Lions 2017 - the decider

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Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by RDW_Scotland on Wed 31 May 2017, 9:03 am

First topic message reminder :



After months if not years, of debate, arguments and plenty bickering the time has come - The Lions are in New Zealand and the tour has begun!

I think it is fair to say that if you're not a fan of the concept of the Lions then this isn't the thread to bring it up - we have had plenty of that over several months and the debate has been done to death. This thread will hopefully be a positive place where those excited about the tour (like me!) can talk about everything that's going on. That's until Jamie Roberts gets a callup of course... Run

3 June - Provincial union team (Toll Stadium, Whangarei)

7 June - Blues (Eden Park, Auckland)

10 June - Crusaders (AMI Stadium, Christchurch)

13 June - Highlanders (Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin)

17 June - Maori (International Stadium, Rotorua)

20 June - Chiefs (Waikato Stadium, Hamilton)

24 June - New Zealand (First Test, Eden Park, Auckland)

27 June - Hurricanes (Westpac Stadium, Wellington)

1 July - New Zealand (Second Test, Westpac Stadium, Wellington)

8 July - New Zealand (Third Test, Eden Park, Auckland)



Last edited by RDW_Scotland on Mon 03 Jul 2017, 10:01 am; edited 3 times in total

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by The Great Aukster on Sat 08 Jul 2017, 11:54 pm

So why should playing an unranked team count as a Test match?

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Galted on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 12:03 am

The Great Aukster wrote:So why should playing an unranked team count as a Test match?

Why shouldn't it?
Rankings are a recent concept in the history of rugby whereas caps have been around throughout its existence. And it's pretty much up to the individual nations to decide their own criteria for awarding caps, if a union wanted to award one for a game against their own B team they could.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by The Great Aukster on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 12:18 am

NZ seem to hold the number of caps a player earns as important, so do other nations. Why aren't caps awarded against the Baabaas - they are better than plenty of national sides? Why not award Test caps playing Super rugby sides? If any nation can decide their own criteria then they could have the most capped rugby players of all time from 1 to 15.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by lostinwales on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 12:30 am

The Great Aukster wrote:NZ seem to hold the number of caps a player earns as important, so do other nations. Why aren't caps awarded against the Baabaas - they are better than plenty of national sides? Why not award Test caps playing Super rugby sides? If any nation can decide their own criteria then they could have the most capped rugby players of all time from 1 to 15.

Well there was this one time that caps were awarded for a game against the baa baas, but raising it is just going to end badly

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 6:07 am

Well, tour is over.

Winners:

JD - Came into the tour in poor form but played well throughout, great tour.
Watson - Another not in the best of form but now must be looking at the England 15 shirt.
George - Never started a test game prior, but was solid throughout his 3 starts.
Itoje - Grew through the tour and will learn to be more disciplined, a future star.
Gatland - Much abuse, but came through with a draw which is a hell of an achievement.
Te'o - Should have started more really, impressed when he got game time.
SOB - A good tour, physically matched the AB's.

Losers:

AWJ - Stick for touring and never put in a performance past average, tough tour.
Props - We should have dominated the AB's from the off in the scrum but it just never really happened. No prop came out with a higher reputation than what he went with.
JJ- Hyped as a starter, never really showed his class apart from his try.
Stander - Looked jaded and failed to make an impact.
Best - Hyped as captain but never got near test side. Continued questions about his throwing.
Kruis - Perhaps harshly dropped instead of the poor AWJ, failed to fully take his chances.

A few more failed to live up to high expectations.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Gwlad on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 6:34 am

You lot will never understand what AWJ is and I can assure you without him we'd have lost the tour, Gtas knows his worth which is why he was there in the pack leading by example.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by eirebilly on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 6:42 am

Gwlad, AWJ is a very solid player but he was very lucky to get the nod after the first test when him and Kruis were beaten off the park. Kruis was sacrificed but Gatland chose to keep AWJ when I feel he had a worse game than Kruis.

Now, I do not believe that AWJ is a bad player, he is just not the same player he was. I feel that Gatland did make a mistake in not playing Itoje and Lawes together from the start of test 2 and 3 and felt that Henderson would have been a better impact sub that AWJ.

This is not to say that AWJ performed poorly in tests 2 and 3, I just feel that Itoje and Lawes added more balance together (very easily seen when Lawes replaced AWJ).

