 1 Jan - 13:16

ChequeredJersey wrote:Well won  Prop, wouldn't say no to Matt rescuing me a BP though Wink
Cheers bud

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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

Post by SirJohnnyEnglish on Mon 5 Jan - 9:56


Full: Pooly, Steve, Prop, Fluxy, SJE, Chris, CJB, BamBam, Luke
Score/Incomplete: CJ, Pete, Matt


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Re: Aviva Premiership Round Eleven

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