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Post by Pot Hale on Wed 16 Jan 2019, 4:47 pm

Ireland squad named for 6N rounds 1&2 - updated after Round 2:

Hookers
Rory Best (Ulster/Banbridge) 115 caps Captain
Sean Cronin (Leinster/St Mary's College) 67 caps
Niall Scannell (Munster/Dolphin) 11 caps

LH/TH
Cian Healy (Leinster/Clontarf) 85 caps
Dave Kilcoyne (Munster/UL Bohemians) 26 caps
Jack McGrath (Leinster/St Marys College) 53 caps
Tadhg Furlong (Leinster/Clontarf) 30 caps
Andrew Porter (Leinster/UCD) 13 caps
John Ryan (Munster/Cork Constitution) 16 caps

Locks
Tadhg Beirne (Munster/Lansdowne) 4 caps** - injured
Ultan Dillane (Connacht/Corinthians) 12 caps
Iain Henderson (Ulster/Queens University) 42 caps** - injured
James Ryan (Leinster/UCD) 15 caps
Devin Toner (Leinster/Lansdowne) 64 caps
Quinn Roux - injury addition (Connacht) 10 caps
Billy Holland - injury addition (Munster/Cork Con) 1 cap

Backrowers
Jack Conan (Leinster/Old Belvedere) 12 caps
Jordi Murphy (Ulster/Lansdowne) 26 caps
Sean O'Brien (Leinster/UCD) 54 caps
Peter O'Mahony (Munster/Cork Constitution) 54 caps (vc)
Rhys Ruddock (Leinster/St Mary's College) 21 caps
CJ Stander (Munster/Shannon) 29 caps
Josh van der Flier (Leinster/UCD) 15 caps

Scrum-halves
Caolin Blade (Connacht/Galwegians) 0 caps
John Cooney (Ulster/Terenure College) 6 caps
Conor Murray (Munster/Garryowen) 69 caps

10s
Joey Carbery (Munster/Clontarf) 18 caps
Jack Carty (Connacht/Buccaneers) 0 caps
Jonathan Sexton (Leinster/St Marys College) 79 caps (vc)

Centres
Bundee Aki (Connacht/Galwegians) 13 caps
Chris Farrell (Munster/Young Munster) 3 caps
Tom Farrell (Connacht/TBC) 0 caps
Robbie Henshaw (Leinster/Buccaneers) 37 caps
Garry Ringrose (Leinster/UCD) 18 caps

Back-three
Will Addison (Ulster/Enniskillen) 3 caps
Andrew Conway (Munster/Garryowen) 10 caps
Keith Earls (Munster/Young Munster) 73 caps
Rob Kearney (Leinster/UCD) 87 caps
Jordan Larmour (Leinster/St Mary's College) 10 caps
Jacob Stockdale (Ulster/Ballynahinch) 15 caps


Last edited by Pot Hale on Sun 10 Feb 2019, 5:39 pm; edited 13 times in total
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Post by rodders on Wed 16 Jan 2019, 4:58 pm

Strongest Irish squad I can remember with some very good players missing out.

Great to see Tom Farrell get a call up, Byrne is a bit unlucky to miss out.
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Post by Pot Hale on Wed 16 Jan 2019, 5:21 pm

rodders wrote:Strongest Irish squad I can remember with some very good players missing out.

Great to see Tom Farrell get a call up, Byrne is a bit unlucky to miss out.

Agreed, Rodders. Connacht deserve some time in the sun with the players they're brining through/taking over and Blade/Carty have been very good this season as a combo. Unlucky for Byrne but it's only for first two rounds so they're may be some switching around later in 6N.

Regarding depth, if you think of previous capped players who've been left out/or those possibly still to come in, it's a good indicator of depth behind.

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Post by Brendan on Wed 16 Jan 2019, 6:03 pm

The great thing with Joe is that in his head he has a squad of 100 players that he needs to keep tabs on and give them feedback.  Earlier this season Carty talked about how the national kicking coach had been doing some work with him.  Blade also has looked good while Marmion has been out.

They great thing as pointed out there is no depth issues, if we are losing and need something in the last 10mins I don't think I'd be disappointed to see them come on.  Hopefully with a few more months since the AIs the locks that aren't Toner are better at calling lineouts.

