Aviva Premiership - Round 1

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Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by LondonTiger on Tue 30 Aug 2016, 11:05 am

First topic message reminder :

Fri 2nd Sep 16

19:45 Gloucester Rugby v  Leicester Tigers  BT Sport

The premiership season starts down at Castle Grim. Gloucester have promised more than they have delivered over the last few seasons, with the pack often failing to perform. This season DoR Humphreys has looked to the SH to address this, bringing in an entire front row from Super Rugby. Gloucester have been slow starters in recent seasons as newcomers take time to assimilate. They will need old hands like Greig Laidlaw on top form to ensure they can start the season with some good results.
Leicester will arrive expecting to play a high tempo offloading game and looking to run the legs off teams. This game plan was introduced last season by Aaron Mauger and was a hit with fans. The team will hope that increased familiarity will reduce the error count that bedevilled the club in the key knockout games last season. A lot of power has been lost in the back row with 3 number 8s leaving the club, but the front 5 looked very strong in pre-season.


20:00 Newcastle Falcons  v   Sale Sharks

It is always hard to ascertain how teams will go at the start of a new season. That is especially true for visitors Sale. They have tended to alternate between over-achieving and under-achieving seasons. Steve Diamond looks to have been pretty canny in his recruitment, but so much will depend on how McGinty goes and if Mike Phillips still has the legs for top flight rugby. The effect of increased revenue following the recent takeover will be unlikely to be seen this season.
Falcons have not finished above 11th in the AP since finishing 9th in 2009/10, and their recruitment has been largely of the "value for money" sort. There has been a massive clear out of players this summer, though despite the international status of many of them most will not be missed. Looking at the players available, and how the team have performed in the past it is hard to see beyond another season in the relegation zone.
I suspect Sale to be too strong for a plucky Falcon's team.




Sat 3rd Sep 16

14:00 Saracens   v   Worcester Warriors   BT Sport

The Twickenham double header starts with the champions (of England and Europe) hosting a Warriors side that again will have minimal EQP representation. Worcester will be physical and look to hit teams on the counter-attack, Saracens will do the same only better. Could be an exciting match but an easy win for Sarries you would expect.


15:30 Northampton Saints   v   Bath Rugby

Both these sides had quite small squads last season, which at times did affect them. Just a small number of changes to the Saints squad this season with a lot of faith (and cash) being thrown the way of Louis Picamoles. He will have to hit the ground running if Saints are to fight their way back into the top 4.
Bath have seen a lot of players leave and look desperately short of midfield backs. With the arrival of players like Charteris and Faletau, the pack shoudl be stronger than last season but it will take time for new coach Blackadder to both stamp his mark and get the players he needs in. They will be buoyed by 3 wins out of 3 in pre-season (all away from home) including last week over Leinster.
Saints to grind out the win.


16:30 Harlequins   v   Bristol Rugby  BT Sport

A new era for Quins in the coaching department, but minimal changes in the playing roster. With Evans yet another season older, they will want Jackson to find form quickly. He showed flashes of excellence last season for Wasps, more of that and Quins could be pushing for a Top 6 placing. Any better than that will require a herculean effort from their England men, and for some of the younger players to really step forward and deliver on youthful promise.
Who knows what to expect from Bristol. they have recruited heavily and will look to be taking early scalps to settle their own nerves. They may surprise Quins.



Sun 4th Sep 16

15:00 Wasps  v   Exeter Chiefs  BT Sport

These teams met at the knock out stages in both major competitions last season, with each team securing a win. Exeter have allowed largely fringe players to leave, and brought in a small number of probable starters. they will be stronger than last season. Wasps however have splashed big money, and are now the leagues money bags. Recruitment seems to have been centred on the back line however, where they could easily field two very strong line-ups. They could struggle up front though - with grizzled old heads like George Smith, Bradley Davies and the italian pairing of Cittadini and Festuccia likely to be missed. Add in the injury issues for Haskell and opposition will be looking to deny their backs any food ball by taking them on up front.
Exeter will probably be too organised for a Wasps team that may well go on to win the title.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by ChequeredJersey on Sun 04 Sep 2016, 6:01 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:25-20 win for Wasps. They'll definitely take that, after being down 8-20 during the match.

