London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

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London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Tue 11 Aug 2015, 1:53 pm

First topic message reminder :

  Welcome to this seasons thread for talking about all things London Irish. 

Senior Squad (39)

Technical Director: Brendan Venter
Director of Rugby: Nick Kennedy
Assistant Coach: Clark Laidlaw
Forwards Coach: George Skivington
Defence Coach: Declan Danaher
Skills Coach: Paul Hodgson

Hooker: David Paice, Gerard Ellis, David Porecki, Jason Harris-Wright, Todd Gleave (dual registered with Rosslyn Park).
Prop: Tom Court, Danny Hobbs-Awoyemi, Tom Smallbone, Ben Franks, Richard Palframan, Ollie Hoskins.
Second Row: Sebastien de Chaves, Jerry Sexton, Jebb Sinclair, George Robson, Will Lloyd.
Back Row: Blair Cowan, Ofisa Treviranus, Luke Narraway, Connor Gilsenen, Joe Trayfoot, Mike Coman, Max Northcote-Green, Senitiki Nayalo.
Scrum Half: Brendan McKibbin, Scott Steele, Darren Allinson (on loan to Bath).
Fly Half: Greig Tonks, Tommy Bell, Theo Brophy-Clews.
Centre: Johnny Williams, Fergus Mulchrone, Ciaran Hearn, Tom Fowlie
Back Three: Topsy Ojo, Alex Lewington, Aseli Tikoirotuama, James Marshall, Ben Ransom


Senior Academy Squad (12)

Hooker: Matt Kouris (dual registered with Esher)
Prop: Harry Elrington (dual registered with Rosslyn Park), Austin Hay (Academy Plus)
Back Row: Isaac Curtis-Harris (dual registered with Esher), Jack Cooke (Academy Plus)
Scrum Half: Conor Murphy, Rory Brand (dual registered with Rosslyn Park)
Fly Half: Tom Parton
Centre: Ross Neal, Matt Williams
Wing: Joe Cokanasiga, Jacob Atkins


Fixture List

Date Time Opponents H/A Venue Competition Result Scorers 







Sat 13th Aug15:00 HarlequinsAThe Stoop FriendlyW 28-12 T: Cowan, Neal, Nayolo, Atkins  C: Bell 3, Tonks.
Fri 19th Aug19:30NottinghamHHazelwood FriendlyW 43-14
Fri 26th Aug19:30Loughborough StudentsHHazelwoodFriendlyW 46-21
Sat 3rd Sep15:00Doncaster KnightsHMadStadChampionship W 19-0T: Fowlie, Tikoroituma  P: Bell 3.
Sat 10th Sep15:00RichmondHMadStadChampionshipW 36-12T: Paice, Cowan 2, Ellis, McKibbin, Elrington. C: Bell 3.
Sat 17th Sep15:00Bedford BluesAGoldington RoadChampionshipW 30-23T: Franks, Williams, Ojo, Northcote-Green. C: Bell 2. P: Bell 2.
Sun 25th Sep15:00Ealing TrailfindersHMadStadChampionshipW 32-12T: Ransom, Trayfoot, Marshall, Steele C:Bell, Marshall 2 P:Bell 2.
Fri 30th Sep19:45NottinghamALadyBay SportsChampionshipW 29-7T: Steele Tikoroituma Northcote-Green Mulchrone C:Bell 3 P:Bell. 
Sat 8th Oct15:00London WelshHMadStadChampionshipW 35-12T: Mulchrone, Paice, de Chaves, McKibbin. C: Bell. 3 P: Bell 3.
Sat 15th Oct15:00Ospreys Prem SelectAThe GnollB & I CupW 25-14T: Neal, Ransom, Nayalo, Palframan.  C: Tonks.  P: Tonks.
Sat 22nd Oct15:00Connacht EaglesHMadStadB & I CupW 34-3T: Elrington, Hoskins, Harris-Wright, Parton, Cokanasiga.  C: Tonks 3 P: Tonks.
Sat 29th Oct15:00London ScottishARAGChampionshipW 62-12T: Paice, McKibbin, Cokanasiga, Bell 2, Tikoirotuma, Steele, Cowan C: Bell 8, P: Bell 2.
Sat 5th Nov15:00Yorkshire CarnegieHMadStadChampionshipW 41-17T: Ransom 2, Tikoirotuma, Marshall 2. C: Bell 5. P: Bell 2.
Sat 19th Nov13:00Cornish PiratesAMennaye FieldChampionshipW 35-24T: Ransom 2, Franks 2, Northcote-Green  C: Marshall 2.  P: Tonks 2.
Sun 27th Nov15:00Jersey RedsHMadStadChampionshipW 42-29T: Ransom, Paice 2, Palframan, Fowlie  C: Bell 4  P: Bell 2  DG: Bell.
Sat 3rd Dec14:00Rotherham TitansAClifton LaneChampionshipW 38-10T: Cokanasiga 2, Bell 2, Steele.  C: Bell 5  P: Bell.
Sun 11th Dec15:00Cornish PiratesHMadStadB & I CupW 33-24T: Atkins, Gilsenan, Porecki, Nayalo, M.Williams.  C: Tonks 4.
Sat 17th Dec14:30Cornish PiratesAMennaye FieldB & I Cup
Sat 24th Dec
15:00
Richmond
A
RAG
Championship