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Post by Brendan on Wed 16 Jan 2019, 6:16 pm

By my count it is
Leinster 16
Munster 11
Ulster 6
Connacht 5
Total 38

Also
Schmidt's 25-man squad of 'close calls'

Finlay Bealham
Marty Moore
Stephen Archer
Rob Herring
Denis Buckley
Ed Byrne
Eric O'Sullivan
Quinn Roux
Gavin Thornbury
Fineen Wycherley
Kieran Treadwell
Billy Holland
Dan Leavy
Sean Reidy
Tommy O'Donnell
Ross Byrne
Billy Burns
Rory Scannell
Stuart McCloskey
Sammy Arnold
Rory O'Loughlin
Adam Byrne
Dave Kearney
Mike Haley
Darren Sweetnam

Some of those names I don't think were close calls just keeping them hungry as they know they are on the radar.

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Post by profitius on Wed 16 Jan 2019, 10:43 pm

Well deserved call ups. Not much controversy with the squad selection these days.
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Post by The Great Aukster on Thu 17 Jan 2019, 11:40 am

The inclusion of the two hens is the strange part of the selection.
Henderson wasn't expected to be back until the end of February and won't be match fit (but at least will have been training).
Henshaw was expected to miss the England game, but with a hamstring injury will definitely not be match fit.

The doubts over them have obviously contributed to the inclusion of the Connacht lads (who arguably should be there on merit anyhow).

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Post by the-goon on Fri 18 Jan 2019, 9:30 am

So no real disagreements in the squad then? Strange times indeed.

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Post by carpet baboon on Fri 18 Jan 2019, 9:55 am

The Great Aukster wrote:The inclusion of the two hens is the strange part of the selection.
Henderson wasn't expected to be back until the end of February and won't be match fit (but at least will have been training).
Henshaw was expected to miss the England game, but with a hamstring injury will definitely not be match fit.

The doubts over them have obviously contributed to the inclusion of the Connacht lads (who arguably should be there on merit anyhow).

As far as Henderson's fitness is concerned, he's been training with the Ulster team already, and it was a torn tendon I think he had repaired, so he could just be it wasn't as bad as first suspected, or he's one of these freaky people who heal quick.
Good news anyway

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Post by carpet baboon on Fri 18 Jan 2019, 12:30 pm

Well Henderson is clearly a mutant as he's starting for Ulster tomorrow

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Post by rodders on Fri 18 Jan 2019, 3:19 pm

Poor Tadge Beirne, I bet he choked on his cornflakes when he saw Ulsters team sheet.
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Post by Pot Hale on Tue 22 Jan 2019, 2:21 am

Double helping of All Bran for both of them now.

Roux having strawberries and cream.
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Post by eirebilly on Tue 22 Jan 2019, 7:31 am

Although Best is the captain, surely he is being pushed extremely hard by Cronin for the start. Cronin has been in excellent form and is far more mobile than Best. For me, I would start Cronin.
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Post by rodders on Tue 22 Jan 2019, 9:34 am

Best has been in superb form for Ulster, albeit only plays for 60-70 minutes these days.

I think Cronin is world class as a ball carrier but from an Ireland perspective it is clear he is not considered a genuine starting option due to other holes in his game.

Best does continue to have throwing issues on big moments but his line out stats still stack up well compared to Scannell, Cronin and Herring, and when you factor his leadership and workrate I think he is still someway ahead.

On the captaincy issue, we've seen how Sexton can get on the wrong side of the ref - O'Mahoney would make a great captain but he is being pushed extremely hard for his place by Ruddock, O'Brien and Leavy.

Regarding the second row - its very unfortunate to lose both Henderson and Beirne, who are both in great from but in reality Henderson was expected to be out. It weakens the bench but Roux has always done a job and Dillane is in good form.

Having these tests of our depth is not a bad thing, still think we will win by >2 scores.
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Post by Pete330v2 on Tue 22 Jan 2019, 11:11 am

Losing both Beirne and Henderson would be a huge blow to most squads but on a positive note it doesn't effect the starting XV as Toner and Ryan were always going to be likely starters. The fact that we have quality players like Roux, Hollande and Dillane ready and waiting to cover the bench is really positive given the circumstances.

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Post by rodders on Tue 22 Jan 2019, 11:15 am

Holland has been in great form but looks like Joe is sticking with 4 locks in the squad.
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Post by SecretFly on Tue 22 Jan 2019, 12:19 pm

rodders wrote:

On the captaincy issue, we've seen how Sexton can get on the wrong side of the ref  - O'Mahoney would make a great captain but he is being pushed extremely hard for his place by Ruddock, O'Brien and Leavy.


O'Brien - another Joe favourite of course. But any coach that would dump warrior lord POM for a just returning fragility-proven O'Brien would be an eejit.

So.... Schmidt might prove himself to be an eejit.

Personally, I know O'Brien does the explosive sight-seeing stuff for the Youtube reels (when fit and reckless enough), but I'd have General POM on my team every week if it came to choices between.