Commentary team thinks the bench strength helped Wasps, and it certainly looked like they had control of the match in the final quarter.

Interesting that the two England young guns - Mallinder and Slade - started the season at fly half, and both ended up on the losing side.

Think both are destined for 12 not 10 for me, their clubs might need them there due to other centre options and wanting them on the park but it's doing neither of them favours for their development and prospects imo

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by doctor_grey on Sun 04 Sep 2016, 6:43 pm

ChequeredJersey wrote:
Rugby Fan wrote:25-20 win for Wasps. They'll definitely take that, after being down 8-20 during the match.

Commentary team thinks the bench strength helped Wasps, and it certainly looked like they had control of the match in the final quarter.

Interesting that the two England young guns - Mallinder and Slade - started the season at fly half, and both ended up on the losing side.

Think both are destined for 12 not 10 for me, their clubs might need them there due to other centre options and wanting them on the park but it's doing neither of them favours for their development and prospects imo
I agree with you. Their coaches might still be experimenting, certainly with Prince Harry. I would like to see a Myler-Mallinder-Burrell combination.

Regarding today's match, I thought Exe had a fine start. Then I went out for a bit. Surprised at the final score. Will watch the replay of the full match over dinner.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sun 04 Sep 2016, 9:01 pm

Mallinder looks much better at 12 but Slade doesn't look out of place at 10 12 or 13. Picked at 10 through given Steenson, Hill and Devoto were all fit suggests he'll end up there for Exeter but well see him in midfield a lot this season.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by formerly known as Sam on Sun 04 Sep 2016, 9:37 pm

I think Slade could end up at 10 if he so wishes. Given that Exeter have a tough game vs Sarries next week I presumed that Steens on was going to be saved for that one whilst Slade was deployed in what was always likely to be the more open game vs Wasps. Sensible squad management.

Likewise most people expected Saints pack to have the upper hand and a far more physical midfield to turn that good ball into points against a much less physical Bath midfield combo. Easing Myler into the season and saving him a little given Saints general over reliance on his fitness.

I think Sarries dominance and clever squad rotation will lead to a number of the bigger clubs trying to emulate the tactic in hope of narrowing the gap.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by doctor_grey on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 5:03 am

I didn't realize until you mentioned it:  Exe have a tough open to the season, first against Wasps then against Saracens.  Nothing like easing into the season, eh?

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by George Carlin on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 7:54 am

The Cherries' capitulation against the Tigers was both amazing and awful to watch.

Like watching Edinburgh in the bad old days. It was as though Leicester suddenly remembered that they don't lose to teams like Gloucester and just decided not to.

Can't put my finger on what is missing from the Glaws pack, but something definitely is.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by LondonTiger on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 8:13 am

George Carlin wrote:
Can't put my finger on what is missing from the Glaws pack, but something definitely is.

In large part Glaws pack replacements were poor quality, whereas each player Leicester brought on made an impact.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by beshocked on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 9:07 am

George Carlin wrote:The Cherries' capitulation against the Tigers was both amazing and awful to watch.

Like watching Edinburgh in the bad old days.  It was as though Leicester suddenly remembered that they don't lose to teams like Gloucester and just decided not to.

Can't put my finger on what is missing from the Glaws pack, but something definitely is.

Typical Leicester winning the game in the last few minutes. It's impressive how often Leicester do it.

It's why Leicester are generally fighting for and winning titles.

Gloucester in contrast, well IMO they seem to have a reputation of letting games slip out of their grasp.

I think the biggest mistake was Gloucester squandering an opportunity to go 10 points clear with only a few minutes to go.

Going by the 1st round it certainly seems like the sides predicted to be the bottom 3 have been more competitive than expected which I think bodes well for the league.

Of course Bristol will be the most frustated but they should take heart from pushing Quins all the way.




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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by HongKongCherry on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 9:21 am

LondonTiger wrote:
George Carlin wrote:
Can't put my finger on what is missing from the Glaws pack, but something definitely is.

In large part Glaws pack replacements were poor quality, whereas each player Leicester brought on made an impact.