Sat 31st Dec
15:00
Bedford Blues
H
MadStad
Championship


13/14/15 Jan

Connacht Eagles
A

B & I Cup


Sat 21st Jan
15:00
Ospreys Prem Select
H
MadStad
B & I Cup


Sat 28th Jan
15:00
Ealing Trailfinders
A
Vallis Way
Championship


Sun 5th Feb
14:00
Nottingham
H
MadStad
Championship


Sat 18th Feb
14:00
London Welsh
A
Old Deer Park
Championship


Sat 25th Feb
15:00
London Scottish
H
MadStad
Championship


Sun 5th Mar
15:00
Yorkshire Carnegie
A
Headingley
Championship


Sat 18th Mar
14:00
Cornish Pirates
H
MadStad
Championship


Sat 25th Mar
14:00
Jersey Reds
A
St Peter
Championship


Sat 8th Apr
15:00
Rotherham Titans
H
MadStad
Championship


Sat 15th Apr
15:00
Doncaster Knights
A
Castle Park
Championship

Season Preview

Well it's been an interesting summer in the aftermath of relegation.  It was clear from the outset that we would lose some players and would have to cut our cloth accordingly.  Initially it appeared that Tom Coventry was staying, but a late u-turn from him meant a new coaching set up was required.  New coaches, loss of big names, new players to integrate, sounds like a recipe for disaster, and we've certainly been there many times over the past few years.  This however, does not feel like that at all.  Perhaps it's because we are a league down, but there is real optimism around, primarily because of those things.  The holy trinity of Nick Kennedy, Declan Danaher and Paul Hodgson have been promoted to the first team after overseeing a successful academy season last year, and have Brendan Venter overseeing them as technical director.  This is exciting.  A proven winner overseeing a young, hungry and exciting coaching team.  On the playing side, the main losses being Matt Symons and Sean Maitland are more than offset by the likes of George Robson, James Marshall and Tommy Bell coming in.  If anything it feels as if we may have a stronger squad this year than we've had for the past 4 or 5.

Two games into pre season and things look positive.  Comfortably beating an admittedly understrength Quins, and a high scoring win against Nottingham have given plenty of optimism for the season ahead.  There were still defensive lapses, which will need to be ironed out, but barring complacency or an absolute stinker in terms of form, we should have more than enough to comfortably make the dreaded play offs, where it then becomes a test of mental strength rather than ability.



Ozzy'sprediction: Champions


Last edited by Ozzy3213 on Mon 12 Dec 2016, 5:21 pm; edited 27 times in total
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Sun 10 Jan 2016, 8:35 pm

Right then, I guess they all say a win is a win. I really wish they didn't have to put us all through that after being 20 nil up with 35 to go. Back to Europe and I can see a fair bit of rotation given the proximity of some very big games (Sale away and Worcester home) just over the horizon. I would be looking for the following to be rested (or at least benched). A Challenge Cup QF would be nice, but no consolation if we were still deep in trouble come the last game of the season away to Newcastle:

Franks
Court
Symons
Williams (played a lot of rugby for a 19 year old)
Lewington
Tiks
McKibben
Narraway

Giving us something like this against Grenoble (Guessing with a few injuries)

