6N 2017: England v France, 4 February

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Post by George Carlin on Thu 19 Jan 2017, 11:14 am

First topic message reminder :

6N 2017: England v France, 4 February - Page 5 Englan11  6N 2017: England v France, 4 February - Page 5 France11
ENGLAND v FRANCE
4 February 2017
KO: 16:50
Twickenham, London 

Live on ITV, FR2, RTE, DMAX, BBC (H)

Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Touch judges: Glen Jackson (New Zealand) & Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa)
TMO: Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland)

A. Head to Head

102 Played 102
56 Won 39
7 Drawn 7
39 Lost 56
1623 Points 1290

B. Recent Form 

19 March 2016
Stade de France, Saint-Denis
21 – 31 to England

22 August 2015
Stade de France, Saint-Denis
25 – 20 to France

15 August 2015
Twickenham, London
19 – 14 to England

21 March 2015
Twickenham, London
55 – 35 to England

1 February 2014
Stade de France, Saint-Denis
26 – 24 to France

C. Teams

ENGLAND 
6N 2017: England v France, 4 February - Page 5 Mary-b10
15-Mike Brown; 14-Jonny May, 13-Jonathan Joseph, 12-Owen Farrell, 11-Elliot Daly; 10-George Ford, 9-Ben Youngs; 1-Joe Marler, 2-Dylan Hartley (captain), 3-Dan Cole, 4-Joe Launchbury, 5-Courtney Lawes, 6-Maro Itoje, 7-Tom Wood, 8-Nathan Hughes

Replacements: 16-Jamie George, 17-Matt Mullan, 18-Kyle Sinckler 19-Teimana Harrison, 20-James Haskell, 21-Danny Care, 22-Ben Te'o, 23-Jack Nowell

FRANCE
6N 2017: England v France, 4 February - Page 5 Raymon10
15-Scott Spedding; 14-Noa Nakaitaci, 13-Remi Lamerat, 12-Gael Fickou, 11-Virimi Vakatawa; 10-Camille Lopez, 9-Baptiste Serin; 1-Cyril Baille, 2-Guilhem Guirado (captain), 3-Uini Atonio, 4-Sebastien Vahaamahina, 5-Yoann Maestri, 6-Damien Chouly, 7-Kevin Gourdon, 8-Louis Picamoles

Replacements: 16-Clement Maynadier, 17-Rabah Slimani, 18-Xavier Chiocci, 19-Arthur Iturria, 20-Loann Goujon, 21-Maxime Machenaud, 22-Jean Marc Doussain, 23-Yoann Huget


Last edited by George Carlin on Sat 04 Feb 2017, 5:09 am; edited 2 times in total
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Post by Sgt_Pooly on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 10:54 am

Depends if France start Atonio, who can be a complete liability come scrum time or Slimani who's the much better scrummager but struggling for form.

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Post by Cumbrian on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 10:55 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:
Cumbrian wrote:I feel for Nowell, but perhaps Daly's inclusion is an indicator of how Eddie sees the game panning out?  Perhaps he is anticipating needing the ability to kick goals from behind the halfway line?  

I believe that the line-out should be fine, we've got four possibly five (Hughes) players that can jump and I reckon Lawes will call them.  Scrum time will be interesting, I believe France have their own injury problems and we've picked quite a big pack.  I am getting excited about this now!

Absolutely Marra,im at KP to watch us smash Bath all over the park then will head to the tap and tackle for beer, curry and watch the England game Yahoo

Great Plans!
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Post by GeordieFalcon on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 10:59 am

Cumbrian wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:
Cumbrian wrote:I feel for Nowell, but perhaps Daly's inclusion is an indicator of how Eddie sees the game panning out?  Perhaps he is anticipating needing the ability to kick goals from behind the halfway line?  

I believe that the line-out should be fine, we've got four possibly five (Hughes) players that can jump and I reckon Lawes will call them.  Scrum time will be interesting, I believe France have their own injury problems and we've picked quite a big pack.  I am getting excited about this now!

Absolutely Marra,im at KP to watch us smash Bath all over the park then will head to the tap and tackle for beer, curry and watch the England game Yahoo

Great Plans!

Then back to Whitley Bay for a 50th do Very Happy

Ive already booked my spot on the couch for all day sunday!!

