Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

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Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Gwlad on Sat 29 Apr 2017, 1:18 am

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by emack2 on Thu 04 May 2017, 9:51 am

Yes Stu Dickinison almost whistled Crockett out of the game,Mike Cron
changed his propping style.
Weak Front row?funny they`ve had the better of every team they`ve
faced this year,2016that was. Doh
AB`s actually strike for and win the ball and attack from the scrum instead
of trying to milk penalties.
Want an example for this article ?try first 2 tests Eng v Aus there super
props.did`nt complete a single scrummage. Doh Doh Doh


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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 04 May 2017, 9:53 am

It's silly to try and suggest england don't have good props and some good ones coming through.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Thu 04 May 2017, 10:07 am

I don't know why it's so hard for a NZ fan to admit his side may not be the best about in one particular area.

Tbh, I see no issue with milking pens from a scrum. If you're superior there, why not get something from it? If you had faster wingers, would you tell them not to run at full speed as it's not fair on the opposition?

Weak Front row?funny they`ve had the better of every team they`ve
faced this year,2016that was.

I've seen them get the better of nobody so I have no idea where this is coming from.

AB`s actually strike for and win the ball and attack from the scrum instead
of trying to milk penalties.

They do this because their scrum is weak as they have poor props. We use the same tactic at Falcons as we have a poop scrum, although we don't attack as well as NZ unfortunately.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by ebop on Thu 04 May 2017, 12:16 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:They do this because their scrum is weak as they have poor props
Headscratch

What teams dominate and crush the ABs weak scrum?
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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by emack2 on Thu 04 May 2017, 12:29 pm

It`s all a matter of opinion it`s one thing to win penalties legally,another
by tactics of the front row mafia.
It`s called playing the referee,if he allows boring in,twisting and lowering,
dropping the shoulder,splitting hooker from props.Squint feeds and pushing
ball backwards with hands in the scrum Hug ,or diving in fine.
I don`t accept AB front row is weak they always win and use there own
ball.Of course other sides have good/great props too and of course you
win by whatever means.
IF you have 9/10 combo that's lightning fast and back three of Dagg,Savea
B.Smith it makes perfect sense.
With my own eyes didn't see AB scrum going backwards much 2016 against
ANY side.
What you see as weakness ,I see as logic,weak goal kicking score tries from
anywhere.Create holes in defence not just try to blast away through. Hug Hug Hug

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by mikey_dragon on Thu 04 May 2017, 10:16 pm

I think Charlie F is a superb TH and should be starting every test.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Fri 05 May 2017, 2:12 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I don't know why it's so hard for a NZ fan to admit his side may not be the best about in one particular area.


They do this because their scrum is weak as they have poor props.

Well with 45 straight wins at home whio needs good ones if thats the case. I dont know a lot about propping but chances are if the AB's had poor props they wouldnt keep Franks on for as long as they have.

Weak scrum and poor props- is that a common view or just yours? Cos I aint heard it before.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Fri 05 May 2017, 1:22 pm

They keep Franks on because the cupboard is bare after him Taylor. Franks is easily your best prop, but in scrummaging terms, he's average.

It's a world wide view from what I know, I thought it was common knowledge.

NZ are an outstanding team, I'm not having a pop. If there was one are they could improve it would the scrum. I remember the management trying heaven and earth to get Hayman back when he was at Falcons. He was an outstanding prop and should have had 100+ caps, amazing scrummager.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Fri 05 May 2017, 7:40 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:They keep Franks on because the cupboard is bare after him Taylor. Franks is easily your best prop, but in scrummaging terms, he's average.

It's a world wide view from what I know, I thought it was common knowledge.

NZ are an outstanding team, I'm not having a pop. If there was one are they could improve it would the scrum. I remember the management trying heaven and earth to get Hayman back when he was at Falcons. He was an outstanding prop and should have had 100+ caps, amazing scrummager.

Well at least he's gone from poor to average in 24 hours. I don't think the NZ scrum being weak is a world wide view besides, there's more to the selection of the forwards than the scrum consideration. We go for mobility, speed, fitness in every position so their will likely be tradeoffs, but there will certainly not be a tight five anywhere that can match the ABs for mobility, speed, fitness, supporting the carrier, one on one tackling, and we have the best lineout exponents in Whitlock, Retallick and Read.