Smallbone
Ellis
Aulika
Sinclair
Lloyd
Trayfoot
Cowan
Treviranus
Steele
Geraghty
Fowlie
Mulcrone
Hearn (if registered)
Ojo
Fenby

Paice, Franks, Halavatau, Sisi, Gilsenan, Allinson, TBC, Waldouck

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 11 Jan 2016, 12:29 pm

That was a huge result yesterday. Winning, however ugly, is something we have not done a lot of recently, so points on the board and confidence in the bank are the two big things to come from it. From what I have heard we picked up some injuries though, and selection for the Grenoble game may give TC some headaches, as I am sure he will want to rest people, but he'll also want to win, build momentum and potentially qualify for a quarter final. Lock is a huge area of concern as Symons and Lloyd are the only fit senior locks. Sinclair can play there and also possibly Sisi, and I've just checked and Lloyd is not registered for Europe, and nor ar Ciaran Hearn or Johnny Harris. Id' probably start Symons against Grenoble, and Ollie Curry out in Agen, partnering each alongside Sinclair in the engine room.

I'd pick for Grenoble

15. Ojo
14. Lewington
13. Fowlie
12. Mulchrone
11. Tikoroituma
10. Geraghty
9. Steele

1. Smallbone
2. Ellis
3. Aulika
4. Symons
5. Sinclair
6. Trayfoot
7. Gilsenan
8. Cowan

16. Cruse 17. Court 18. Halavatau 19. Curry 20. Sisi 21. Stevens 22. Allinson 23. Brophy-Clews

In the backs Fenby, Maitland, Griffin and Noakes are definitely injured and I am pretty sure Waldouck is as well. Hearn is not registered and Williams needs a rest. This is basically the only fit, registered backline available to us. Up front Harris is not registered, Paice is possibly injured and Franks needs a rest. Court does too, but we have another registered loosehead. Skivs, Sheriff and Rouse are all injured and Lloyd not registered, and I would rest big Trev and Naz who have been huge for us in the past few weeks. This is basically who we have unless there are some miracle recoveries from injury, although to be fair, that does happen, just ask Andrew Goode!
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Mon 11 Jan 2016, 5:28 pm

Had actually realised that Lloyd and Hearn weren't registered, but was labouring under the forlorn hope that there was some room for additions mid way through the competition, as in football.

Lock is a real issue and I would definitely see Curry playing some part in the Agen game, as you say.

Loosehead is interesting. We have never shown any inclination to give Harris any gametime, which just leaves Court and Smallbone. I know Franks is keen on not being moved around too much, but it wouldn't surprise me to see him get a little gametime there at some point in the season. Especially when Palf is back (any ideas on his recovery time?).

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 11 Jan 2016, 7:02 pm

There is room to register at least 1 additional front row player and possibly one more.

Palf is still out for a while I believe.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Sun 17 Jan 2016, 7:04 pm

Wasn't at the game yesterday but doesn't sound like I missed much. I imagine a similar side will go again versus Agen, keeping the key players fresh for Premiership action.

In better news we have been linked with Tommy Bell the 10/15 from Leicester. A decent player and would definitely be a useful alternative to James Marshall at 10. A very good goal kicker as well. As we don't have the biggest squad, it seems like versatility will be prized next season.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Sun 24 Jan 2016, 4:54 pm

Linked with Andy Symons in today's Rugby Paper. I have wondered for a while if we might look to bring him over. Obviously it doesn't sound like a done deal, but the pleasing thing would be that signing him and Bell would help to address our goal-kicking weaknesses, while also giving us increased versatility as he can play a number of positions.

Would be nice to see us linked with a couple of forwards though, especially some ball-carriers.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Sun 24 Jan 2016, 5:06 pm

Will have plenty or versatility if we end up with him and Bell. In addition to Marshall. The former pair are both better kickers than Noakes and Geraghty too.

Would probably make sense for Symons with Teo, Willison and Mills all likely to be getting plenty of gametime at Worcester.

Agree regarding ball carrying forwards. Laurence Pearce seems like he may be available as he's been linked to Sale. Couple of decent back rowers would do nicely.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Sun 24 Jan 2016, 5:28 pm

Yea, wouldn't mind Pearce myself - I know we looked at him before he joined Tigers.