I am not one to say that individuals are the reasons why a series is won or lost as it is a team effort but AWJ was one part of a misfiring 4-5 combination in the first test that had a massive influence on the result...
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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Gwlad on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 6:48 am

Wat AWJ brings isn't as tangible as form. Kruis was dropped because he was shockingly poor, AWJ has been doing it for years and in an inexperienced tight 5 he was absolutely fundamental to success.

Frankly debate on this is irrelevant now, he did the job he was asked to do. He never been a glory player, he does the grunt work and fronts up.

The results speak volumes for themselves.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Sgt_Pooly on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 6:51 am

Gwlad wrote:Wat AWJ brings isn't as tangible as form. Kruis was dropped because he was shockingly poor, AWJ has been doing it for years and in an inexperienced tight 5 he was absolutely fundamental to success.

Frankly debate on this is irrelevant now, he did the job he was asked to do. He never been a glory player, he does the grunt work and fronts up.

The results speak volumes for themselves.

AWJ has been shockingly poor for years?

Not that we'll ever know but I think we drew despite AWJ's not because of him, he was carried for the 3 tests.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by eirebilly on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 7:05 am

Think you miss my point somewhat there Gwlad. I am not blaming nor praising AWJ, I am saying that he was very lucky to get started after his and Kruis' performance in the first test which saw Kruis dropped from the test squad.

For me it is about balance and Itoje and Lawes provided far more balance, simple as that.

I was also very critical of the 10/12 combination. Both Sexton and Farrell are good enough to start at 10 but neither are good enough to play 12 against the physical AB's as they do not have that defensive balance. For me, Te'o had to start at 12 with either Sexton or Farrell at 10. If Sexton or Farrell started at 10, one of them would have missed the test squad as I believe that Biggar would have been a better impact sub.

I also felt that Williams (great break for the try in test 1) was playing poorly at 15 under the high ball and as such left the balance in the back three out of shape. Watson should have gone to 15 (much better under the high ball) with Williams moving to wing.
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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by fa0019 on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 7:56 am

Wales gave caps vs the baa baas so that Martyn Williams could join the 100 club so I can hardly see why seeing the lions as a test match is more ridiculous. The lions is not an invitational side anymore than Ireland, Wales, Scotland and England are.

The lions pre 2001 were called the British Lions and raised the union jack as their flag. Pre 1997 they sung GSTQ at test matches. They were the the national team of the UK... so much so that Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England didn't even tour abroad until the 60s and even when they did it was the odd test here and there.

Now its different admittedly... but no more stupid then the UK being a single country and in certain sports they compete as England, Scotland, Wales, and N. Ireland (with rugby being one of the rare sports where the union never devolved after Irish Independence). In the past I imagine it was close to Brian Carney playing for league for GB, Eoin MOrgan playing cricket for England etc etc. But now sure its a team composed of 2 countries... but its still a test match but one with a confusing historical complex.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by fa0019 on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 8:07 am

Gwlad wrote:Wat AWJ brings isn't as tangible as form. Kruis was dropped because he was shockingly poor, AWJ has been doing it for years and in an inexperienced tight 5 he was absolutely fundamental to success.

Frankly debate on this is irrelevant now, he did the job he was asked to do. He never been a glory player, he does the grunt work and fronts up.

The results speak volumes for themselves.

I don't think he played bad at all during the 1st test and agreed with the 1st test selection. If Warburton was not playing that pack, that team was a little short of leadership, and AWJ had to play.
However the blend we got in the end was a little odd and in fact I think the lions missed a trick by not fielding a proper 5 and lineout captain. Its either Lawes & Kruis for me and Itoje or Jones. Kruis struggled a bit in the loose but was very very good in the set piece.
You could play Itoje at 6 and Warburton at 7 to accomodate Jones and Kruis/Lawes... but then you would lose the ball carrying of SOB.

I thought that one place where the lions let themselves down was in the set piece and when they dropped kruis they lost their best scrum lock and their best lineout lock. Come the big moments Itoje messed up a number of lineouts and at best we gained parity at scrum time although overall he did ok in the set piece and was massive in the loose.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Exiledinborders on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 8:24 am

aucklandlaurie wrote:New Zealand are the best team in the World.
That is what their ranking says. However they have just failed to beat an invitational team. If England were to fail to beat the Barbarians questions would be asked. However I cannot remember the last time it happened.