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Post by funnyExiledScot on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:11 am

I would switch Daly and Nowell, but otherwise it's a very strong team. I think England will go well, and put France to the sword.

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Post by George Carlin on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:20 am

England by a good 2 scores I would think.
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Post by Gooseberry on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:21 am

Dalys inclussion is partly down to Jones' stated ambition to get him on the pitch. Hes exactly the kind of all round attacking footballer that Aussies love. Nowell missing some training probably made the decision a lot easier.

It certainly gives England a strong range of attacking options, without losing the multiple kicking options in the backs. France wont want to be turnuing ovber posession too much.

Infact looking at the scrum as well you could almost see a reverse of the classic upthejumper England vs Gallic flair. The forecast isnt great for saturday, so that could play into the big French packs hands.

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Post by Gooseberry on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:24 am

I had expected to see an extra forward on the bench for England, but I guess the injury to Kruis put paid to that ... they are running out of spares. Jones has already had to start a player he described as mediocre. Te'o at least gives him the option of beefing up the backs as a plan B.

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Post by cascough on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:31 am

Nowell apparently missed 2 days training this week due to personal issues. That's probably why he isn't starting.

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Post by Poorfour on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:35 am

For a squad missing 4 probable starters in the pack, that's still very strong. I don't think the scrum will be a problem unless Cole is wobbly. Marler is our best scrummaging prop and goes much better with Hartley than Mako does, and George and Sinckler have tended to improve the scrum when they come on.

France will probably be worried about the lineout and England's ability to attack it. If we can crack their calls, we have 4 jumpers in the pack, all capable of making steals.

GF - I hope Itoje doesn't continue to play as he does at lock - England will need him to up his work rate considerably in return for stepping out of the engine room. I will be interested to see if he can do it as it's a different type of fitness.

The bench has clearly been picked for a power game in the final quarter - George, the Sinck, the Hask, Te'o and Nowell all add heft and the forwards add a surprising amount of speed.

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Post by formerly known as Sam on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:51 am

Poorfour wrote:For a squad missing 4 probable starters in the pack, that's still very strong. I don't think the scrum will be a problem unless Cole is wobbly. Marler is our best scrummaging prop and goes much better with Hartley than Mako does, and George and Sinckler have tended to improve the scrum when they come on.

Cole was solid in the autumn and has been consistently good in the scrum for Tigers. Can't see him being wobbly or Sinckler improving the scrum. Improving the aggression and carrying most definitely.

Think George is the biggest impact in the scrum, he's a beast and he should be starting.

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Post by Poorfour on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:57 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:
Cole was solid in the autumn and has been consistently good in the scrum for Tigers. Can't see him being wobbly or Sinckler improving the scrum. Improving the aggression and carrying most definitely.

My abiding recent memory is that in the Argentina game, Cole was struggling in the scrum and got binned. Sinckler improved things immediately despite being 7 against 8. That may have been an unusual situation because Cole would have been under more aerobic stress than usual playing 14 against 15, but in general I don't think he's quite as solid as he once was.
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Post by GeordieFalcon on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:57 am

Poorfour wrote:For a squad missing 4 probable starters in the pack, that's still very strong. I don't think the scrum will be a problem unless Cole is wobbly. Marler is our best scrummaging prop and goes much better with Hartley than Mako does, and George and Sinckler have tended to improve the scrum when they come on.

France will probably be worried about the lineout and England's ability to attack it. If we can crack their calls, we have 4 jumpers in the pack, all capable of making steals.

GF - I hope Itoje doesn't continue to play as he does at lock - England will need him to up his work rate considerably in return for stepping out of the engine room. I will be interested to see if he can do it as it's a different type of fitness.

The bench has clearly been picked for a power game in the final quarter - George, the Sinck, the Hask, Te'o and Nowell all add heft and the forwards add a surprising amount of speed.


I was referring to the fact his game is more like a flanker anyway than the traditional lock.

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Post by cascough on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 11:59 am

Poorfour wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:
Cole was solid in the autumn and has been consistently good in the scrum for Tigers. Can't see him being wobbly or Sinckler improving the scrum. Improving the aggression and carrying most definitely.

My abiding recent memory is that in the Argentina game, Cole was struggling in the scrum and got binned. Sinckler improved things immediately despite being 7 against 8. That may have been an unusual situation because Cole would have been under more aerobic stress than usual playing 14 against 15, but in general I don't think he's quite as solid as he once was.

