Englands infamous Strength in depth

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 5:03 pm

Ive often disagreed that we have this much famed strength in depth. I questioned that we may have the numbers but lacked the players at a certain level to come in and do a certain job.

Suddenly however I think this is changing. This series we have lost some key players...and yet the players we have replaced them with...have played superb.
Now the system may have much to do with it..but nevertheless...we are starting to develop the real genuine strength in depth...

Would you agree with the below?

Englands "Proven" Options

LH - Mako, Marler, Mullan
Ho - Hartley, George (Jurys out - LCD)
TH - Cole, Sinkler, (Jurys out - Hill, Brookes)
Lock - Lawes, Itoje, Kruis, Launchbury
Flank - Haskell, Robshaw, Wood, (Jurys out - Clifford, Harrison)
No.8 - Billy, Hughes, Ben Morgan

SH - Youngs, Care
FH - Ford, Farrell
12 - Farrell, (Jurys out - Teo)
13 - Joseph, Daly, Manu
Wing - May, Watson, Roko, Yarde, Nowell
FB - Brown (Jurys out - Goode)


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Post by Exiledinborders on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 5:28 pm

A fit Manu at thirteen is proven but a very different player to Joseph or Daly.

Morgan is a pretty good eight.

We could do with another option at twelve. I would like to see Slade have a go.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 5:47 pm

Ah yes I forgot about Manu and Morgan actually.

We could do with another option at twelve. I would like to see Slade have a go

I think we have a host of young kids coming through who we are hoping will come good...but as of yet like Mallinder , Haley, Chisholm (Flanker), etc etc...none of them are proven.

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Post by majesticimperialman on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 7:02 pm

I don't think we will see Manu in the England team any time soon.

Morgan yes i would love to see have another go.

12? Seems to be a problem. Or rather Farrell is the problem. Who can replace him if he gets injured?
Who can match his skills not only as a centre but a goal kicker also?

Also a lot depends on Brown at full back. Apart from Goode who is next in line? Who is there to step in incase of injury?

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Post by Barney McGrew did it on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 7:11 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Ah yes I forgot about Manu and Morgan actually.

We could do with another option at twelve. I would like to see Slade have a go

I think we have a host of young kids coming through who we are hoping will come good...but as of yet like Mallinder , Haley, Chisholm (Flanker), etc etc...none of them are proven.

I think we all have
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Post by nathan on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 8:01 pm

Manu played again today, glad to see him get some more minutes under his belt.

What does worry me is that he's lost a lot of weight and if that will effect his normal game. Mind you, if it stops his from getting injured all the time, it can only be a good thing.

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Post by doctor_grey on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 9:00 pm

majesticimperialman wrote:I don't think we will see Manu in the England team any time soon.

Morgan yes i would love to see have another go.

12? Seems to be a problem. Or rather Farrell is the problem. Who can replace him if he gets injured?
Who can match his skills not only as a centre but a goal kicker also?

Also a lot depends on Brown at full back. Apart from Goode who is next in line? Who is there to step in incase of injury?
Agree about Farrell.  Only Daly is a kicker in whom we could likely have confidence.  And he might be getting a lot of game time, especially if Farrell gets hurt again.  Trusting Ford with a game winner is about the same as trusting my mum when driving to shut up keep her eyes on the road.   At Fullback, we know what Goode will bring, so the question is whether that is good enough considering the other fourteen players on the pitch, or not.  But then, I agree, who would be next?  

I know I will catch flack for this one, but the other thing is I am concerned about is our scrum.  An England pack should never (as in never, ever) be pushed back by a Wallaby pack.  It happened at times in June and also in the first half today.  It is great we have these mobile props who can spin passes and step people as if they are auditioning for Strictly Come Dancing.  But I want to see Props who never (as in never, ever) get pushed back by a Wallaby pack.  That is a national disgrace.  What happens when England goes up against stronger packs?  Scrummaging used to be as English as feckin Saint George himself.  Now, it seems not so much.
__________

p.s. This is now a few hours later.  I just looked up Saint George and found he was not English and likely had no connection to England whatsoever.  Consequently, the English scrum IS currently as English as Saint George.  Instead, I think I prefer the English scrum to be as English as Cheddar Cheese.