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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by eirebilly on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 8:28 am

Exiledinborders wrote:
aucklandlaurie wrote:New Zealand are the best team in the World.
That is what their ranking says. However they have just failed to beat an invitational team. If England were to fail to beat the Barbarians questions would be asked. However I cannot remember the last time it happened.


I would not class the Lions as an invitational team as such. The Lions is full of some of the best players from 4 (sorry 3 Wink ) nations and are coached by man with an exceptional record in coaching.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Taylorman on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 8:29 am

Exiledinborders wrote:
aucklandlaurie wrote:New Zealand are the best team in the World.
That is what their ranking says. However they have just failed to beat an invitational team. If England were to fail to beat the Barbarians questions would be asked. However I cannot remember the last time it happened.


You're now comparing the Lions to the Barbarians?

How....quaint.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by fa0019 on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 9:58 am

Exiledinborders wrote:
aucklandlaurie wrote:New Zealand are the best team in the World.
That is what their ranking says. However they have just failed to beat an invitational team. If England were to fail to beat the Barbarians questions would be asked. However I cannot remember the last time it happened.


That a major team lost to an "invitational side"?

Lions
AUS in 2013.
SA in 1997 (world champs)
AUS in 1989 (2 years later world champs)
SA in 1974  (had never lost a home series at time. And just for reference in series they beat NZ in 70 & 76, FRA in 71, 74 & 75 and AUS in 71)... anyone else got a record better than that... well until the Lions beat them in 74!!!
NZ in 1971

Baabaas pre 96 - when they were in reality the lions and occasionally 1 or 2 frenchmen.
NZ 1973
SA 1994

Baabaas post 96 -  post professionalism and end of the lions in disguise format

SA 2007
NZ 2009
SA 2010

And the baabaas have an even tougher task. They literally shake hands with the opposition and their teammates for the first time... in the lineup before kickoff.

NZ Maori

ENG 2010
IRE 2010
Lions 2005
ENG 1998

PS - Just 1 final point. The lions play all their games away from home. In the pro era they have played 18 tests. Won 7, lost 10, draw 1. That's a win rate of 39%. Do you realise how good that is? The only comparable team is France... their record stands at 9% when facing these teams away.

Against AUS and NZ here is the record in the pro era for major sides

Boks - 7 wins in 47 or 15%
FRA - 1 win in 23 or 4%
Lions - 4 wins in 12 or 33%
ENG - 7 wins in 23 or 30%
SCO - 2 wins in 11 or 18%

Interesting that the Lions record has is barely better than 1 of its constituents in the 21 year pro era but still the record is very impressive still.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by fa0019 on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 10:11 am

Everyone thinks NZ is this never lose team but the fact they don't have to face someone as strong as themselves helps.
If you compare their record against AUS and SA in the pro era they look more fallible.

In terms of away matches

NZ - 30 wins in 53 (56% win rate)
Lions - 6 wins in 12 (50% win rate)
ENG - 7 wins in 21 (33% win rate)
FRA - 2 wins in 20 (10% win rate)

and 1 things to remember... NZ are obviously the best but the lions are a scratch side half the time and no one would doubt if they played more often they would get more wins.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by The Great Aukster on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 11:45 am

fa0019 wrote:Wales gave caps vs the baa baas so that Martyn Williams could join the 100 club so I can hardly see why seeing the lions as a test match is more ridiculous. The lions is not an invitational side anymore than Ireland, Wales, Scotland and England are.

The lions pre 2001 were called the British Lions and raised the union jack as their flag. Pre 1997 they sung GSTQ at test matches. They were the the national team of the UK... so much so that Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England didn't even tour abroad until the 60s and even when they did it was the odd test here and there.

Now its different admittedly... but no more stupid then the UK being a single country and in certain sports they compete as England, Scotland, Wales, and N. Ireland (with rugby being one of the rare sports where the union never devolved after Irish Independence). In the past I imagine it was close to Brian Carney playing for league for GB, Eoin MOrgan playing cricket for England etc etc. But now sure its a team composed of 2 countries... but its still a test match but one with a confusing historical complex.

fa0019 - do you really believe that? National sides have leagues below them from which to compare players who regularly face each other week in week out. Comparing say Rory Best to Jamie George in the same game is limited to maybe a few minutes when George has come off the bench in the 6N and Best happens to still be on the pitch. Best hooks the ball in the scrum, George doesn't - something that cost the Lions with one against the head and a scrum penalty on Saturday. Both have been shown up to have crooked throws from the line but there is very little opportunity to compare them head to head. The Lions is selected on the coach's whim rather than knowledge of how players have played together or against one another.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 11:50 am

You really need to start watching some more aviva euro games and England games.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by The Great Aukster on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 11:56 am

Can't stand boring rugby. Wink

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 11:57 am

Dropping watching ireland as well as avoiding the lions. You'll have nothing left soon!