So when you isolate and label a so called weakness and ignore the advantages gained from those selections you don't paint the full picture. We could go all out for the best prop in terms of scrumming ability but if he's no good around the field then he's largely useless for the times there are no scrums, I.e. Around 90% of the time.

So we tend not to produce scrum only props at the lower levels, deliberately, because our focus is the use of the space on the field, across all 23 players.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Gwlad on Fri 05 May 2017, 7:54 pm

It is, everyone thinks the NZ have a weak scrum.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by aucklandlaurie on Fri 05 May 2017, 7:56 pm

Gwlad wrote:It is, everyone thinks the NZ have a weak scrum.

 Just imagine how fantastic they would be if they had a strong scrum as well?

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Fri 05 May 2017, 8:11 pm

aucklandlaurie wrote:
Gwlad wrote:It is, everyone thinks the NZ have a weak scrum.

 Just imagine how fantastic they would be if they had a strong scrum as well?

Yeah but then we'd be weaker in the more important areas, like the 75 minutes scrums are not taking place. I know which I prefer. Our scrum is a means to and end and weak is a relative word if it's not costing us wins.

I mean it's like saying we can't beat you but we can prod you with a stick after the match. Kinda redundant. It's not an area Hansens concerned about and that's the main thing, relevance.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Fri 05 May 2017, 10:11 pm

aucklandlaurie wrote:
Gwlad wrote:It is, everyone thinks the NZ have a weak scrum.

 Just imagine how fantastic they would be if they had a strong scrum as well?

Exactly....scary!

I agree the scrum is a small facet of the game but its still a facet. The initial point that NZ dont have the best players in the world in every position still stands. 2 and 4-15 they have a valid argument, 1 and 3 they dont...

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Fri 05 May 2017, 11:23 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:
aucklandlaurie wrote:
Gwlad wrote:It is, everyone thinks the NZ have a weak scrum.

 Just imagine how fantastic they would be if they had a strong scrum as well?

Exactly....scary!

I agree the scrum is a small facet of the game but its still a facet. The initial point that NZ dont have the best players in the world in every position still stands. 2 and 4-15 they have a valid argument, 1 and 3 they dont...

That's if you take the narrow view that the 1 and 3 are there for s rummaging only. Faumuina for example has huge value in the loose and runs and tackles strongly.

Who for example would you say are the best two props?


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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by ebop on Sat 06 May 2017, 12:00 am

That's a good question

Who are the best 'well rounded' props?

Excuse the pun

Because any names thrown up will need to be good in the scum, destructive tacklers, have good hands, be comfortable in the backline if found there by any chance, clear out rucks and lift lineout jumpers all day and every day. And run with the ball. And not talk. Did I miss anything? I'm no prop expert but imagine something like that would be the NZ prop job description.

So who are the best props and let's compare
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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Gwlad on Sat 06 May 2017, 12:21 am

Primary role of a good prop is scrummaging. The rest is Gary glitter. That's why NZ props are never touted as the best in the world by anyone except Kiwis.


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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by ebop on Sat 06 May 2017, 12:31 am

Ok that's cool

Don't think any of us are saying Franks and co are the best scummagers on the planet. They rarely get shown up though and our scrum provides the ball we need. Guess we're just a bit miffed at the use of the term 'weak'. Because that suggests our scrum gets owned by multiple teams and I don't recall that being the case. I'll happily say we're not the most dominant scrum out there but we require 'extras'. Have no problem with that.


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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by emack2 on Sat 06 May 2017, 12:33 am

Sgt.Pooley you are entitled to your opinion at 23 Owen Franks was rated
Worlds Number One tighthead.
You must try Googling him,far from being a poor Scrummager,it is a
fact he`s noted for his strong Scrummaging.[Wilkipedia].
It is not a matter of AB fans admitting they have a weak Scrum,when
practice says otherwise.
There set piece is the equal of any side they`ve faced in recent years .
Not an opinion that`s fact,other sides have talked of dominating up
front.Few have managed it a gainst a full strength AB side.
IN 2013 several sides could have.maybe should have beaten them
but they didn't.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by aucklandlaurie on Sat 06 May 2017, 1:08 am

Our backlines pretty weak too, Backs like Savea and the Smiths wouldnt be in the top ten in Europe, We are probably just as strong at prop as anywhere across the team, locks are probably up to International standard though.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Gwlad on Sat 06 May 2017, 1:20 am

aucklandlaurie wrote:Our backlines pretty weak too, Backs like Savea and the Smiths wouldnt be in the top ten in Europe, We are probably just as strong at prop as anywhere across the team, locks are probably up to International standard though.