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Post by doctor_grey on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 10:50 pm

I did a little checking to see how the squad evolved over the course of Eddie Jones first year in charge.  Granted many of the changes were due to injury, but some, like Luther Burrell, were made due to performance.

Here are three matches:  The Six Nations opener (Eddie Jones' first game in charge), the first match in June against Australia, and the December match against Australia.

Which of three line-ups is the best one?  Would the December England line-up beat the other two?  I know the tendency will be to pick and choose players, and we can and will do that.  But for this exercise, which do you think is best?  The biggest scoreline points difference of the three matches was December...........
 
 February, v. Scotland
score:  15-9
June, v. Australia
score 39-28
December, v. Australia
score:  37-21
             15Mike BrownMike BrownMike Brown
             14Anthony WatsonAnthony WatsonMarland Yarde 
             13Jonathan JosephJonathan JosephJonathan Joseph
             12Owen FarrellLuther BurrellOwen Farrell
             11Jack NowellMarland YardeJonny May
             10George FordOwen FarrellGeorge Ford
              9Danny CareBen YoungsBen Youngs
              1Joe MarlerMako VunipolaMako Vunipola
              2Dylan HartleyDylan HartleyDylan Hartley
              3Dan ColeDan ColeDan Cole
              4Joe LaunchburyMaro ItojeCourtney Lawes
              5George KruisGeorge KruisGeorge Kruis
              6Chris RobshawChris RobshawChris Robshaw
              7James HaskellJames HaskellTom Wood
              8Billy VunipolaBilly VunipolaNathan Hughes
 REPLACEMENTS REPLACEMENTS REPLACEMENTS
             16Jamie GeorgeLuke Cowan-DickieJamie George
             17Mako VunipolaMatt MullanJoe Marler
             18Paul HillPaul HillKyle Sinckler
             19Courtney LawesJoe LaunchburyCharlie Ewels
             20Jack CliffordCourtney LawesTeimana Harrison
             21Ben YoungsDanny CareDanny Care
             22Ollie DeVotoGeorge FordBen Te'o
             23Alex GoodeJack NowellHenry Slade


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Post by ChequeredJersey on Sun 04 Dec 2016, 12:13 am

Interesting to see how much of that progressing score margin is the longer coaching from Eddie too
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Post by majesticimperialman on Sun 04 Dec 2016, 8:15 am

A few years ago NZ seem to have a conveyor belt of talent coming through.

Now it seems England have a conveyor belt of talent coming though. It seems who ever is selected to play never lets the team/squad down.

Nathan Hughes standing in for Billy V is a fine example. Tom Wood getting better every game he plays. England just seem to be blest with talent at the moment.

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Post by Shifty on Sun 04 Dec 2016, 8:48 am

England's success is all down to the Eddie Jones boom / bust factor. Look at the guys entire career, he either over achieves beyond all sense of reality, or he crashes and burns like the comet that made the dinosaurs extinct, the man has no middle ground what so ever. I actually posted this exact same thing on the topic where it was announced he got the England job. The man is such a yo-yo coach it's crazy.
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Post by Poorfour on Sun 04 Dec 2016, 9:10 am

I think people forget that the 2003 side was a long way from perfect until the last year or so. They contrived to lose games they should have won in the 6N, and it was only after the away victory in NZ that we had any reason to believe that they could actually win the RWC. Even then, Wales and France took them closer than was comfortable in the knockout rounds.

This team isn't as mature but it has the knack of winning well even while making mistakes
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Post by Poorfour on Sun 04 Dec 2016, 10:40 am

Shifty wrote:England's success is all down to the Eddie Jones boom / bust factor.  Look at the guys entire career, he either over achieves beyond all sense of reality, or he crashes and burns like the comet that made the dinosaurs extinct, the man has no middle ground what so ever.  I actually posted this exact same thing on the topic where it was announced he got the England job.  The man is such a yo-yo coach it's crazy.  