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by The Great Aukster on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 12:20 pm

Sure Ireland are boring but they have such limited resources someone has to support them. The Pro12 is anything but boring though, so thankfully I don't have to watch too much AP (unless there's an Irish connection of course).

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by No 7&1/2 on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 12:22 pm

You do seem very insular.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by fa0019 on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 1:00 pm

The Great Aukster wrote:
fa0019 wrote:Wales gave caps vs the baa baas so that Martyn Williams could join the 100 club so I can hardly see why seeing the lions as a test match is more ridiculous. The lions is not an invitational side anymore than Ireland, Wales, Scotland and England are.

The lions pre 2001 were called the British Lions and raised the union jack as their flag. Pre 1997 they sung GSTQ at test matches. They were the the national team of the UK... so much so that Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England didn't even tour abroad until the 60s and even when they did it was the odd test here and there.

Now its different admittedly... but no more stupid then the UK being a single country and in certain sports they compete as England, Scotland, Wales, and N. Ireland (with rugby being one of the rare sports where the union never devolved after Irish Independence). In the past I imagine it was close to Brian Carney playing for league for GB, Eoin MOrgan playing cricket for England etc etc. But now sure its a team composed of 2 countries... but its still a test match but one with a confusing historical complex.

fa0019 - do you really believe that? National sides have leagues below them from which to compare players who regularly face each other week in week out. Comparing say Rory Best to Jamie George in the same game is limited to maybe a few minutes when George has come off the bench in the 6N and Best happens to still be on the pitch. Best hooks the ball in the scrum, George doesn't - something that cost the Lions with one against the head and a scrum penalty on Saturday. Both have been shown up to have crooked throws from the line but there is very little opportunity to compare them head to head. The Lions is selected on the coach's whim rather than knowledge of how players have played together or against one another.

Not sure what that has to do with saying the lions is no more an invitational side than Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales is.

They play in different leagues, sort of. They play European Cup, they play 6N rugby. But like any team sport... prowess or success may be down to others so its difficult even if they played week in week out. The only thing we can see is that George was chosen ahead of Best and Owens and then Hartley, Ford etc etc by Gatland before and during this tour. That's all we can see.

George and this no hook thing is ridiculous but it has its reasons..albeit I don't think its worth it. Especially in a weak/inferior pack a hooker needs to get that ball to the back as soon as possible. Tom Youngs, Jamie George they all learnt their craft in monster club sides that weren't under the cosh every scrum.

Nevertheless your entire argument holds water if players facing each other compete with exactly the same situations. Equal strengths around the park. That's rare even in leagues with insular rules (i.e. all players who want to play test rugby in given country must play in that particular league).

Parisse has been bested by the opposition nearly every game, played in a side who is often dominated up front. It doesn't mean he doesn't shine through but what it means is that its difficult to truly assess his true value.

Say George betters Hartley in a Northampton vs. Sarries... well Sarries is the best team in Europe. They have a test pack. Do Northampton?

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by The Great Aukster on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 9:52 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:You do seem very insular.

Absolutely, born on an island, live on an island and very likely to die on an island - as insular as they come.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by The Great Aukster on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 10:05 pm

fa0019 wrote:
The Great Aukster wrote:
fa0019 wrote:Wales gave caps vs the baa baas so that Martyn Williams could join the 100 club so I can hardly see why seeing the lions as a test match is more ridiculous. The lions is not an invitational side anymore than Ireland, Wales, Scotland and England are.

The lions pre 2001 were called the British Lions and raised the union jack as their flag. Pre 1997 they sung GSTQ at test matches. They were the the national team of the UK... so much so that Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England didn't even tour abroad until the 60s and even when they did it was the odd test here and there.