As I recall Sinckler came on and got pinged too. The scrum as a whole was struggling.

I do agree with Cole not being quite as solid as he once was though. I hope he silences some doubters this 6N.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 12:00 pm

Cole was on a hiding to nothing against Argentina, he took one for the team. As I recall, Harrison was packing at 8 and didn't push once. Cole is back to almost his best imo, Sinckler is certainly not a better a scrummager.

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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 12:23 pm

beshocked wrote:England only have one full back in the 25. picard

What do we do if Brown comes off early injured?

You've made a mistake in thinking Brown is human. He is part man, part machine, part psychopath
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Post by WELL-PAST-IT on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 12:30 pm

Both Daly and Nowell can cover fullback, as can Ford if necessary.

I would have preferred Genge on the bench to Mullan who has been on ddgy form for Wasps. Bit of a risk, but he provides so much go forward. Genge, Sinkler and George are going to provide one hell of a front row in a few years. Add to that Billy V, Itoje and Haskell and you have 6 out of 8 big ball carriers.

Come to think of it, May has played there as well.

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Post by tazfalklands on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 12:34 pm

I disagree that England don't have another option at 15. Anthony Watson has played there a lot for his club, and has actually been played out of position for England, and he has put in a lot of good performances on the field. The problem is that players get injured (Watson) and lose form (Goode), and then to say well the fourth choice (Daly) hasn't got any caps is foolish. As fourth choice he isn't going to get many caps. there is only 1 cap for fullback per game, and unless you want to constantly change the full back only 1 or 2 are going to be capped, and over the last few years that has been Brown (or Goode), with potentially Watson moving off his wing if there was an injury during the game and a like for like not on the bench

Last year there were 2 (or 3 if you go on Scots expected form before the game) uncompetitive games, and there is no way you can swap out more than 4-5 players. And the problem is looking good against Fiji or Italy and its a case of 'Welllll its only XXXXX, they need to play against Wales/Ireland/Australia etc before we can really see how good they were.

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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 12:38 pm

We are going to be tested and to be honest I can't see England winning the 6 nations this year, but we will get a good look at our depth.
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Post by Barney McGrew did it on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 12:41 pm

WELL-PAST-IT wrote:Both Daly and Nowell can cover fullback, as can Ford if necessary.

I would have preferred Genge on the bench to Mullan who has been on ddgy form for Wasps. Bit of a risk, but he provides so much go forward. Genge, Sinkler and George are going to provide one hell of a front row in a few years. Add to that Billy V, Itoje and Haskell and you have 6 out of 8 big ball carriers.

Come to think of it, May has played there as well.

Pretty sure May will be used as cover for flanker
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Post by WELL-PAST-IT on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 12:47 pm

Barney McGrew did it wrote:
WELL-PAST-IT wrote:Both Daly and Nowell can cover fullback, as can Ford if necessary.

I would have preferred Genge on the bench to Mullan who has been on ddgy form for Wasps. Bit of a risk, but he provides so much go forward. Genge, Sinkler and George are going to provide one hell of a front row in a few years. Add to that Billy V, Itoje and Haskell and you have 6 out of 8 big ball carriers.

Come to think of it, May has played there as well.

Pretty sure May will be used as cover for flanker

Tall and thin enough to be a potential line out option

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Post by Cumbrian on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 1:59 pm

French team according to FFR website:

15. Spedding
14. Nakaitaci
13. Lamerat
12. Fickou
11. Vakatawa

10. Lopez,
09. Serin

08. Picamoles
07. Gourdon
06. Chouly
05. Maestri
04. Vahaamahina
03. Atonio,
02. Guirado (cap)
01. Baille

Remplaçants: Maynadier, Slimani, Chiocci, Iturria, Goujon, Machenaud, Doussain, Huget.
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Post by Luckless Pedestrian on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 2:25 pm

I'm glad they've gone with Serin. Great player.

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Post by propdavid_london on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 2:37 pm

There are a few names that I don't recognise in that French side! Although haven't seen as much European rugby as I would have liked.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 2:45 pm

Decent looking side but nothing I don't think we can't turn over. I wouldn't pick any of the French pack (bar Guirado) for us and similar in the backline.