He does have a reputation for pushing his players to breaking point and beyond. The likely difference this time is that he has a big enough pool of players to choose from that he can't burn all of the key ones out.
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Post by dummy_half on Sun 04 Dec 2016, 1:45 pm

Looking at the line-ups above, I'd take 1-9 from the summer test and 10-15 from the 6Ns - if by some miracle everyone was fit at the same time, I suspect that's EJs favoured XV (although maybe an argument for May or Daly ahead of Nowell). Replacements would be the front row from yesterday, Lawes, Launchbury, Care, Daly/Nowell and perhaps Slade.

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Post by lostinwales on Sun 04 Dec 2016, 4:39 pm

Shifty wrote:England's success is all down to the Eddie Jones boom / bust factor.  Look at the guys entire career, he either over achieves beyond all sense of reality, or he crashes and burns like the comet that made the dinosaurs extinct, the man has no middle ground what so ever.  I actually posted this exact same thing on the topic where it was announced he got the England job.  The man is such a yo-yo coach it's crazy.  

There is always a danger of that, and we all know that coaches do have a shelf life. But what I also remember reading is that with Jones its often a case that he fits with some teams better than others. I can't see him hanging around much longer than the next RWC anyway.

There is also a chance that he might actually have learned a few things over the years.

Anyway one way or another things seem to be working well now, and we have a good production line for new players, so we can be cautiously optimistic

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Post by robbo277 on Sun 04 Dec 2016, 5:38 pm

I think standards have gone up across the board. Certainly in Johnson's time, we had no "Great" players, some good players and a lot of solid players. Now we have a few great players, a lot of good players and some solid players who can stand in when we have injuries, as well as a number of potentially great unproven players looking to break in.

A perfect example is that current day Lawes is better than 2011 Lawes, but 2011 Lawes was one of the first choices at lock. Now he's probably fourth choice, despite his improvements.

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Post by lostinwales on Sat 24 Dec 2016, 3:41 pm

Strength in depth looks to be challenged again as it looks like Mako will be joining his brother on the sidelines this 6N.

So Marler 1st choice with Genge or Mullan backing him up. Bad news for Mako as he's been great but we should be OK

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Post by Gwlad on Sat 24 Dec 2016, 5:42 pm

no doubt huge strength in depth all over the park which carries inherent risks unless you remain consistent in selection while keeping players hungry. ALso if you lose key players like Ford, Youngs, Farrell the wheel could come off pretty quickly.

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Post by Poorfour on Sat 24 Dec 2016, 6:11 pm

Gwlad wrote:no doubt huge strength in depth all over the park which carries inherent risks unless you remain consistent in selection while keeping players hungry. ALso if you lose key players like Ford, Youngs, Farrell the wheel could come off pretty quickly.

You realise that you've just argued three contradictory things? If we have "strength in depth all over the park" then it shouldn't matter if we "lose key players" - the ability to replace one player with another of almost equal quality is the definition of strength in depth.

I'd agree with you that there are risks in keeping all the players hungry, but the nature of modern rugby is that opportunities will come with injuries. We've seen that in the autumn internationals. England were short of key players like Kruis, Itoje, Haskell, Billy V, Nowell and Watson. They coped.

It would be tough to lose Ford and Farrell at the same time, purely from an experience perspective, but beyond that there are replacements in most positions.
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Post by majesticimperialman on Sat 24 Dec 2016, 10:05 pm

Ford and Farrell are a great combination that's for sure. No doubt if we lose Ford to injury some one will be a ble to step into his place.

BUT, losing Farrell will be a bigger blow because of his goal kicking. I do not know of any with his accuracy
who could step up to the plate.

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Post by Steve_rugby on Sat 24 Dec 2016, 10:10 pm

Gwlad wrote:no doubt huge strength in depth all over the park which carries inherent risks unless you remain consistent in selection while keeping players hungry. ALso if you lose key players like Ford, Youngs, Farrell the wheel could come off pretty quickly.