Spot on. We reacted to tigers bringing Genge and Cole on by replacing our entire front row, which had been hugely effective, with the likes of PDJ Shocked There was a notable drop in energy and shockingly the players appeared to think it was in the bag, which given this isn't the first time we've been leading Tigers is pretty criminal. The only ray of hope is that we have signed additional front row players who will add quality, however, we're not going to see them for a month or too in the case of Matu'u and Hohneck.

We should have gone for the points near the end, but I understand the reason for the kick to touch. However, Hook's kick was average at best, which was followed by a poor lineout call and an even worse throw!

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by LondonTiger on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 10:18 am

HongKongCherry wrote:
LondonTiger wrote:
George Carlin wrote:
Can't put my finger on what is missing from the Glaws pack, but something definitely is.

In large part Glaws pack replacements were poor quality, whereas each player Leicester brought on made an impact.

Spot on. We reacted to tigers bringing Genge and Cole on by replacing our entire front row, which had been hugely effective, with the likes of PDJ Shocked  There was a notable drop in energy and shockingly the players appeared to think it was in the bag, which given this isn't the first time we've been leading Tigers is pretty criminal. The only ray of hope is that we have signed additional front row players who will add quality, however, we're not going to see them for a month or too in the case of Matu'u and Hohneck.

We should have gone for the points near the end, but I understand the reason for the kick to touch. However, Hook's kick was average at best, which was followed by a poor lineout call and an even worse throw!

We trailled you by 12 points just before HT away last season and by 17 points at the same point at WR. 24 point deficit though is the biggest yet. Gloucester have real potential and showed much of that at the weekend, but they also showed the same frailties as usual.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by LondonTiger on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 10:42 am

Oh, and watching Genge develop this season will be fascinating. It has that same feeling as when Dan Cole was emerging for us with an experienced and rated international to learn from. Would be good if Genge can supplant Ayerza in the same way Cole did to Castro.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by formerly known as Sam on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 11:33 am

LondonTiger wrote:Oh, and watching Genge develop this season will be fascinating. It has that same feeling as when Dan Cole was emerging for us with an experienced and rated international to learn from. Would be good if Genge can supplant Ayerza in the same way Cole did to Castro.

I also like the idea of having Genge and Mulipola coming off the bench for second half impact later in the season.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by yappysnap on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 2:15 pm

Quins made that very hard for themselves, but also Bristol were very good for the first 50.

Really impressed by them, especially the backline. Got to say Henson was missed massively when he went off, him and that 13 of theirs were showing Roberts and Marchant up.

A win is a win, but I can't help but feel we got very lucky there, some messy try's from mauls, only able to put pressure on in the scrum and then a fairly leniant call from the ref saved our bacon.

We need a huuuge improvement next week. Don't want to get all footballerish but already I'm a little concerned with the decision to promote from within.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by yappysnap on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 2:32 pm







Also I don't know if other teams forums are like this but the posters at CAW love a good meltdown

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by LondonTiger on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 3:09 pm

That is not an uncommon sight on other team boards Yappy.

Glaws fans seem split between blaming players/coaches/Barnes/Leicester's cheating ways.
Saints are moaning about everything under the sun, whilst still having digs at Tigers Very Happy

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by WELL-PAST-IT on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 3:16 pm

I was very disappointed with Saints, the initial selection was just more of the muddled thinking that dogged Saints last season.

Patterson is miles past his best and that was not that good, Craig is at least solid in the tight. Patterson reminds me of a lighter weight Borthwick, Great lineout, then it stops. Dickinson is far better at lock than Paterson, even if he is out of position. We need to give the likes of Alex Moon a crack off the bench, at 6'10" and 19.5 stone he is a massive lump and only 20 at  that.

Wood and Gibson in the back row, two of a kind, both grafters but without the ability to make any hard ground or jackal the ball, it showed all through the game.

Burrell and Pisi at 12 and 13 is a known problem, Pisi hasn't the pace to go around people any more and doesn't have the strength to go through them.

Big gamble playing Prince Harry (FEALC) at 10, his inexperience in the position showed. He wasn't a disaster and probably preferable to JJH but Myler is still king at 10 in Northampton.