Now its different admittedly... but no more stupid then the UK being a single country and in certain sports they compete as England, Scotland, Wales, and N. Ireland (with rugby being one of the rare sports where the union never devolved after Irish Independence). In the past I imagine it was close to Brian Carney playing for league for GB, Eoin MOrgan playing cricket for England etc etc. But now sure its a team composed of 2 countries... but its still a test match but one with a confusing historical complex.

fa0019 - do you really believe that? National sides have leagues below them from which to compare players who regularly face each other week in week out. Comparing say Rory Best to Jamie George in the same game is limited to maybe a few minutes when George has come off the bench in the 6N and Best happens to still be on the pitch. Best hooks the ball in the scrum, George doesn't - something that cost the Lions with one against the head and a scrum penalty on Saturday. Both have been shown up to have crooked throws from the line but there is very little opportunity to compare them head to head. The Lions is selected on the coach's whim rather than knowledge of how players have played together or against one another.

Not sure what that has to do with saying the lions is no more an invitational side than Ireland, England, Scotland, Wales is.

They play in different leagues, sort of. They play European Cup, they play 6N rugby. But like any team sport... prowess or success may be down to others so its difficult even if they played week in week out. The only thing we can see is that George was chosen ahead of Best and Owens and then Hartley, Ford etc etc by Gatland before and during this tour. That's all we can see.

George and this no hook thing is ridiculous but it has its reasons..albeit I don't think its worth it. Especially in a weak/inferior pack a hooker needs to get that ball to the back as soon as possible. Tom Youngs, Jamie George they all learnt their craft in monster club sides that weren't under the cosh every scrum.

Nevertheless your entire argument holds water if players facing each other compete with exactly the same situations. Equal strengths around the park. That's rare even in leagues with insular rules (i.e. all players who want to play test rugby in given country must play in that particular league).

Parisse has been bested by the opposition nearly every game, played in a side who is often dominated up front. It doesn't mean he doesn't shine through but what it means is that its difficult to truly assess his true value.

Say George betters Hartley in a Northampton vs. Sarries... well Sarries is the best team in Europe. They have a test pack. Do Northampton?
Fa0019 you have argued well to show that there is little data to make a decision on and if there is meagre comparison in the same league there can be none across different leagues. Hence the Lions is far more invitational than any other side apart from maybe the Barbarians.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by mikey_dragon on Sun 09 Jul 2017, 11:03 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Gatland and his medical staff brought a player back onto the pitch who had been unconcious?  Serious accusation there mikey but if you're right I hope they punish him severely.

Back to posting like a clown then? I thought he looked unconscious for a moment when watching in slow-mo.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/rugby-union/2017/07/08/warren-gatland-insists-alun-wyn-jones-cleared-put-back-lions/

Well done AWJ thumbsup

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Gwlad on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 3:59 am

mikey_dragon wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Gatland and his medical staff brought a player back onto the pitch who had been unconcious?  Serious accusation there mikey but if you're right I hope they punish him severely.

Back to posting like a clown then? I thought he looked unconscious for a moment when watching in slow-mo.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/rugby-union/2017/07/08/warren-gatland-insists-alun-wyn-jones-cleared-put-back-lions/

Well done AWJ thumbsup

I dont think the lights went out I think he was in pain tbh. Yet another cynical tackle from rugby's 'hard' men and still they couldn't win

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 7:14 am

Nope mikey. Asking you a question. If you think he was unconcious surely you wouldn't be praising gatland for bringing him back on? You'd surely be asking about player safety and where things had gone wrong.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by beshocked on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 8:43 am

George generally isn't used to playing that long, he rarely plays more than 60, unsurprising he would be tired at the end there after a long season.

Gatland should have probably replaced him earlier.


Though saying that I have to give credit to Gatland. Didn't think he was capable of a series draw.

Sure the tour has had its flaws - no Scots, not utilising the squad properly but bar AWJ the selection from Gatland in the starting line up has been pretty good.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Griff on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 9:14 am

Such a good photo (below). Saw this and thought how it really embodies the spirit of rugby. Lots of caption competition opportunities too!



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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Taylorman on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 9:21 am

Griff wrote:Such a good photo (below).  Saw this and thought how it really embodies the spirit of rugby.  Lots of caption competition opportunities too!



Awesome pic, one for the ages.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by The Great Aukster on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 9:35 am

Owens finds Ardie with bent touch.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by BamBam on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 9:57 am

Fair play to Gatland for not losing the tour, but I struggle to call it a success

Maybe I'm blinkered, but to me, a successful tour is a winning tour - certain people on here seem to think that despite leading for about 3 mins during the Tests, this has been an unqualified success


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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by beshocked on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 10:09 am

BamBam wrote:Fair play to Gatland for not losing the tour, but I struggle to call it a success

Maybe I'm blinkered, but to me, a successful tour is a winning tour - certain people on here seem to think that despite leading for about 3 mins during the Tests, this has been an unqualified success


It's a lot better than most of us expected. I thought it would be a 3-0 drubbing. Yes I think Gatland still has his flaws but it's probably his best achievement to date.