Doh

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Post by Gwlad on Sun 25 Dec 2016, 2:24 am

you can't be that obtuse unless you were born to be…having strength in depth doesn't mean that that you are as strong as you were with your first choice side, strength in depth or not, lose certain players you are obviously compromised especially in certain positions.

do you understand now?

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Post by Poorfour on Sun 25 Dec 2016, 4:58 pm

No, I don't. If you don't have players of similar quality to replace your first choices, you don't have strength in depth. If they aren't similar quality, it's not strength in depth, it's just depth.

The All Blacks have strength in depth. England for many years have had depth but not strength in depth. Now they are getting there.

Now why don't you just get on with enjoying Christmas rather than making personal insults on Christmas day? Or are you lacking even that much class?
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Post by Scottrf on Sun 25 Dec 2016, 5:52 pm

I kinda agree with Gwlad. No team has like for like replacements for their very best players. Strength in depth means you have a number of similar strength players in each position, not that you can pick your team out of the hat and it's just as good. Even NZ would suffer if you could take out 3/4 of their most influential players.

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Post by Poorfour on Sun 25 Dec 2016, 9:21 pm

Scottrf wrote:I kinda agree with Gwlad. No team has like for like replacements for their very best players. Strength in depth means you have a number of similar strength players in each position, not that you can pick your team out of the hat and it's just as good. Even NZ would suffer if you could take out 3/4 of their most influential players.

New Zealand suffered when they started a game without two specialist locks. But they also won the RWC with Stephen Donald at fly half.

Strength in depth, to me, is being able to lose first choice players in any position and still play well. In practice, really good teams can play with 3 or 4 first choice players out and still perform before they lose their patterns, maybe a few more if both first and second choices are experienced.

That means having two or preferably three players competing for each position. Ideally, it means that the second choice is pushing the first choice so closely that both are raising their game and the coach might happily swap them for certain opposition. That's different from picking names out of a hat.

England are there or almost there in a number of positions. Loosehead, hooker, both lock positions, nine, ten (because Ford and Farrell can both play there), OC and wing isn't a bad list. Tighthead and No8 will get there, barring serious injury. We are constantly told that there are oodles of better 6s than Robshaw, but I am not so sure. The next generation of full backs needs to be brought through.

Openside is traditionally a problem position, but England have won 5 games in a row, 4 of them against RC opposition, without even stop-gap 7 Haskell. Wood was technically our 5th or 6th choice option but still good enough to beat an Australian side featuring both Pocock and Hooper.

So, really, the difficult position is inside centre, where Farrell is the only really proven option. Te'o has shown some promise, Slade has all the skills to play the same role as Farrell, Tuilagi could become a new Nonu if he is ever fully fit and Mallinder might eventually be better than any of them. We will only find out if they play. Which one for them will, certainly in Argentina next summer if not during the 6N.

England started the Autumn Internationals without Kruis, Itoje, Haskell, Nowell and Watson, and finished it having regained Kruis but losing Vunipola. It's daft to claim they're not influential players. A clean sweep in those circumstances speaks to strength in depth, even if we are still working on inside centre.

But my objection to Gwlad was twofold. Firstly, his post just doesn't add up; strength in depth all over the park (his words) with its inherent risks (his words, which I accept with the note that I'd rather have the risks of strength in depth than the risks of not having it) just isn't consistent with being vulnerable in key positions.

Secondly, when I challenged it, he responded offensively and ad hominem.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Mon 26 Dec 2016, 12:37 pm

Watching Christian Wade score a hat trick against Bath, I started to wonder whether he might end up one of the least-capped prolific wingers in the English club game.

England does have an odd record of ignoring try-scoring club wingers, so it's by no means an uncontested title. David Trick and Tony Swift both come to mind from the 80s and 90s. Ashton and Strettle went unpicked for prolonged periods but they did get caps in the early part of their careers, unlike Tom Varndell during the same period. Simpson Daniel is an obvious contender too, but untimely injuries played a big part in his non-selection.