Good news:

Picamoles made a lot of good if short carries and retained possession well, apart from on incident; JP Doyle (by a country mile the worst ref in the AP) failed to spot both a high tackle and then neck choke on him and the failure to release the player after the tackle with Bath players wrapping him up and making it impossible to release the ball. The whole Church stand went up for each of the three penalties, Doyle gave it against Picamoles for not releasing. Tim Wigglesworth running the touch, just stood open mouthed shaking his head.

Harrison when he came on showed the dog the rest of the back row were missing, why he didn't start I will never know, it is not as if he was overplayed in Australia.

Groom looks the part, adds real pace to the game and should start next week.

Burrell looks hungry, went looking for the ball and made some goods breaks, he has an astute rugby brain.

George North got onto the field and he also looked hungry for the ball.

When we played Myler, Mallinder and Burrell across the middle, we looked very dangerous and scored two tries quickly.

Our defence was excellent, Bath did not look like scoring a try.

The bad news:

Jim Mallinder has learnt nothing from last season!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Foden got injured again, lets hope it is not serious, can't remember when he played 80 minutes last.

We definitely need a better back up lock by November, with Lawes away we are very weak there, same for tight head, no back up to Hill or Brookes when they are away.

We gave away too many penalties (well, at least Doyle thought we did) and therefore Bath didn't need to score a try.

We looked completely off the pace for 65 minutes of the game until the subs came on, does that tell you something Mr. Mallinder Snr?



Oh, and we lost a game we should have won easily.


PS, sorry LT I forgot to have a moan about Tigers getting everyone's expectations up of a heavy defeat and then cheating their way to victory.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by WELL-PAST-IT on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 3:28 pm

LondonTiger wrote:That is not an uncommon sight on other team boards Yappy.

Glaws fans seem split between blaming players/coaches/Barnes/Leicester's cheating ways.
Saints are moaning about everything under the sun, whilst still having digs at Tigers Very Happy


Still looking for the Saints fans moaning, bemoaning probably, apart from Doc who is feeling a bit miffed at being usurped by a young lady. My Mrs. said that having seen the game, I should have offered him her ticket, she would have been quite happy to stay in the pub.

When it comes to having digs at Tigers, I am quite happy to borrow a 30 tonne excavator, however, I can't find much to have a dig about these days, except their DoR, just looking at him makes me want to dig a very large hole; a very irritating man.

I could have a go about all the overseas imports being made lately at the expense of home grown players, but I won't.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by HongKongCherry on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 3:47 pm

LondonTiger wrote:That is not an uncommon sight on other team boards Yappy.

Glaws fans seem split between blaming players/coaches/Barnes/Leicester's cheating ways.
Saints are moaning about everything under the sun, whilst still having digs at Tigers Very Happy

We're only happy when we're unhappy mad Very Happy

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by Ozzy3213 on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 3:51 pm

You think your message boards are bad.  Having played well and nilled Doncaster this week we still have people moaning about everything from the performance to seat prices, the quality of the beer and the price of pies!!!

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by Heaf on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 4:20 pm

And the hot chocolate was watery too Erm

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by yappysnap on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 4:53 pm

Hot chocolate in September??? That's a November drink at the earliest, and it's always watery because they expect you to add some baileys to it...

Glad to hear all the others are just as bad!

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by George Carlin on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 5:23 pm

Heaf wrote:And the hot chocolate was watery too Erm
Laugh  The first world gentleman's problem.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by Heaf on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 5:55 pm

Very Happy

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by HongKongCherry on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 8:26 pm

Heaf wrote:And the hot chocolate was watery too Erm

So that's what come for the craic means!

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by yappysnap on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 8:55 pm

Just rewatching the game, Varndell charging down the penalty and then his sheepish reaction as he's reminded he can't actually do it was probably the highlight of the whole double header.

On a side note great to see the likes of Varndell, Crane and Henson back in top flight rugby, they're all far too good to be in the championship and I hope Varndell does beat Cueto's record.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by formerly known as Sam on Mon 05 Sep 2016, 8:59 pm

yappysnap wrote:Hot chocolate in September??? That's a November drink at the earliest, and it's always watery because they expect you to add some baileys to it...