Typical Kiwi arrogance, again.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Sat 06 May 2017, 1:37 am

aucklandlaurie wrote:Our backlines pretty weak too, Backs like Savea and the Smiths wouldnt be in the top ten in Europe, We are probably just as strong at prop as anywhere across the team, locks are probably up to International standard though.

The irony if that is that they could soon be in the top ten in Europe, up there with Piutau.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Sat 06 May 2017, 1:39 am

Gwlad wrote:
aucklandlaurie wrote:Our backlines pretty weak too, Backs like Savea and the Smiths wouldnt be in the top ten in Europe, We are probably just as strong at prop as anywhere across the team, locks are probably up to International standard though.

Typical Kiwi arrogance, again.

Ahh, so it's ok for you to call us weak but when we defend it it's arrogance. Anything wrong with that equation sonny?

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by aucklandlaurie on Sat 06 May 2017, 1:53 am

Gwlad wrote:
aucklandlaurie wrote:Our backlines pretty weak too, Backs like Savea and the Smiths wouldnt be in the top ten in Europe, We are probably just as strong at prop as anywhere across the team, locks are probably up to International standard though.

Typical Kiwi arrogance, again.

 I'm Proud to be a Kiwi, Where are you from Gwlad? Scotland?

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Gwlad on Sat 06 May 2017, 2:41 am

aucklandlaurie wrote:
Gwlad wrote:
aucklandlaurie wrote:Our backlines pretty weak too, Backs like Savea and the Smiths wouldnt be in the top ten in Europe, We are probably just as strong at prop as anywhere across the team, locks are probably up to International standard though.

Typical Kiwi arrogance, again.

 I'm Proud to be a Kiwi, Where are you from Gwlad? Scotland?

Not sure a Kiwi understands the difference between pride and arrogance when it comes to rugby.

Us Welsh are humble folk with simple tastes who enjoy a quiet life

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Sat 06 May 2017, 9:02 am

A prop's primary role is scrummaging, after that everything is a bonus. There's many props around that can scrummage well and provide other abilities such as carrying, tackling etc.

You suggest that NZ pick there props on other skills, rather than scrummaging. I'd suggest that they do this as on the whole they don't have good scrummaging props readily available so make do.

Taylor, I threw some names out earlier in the thread, there's plenty more that are better than Franks and Moody....100's better than Crockett.

Sgt.Pooley you are entitled to your opinion at 23 Owen Franks was rated
Worlds Number One tighthead
Not an opion I've ever had or ever heard tbh. How can be rated the best in your position when you so don't excell at your primary role?

Our backlines pretty weak too, Backs like Savea and the Smiths wouldnt be in the top ten in Europe, We are probably just as strong at prop as anywhere across the team, locks are probably up to International standard though.

C'mon Laurie, don't get so defensive. I said earlier the rest of your side are outstanding, truly world class. I'm not having a pop, I'm just stating that one area NZ could improve is the scrum.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by emack2 on Sat 06 May 2017, 10:03 am

Go online and check what I`m saying Franks DOES excel in his primary role
it`s there in black and white print.
Which incidentally are holding up a Scrum to allow your Hooker to hook.
Support[lift] or block in the lineout.or restart,clean out rucks.Support
plays.tackle,jump in lineout peels etc.
The constant tinkering with the scrum laws don`t help,movement before
feed call.Means constant resets if reffed correctly.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Sat 06 May 2017, 10:09 am

I don't need to read that Franks is a good scrummager Emack. I watched him for many a year and can see that he isn't particularly strong in that area.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Sat 06 May 2017, 10:11 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I don't need to read that Franks is a good scrummager Emack. I watched him for many a year and can see that he isn't particularly strong in that area.