Obviously, in bigger news we are through to another European quarter final! Not sure the timing is that good for us, but I am hopeful that by then we will have at least beaten Wuss at home to put a bit more distance between us and Newcastle. If we are still in a two horse dogfight then we can just send a second choice side out and give it a lash. Proud of that team for picking up an away win in France to be honest when you look at the line-up. Curry sounds like he had a good game too which is encouraging.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Sun 24 Jan 2016, 5:39 pm

I think the QF is a decent (and unexpected) boost to the squad. Good to see that team putting in a performance. Who knows what the situation will be when the game comes around, but I'd rather be in it than not.

Big few weeks coming up against Sale and Worcester. Both have been doing okay, but they are the kind of games we have to target if we are going to pull clear of danger.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Sun 24 Jan 2016, 6:00 pm

Yea - must be targeting at least 5 points from those two. Both are good sides, but we need to put some distance between us and Falcons. Am sure that would help with recruitment as well. Hopefully see something like the following:

Court
Paice
Franks
Symons
Lloyd
Treviranus
Cowan (Gilsenan)
Guest

McKibbin
Geraghty
Tikoirotuma
Williams
Hearn
Lewington
Maitland (Ojo)

For the Sharks game and brackets for the Wuss match. I assume we can keep Blair and Maitland for next week, but I guess it depends on how they feel.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Sun 24 Jan 2016, 6:47 pm

Can't really argue too much with that. A few marginal ones like Paice/Ellis. A lot will depend on how sharp they feel Guest is, as Narraway has been performing very well. Looked last season like he was just going through the motions and picking up a pay cheque, but he's been our best back row this season.

I've not seen the last two games so can't really comment too much on how Gilsenan has gone. Hopefully Tiks and Williams will both be fresh after a rest.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Sun 24 Jan 2016, 7:07 pm

Personally have mixed feelings on Narraway. I know he has been good this season, but think he can still try the unnecessary and spectacular at times and isn't as abrasive as our other options. Guest is a very similar player but a better ball carrier which is what we are lacking at the moment. I fully expect Narraway to start though as Coventry is clearly a fan and Guest won't be fully sharp yet.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 01 Feb 2016, 5:29 pm

Mike Coman announced for next season. Good signing, that's him and Marshall confirmed and Andy Symons and Tommy Bell rumoured.

Looks like we are bringing decent guys in, just need to up our game to make sure we're still playing Premiership rugby when they arrive!
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Mon 01 Feb 2016, 10:48 pm

Particularly pleasing to see Marshall tweeting his support of this signing. Not quite the massive ball-carrier that we need, but think he will be a useful acquisition. Should start for us at 6 and will bring added work-rate and leadership for when Symons ends up with England.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by George Carlin on Tue 02 Feb 2016, 7:59 am

Ozzy3213 wrote:Mike Coman announced for next season.  Good signing, that's him and Marshall confirmed and Andy Symons and Tommy Bell rumoured.  

Looks like we are bringing decent guys in, just need to up our game to make sure we're still playing Premiership rugby when they arrive!
Yes, Coman People (as we have christened him on the jock threads) is absolutely decent. 

His status as club captain shows he is well liked.

He won't set the turf on fire, but he is solid, smart and professional. A great squad man, at the very least.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Wed 10 Feb 2016, 8:28 am

Happy with Stooke coming in and although I know absolutely nothing about the other two lads, at least it is more numbers, one in a very important position.

Mixed feelings after Sunday. We really should have put Worcester away by more, but in a way that gives me confidence. They looked like a poor side. Shame that we have Saints next, as it looks like they turned the corner against Quins and have finally got their selection right. A big effort needed, but if we can start picking up LBPs from these sorts of games I have confidence we will stay up.

I am guessing the same line-up as for Wuss, but with Stooke coming onto bench at the expense of Nagle and Halse in for TBC.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Wed 10 Feb 2016, 8:28 am

PS. Maitland was fairly poor for Scotland. I expect he will be released unless he finds some form soon.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Heaf on Wed 10 Feb 2016, 12:20 pm

SirBurger wrote:Happy with Stooke coming in and although I know absolutely nothing about the other two lads, at least it is more numbers, one in a very important position.