We could really hammer that back 3 with high balls, both wingers are really bad under the high ball.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 2:46 pm

Would be good to see Daly really chase a couple. ...

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Post by tazfalklands on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 2:46 pm

I have a quick prediction for the game start, France win the Toss, Hartley extends hand to shake as Guirado bends to pick up the coin, Hartley makes accidental contact with Guirado's head and receives a red card before the ball is kicked off.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 2:49 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Would be good to see Daly really chase a couple. ...

Well May is an outstanding kick chase option......not so sure on Daly though Doh

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Post by thomh on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 4:01 pm

cascough wrote:
Poorfour wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:
Cole was solid in the autumn and has been consistently good in the scrum for Tigers. Can't see him being wobbly or Sinckler improving the scrum. Improving the aggression and carrying most definitely.

My abiding recent memory is that in the Argentina game, Cole was struggling in the scrum and got binned. Sinckler improved things immediately despite being 7 against 8. That may have been an unusual situation because Cole would have been under more aerobic stress than usual playing 14 against 15, but in general I don't think he's quite as solid as he once was.

As I recall Sinckler came on and got pinged too. The scrum as a whole was struggling.

I do agree with Cole not being quite as solid as he once was though. I hope he silences some doubters this 6N.

Sgt_Pooly wrote:Cole was on a hiding to nothing against Argentina, he took one for the team. As I recall, Harrison was packing at 8 and didn't push once. Cole is back to almost his best imo, Sinckler is certainly not a better a scrummager.

Cole went horribly against Argentina and South Africa, and Sinckler did immediately improve the scrum when he came on before half time - hence Argentina having to pick and go rather than driving it over the line / winning more penalties.

It's too early to say that Sinckler is a better scrummager than Cole, but poorfour's statement that he improved the scrum when he came one was definitely true.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 4:24 pm

You can't compare scrummaging as a starter to a sub, especially when under intense pressure from countless scrums against one of the best scrummaging units in world rugby.

As I recall, Sinckler has a good 2 scrums then started to get pinged. He's completely fresh remember, whilst Cole has been anchoring a faulting scrum all game.

Sinckler is not a good a scrummager as Cole, it's not even a discussion.

Cole had a few ad scrums against SA but as soon as Mako was replaced, we got on top and walked them backwards (from the top of my head).

It's too early to say that Sinckler is a better scrummager than Cole

It's not too early, he isn't.

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Post by whocares on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 4:27 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:Decent looking side but nothing I don't think we can't turn over. I wouldn't pick any of the French pack (bar Guirado) for us and similar in the backline.

We could really hammer that back 3 with high balls, both wingers are really bad under the high ball.

agree specially Nakaitaci...would have thought that Huget would have started because of that - he's still on the bench though. rest of the team is quite logical keeping in mind the long injury list. Nothing that England should fear indeed although the likes of Lamerat and Gourdon are quite underrated.

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Post by king_carlos on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 5:41 pm

Guirado vs Hartley will be a big test for the England skipper when he hasn't played. Guirado is up there with Coles and Creevy as the best hookers around IMO.

That unit of Marler/Hartley/Cole have played a lot of rugby together thankfully.

Having Jamie George on the bench certainly helps the nerves about that as well. It must only be a matter of time before he's starting hooker.

The England line-out should be excellent with 5 options to aim at. Given that Itoje and Lawes are strong jumping in the middle of the line-out, Launchbury and Wood good at the front and Hughes a regular jumper at the tail we may even see a simplified line-out with less movement.

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Post by Scottrf on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 7:35 pm

Lawes calling?

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Post by king_carlos on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 7:58 pm

Lawes will call to start with. Obviously that hasn't been announced but he's the most experienced line-out leader in the squad by a mile. Plus he's done it very well for England and Saints in the past.

Itoje has called for Saracens but I couldn't say whether he has for England. He's played his internationals with Lawes or Kruis so I can't see why he would have done.

Launchbury again has called at times for Wasps but not for England. He's a solid jumper but it's not a strength in his game.

If Lawes went off then Itoje will probably be calling. Given he's less experienced at it that is another argument to simplify the line-out, use less movement and back the multiple jumpers.

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Post by doctor_grey on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 8:34 pm

But...........can this group scrimmage with the French? Guy Novès is not the most creative dude in Rugby, but he can smell weakness. If this England pack doesn't show up with a vengeance in all the physical aspects, it will be a long day.