Oh, so it's your view...no wonder we haven't seen it anywhere, explains a lot then.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Sat 06 May 2017, 10:21 am

Taylorman wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:I don't need to read that Franks is a good scrummager Emack. I watched him for many a year and can see that he isn't particularly strong in that area.

Oh, so it's your view...no wonder we haven't seen it anywhere, explains a lot then.

There's really no need to get so annoyed and touchy and no not just mine, most of the NH from what I gather. It hardly takes a rugby expert to see that NZ's scrum and props are weak.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Sat 06 May 2017, 11:15 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:
Taylorman wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:I don't need to read that Franks is a good scrummager Emack. I watched him for many a year and can see that he isn't particularly strong in that area.

Oh, so it's your view...no wonder we haven't seen it anywhere, explains a lot then.

There's really no need to get so annoyed and touchy and no not just mine, most of the NH from what I gather. It hardly takes a rugby expert to see that NZ's scrum and props are weak.

Not about being touchy it's about hearing a view that's purported to be a common one when there's no obvious evidence of it. For example, where's the evidence of Own Franks being a weak or poor scrummager....your exact words.

I for one have never heard that description.

Perhaps we do need an expert?

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Sat 06 May 2017, 12:54 pm

Apologies if I keep tying Franks in as a poor scrummager, he's better than that he's average. His work around the park is very good though. He's certainly your best prop in a weak area, I can see why you were so desperate to get Hayman back, fantastic prop.

The rest of your options are poor in the scrum though.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by ebop on Sat 06 May 2017, 1:08 pm

Hayman was good but his heart wasn't in it. He'll go down as a foot note. Just to get my eye in, because you're clearly an expert, who are the average props that Franks would be ranked alongside with (in your opinion). You know your props so this should be pretty easy for you.
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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by chewed_mintie on Sat 06 May 2017, 1:28 pm

If having average props means we win the vast majority of our scrum ball and have the added bonus of extra ball players who know what to do at the right time, who are also mobile and great defensively then I'm happy with that.

It says more about these 'exceptional' props who can only gain parity against our average props. Maybe you should ask more of your own props Sgt Pooly?

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by ebop on Sat 06 May 2017, 1:37 pm

Yup chewed_mintie

Good luck trying to engage someone from the NH about the value of a prop outside their scrummaging ability

Kinda explains a lot really

Kick....and....clap
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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sat 06 May 2017, 2:14 pm

I think both sides are arguing the same thing here?

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by ebop on Sat 06 May 2017, 2:33 pm

Not so sure 7.5

Pooly and gwlad think a prop does the scrum thing and then when he's not doing the scrum thing he stands out of the way to let the flashy guys earn a penalty so that the really flashy guy gets to kick the ball between the posts for 3 pts.

That's not what we're thinking
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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sat 06 May 2017, 2:48 pm

Not sure pooly has said that at all and he's pretty consistent in seeing the front row as set piece as priority eg youngs for England. As a scrumager I'm sure you have better which is what pooly is saying. Think you're saying the same thing ie as long as the scrum is functioning with a prop who adds a lot round the field it's preferable than a really strong scrum where the prop adds less in open play.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Sat 06 May 2017, 3:42 pm

That's pretty much it 71/2.

Props for me should be good scrummagers first, perhaps it's a NH thing. One of the best parts of a game for me is seeing a front row really dominating in the scrum, just as others love silky attacking play or lineout dominance. It's what makes the game of rugby so fascinating, as there's numerous ways for a team to play.

NZ have not a had a dominant scrum for a number of years and perhaps it's not in your makeup to enjoy such a thing. My initial point was it's an area you can improve and we've slightly went off the rails a bit with some members taking offence.

I'm not having a go, NZ are the bench mark. But, they are not the best in every area....thankfully really.

With some of the scrummaging options available for the Lions, it could be a chance to attack. The issue will be if they can gel as a unit and be cohesive enough to dominate the scrum.

You have to look for chinks in the armour of this NZ side, as they are very very good. You could pick a current world XV and they'd be in with a shout in almost every position.....just not prop Run

I'm not looking to wind up or wum, it's just an observation.

ebop wrote:Pooly and gwlad think a prop does the scrum thing and then when he's not doing the scrum thing he stands out of the way to let the flashy guys earn a penalty so that the really flashy guy gets to kick the ball between the posts for 3 pts.