Still, we are going through something of a Golden Age for prolific, Test-toxic wings. Sharples and Rokodoguni are at or near the top of this season's try table, while Wade's burst gave him a record total for a calendar year.

I'm not going to argue for more caps for any of these players specifically, since their strengths and weaknesses have been discussed on these boards before. Also, we're all familiar with the idea of a good club player who might be out of his depth a level up.

I was just wondering, since this thread is about depth, whether any other Test nation has a similar history of not capping high scorers in their domestic leagues. I suppose another question might be why the wingers we do select don't seem to turn it on in club games (even allowing for the number they miss while on international duty).

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Post by Poorfour on Mon 26 Dec 2016, 3:28 pm

I think the role of wing at international level must be both more demanding than at club but also fairly easily picked up for those with the requisite skills. Certainly, wings seem more interchangeable than other positions but at the same time there are many fan favourites who for whatever reason haven't made it at international level.
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Post by yappysnap on Mon 26 Dec 2016, 9:25 pm

I guess at Int level a wing needs less ability to create something from nothing, as in theory there should be high quality players all over the pitch to help them with that.

What they do need is physicality, good basics, high work rate and a low error count.

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Post by BigTrevsbigmac on Mon 26 Dec 2016, 9:47 pm

Maybe there is an art to recruiting club players that are just under the radar & perceived not ' quite what it takes' at international level.
Wasps seem to have a few.

Simpson, Robson, Wade , Daly (until recently), Gaskell, Miller, Jones, Thompson, T. Young (Wales), Mullan.

Of course you could go down the SA route........

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Post by ChequeredJersey on Mon 26 Dec 2016, 10:01 pm

Think one of their 9s will get there soon, and Jones was in line to play 7 until his injury.
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Post by BigTrevsbigmac on Mon 26 Dec 2016, 10:24 pm

ChequeredJersey wrote:Think one of their 9s will get there soon, and Jones was in line to play 7 until his injury.

Ironically he was in line only because The Hask was injured. Ironic because I remember there was a lot of talk on these boards how Wasps will struggle when George Smith left us.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Tue 27 Dec 2016, 3:34 pm

Poorfour wrote:I think the role of wing at international level must be both more demanding than at club but also fairly easily picked up for those with the requisite skills. Certainly, wings seem more interchangeable than other positions but at the same time there are many fan favourites who for whatever reason haven't made it at international level.

I think you've touched on one aspect there which might make a difference. A lot of English wingers are only really seen as comfortable in that one position, certainly at Test level. That means they are unlikely to be selected for a bench spot, where versatility has usually been favoured.

I'm curious to know whether France - which has a similarly broad professional player base - overlooks high scoring Top 14 wingers. I don't think it happens so much in NZ, perhaps because the Super franchises play a national style, so coaches are more inclined to expect a form player to fit in.

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Post by emack2 on Thu 29 Dec 2016, 9:39 pm