Mixed feelings after Sunday. We really should have put Worcester away by more, but in a way that gives me confidence. They looked like a poor side. Shame that we have Saints next, as it looks like they turned the corner against Quins and have finally got their selection right. A big effort needed, but if we can start picking up LBPs from these sorts of games I have confidence we will stay up.

I am guessing the same line-up as for Wuss, but with Stooke coming onto bench at the expense of Nagle and Halse in for TBC.

I agree we should have won by more - although a little tricky with Mr Barnes & co trying to chalk them all off ... and then ironically ignoring an obstruction for one of their tries

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Fri 12 Feb 2016, 12:08 pm

Tiks out injured for 6 weeks. Our injuries are beyond a joke now. Topsy and Fenners are now our only fit and available back three players!
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Fri 12 Feb 2016, 12:34 pm

Current injury list

Tiks
Franks
Lewi
Skivs
Rouse
Griffin
Noakes
Palf
Sheriff
McKibbin
Gilsenan
Sisi
Cross
Trayfoot
Guest
Fowlie

and Cowan/ Maitland away with Scotland.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Heaf on Fri 12 Feb 2016, 2:30 pm

Jeez - have the whole team been walking under ladders whilst smashing mirrors and kicking black cats or something - this must be the worst ever just when we can least afford it ...

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Hazel Sapling on Fri 12 Feb 2016, 3:16 pm

Isn't Cross at LS?

That is an horrific injury list considering LI's squad.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Fri 12 Feb 2016, 4:01 pm

Geoff Cross was on loan at Scottish but may have been recalled as a result to the injury to Franks. He also has a knock however, as does Palframan, meaning we only have 2 fit tightheads, and that includes the academy lads.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 10:38 am

Honestly can't remember a prem season I've enjoyed less than this. Our away performances are massively frustrating. We were actually doing really well for the first 10 minutes at the weekend, with a solid defence and some good phases thrown together. Aulika gets binned and 20 minutes in and we're 14 nil down with the game realistically gone. The wheels seem to be coming off so quickly in some of these games.

I'm not resigned to relegation like some seem to be, as Worcester are still in pretty poor shape. The injury situation is as bad as I can remember for the club and has obviously come at a bad time. That said, it's important that it doesn't become too much of an excuse for poor performance. If we get relegated, no one will remember that in a few years. The team was similar to the one that took the field against Worcester and regardless of the relative strengths of the opposition, the performances were markedly different.

Will be interesting to see how we approach the Exeter game. We've been much more solid at home over the last few months and will remember beating them at our place last year. Have assumed Topsy and Ellis have been added to the injury list after coming off at the weekend, without anyone returning (hopefully not the case), so would go with something like this:

Court
Paice
Aulika
Symons
Stooke
Guest (haven't heard anywhere that he's injured despite being on the list. Happy to be corrected though)
Narraway
Treviranus
Steele
Geraghty
Hearn
Williams
Mulchrone
Fenby
TBC

Cruise, Smallbone, Halavatu, Nagle, McCusker, Allinson, Waldouck, Lewis-Pratt

Appreciate that's more changes than is likely. Not convinced on Lloyd. He's okay, but a touch lightweight in the tight, without compensating with a top class lineout game. Stooke is worth a shot and is a massive lump who would hopefully help with some of the maul woes at the weekend. Especially given the threat Waldrom poses from the back of them. Need to start Trev if he's in any way fit enough and get Guest into the game if fit. The back row has got to be carrying some ball and I think those two offer more threat than Jebb and McCusker who are pretty one paced.

Shane didn't have a great game, and is not on form in general, but he's all we've got unless we want to chuck an 18 year old in at 10. Outside backs are a real issue with the injuries if Topsy is out. Think it's probably an opportunity for TBC to start at 15 as he did in Europe.


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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by GeordieFalcon on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 10:42 am

That's a horrific injury list.

Ironically we have had a similar injury list, but we're coming out of it now and the results are coming.

Hopefully you can get your guys fit and Wuss go down.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 10:51 am

Yeah, it would be amusing if it wasn't causing such an issue. Couple more likely added on Saturday with Ellis and Ojo both going off hurt and Maitland and Cowan both managing to injure themselves with Scotland.