I'm not suggesting that all ebop although primarily, a prop should be a good scrummager. If I have 5 guys who are good scrummagers, you then pick the guy who has the most effect around the park etc. I don't want somebody like Julian White who was an fantastic scrummager but pretty much was a passenger for the rest of the game.

Someone like Furlong of Ireland is a prime example. He's fantastic in the set piece and adds physicality in his carrying and defence around the park, he's possibly the bench mark right now.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Sat 06 May 2017, 6:15 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:That's pretty much it 71/2.

Props for me should be good scrummagers first, perhaps it's a NH thing. One of the best parts of a game for me is seeing a front row really dominating in the scrum, just as others love silky attacking play or lineout dominance. It's what makes the game of rugby so fascinating, as there's numerous ways for a team to play.

NZ have not a had a dominant scrum for a number of years and perhaps it's not in your makeup to enjoy such a thing. My initial point was it's an area you can improve and we've slightly went off the rails a bit with some members taking offence.

I'm not having a go, NZ are the bench mark. But, they are not the best in every area....thankfully really.

With some of the scrummaging options available for the Lions, it could be a chance to attack. The issue will be if they can gel as a unit and be cohesive enough to dominate the scrum.

You have to look for chinks in the armour of this NZ side, as they are very very good. You could pick a current world XV and they'd be in with a shout in almost every position.....just not prop Run

I'm not looking to wind up or wum, it's just an observation.

ebop wrote:Pooly and gwlad think a prop does the scrum thing and then when he's not doing the scrum thing he stands out of the way to let the flashy guys earn a penalty so that the really flashy guy gets to kick the ball between the posts for 3 pts.

I'm not suggesting that all ebop although primarily, a prop should be a good scrummager. If I have 5 guys who are good scrummagers, you then pick the guy who has the most effect around the park etc. I don't want somebody like Julian White who was an fantastic scrummager but pretty much was a passenger for the rest of the game.

Someone like Furlong of Ireland is a prime example. He's fantastic in the set piece and adds physicality in his carrying and defence around the park, he's possibly the bench mark right now.

Fair points, and I think it's a choice of direction NZ rugby has chosen to go. When you isolate the time a prop spends at actual scrum time we are probably talking about less than a minute of actual scrum effort, compared with the 22 odd minutes average last time I looked that the ball is in play.

That means we can get far more out of a player as one of our 23 in general play and simply 'get by' at scrum time. And based on the fact that the ABs are consistently winning that thinking has been proven. Other sides do not have enough evidence as to the effectiveness of having a specialist prop versus a multi skilled one, because their results vary so much.

Franks is successful as a prop BECAUSE NZ is successful as a side so it's a proven selection. You must look at individual effort in terms of the team overall, particularly at prop, where their direct impact on any result is difficult to assess. Unlike say a player like Barrett who is presently carving sides up on his own almost.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by emack2 on Sat 06 May 2017, 10:22 pm

I don`t claim to be an expert on scrums BUT like you Sgt.Pooley I`ve seen
most of the greats,probably given my age more than you.
I`m not arrogant enough to ignore stuff written by real experts on the net
about players.YOU don`t get 82 starts as an an AB if your weak.
The days of grind em down went out with the squad system,the Scrum
is an area of the game,there may only be 3 or 4 in a game.
Argentina are acknowledged as great Scrummagers,but never hook the
ball.With there game plan being based now on running the ball THAT is
a weakness.
Watching two teams with the same idea trying to out cheat each other
by "GREAT" scrummaging.When as happened recently the ball lay
in the scrum stalemated.Before it being scooped back by hand.
A team which keeps the scrum up and heels the ball is better tactically
than another.Scrums are won by out witting the Ref,IF he doesn't sort
it.The law of the jungle ensues, a team that prepares to take Scrums
as a penalty option.Against acknowledged scrummaging teams is not
WEAK.
I am hip to most or all of Front Row Mafia tricks,and trust my eyes
like you..The illusion that the AB scrum is there for the taking is
a NH myth.Talked about but seldom if ever achieved they certainly
haven't been backpedalling in many tests I`ve seen recently.
People talk about World class players,or players fitting into anothers
team.This is a misnomer because different Coaches have different
ideas and gameplans.
The analyst that views every match looking for points to attack/defend
or officials foibles etc.
Incidentally in my opinion the last decent Bok prop was Oz Du randt.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Sun 07 May 2017, 12:26 am