Firstly Happy New year to 606v2 Hug as we move into the 21st year of
Professionlism.There are many new problems facing the worlds teams the
Rulings involving catching the ball in the air/and tackling will change the game
as we know it.Yellow/Red cards will be more prevalent I`m all for player safety
but this takes it to far.
Back in 2007 Jake White made two changes to Sanzar policy he sacrificed the
RC in a hope of winning a RWC.[it worked].The Precedent set for the future
the second from 2008 SA players would be selected where ever they played.
In 2015 the Wallabies followed suit only NZ sticking to there guns for obvious
reasons.
NZ have had to invest Millions more to try and keep players at home,England
many more in there clubs to develop players.France at last are hitting back
restricting the numbers.Of Non-Qualified players in run on teams and squads
in the top 14.
The expansion of Super 18 is a joke,NZ with 5 is about right,SA 4 is more
like itAUS,4 at best.Japan/Argentina will benefit in the long term but short term?
The RWC was much closer because the IRB paid Coaches for even sides like
Uruguay put up some sort of a show.
It is axiomatic that Test Squads will be picked from the Provincial/Club/Super
sides.The average Tier 1 Team will have a Squad of say 32-5 with a wider
squad of say 50.
If you look at the numbers theory of course the pools roughly working on
club side squad of 50.England 600,Ireland 250,Nz 250,Argentina about 50
Italy maybe a 100,Wales 200-50,Scotland100.France 700.
That is only players qualified in there home comps allowances for non-qualified
not included.
In my opinion using overseas based players where the Coaches don`t have
control to train or pick players except for certain Tests is detrimental.
It is a sad state of affairs when teams have to pay the piper regardless if
they can hope to compete.Famous names going to the wall English,Sa,and
French going into bankruptcy trying to keep up with the Jones.
England had a period of continuity under Cooke, Rowell,and Woodward
leading to there great period 2000-4 when the lost 1 match in each year.
When for various reasons SCW left in 2004 the cupboard was bare. Robinson
and Ashton both had better win/loss ratios than SCW at the point they were
sacked.
Martin Johnson great player but no Coaching experience at any level,then
Stuart Lancaster was a safe pair of hands.His record including a win v NZ,
a draw v the Boks and 4 years with a domestic record the equal of SCW.
The players that you refer to as depth Lancaster and the Teflon Kid picked
an developed.Eddie Jones has polished with help from Ella,Wilkinson,George
Smith.
One Factor needs to be taken into account prior to RWCs Ashton,Johnson
and Lancaster all had England playing a balanced game.Come "The Elephant
in the Corner"it was safety first no risk Rugby in the RWC.
RWC cycles are over 7-8 years Englands started in 1999 and could be ready
in 2019.Nz started in 2003,then 2007 and will be somewhere at least to SF
in 2019.

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Post by Steve_rugby on Thu 29 Dec 2016, 9:45 pm

And your point is ?

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Post by Poorfour on Thu 29 Dec 2016, 11:11 pm

Lancaster said early in his tenure that he didn't feel that the squad he was building would be fully ready until 2019, and Eddie has given Lancaster due credit for the development work he did. The big difference is twofold: Eddie knows what it takes to win a world cup and won't go into his shell tactically, and England now have a core of players with a critical mass of experience, and two or more of them in each position. All the pain that Lancaster endured rebuilding his backline every series (usually because the last series' players were all injured) is paying off.

The Argentina game was a huge bonus for England. The players had to rethink things for themselves and work their way through a tricky situation. They've also come back from 10 point deficits several times in the last year. Now they've done all that, they're starting to get something of the resilience that NZ have. Long way to go yet, but this team is fitter in mind and body than any we've had from England in a long time.
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Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 9:24 am

Here's the current Aviva all-time try scoring table. England caps in brackets.

89 - Mark Cueto (55)
89 - Tom Varndell (4)
75 - Steve Hanley (1)
72 - Chris Ashton (39)
68 - Paul Sackey (22)
66 - Tom Voyce (9)
63 - James Simpson Daniel (10)
59 - Neil Back (66)
59 - Christian Wade (1)
58 - Ben Cohen (57)

That's mostly a list of finishers who have been/are being overlooked for England. You can't make direct comparisons, but Statbunker has all-time numbers for the Super 15 (presumably before expansion). Most are stars of the Test scene too.

55 - Bryan Habana
50 - Ma'a Nonu
44 - Doug Howlett
42 - Sitiveni Sivivatu
41 - Stirling Mortlock
39 - Odwa Ndungane
39 - Hosea Gear
38 - Lelia Masaga
38 - JP Pietersen
38 - Rico Gear
37 - Julian Savea
37 - TJ Perenara

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Post by aucklandlaurie on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 12:08 pm

Just out of curiosity RF, but why would Caleb Ralph be missing from that list? he scored 58 tries in Super rugby.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 12:36 pm

aucklandlaurie wrote:Just out of curiosity RF, but why would Caleb Ralph be missing from that list? he scored 58 tries in Super rugby.
He's next in the list, since Statbunker has him pegged at 36 tries.

http://rugby.statbunker.com/alltimestats/AllTimeTryScorers?comp_code=9891232

Sadly, not a lot of detail about how they calculate their numbers. Got a better one? Only did a cursory search, to be honest.