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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by BamBam on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 10:31 am

I still wouldn't call it a successful tour though - losing to Super Rugby teams definitely needs to be taken into account too

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by RDW_Scotland on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 10:37 am

The midweek results really weren't great:

Won 4
Lost 2
Drew 1

A 57% midweek win rate must be one of the worst for a long time. Of course you could argue that midweek results don't matter really, and that at near full strength teams this was the hardest midweek fixtures we've ever had, but when you consider the tour as a whole being more than just 3 tests at the end (which I do) I don't think that can be counted as a success.

Saying that, who would have thought that we would have drawn the test series after such a poor run of results building up to it!

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Scottrf on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 10:50 am

A draw is a great result and yes the midweek results were underpar, but they were 1. Warm up games for the tests 2. The hardest midweek games ever.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by beshocked on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 11:18 am

Well the geography 6 situation was a massive balls up.

It's embarrassing for the 6 players involved and they aren't really embraced by anyone. The players left behind also feel aggrieved too.

Then there's of course the lack of Scottish players. Even if the Scottish players made up the backbone of the mid week team it would be better than the situation we had.

Mid weekers being overplayed was another mistake as there seemed to be no real way to get into the test team once it was set.

I do feel sorry for some of the players who will feel they didn't get a fair opportunity to prove themselves.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by bsando on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 12:30 pm

I actually Enjoyed the midweek games more, especially the last one! The 3 test results were very impressive in the end but I found the games a bit too defensive for my liking and both Gatland and Hansen seem very similar in approach and coaching style. I know Gatland probably wants to cary on with the Lions in 2021 but I really hope he doesn't get offered the job. If we can have a series with fresh perspective on selections and tactics, preferably a British head coach as well I would be much more enthusiastic about the next tour.
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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by emack2 on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 12:41 pm

Love people using stats to prove a point so try these Barbarians picked a
Lions strength side 1961 to beat the Boks 1961.Especially a fellow Scot
NO side is invincible the Boks decline started in 1949,in 1951-2 a great
side played multi=phase rugby.In 1953 they lost at home to Australia for the
first time,in 1955 drew a series with THE greatest Lions,lost a series
to NZ 1956,Lost a series at home to France in 1958 again in 1964.
Two tests to Aus first series loss then 3-1 to NZ.1965
They won a close one in 1960 vNz,then as you say in 1970,and 76 a period
in which EVERYONE was beating NZ during this period.SA lost to Argentina
for the first time.
NZ have won exactly TWICE as many as SA and Aus combined in the
RC.Twice or more as many RC and Super titles as SA and Aus combined
plus 3 RWC titles to 2.
Also not lostthat many games to NH sides since the game went pro so honour
the sides that have beaten them.
A 75 % win rate since 1903 is a pretty impressive stat.hopefully the wheel
has turned.
We have much harder matches between all sides and the improvement
by many sides continues.That just more sides compete improve it`s
good for the game.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by Galted on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 1:57 pm

And in 2004 Haberdasher's Aske's School of Elstree lost to Tiffin School of Kingston-Upon-Thames by 19 points to 0.
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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by LordDowlais on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 2:56 pm

Well, as some members on here were predicting a 3-0 whitewash and the worst tour since the knight of the realm took us in 2005, I do not think it ended to shabbily.

Gatland record stands, 2 tours, none lost.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by beshocked on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 3:02 pm

It's quite interesting when you think about it:

2013 - Gatland irritates the Irish most
2017 - Gatland irritates the Scots most
2021 - Gatland irrates the English most?

Wouldn't be a Gatland Lions tour without controversy.

In Wales, Gatland will always be a hero but in the other nations? Very divisive.

Maybe just maybe Gatland holds a soft spot for England because of his time with Wasps?

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by LordDowlais on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 3:10 pm

beshocked wrote:It's quite interesting when you think about it:

2013 - Gatland irritates the Irish most
2017 - Gatland irritates the Scots most
2021 - Gatland irrates the English most?

Wouldn't be a Gatland Lions tour without controversy.