emack2 wrote:I don`t claim to be an expert on scrums BUT like you Sgt.Pooley I`ve seen
most of the greats,probably given my age more than you.
I`m not arrogant enough to ignore stuff written by real experts on the net
about players.YOU don`t get 82 starts as an an AB if your weak.
The days of grind em down went out with the squad system,the Scrum
is an area of the game,there may only be 3 or 4 in a game.
Argentina are acknowledged as great Scrummagers,but never hook the
ball.With there game plan being based now on running the ball THAT is
a weakness.
Watching two teams with the same idea trying to out cheat each other
by "GREAT" scrummaging.When as happened recently the ball lay
in the scrum stalemated.Before it being scooped back by hand.
A team which keeps the scrum up and heels the ball is better tactically
than another.Scrums are won by out witting the Ref,IF he doesn't sort
it.The law of the jungle ensues, a team that prepares to take Scrums
as a penalty option.Against acknowledged scrummaging teams is not
WEAK.
I am hip to most or all of Front Row Mafia tricks,and trust my eyes
like you..The illusion that the AB scrum is there for the taking is
a NH myth.Talked about but seldom if ever achieved they certainly
haven't been backpedalling in many tests I`ve seen recently.
People talk about World class players,or players fitting into anothers
team.This is a misnomer because different Coaches have different
ideas and gameplans.
The analyst that views every match looking for points to attack/defend
or officials foibles etc.
Incidentally in my opinion the last decent Bok prop was Oz Du randt.

I get Poolys point. He's merely trying to convey a single area where there are better players.

The NZ point is the game requires a wider set of skills across the 23 to play its broader game plan. For me one of the biggest gains in the last decade are the ability of the tight five to all be able to handle, pass, run, offload defend one on one and last the 80. No one has the speed and skills of Coles, the engine of Retallick so there are clear advantages in the areas of broken play, which still utilises at least 80% of the game.

In isolation, Franks may not be the best but that matters little. Furlong may be a better prop, but does he gives his side a better 80 minutes in terms of the result? Hard to measure but certainly a factor,

In Franks, he is probably the least of all that on the tight 5 so is mainly there for his scrummaging. So to some degree he must be providing the ABs what they need.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Sun 07 May 2017, 5:02 am

Certainly Taylor, I was never on the attack.

Tbh, I wasn't even really suggesting props could come in and improve the NZ side. I was merely suggesting there are better props who are better scrummagers, based on this mythical world XV we often talk about.

If NZ had this huge scrummaging TH available, it would be interesting to see if they would go with him over other options.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by ebop on Sun 07 May 2017, 8:38 am

Sgt_Pooly, sorry for being a d**k yesterday. I get your point and 7.5 was kinda right in that we were on the same page even though the book is written in different languages. Guess we trade off some elements of our scrum for other facets but our scrum must be competitive and at least win our own ball the vast majority of time. If our scrum becomes a liability then I'm sure serious questions would be asked.
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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Sun 07 May 2017, 8:48 am

Yea I imagine so ebop and no offence taken.

A dominant scrum can be great but in isolation, it can also distract from other elements and put you off your natural game.

We had a instant in the AI's when down to 14 men against Argentina. We were getting hammered in the scrum. Time after time, drove back and conceding pens. This kind of distracted Argentina from trying to build on the scoreboard and now and again we'd get one against the head which would stop all this momentum. They just put too much on trying to scrum us off the park and it cost them.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Gwlad on Mon 08 May 2017, 4:14 am

Simple fact is the Lions will target the scrum because NZ will be looking for parity at best. Traditionally Welsh kickers have won lions series and I expect that if and when we win the scrum battle Halfpenny will slot his kicks, job done you're welcome.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Mon 08 May 2017, 4:55 am

I'm not sure of the Welsh kickers thing but I can certainly see us targeting the scrum, it's one of the few places I see us having an advantage.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Rugby Fan on Mon 08 May 2017, 8:45 am

You can target the scrum, and win there, but, as Pooly says, you still have to play smart rugby.

