Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

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Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 18 May 2018, 5:48 am

The biggest issues in rugby are up for debate as Mick Cleary sits down with four leading coaches.

Has it been more difficult coping with player welfare this season because of the demands of the Lions season?

Mark McCall (Saracens) The real issue is the shortness of the pre-season for those players. They had five weeks off but that left them only two to three weeks to get ready, which is not enough. Their playing minutes are OK.

Dai Young (Wasps) I think people underestimate the mental toll on players even if they are not playing. Players need time away from the game to recharge.

Dean Richards (Newcastle) It was probably more problematic for our generation because we didn’t have the wonders of modern science to help with recovery. The understanding of what players need to do for rehab is much greater than it ever was and as a consequence they are far better catered for.

Rob Baxter (Exeter) You have got to recognise certain realities. It’s obvious that we have to look after players mentally and physically but we also have to find the means to pay them a salary. If we want a professional sport, we have to fund it. We can’t keep running away from the fact that there has to be a balance between playing and not playing. You can’t advocate more rest for everyone or pretty soon there will be no professional game. If a player only plays 10 games a season who is going to provide the money?

MC So the Irish system, essentially a centrally contracted system, is the way to go then?

DY It’s easy to look at Leinster’s success and think that is the way to go yet it is only two years since the European quarter-finals comprised five England and three French teams. Just because Leinster are successful now, doesn’t mean you have to copy how they do things. Our system works. I don’t think the Irish set-up is any better.

McM Two years ago, everyone was saying that the Irish provinces couldn’t compete. That turned out not to be case. You have to get the whole picture right. Club rugby has clashes with international rugby and that is part of the global season conversation. There is nothing wrong with the product in the English game. It is good. We just need to sort the balance of when or how often we have our international players.

Four coaches from different parts of the country. How important is that spread?

DR If there were no professional rugby in the north it would be a terrible thing for rugby in this country. I don’t think people realise how much rugby is played up in the north and the passion people have for rugby. Having the European finals weekend there next year will be fantastic. All the signs are positive and it will be put Newcastle right back on the map.

McM It happens all round the world – a union taking matches on the road to spread the word? Bringing a Test match to the north has to be the right thing to do.

RB It was a huge step for us to get into the Premiership (2010). All the best young promising players in Devon and Cornwall were leaving. You could pick an international side from the players who left the South West over a 10-year period. That has changed. The young lads now have something to aim for at the Chiefs. The more successful you are, the more you become a realistic target. Rugby is probably the number one sport in the area despite the presence of a couple of football clubs.

Promotion and relegation – are they a good thing?

DR If you’d asked me 15-20 years ago, I’d have been a supporter of promotion and relegation. But, with all the investment in the clubs, and not just the money to buy players, the investment in community projects, in supporters, in academies, it is a real shame when relegation happens. The knock-on effect of being relegated is massive.

MC Has the pressure on directors of rugby grown more acute and are they more vulnerable?

DY It is part of the job but it is getting harder. It doesn’t matter what your contract might say, you’ve effectively got a one-year contract. One bad year and you’re under pressure. A director of rugby carries more risk than anyone else. The board are not going to sack 30 or 40 players, are they?

MC The Premiership had the most tries ever this season, with 776, an average of 5.88 per match.

McM In 2011 when we won the league title we scored 35 tries in 22 games so I can understand why people didn’t like us back then. It seems that this season, teams have set out to be more positive. Exeter don’t kick penalties. They kick the ball into the corner to go for tries. There are tries everywhere but I’m not sure how deliberate it is. But it has definitely been more difficult to defend this year.

DY All the guys look at trends and how you win matches so that while penalties are still important, we have all seen that few games are won by just kicking penalties. You have to score tries. And, in the league across a long season, bonus points matter.

DR You build your side that is going to suit the style of play you want. Niki Goneva was available, Sinoti Sinoti was available. I saw them as fantastic players and they suited how we wanted to play.

RB I think it’s probably cyclical. At Exeter we look to score tries now for a different reason to when we first came up. Then, it was a case of keeping the ball for as long as we could because we were afraid of what the opposition could do to us. Now, we feel when we are in charge of the ball, we can put the opposition under pressure and score. So, it’s the same style but for a different reason.

What state are England in a year out from the World Cup?

RB We don’t know the process that Eddie has put in place for what he is aiming for at the World Cup. There has been a lot of talk about injuries picked up in England camps. Eddie is not ignorant. He knows those things have happened. Is his aim now to put players through a certain process that he thinks will lead to something good into the World Cup? He could have a schedule where it is tough for these lads at the moment, playing under fatigue, but it may be part of a process that Eddie believes they need to go through. It is hard to say if what has happened with England over the last few months is a problem or is it actually a positive?

DR That said, there is an England squad in place that has every chance of doing well in the World Cup, good enough to compete with the best and get through to the final or final stages.

McM England have talent but they also have depth of talent that other countries don’t have.

DY That’s true. The desire to do well for the jersey is as strong as I’ve seen. England have enough players to do everyone proud.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by Brendan on Fri 18 May 2018, 11:02 am

Some interesting points

Was surprised to hear about Devon was such a hot bed of rugby. As Exeter are now getting them is that why they are now doing better and Bath Glaws and Bristol doing worse (As they aren't getting those players)

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by The Oracle on Fri 18 May 2018, 12:38 pm

Devon and Cornwall have always been hotbeds for rugby, haven't they? Cornwall were quite big in counties rugby in the past. You've got the likes of Cornish Pirates (Penzance and Newlyn), Launceston RFC, Redruth, etc. Just never had a big big team in that area, until Exeter made a push for the prem and then exceeded expectations and have done so well.
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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by ebop on Fri 18 May 2018, 12:41 pm

“Rugby Fan wrote:McM England have talent but they also have depth of talent that other countries don’t have.
There is depth and then there is “DEPTH”

England have a good team and coach and a depth of cash and total players. And way more elite depth than Ireland for example that operate on the smell of an oily rag in terms of depth.