Glad to hear all the others are just as bad!

Add a sugar and a shot of bourbon. Nice winter warmer.

The Tigers offy board is a mix of frustratingly over optimistic (in their eyes we're still in 2002) or completely doom laden (we're on the verge of relegation).

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by ChequeredJersey on Tue 06 Sep 2016, 12:31 am

yappysnap wrote:





Also I don't know if other teams forums are like this but the posters at CAW love a good meltdown

Thought we were dross but there were a few positives. V happy with the discipline in our own half. No kickable penalties given away all match. The breakdown was pretty good.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by yappysnap on Tue 06 Sep 2016, 8:34 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:
yappysnap wrote:Hot chocolate in September??? That's a November drink at the earliest, and it's always watery because they expect you to add some baileys to it...

Glad to hear all the others are just as bad!

Add a sugar and a shot of bourbon. Nice winter warmer.

The Tigers offy board is a mix of frustratingly over optimistic (in their eyes we're still in 2002) or completely doom laden (we're on the verge of relegation).

Sounds like a good one...

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by yappysnap on Tue 06 Sep 2016, 8:36 am

ChequeredJersey wrote:
yappysnap wrote:





Also I don't know if other teams forums are like this but the posters at CAW love a good meltdown

Thought we were dross but there were a few positives. V happy with the discipline in our own half. No kickable penalties given away all match. The breakdown was pretty good.

Agree with that, we played badly, really badly and gifted Bristol tries, for 50 minutes we were amateur. For about 5 mins in the first half and and the remainder of the second we managed to at least act like a pro team and got the win, but even then we were far from good. I think I remember one completed backs move on the whole game.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by sad_gimp on Tue 06 Sep 2016, 10:30 am

yappysnap wrote:





Also I don't know if other teams forums are like this but the posters at CAW love a good meltdown

CAW is unbearable, just utterly depressing. I check it once a month or so but it's just the same people moaning about everything.

This season is great, 100% win record, COYQ!

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by propdavid_london on Wed 07 Sep 2016, 12:50 pm

I was at the LDH or just double header we should probably call it.
Not sure what has changed from previous years but the attendance was way down (Might have something to do with the £49 they wanted per ticket). But I thought that the games were generally poor to match.
Sarries v Worcester - I thought it was a predictable affair. Plucky Worcester for 60mins, then Sarries geared up to win comfortably. Worcester showed little in attack and Sarries were efficient on the turnover.
Quins v Bristol - Quins were very lucky there. Unfortunately what I was a Quins side continuing from last season! Yes we are 1 from 1 and hopefully they will learn from this game. And yes, conditions were appalling. But they should have blown the cobwebs away in the first 20mins, or better - in Pre-Season. Care and Chisholm were poor, and as mentioned above Roberts and Marchant were done on a number of occasions.
Positives are that they rallied and managed to stay in the game and scrap a game that shouldn't have been close. Credit to Bristol though, they took their chances and have a pack that will case a lot of problems to other teams. I don't think Bristol will be going down this season if they can maintain that matchday intensity.

Comments on other games highlights that I saw -
Manu Tuilagi might be fit but really needs to get his match head on - caught out of position way too many times.
Matt Tait - game to forget
Ford - Looks to have a bit of confidence back and managed the game well in horrid conditions
Gloucester - How did they mess up that lead!

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by formerly known as Sam on Wed 07 Sep 2016, 1:05 pm

Manu may be physically fit but he looks along way off match sharpness. He looked like he was operating at about 50% vs Glaws. Hopefully a few more games and he might start firing fully.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by yappysnap on Wed 07 Sep 2016, 1:11 pm

Got to remember it has been a very long time since manu's had a run of games to get some form back. We should expect him to be rusty, just need him to stay fit.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

Post by formerly known as Sam on Wed 07 Sep 2016, 2:16 pm

Pretty much Yappysnap. Pairing him with Betham didn't help as that's two attacking centres. I'd like to see Smith, who is much stronger in defence and organisation, come in alongside Manu for Wasps.

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Re: Aviva Premiership - Round 1

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