Good game from you guys on Friday night, definitely deserved that one. Would rather Worcester went down as well as it's good to have the North represented and it's a decent away trip. Also think Dean Ryan is a bit of a bluffer, we'll see though.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by GeordieFalcon on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 11:26 am

Ive never been a fan of Wuss. I hope they go down anyway.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 12:10 pm

The injury situation is certainly not getting any better. Ellis went off with a bang to the head, and Scott Steele also went of injured on Saturday. If Topsy's injury stops him from playing this week then Fenby is the only fit senior back three player. Paice and Geraghty are already playing whilst injured. It is genuinely the case in most positions of whoever is fit is in the team.

What is good is that TC has certainly not come out blaming injuries or referees for where we are in the league. Dean Ryan is an absolute joke quite frankly. His rant about Worcester being on the wrong end of refereeing decisions is laughable. They had every decision go there way against us and there have been games this season where they have picked up other LBP's off the back of dodgy decisions in their favour. Was it against Quins where they got a try despite one of their players clearly pulling a defender back?

If we go down, which is a real possibility, it will be because we have not been good enough. Injuries aside, we have contrived through poor play to lose games that we should have won this season. On day 1 we should have beaten a well under strength Tigers side at home, but absolutely butchered a number of good tryscoring opportunities, and I genuinely believe we would have turned Bath over but for McKibbin's absolute brain fart which got him red carded.

I will be gutted if we go down, but it may be the opportunity we need to rebuild properly, as it's tough doing that in the pressure cooker of the Premiership, where trying to bed in a style of play, introduce new players and bring through talented youngsters all has to be tempered in favour of nicking the results you need to stay up.

The game against the Chiefs this weekend is massive, as after that it's Welford Road and then The Rec for us, and I am not convinced that our away form is likely to see us pick up points from those games, however poor form both of those sides are in. If we lose this weekend and lose touch with Falcons and Worcester, then I reckon we have one foot firmly on the slippery slope down to the Championship.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 12:27 pm

There's a part of me that wouldn't mind watching us in the Championship. I wouldn't mind seeing us win more games than we lose for a start and live in South Yorkshire, so would get to more games than I can at the moment (Rotherham, Doncaster, Leeds, Nottingham all an easy distance away). I'm old enough to remember seeing us play the last time we were relegated in the mid 90's.

I worry though about how well we are set up for it though and about how deep pockets are on the investor front especially if we don't bounce straight back up in year one (which I would back us to if Bristol aren't in there still).


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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 1:11 pm

I spoke to one of the consortium who own the club about a month ago, and we touched on relegation. From the conversation we had, the board are prepared for it if it happens and there is certainly no question of anyone in power jumping ship. They are determined to take the club forward, however tough that may prove to be.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 1:16 pm

That's encouraging. Sure there will always be contingency planning in place in this game where relegation is always a risk, but it's nice to get some reassurance that they didn't bet the family silver on survival.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 8:42 pm

That is reassuring Ozzy. And agree to an extent with you, Margin: for the first time in years I actually wouldn't mind us going down. This season of Premiership Rugby has just been painful and although I have always worried that relegation could end us, perhaps it won't. I would expect us to lose most/all of the following though: Franks, Symons, Cowan, Lewington and Maitland which would be a blow.

In better news, great to see the Under 18s getting the win today.

Team for Exeter:

Court
Ellis (if fit)
Aulika
Symons
Stooke
McCusker
Narraway
Treviranus

Steele
Geraghty
Hearn
Williams
Mulchrone
Ojo
Fenby

Bench: Paice, Smallbone, Halavatau, Sinclair, Guest, Allinson, Brophy-Clews, ?????

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 8:52 pm

Certainly, as current internationals Cowan and Maitland would likely look to move on. Symons I suspect would stay, and I would not be surprised if Franks stayed.

I think there need to be some changes for this weekend, as Exeter will be uber competitive off the back off losing their last two games. Up front we need some fresh bodies and ideas, and in the backs, I want round pegs in round holes rather than playing someone like Hearn, who is our best outside centre, on the wing. I also don't think Shane is bringing anything to the table in an attacking sense and whoever is at 12 is having to do his tackling for him. If I was picking the team for this weekend, this would be it....