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Post by The Great Aukster on Tue 22 Jan 2019, 1:16 pm

Joe has the luxury to be a horses for courses selector.
POM is the best extra lineout option of the four
Ruddock is probably the best all rounder.
O'Brien was the best carrier (but has to show he still is).
Leavy is the tackle jackal and the best at turnovers.

With Beirne and Henderson out, Joe may look to replace those missing skills over more than one player.


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Post by rodders on Tue 22 Jan 2019, 2:09 pm

SecretFly wrote:
rodders wrote:

On the captaincy issue, we've seen how Sexton can get on the wrong side of the ref  - O'Mahoney would make a great captain but he is being pushed extremely hard for his place by Ruddock, O'Brien and Leavy.


O'Brien - another Joe favourite of course.  But any coach that would dump warrior lord POM for a just returning fragility-proven O'Brien would be an eejit.  

So.... Schmidt might prove himself to be an eejit.  

Personally, I know O'Brien does the explosive sight-seeing stuff for the Youtube reels (when fit and reckless enough), but I'd have General POM on my team every week if it came to choices between.

I'd have O'Mahoney as well, was just making the point regarding captaincy that POM has a lot more competition to contend with than Best does, so not having that pressure and being able to focus on his rugby makes sense and is getting the best of him in my opinion.
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Post by mikey_dragon on Wed 23 Jan 2019, 3:32 am

I haven’t had the chance to watch much, but how did Dan Leavy miss out? Once rated as Ireland’s best 7 according to some on here.

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Post by carpet baboon on Wed 23 Jan 2019, 9:00 am

mikey_dragon wrote:I haven’t had the chance to watch much, but how did Dan Leavy miss out? Once rated as Ireland’s best 7 according to some on here.

Injured

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Post by rodders on Wed 23 Jan 2019, 9:15 am

carpet baboon wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I haven’t had the chance to watch much, but how did Dan Leavy miss out? Once rated as Ireland’s best 7 according to some on here.

Injured

He is but I have a feeling he's been leapfrogged by his mate VDF again, possibly Ruddock as well. Both are playing out of their skins this season.

I think Schmidt has always rated VDF higher than Leavy, despite the fact that Leavy was arguably Ireland's best player last season.

The backrow depth in Ireland is pretty ridiculous right now.
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Post by theslosty on Wed 23 Jan 2019, 1:59 pm

Just to counter that - Schmidt originally picked Leavy at 7 for the most recent All Blacks game. However two brilliant opensides with slightly different qualities and SOB is well behind both as it stands.

P.S. POM is a shoo in
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Post by munkian on Thu 24 Jan 2019, 8:38 am

O’Mahony, O'my baby, O'my ragtime gal Sorry
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Post by SecretFly on Thu 24 Jan 2019, 8:57 am

POMe is the greatest! Yahoo

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Post by LondonTiger on Thu 24 Jan 2019, 9:37 am

POeM is more stylish

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Post by SecretFly on Thu 24 Jan 2019, 9:49 am

LondonTiger wrote:POeM is more stylish

I denied myself that though, Tiger - it's much too obvious for my palate. Wink

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Post by The Great Aukster on Thu 24 Jan 2019, 1:55 pm

LondonTiger wrote:POeM is more stylish

That's wins an iambic medal, not sure what colour though...

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Post by Sin é on Thu 24 Jan 2019, 6:25 pm

rodders wrote:
On the captaincy issue, we've seen how Sexton can get on the wrong side of the ref  - O'Mahoney would make a great captain but he is being pushed extremely hard for his place by Ruddock, O'Brien and Leavy.

POM isn't pushed by any of those - he was in World Rugby's Team of the Year (along with Furlong, Sexton and Murray) in the same backrow as David Pocock and Kieran Reid.

And he has just been shortlisted for Champs Cup Player of the Season (with no sign of Ruddock, O'Brien or Leavy in it). In fact, he is the only backrower playing for an Irish Province to make the shortlist.

Edit: and Sean O'Brien rarely if ever plays 6 now. Even on the Lions, Gatland shifted Warburton to 6 to leave SOB at 7.
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Post by geoff999rugby on Thu 24 Jan 2019, 8:18 pm

The Great Aukster wrote:
POM is the best extra lineout option of the four
Ruddock is probably the best all rounder.
O'Brien was the best carrier (but has to show he still is).
Leavy is the tackle jackal and the best at turnovers.