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Post by aucklandlaurie on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 1:04 pm

Maybe he had 22 disallowed for forward passes.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 1:14 pm

aucklandlaurie wrote:Maybe he had 22 disallowed for forward passes.
I hear Statbunker takes a hardline approach towards retrospectively disallowing tries.

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Post by aucklandlaurie on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 1:17 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:
aucklandlaurie wrote:Maybe he had 22 disallowed for forward passes.
I hear Statbunker takes a hardline approach towards retrospectively disallowing tries.

 Thats what I like to see, none of this just giving out tries mamby pamby, make the bar stids work for them.

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Post by Gooseberry on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 1:48 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:
aucklandlaurie wrote:Just out of curiosity RF, but why would Caleb Ralph be missing from that list? he scored 58 tries in Super rugby.
He's next in the list, since Statbunker has him pegged at 36 tries.

http://rugby.statbunker.com/alltimestats/AllTimeTryScorers?comp_code=9891232

Sadly, not a lot of detail about how they calculate their numbers. Got a better one? Only did a cursory search, to be honest.

Is statbunker actually fixed now? It used to be hopelessly unreliable.

*edit ...Id also humbly suggest that its only meaningful if you peg it to minutes on the pitch. Varndell has a ridiculous domestic scoring record, but theres not many premiership wingers who have played as many minutes of club rugby either.

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Post by Poorfour on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 3:21 pm

It's telling that the three England players with the highest cap count were also notably good defenders. And well done to Neil Back for being the sole representative of the forwards on that list.
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Post by yappysnap on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 6:09 pm

Tom Waldrom must be close on the list?

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Post by majesticimperialman on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 8:52 pm

What as amazed about the England team/squad is their fitness. They are a lot fitter than they was under Stewart Lancaster.

England seem to be able to finish teams off in the last 20/25 minutes of the game. When the other team are running out of breath, England do seem a lot fitter.

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Post by majesticimperialman on Fri 30 Dec 2016, 9:48 pm

Have often wandered " WHY " Jimmy Gopparth never got a chance to play for England?

Just realised he is a New Zealander. Doh picard

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Post by Poorfour on Sat 31 Dec 2016, 11:13 am

majesticimperialman wrote:What as amazed about the England team/squad is their fitness. They are a lot fitter than they was under Stewart Lancaster.

England seem to be able to finish teams off in the last 20/25 minutes of the game. When the other team are running out of breath, England do seem a lot fitter.

It's partly fitness and partly a better bench strategy. Lancaster's bench was generally designed to close matches down, full of reliable but uninspired players. Eddie's benches are selected to rip tiring opposition to shreds.
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Post by propdavid_london on Wed 04 Jan 2017, 8:40 am

Englands depth will be tested again this 6N if recent injuries are to go by - Mako, Billy V, Robshaw, Launchbury, Kruis are all injured.

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Post by Gwlad on Tue 10 Jan 2017, 3:49 am

Poorfour wrote:No, I don't. If you don't have players of similar quality to replace your first choices, you don't have strength in depth.  If they aren't similar quality, it's not strength in depth, it's just depth.

The All Blacks have strength in depth. England for many years have had depth but not strength in depth. Now they are getting there.

Now why don't you just get on with enjoying Christmas rather than making personal insults on Christmas day? Or are you lacking even that much class?

My remark was made Xmas eve, yours Xmas day…you obviously had nothing better to do Doh

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Post by Poorfour on Tue 10 Jan 2017, 9:14 am

Gwlad, I just don't know which is more pitiful, that it took you 17 days to come up with that rejoinder, or that you don't know that by common convention a new day starts at midnight:

Quora timestamp wrote:by Gwlad on Sun Dec 25, 2016 2:24 am
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