15. Tom Halse
14. Topsy Ojo
13. Ciaran Hearn
12. Fergus Mulchrone
11. Andrew Fenby
10. Theo Brophy-Clews
9. Scott Steele

1. Tom Smallbone
2. Gerard Ellis
3. Halani Aulika
4. Matt Symons
5. Ian Nagle
6. Elliott Stooke
7. Ofisa Treviranus
8. Rob McCusker

16. Jimmy Stevens 17. Tom Court 18. Leo Halavatau 19. Jebb Sinclair 20. Luke Narraway 21. Tom Guest 22. Darren Allinson 23. Johnny Williams
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 8:56 pm

Some good news though, the U18's thumped Gloucester 35-11 in the academy final. Both sides went in unbeaten, so it's a cracking result. Some good players in this crop, who hopefully we can keep and develop. Isaac Curtis-Harris and Matt Williams look the standouts.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 8:58 pm

Heard good things about Parton at 10 as well Ozzy. Moved from 15 last season and gets rave reviews every match he plays.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 8:59 pm

Question though, if we go down, would you want TC to stay?

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 9:05 pm

Parton does look a good player as well.  I spoke to someone who watches all the underage games who reckons he has more potential than TBC.

If we go down, yes I would want TC to stay, and prove to everyone that he is a top coach.  

I think this year has been incredibly difficult for him.  He was identified as being a top coach, and ready to move into the head honcho role.  What you have to consider is that with the Chiefs, he is coaching a load of All Blacks under zero threat of relegation.  He's come here and lets face it, the relative ability of our guys is going to have been a real drop off.  He's having to arrest a 5 year slide, install a new style of play, and get used to a different league, all with players who may not be good enough, whilst ensuring that he doesn't get relegated.  Just when he looked as if he was starting to get to grips with things a bit, we have been hammered with injury and he is missing some real key guys out there.  I think we all probably expected too much, he's a top coach, not a miracle worker.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 9:14 pm

http://www.fifteenrugby.com/u18-academy-final-sublime-london-irish-beat-gloucester-to-win-u18-title/
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 9:18 pm

I'd want TC to stay. Despite not getting to results so far, he seems like the kind of guy that people want to come back and be coached by again (Coman, possibly Symons x 2 etc). Maybe I'm naturally not massively reactionary, but I think sometimes sh*t just happens. Not saying it would definitely be the right call, just that I would rather see something through.

Really encouraging news with the u18s and massively promising for the future. There are obviously some superb prospects in there and will be interesting to see who we pick up on senior academy contracts. Would expect it to be a few more than usual. Purely going on various writeups, age group recognition so far etc (so basically an uneducated guess), would expect Parton, Brand, Isaac-Harris, Williams, Kouris would be involved with likely a few more.


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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 9:23 pm

Joe Cokanasiga is already in the senior academy and looks a genuine prospect as well. If we get any more back 3 injuries we may well end up seeing him int eh first team sooner rather than later.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Mon 15 Feb 2016, 9:25 pm

Yeah, left him out as he's already involved after being snapped up on his 18th birthday I think (assume as he isn't still in school?). The kid is built like a tank, so will be interesting to see how he goes in senior rugby.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Wed 17 Feb 2016, 8:18 pm

Interesting thoughts - TC's ability to convince players new and old to sign or renew is very impressive and indicates that players do like playing for him. The injuries work in his favour as he has been severely hampered. A lot of our most important players were also at the World Cup which meant no pre-season for them and arguably no chance to fully figure out the style of play he wanted. However, that last point is still a bit of a worry for me - there just doesn't appear to be much of a style, especially away from home. Hopefully it will come and I think if push came to shove I would let him have another year. It is a risk though, especially if we go down as I think we would need to come straight back up to survive.

Bell signing confirmed which is pleasing. Gives us options at 10 and 15.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Wed 17 Feb 2016, 9:01 pm

I guess a lot will really depend on the mood of the squad at the time. If we went down and the squad were united with a common purpose until the end behind TC then I would see no value in him going. If things are more fractured and there is a significant element of disharmony then a change may be in order. Trying not to get too resigned to it just yet though despite some of the doom and gloom about. Need to make sure we are still within touching distance of Worcester by the time we next play them for a start.