But is England’s depth really the kind of depth that wins RWCs? Do they have ‘take a few players out and you come fifth in the 6Ns kinda depth’? The kind of depth where Eddie starts checking the passports of mummies and daddies of rugby players around the world to fill gaps ‘kinda depth’.

England have numbers but not really the depth required to dominate

The quality is ‘just not there’

They are not that deep in depth. Don’t know who this Mark McCall guy is but he sounds like a club coach.
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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by munkian on Fri 18 May 2018, 1:06 pm

I wouldn't say England have more depth in quality than Ireland. They have a production line of decent 'stout yeoman' Lockflankers but they've had to import a decent back rower in.
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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 18 May 2018, 1:15 pm

You don't surprise me in your lack of knowledge ebop.
Or you wumming munkian.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by ebop on Fri 18 May 2018, 1:27 pm

Really 7.5, your team came 5th in the 6Ns. Where did it go wrong with ‘all’ that talent and depth? Ireland are superior to England. They don’t have the numbers but the ‘right’ kind of narrow depth. England have a bland kind of depth. You guys discuss this player vs this player vs this player and that player kind of level of depth where you guys just don’t know. It’s because the options are not quite there. So many questions over your guys. It’s a problem. Eddie knows it’s a problem.
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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 18 May 2018, 1:29 pm

You can't really comment. As you say you lack knowledge. Watch some.more rugby and come back in the new season.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by ebop on Fri 18 May 2018, 1:32 pm

Yes I can

England lacks depth, quality depth
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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by munkian on Fri 18 May 2018, 1:42 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:You don't surprise me in your lack of knowledge ebop.
Or you wumming munkian.

Which part is untrue ?
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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 18 May 2018, 1:51 pm

You need to watch some.rugby ebop. As you acknowledge you don't know what you're on about.

Your insinuation that Englands club rugby develops merely decent flankers munkian.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by munkian on Fri 18 May 2018, 1:56 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:You need to watch some.rugby ebop. As you acknowledge you don't know what you're on about.

Your insinuation that Englands club rugby develops merely decent flankers munkian.

In comparison to Ireland and Wales ? I wouldn't swap any of ours, doubt Ireland would either.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 18 May 2018, 1:58 pm

Well for a start wales play a flanker developed through englands structure. Not one I particularly rate personally but gatland seems to. Scotland's 7 who was getting rave reviews was developed in part in England. Maybe I'm misunderstanding your point?

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by munkian on Fri 18 May 2018, 2:00 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Well for a start wales play a flanker developed through englands structure. Not one I particularly rate personally but gatland seems to. Scotland's 7 who was getting rave reviews was developed in part in England. Maybe I'm misunderstanding your point?

Who ?

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by ebop on Fri 18 May 2018, 2:00 pm

I watch a lot of rugby 7.5. Reckon I touched a nerve. You know what I mean about depth though. Always hoping the next guy in will make the difference but it never pans out. Too much bland depth and not enough ‘world’ class players.
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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by LondonTiger on Fri 18 May 2018, 2:01 pm

An Irishman and a Welshman talk up English rugby, offending a Kiwi. Cool

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 18 May 2018, 2:01 pm

Moriarty.

Just going by your own words ebop.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by munkian on Fri 18 May 2018, 2:08 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Moriarty.

Just going by your own words ebop.

Grasping at straws there really aren't you mate ? He played his Jnr rugby in Wales. I wouldn't say hes first choice at the moment either.

So, one player whose Dad was a Welsh rugby captain whose Son was born on the wrong side of the border whilst playing League aide, which England test flanker would replace anyone on the Welsh or Irish team ? EDIT or Scotland
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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 18 May 2018, 2:15 pm

Not grasping at all when we're talking about development. As I said maybe I got the wrong end of the stick. So you're basically saying in your opinion other nations have players who would get into a lions team for instance ahead of England players. Fair enough. I personally don't rate haskell as a 7 who has filled in there. For me Robshaw is right up there with current 6s and has been great over the last few years. Don't rate him as a top 7 where he was.budged over to this year. In relation to the next couple of years I'm looking forward to seeing how the currys willis earl simminds and a few others progress. When they get a chance they'll do well.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by munkian on Fri 18 May 2018, 2:16 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Not grasping at all when we're talking about development. As I said maybe I got the wrong end of the stick. So you're basically saying in your opinion other nations have players who would get into a lions team for instance ahead of England players. Fair enough. I personally don't rate haskell as a 7 who has filled in there. For me Robshaw is right up there with current 6s and has been great over the last few years. Don't rate him as a top 7 where he was.budged over to this year. In relation to the next couple of years I'm looking forward to seeing how the currys willis earl  simminds and a few others progress. When they get a chance they'll do well.

So, none then ?
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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 18 May 2018, 2:19 pm

Well for me if we're just going with choices I'd have Robshaw and tipuric. Though I really like shingler.
Pom leavy.
Robshaw and Watson.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by yappysnap on Thu 24 May 2018, 10:56 pm

Wow

Well this thread derailed quickly.

Nothing really that revealing in the interview but then there was the going to be.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 25 May 2018, 1:39 am

Main thing I took from the interview is how difficult it is to maintain player welfare. The coaches defended not giving the Lions a break because they believe it's not economic to do otherwise.

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Re: Telegraph Interview with McCall, Baxter, Richards & Young

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