In Wales, Gatland will always be a hero but in the other nations? Very divisive.

Maybe just maybe Gatland holds a soft spot for England because of his time with Wasps?

Winners are generally despised as much as they a revered. Manchester United were hated by non supporters, Andy Murray divides opinions ect. It's all comes with the territory.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by beshocked on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 3:20 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:It's quite interesting when you think about it:

2013 - Gatland irritates the Irish most
2017 - Gatland irritates the Scots most
2021 - Gatland irrates the English most?

Wouldn't be a Gatland Lions tour without controversy.

In Wales, Gatland will always be a hero but in the other nations? Very divisive.

Maybe just maybe Gatland holds a soft spot for England because of his time with Wasps?

Winners are generally despised as much as they a revered. Manchester United were hated by non supporters, Andy Murray divides opinions ect. It's all comes with the territory.

Disagree. I think Exeter Chiefs are probably one of the most popular winners. I think most would have wanted Clermont to lift the top 14 title too.

Even with Saracens, I think some of the hate has eased off a bit as a more all round game has been developed plus of course contributing players to internationals. I don't think Saracens will ever be loved like a Clermont or Exeter or Wasps but probably more likable than Gatland!

The comical thing is that there has been a Saracens core in the Lions - both coaches and players.

I don't think Federer divides opinion.

Gatland is divisive because of his controversial methods.

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by BamBam on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 3:22 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:It's quite interesting when you think about it:

2013 - Gatland irritates the Irish most
2017 - Gatland irritates the Scots most
2021 - Gatland irrates the English most?

Wouldn't be a Gatland Lions tour without controversy.

In Wales, Gatland will always be a hero but in the other nations? Very divisive.

Maybe just maybe Gatland holds a soft spot for England because of his time with Wasps?

Winners are generally despised as much as they a revered. Manchester United were hated by non supporters, Andy Murray divides opinions ect. It's all comes with the territory.

Yes, Sir Alex Ferguson and co were renowned for celebrating draws weren't they. Andy Murray is absolutely chuffed when he fails to win

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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by RuggerRadge2611 on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 3:26 pm

beshocked wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:It's quite interesting when you think about it:

2013 - Gatland irritates the Irish most
2017 - Gatland irritates the Scots most
2021 - Gatland irrates the English most?

Wouldn't be a Gatland Lions tour without controversy.

In Wales, Gatland will always be a hero but in the other nations? Very divisive.

Maybe just maybe Gatland holds a soft spot for England because of his time with Wasps?

Winners are generally despised as much as they a revered. Manchester United were hated by non supporters, Andy Murray divides opinions ect. It's all comes with the territory.

Disagree. I think Exeter Chiefs are probably one of the most popular winners. I think most would have wanted Clermont to lift the top 14 title too.

Even with Saracens, I think some of the hate has eased off a bit as a more all round game has been developed plus of course contributing players to internationals. I don't think Saracens will ever be loved like a Clermont or Exeter or Wasps but probably more likable than Gatland!

The comical thing is that there has been a Saracens core in the Lions - both coaches and players.

I don't think Federer divides opinion.

Gatland is divisive because of his controversial methods.

Welsh fans only revere Gatland when revering him is safe, and popular. Rewind to the wake of Wales' tour to NZ just 12 months ago and have read at some of the comments when NZ dominated the series and the Chiefs put Wales to the sword.

Some were calling for him to leave the job with immediate affect and others were desperately hoping he wasn't the Lions coach!
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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by beshocked on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 3:28 pm

Bambam you can't draw in tennis. There's always a winner.

I am sure if a draw meant Man U won the league they'd celebrate a draw.

Lions were huge underdogs going to NZ. Lions might not have outright won but it's optimistic going forward for individual countries.

It shows that NZ are mortal. I don't think England should fear NZ. I feel like if England keep growing and get a top class 8 like Billy back in the team, it will be very fascinating indeed.

I still think Wales should get rid of Gatland but if they want to keep him they are welcome to.

Of course we'll see in the 2019 RWC where the gap between the SH and NH sides has truly closed or we are being lulled into a false sense of security.


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Re: Lions 2017 - the decider

Post by BamBam on Mon 10 Jul 2017, 3:30 pm

Beshocked, my point was that those examples would never celebrate NOT winning

Man Utd might have accepted draws during the season, but they'd want to win the league - anything less would have been failure (in their heyday that is)

I must congratulate you on observing that there are no draws in tennis

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