Like the Tommy Bell signing. Just a really solid signing and the kind of player we are crying out for in the squad. Just a shame Leicester have a few injury issues there or there could have been a deal to be done on an early release/loan.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Ozzy3213 on Thu 18 Feb 2016, 10:45 am

The board tried to get hm early, but uynderstandably Tigers were not having it.
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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Mon 22 Feb 2016, 10:01 am

Mixed feelings after yesterday. Mainly gutted at a missed opportunity, but at least we took something, which I'm not sure we would have done a few weeks ago. This morning I have plugged in the numbers and I have us getting a total of 26 points, which is one less than I have for Wuss, which goes to show that it is still all to play for and I am feeling less pessimistic than I was last night.

A further injury to Symons really doesn't help matters, but I am hoping he won't be out too long. Anything, even a point at Leicester would be fantastic and I think would mean a lot to the players. We need to start getting something in matches away from home and it would really give the lads a psychological boost.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Margin_Walker on Mon 22 Feb 2016, 1:27 pm

Thought as a defensive display (outside of the maul defence) was superb. Completely suffocated Exeter and I can't remember seeing them play as negatively over the last few seasons. Baxter had a moan about the ball boys slowing down their tempo etc, but all they were ever interested in doing all game was mauling and scrummaging for pens.

TBC's tactical kicking isn't great, but he was a much bigger presence defensively than our other tens. Him, Williams and Mulchrone is a pretty solid midfield defensive unit, which may well be what we need again at Leicester.

I'm not too intimidated by the 5 point gap as there are plenty of games to go. But to try to ensure we remain in touch with Worcester prior to playing them next however we can. Another weekend like this one falling three points further behind everyone would leave us in a very ropey position.

Injuries still a huge concern. Symons having a spell on the sidelines really would be the cherry on the cake on that front.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Heaf on Mon 22 Feb 2016, 11:36 pm

SirBurger wrote:Mixed feelings after yesterday. Mainly gutted at a missed opportunity, but at least we took something, which I'm not sure we would have done a few weeks ago. This morning I have plugged in the numbers and I have us getting a total of 26 points, which is one less than I have for Wuss, which goes to show that it is still all to play for and I am feeling less pessimistic than I was last night.

A further injury to Symons really doesn't help matters, but I am hoping he won't be out too long. Anything, even a point at Leicester would be fantastic and I think would mean a lot to the players. We need to start getting something in matches away from home and it would really give the lads a psychological boost.
If it is that close Wuss will have Mr Barnes to thank for keeping them up ...

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Tue 23 Feb 2016, 9:11 am

SirBurger wrote:Mixed feelings after yesterday. Mainly gutted at a missed opportunity, but at least we took something, which I'm not sure we would have done a few weeks ago. This morning I have plugged in the numbers and I have us getting a total of 26 points, which is one less than I have for Wuss, which goes to show that it is still all to play for and I am feeling less pessimistic than I was last night.

A further injury to Symons really doesn't help matters, but I am hoping he won't be out too long. Anything, even a point at Leicester would be fantastic and I think would mean a lot to the players. We need to start getting something in matches away from home and it would really give the lads a psychological boost.

Interested to see where you see these points coming from SB?

Things change week to week, I done a similar thing a few weeks and had us around the 20pt mark at the end of the season. A few big wins and everything looks completely different.

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by SirBurger on Tue 23 Feb 2016, 9:48 am

Wuss (18):
Northampton (A) 0
Newcastle (A) 1
Gloucester (H) 4
Quins (A) 1
Irish (H) 4
Exeter (A) 0
Wasps (H) 0
Leicester (A) 0
Saracens (H) 1

Total: 29

Irish (13):
Leicester (A) 0
Bath (A) 1
Saracens (H) 1
Gloucester (H) 4
Worcester (A) 1
Sale (H) 4
Newcastle (A) 1
Quins (H) 1
Wasps (A) 0

Total: 26

So actually a difference of 3 points. Not sure why it was less yesterday, but it definitely shows that it is still very tight. Wuss lose to Glos and we beat Quins for instance and we would leapfrog them. One 'surprise' result and all could change.

For the record I have Newcastle as:

(20):
Glos (A) 1
Worcester (H) 4
Exeter (A) 0
Bath (A) 1
Wasps (H) 1
Quins (A) 1
Irish (H) 4
Saracens (A) 0
Sale (H) 4

Total: 36

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Re: London Irish 2016/17 Championship Thread

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Tue 23 Feb 2016, 10:12 am

Very fair assessment SB, 36pts is some total for Falcons.

I actually fancy us to turn Gloucester over on current form.

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