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Post by Gooseberry on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 8:45 pm

Eddie Butler will go into overdrive pronouncing those names

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Post by king_carlos on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 10:08 pm

doctor_grey wrote:But...........can this group scrimmage with the French?  Guy Novès is not the most creative dude in Rugby, but he can smell weakness.  If this England pack doesn't show up with a vengeance in all the physical aspects, it will be a long day.  
Marler and Cole have been the back bone of a usually solid England scrum. It waned towards the end of Bombers tenure but all the forward play did as they looked under-powered and light weight.

Our scrum has rarely been poor with Hartley at hooker or with Jones/Borthwick/Hatley in charge.

Launchbury is a strong scrummaging lock, Lawes is solid and Hughes actually puts his head in unlike others have when slotting in at 8. Itoje will lend some weight to the prop he is behind too.

My biggest worry would be Hartley being so short of match sharpness, especially when under pressure from Guirado. He has bounced back quickly after injury for England before so hopefully he does it again. If memory serves he has also returned to form slowly for Saints before and fallen behind Haywood in many fans estimations following injury?

If Hartley does struggle then I hope Jones is as brutal as he has been with Harrison and Burrell by making the tactical change early and getting the shepherds crook out.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Thu 02 Feb 2017, 10:22 pm

Three backs on the bench gives me comfort that we have tactical flexibility if our pack goes backwards. France have some dangerous players in their team, so we don't want to get caught cold like two years ago.

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Post by lostinwales on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 12:31 am

We will miss Billy and Robshaw. But the team is playing smart in a way we haven't seen for years. And there is serious muscle in that pack. They won't lose much in the scrum and they will be too much for the French elsewhere. You don't have to be the best- just better than the other team - and this team will keep on being just that little bit better for a while yet.

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Post by Gwlad on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 1:00 am

Huge test for England, Les Bleus will sniff an opportunity and I expect that they will attack what is perceived as a decidedly weakened English pack. Test of the much vaunted English strength in depth. Could be an interesting first third but i expect the English will absorb the pressure and the French heads will go down. Predict England by 10 at least.

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Post by bedfordwelsh on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 5:47 am

I really don't think France will get anywhere near England.

I'll be surprised if England don't win by 15-20pts at a canter
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Post by doctor_grey on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 7:53 am

I hope you boys are right.  To me, it is not just the dudes we are putting out there, it is also the match fitness.  I am sure any player Jones puts out there will have met their objective fitness measurables, but it is different when being pushed by a lot of French beef.  Hopefully I am wrong.  

Also, who will have the job to tell Jonny May to run 'forwards'?

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Post by WELL-PAST-IT on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 8:23 am

doctor_grey wrote:I hope you boys are right.  To me, it is not just the dudes we are putting out there, it is also the match fitness.  I am sure any player Jones puts out there will have met their objective fitness measurables, but it is different when being pushed by a lot of French beef.  Hopefully I am wrong.  

Also, who will have the job to tell Jonny May to run 'forwards'?

I don't think we will have to worry too much about that Doc, seems to have got himself straight. Reading past comments by the England squad, circles and zig zags are just the way his mind works, scatty. Had the game of his life in my opinion against the Argies, seemed to cover both wings, massive defensive effort and sound in attcak down either flank.

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Post by robbo277 on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 12:06 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:Decent looking side but nothing I don't think we can't turn over. I wouldn't pick any of the French pack (bar Guirado) for us and similar in the backline.

We could really hammer that back 3 with high balls, both wingers are really bad under the high ball.

At the same time though, if we're not accurate we're giving some dangerous runners time and space with the ball to hurt us. It could be a useful tactic, but accuracy will be key.

Hoping for a big(ish) England win. I'm not going to say anything as cliche as "depends what France turns up", but I'll be interested to see how they go in their first run-out after the autumn. The tournament has been missing a strong France for too long.

France haven't won a Championship since 2010.
Since finishing second in 2011, France have finished 4th in 2012, 2014 and 2015, 5th in 2015 and 6th in 2013
France haven't beaten the Championship winning team in this period.
France have only been another team's only loss only once in 2014 (against England)

With the exception of that England game in 2014, France haven't been consistently challenging the top of the table or the teams at the top of the table, and the tournament is weaker for it.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 12:36 pm

WELL-PAST-IT wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:I hope you boys are right.  To me, it is not just the dudes we are putting out there, it is also the match fitness.  I am sure any player Jones puts out there will have met their objective fitness measurables, but it is different when being pushed by a lot of French beef.  Hopefully I am wrong.  