In 2010, England toured Australia. In the first Test, we had the Wallaby scrum on toast, winning two penalty tries from them. Australia finished 27-17 on top. This from the BBC report:

England's last victory over the Wallabies, in the 2007 World Cup, was based on them scrummaging Australia into the ground and as they twice cut the gap to four points in the second half it looked as though a similar result was on the cards.

But it would have been a harsh result given Australia's far greater attacking threat with the ball in hand and in the end the hosts had just enough in reserve to clinch their third win in a row against England/
http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/rugby_union/8734071.stm

Watching the game, I remember thinking how much time we needed to waste scrummaging them to a stand still, and how poorly we we using our clear dominance.

When was the last time an international team destroyed top opponents in the scrum and used that as the basis for victory? England against Ireland in the 2012 Six Nations stands out. You could also make a case for the Lions 3rd Test in 2013 but I'm not sure it's been such a good weapon since the hit was taken out.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by Taylorman on Mon 08 May 2017, 9:22 am

Rugby Fan wrote:You can target the scrum, and win there, but, as Pooly says, you still have to play smart rugby.

In 2010, England toured Australia. In the first Test, we had the Wallaby scrum on toast, winning two penalty tries from them. Australia finished 27-17 on top. This from the BBC report:

England's last victory over the Wallabies, in the 2007 World Cup, was based on them scrummaging Australia into the ground and as they twice cut the gap to four points in the second half it looked as though a similar result was on the cards.

But it would have been a harsh result given Australia's far greater attacking threat with the ball in hand and in the end the hosts had just enough in reserve to clinch their third win in a row against England/
http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/rugby_union/8734071.stm

Watching the game, I remember thinking how much time we needed to waste scrummaging them to a stand still, and how poorly we we using our clear dominance.

When was the last time an international team destroyed top opponents in the scrum and used that as the basis for victory? England against Ireland in the 2012 Six Nations stands out. You could also make a case for the Lions 3rd Test in 2013 but I'm not sure it's been such a good weapon since the hit was taken out.

Targeting the All Black scrum is easier said than done.

The ABs will aim to run the tight five off their feet and hit them hard in the contact to lower the impact of the set pieces.

A scrum is no good if they're all stuffed and can't put maximum effort into it, or they're hurting. ABs will aim to do both so it's not about how technically strong the scrum is. No scrum is any good when they're all turning up to it exhausted. It's too simple a statement to say they'll 'target the scrum' because with the ABs targeting the ball in play, which usually last for much longer periods, they will have already partially depowered the Lions scrum.

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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by ebop on Mon 08 May 2017, 9:26 am

That's a good point Tman

And why our focus isn't solely on the scrum

If it's a sloppy disjointed effort from the ABs then that could play into the Lions' hands but our boys will be so up for this that I can't see that happening. Given the current SR form, our players will be dialled in and there will be plenty of running.
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Re: Best Lions opposition team since 1989.

Post by emack2 on Mon 08 May 2017, 3:10 pm

Always this myth did you watch Crusaders v Bulls on Saturday?the SA
commentators were drooling.Over the Franks,Taylor,Crockett front row
before the start,the demolition job they did on the Bulls.
Was the thing which seems to impress you,they won there own ball and
destroyed the opposition Scrum.
That was without 2 first choice forwards rated number one in there positions
make no mistake.The All Blacks will achieve at least parity in the tight areas
there backs if anything suffer.
From no settled combo at 12/13 Crotty is a near certainy in either position
then its down to form.
Issy Dagg is now almost fit but can`t be guaranteed a start for Crusaders
the youngsters covering injuries so well.
How about Feddes at 13 solves the goal kicking problem,works well with
Crotty.Or Jordie Barrett as a wing.
Both highly unlikely but there you are,fitness will be the key plus
defence.Ireland deservedly got there first win v AB`s but even then
the AB`s scored the trade mark 3 try burst.
Incidentally AB`s have always had mobile ball playing Props,but
call them "seagulls" was a sure way to start a riot.

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