Also, who will have the job to tell Jonny May to run 'forwards'?

I don't think we will have to worry too much about that Doc, seems to have got himself straight. Reading past comments by the England squad, circles and zig zags are just the way his mind works, scatty. Had the game of his life in my opinion against the Argies, seemed to cover both wings, massive defensive effort and sound in attcak down either flank.

Scrummed down well on the flank aswell Wink Whistle

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Post by mid_gen on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 12:58 pm

king_carlos wrote:
My biggest worry would be Hartley being so short of match sharpness, especially when under pressure from Guirado. He has bounced back quickly after injury for England before so hopefully he does it again. If memory serves he has also returned to form slowly for Saints before and fallen behind Haywood in many fans estimations following injury?

If he was out injured maybe. He's been on disciplinary though, so will be in top physical shape, probably better than the guys that have been playing the last few weeks, got over any niggles etc.

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Post by dummy_half on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 1:45 pm

The only concern with Hartley is that he hasn't played much this season - iirc, he'd only had a game or two for Saints before the AIs and picked up his ban in his first match back after the international window. Fitness shouldn't be an issue, indeed as others have said, he's had a nice rest from contact work to ease any niggles while still being able to do fitness work, however I do wonder about his match sharpness (which is as much a mental thing as a physical one).

In the end, I don't think our injury 'crisis' has turned out quite as bad as feared - front row is the same that started last year's Grand Slam, Launchbury and Lawes have played together plenty in the 2nd row and are a good international class combination, both in good form. Wood was solid in the AIs and looks back to somewhere near his best (remembering that Bomber was actually going to make him captain ahead of Robshaw, but injury intervened). Hughes did well in the AIs deputising for Billy V. SO that just leaves Itoje on the blindside as the one question mark - he's obviously an outstanding 2nd row and has played well at 6 for his club, but I think the Lawes experiment of a few years ago is what is leaving me a little concerned.

Yes, we'll miss Robshaw and Billy V, but their replacements (Wood and Hughes) are not that far from like-for-like in style if not absolute quality.

The back line is pretty much first choice (give or take Watson on one wing).

Of course I always approach games against France with some trepidation - the cliché of not knowing which France will turn up still has some basis in fact, even if their performances in the last few years of the 6Ns have been on the poor side.

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Post by RDW on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 1:52 pm


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Post by ChequeredJersey on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 2:19 pm

TightHEAD wrote:
beshocked wrote:England only have one full back in the 25. picard

What do we do if Brown comes off early injured?

You've made a mistake in thinking Brown is human. He is part man, part machine, part psychopath

Daly will cover FB
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Post by ChequeredJersey on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 2:22 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:You can't compare scrummaging as a starter to a sub, especially when under intense pressure from countless scrums against one of the best scrummaging units in world rugby.

As I recall, Sinckler has a good 2 scrums then started to get pinged. He's completely fresh remember, whilst Cole has been anchoring a faulting scrum all game.

Sinckler is not a good a scrummager as Cole, it's not even a discussion.

Cole had a few ad scrums against SA but as soon as Mako was replaced, we got on top and walked them backwards (from the top of my head).  

It's too early to say that Sinckler is a better scrummager than Cole

It's not too early, he isn't.

I think he might be, but over a period of time, he is not yet. But he's also an incredibly quick learning scrummager who never really looked under pressure except when he was in a depleted scrum in any of his England matches
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Post by ChequeredJersey on Fri 03 Feb 2017, 2:23 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:You can't compare scrummaging as a starter to a sub, especially when under intense pressure from countless scrums against one of the best scrummaging units in world rugby.

As I recall, Sinckler has a good 2 scrums then started to get pinged. He's completely fresh remember, whilst Cole has been anchoring a faulting scrum all game.

Sinckler is not a good a scrummager as Cole, it's not even a discussion.

Cole had a few ad scrums against SA but as soon as Mako was replaced, we got on top and walked them backwards (from the top of my head).  

It's too early to say that Sinckler is a better scrummager than Cole

It's not too early, he isn't.

Think Sinckler got pinged once?
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