Which why I reckon all 4 will be at the World Cup along with Stander
Beirne and Henderson will provide extra backrow cover.
Rough on the likes of Van deFlier, Murphy and Conan but thems the breaks.
Mind you if both Leavy and O'Brien are looking dodgy re injuries one will be left behind to be replaced by one of the three others I mentioned.

Cronin is a great bench hooker but Ireland need Best as a captain and at the breakdown - gives us a 4th backrower

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Post by geoff999rugby on Thu 24 Jan 2019, 8:19 pm

Sin é wrote:
rodders wrote:
On the captaincy issue, we've seen how Sexton can get on the wrong side of the ref  - O'Mahoney would make a great captain but he is being pushed extremely hard for his place by Ruddock, O'Brien and Leavy.

POM isn't pushed by any of those - he was in World Rugby's Team of the Year (along with Furlong, Sexton and Murray) in the same backrow as David Pocock and Kieran Reid.

And he has just been shortlisted for Champs Cup Player of the Season (with no sign of Ruddock, O'Brien or Leavy in it). In fact, he is the only backrower playing for an Irish Province to make the shortlist.

Edit: and Sean O'Brien rarely if ever plays 6 now. Even on the Lions, Gatland shifted Warburton to 6 to leave SOB at 7.

There area handful of shoo ins for Ireland

Best, Furlong, Ryan, POM, Stander, Murray, Sexton, Earls, Stockdale and Kearney
Not saying the best 10 players necessarily but all are above the level of the alternatives

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Post by rodders on Fri 25 Jan 2019, 9:59 am

Sin é wrote:
rodders wrote:
On the captaincy issue, we've seen how Sexton can get on the wrong side of the ref  - O'Mahoney would make a great captain but he is being pushed extremely hard for his place by Ruddock, O'Brien and Leavy.

POM isn't pushed by any of those

He's definitely pushed by those, Ruddock and VDF are the best back backers rowers in the country on current form.

If Leavy and O'Brien were fully fit then Schmidt would have a major selection headache.

By contrast no one is genuinely challenging Rory for the starting hooker spot. Scannell is probably closest but his throwing is dreadful.

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Post by geoff999rugby on Fri 25 Jan 2019, 10:20 am

Really don't see it POM starts every time

Ruddock perfect for the bench - ahead of Murphy as Irelands best utility back

Leavy, SOB and VDF are fighting for one spot, and one wont make the WC squad unless Schmidt changes the squad make up from last time

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Post by rodders on Fri 25 Jan 2019, 10:38 am

geoff999rugby wrote:Really don't see it POM starts every time

Schmidt didn't see him as a nailed on starter though until Heaslip retired. He's starting now because his performances over the last couple of seasons have warranted it but I've no doubt if he slipped off that level he would be out of the XV.

I think what I've tried to say hasn't come across well.

I'd personally have no problem with POM as Ireland captain, in recent times he's been one of the stand out players but why I think Schmidt has so far resisted the temptation to switch to the younger man, is that POM isn't so far ahead of his competition that he can afford to take on the extra responsibility, whereas Rory is a long way ahead of any competition for now.
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Post by Brendan on Fri 25 Jan 2019, 4:34 pm

POM gives us options in the lineout aswell. Only played against England 2 years ago because of an injury and because of it he made the Lions so not that far ahead but definitely in the WC squad.

Best thing about this world cup is we will be leaving out alot of really good players who would have made squads in times gone by at home. If anyone gets injured we won't assume we have lost all hope as players called up are good enough

Disappointed to see SOB called up as we know what he does and he needs a good run of games to ease him back, not games like England were he will try so hard he breaks himself again.  It also sends the wrong message as it tells the other players he just has to be fit to get it.

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Post by rodders on Mon 28 Jan 2019, 9:48 am

SOB is a world class player and has a lot of credit in the bank so I think it is fair enough that Schmidt is giving him every opportunity to prove himself fit - the same applies to Kearney.

That said it has to be last chance saloon time. If SOB can't string a run of big performances between now and end of season they'd be crazy to take him to Japan ahead of the likes of Leavy or Ruddock.
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Post by SecretFly on Mon 28 Jan 2019, 1:24 pm

rodders wrote: If SOB can't string a run of big performances between now and end of season they'd be crazy to take him to Japan ahead of the likes of Leavy or Ruddock.

I don't know, rodders. (Not disagreeing with you all the time on purpose here Wink - it's just your posts are as always thought provoking) I think the message from Schmidt to SOB, if played, needs to be contain the madman antics a bit. Problem for SOB is that the minute he comes on the field he's trying to make big statements because he knows very well that pressure from other players. But that can be a negative for him and indeed the team. Too ambitious means he overdoes the force of his connects and risks everything (his fitness and our team strategy and rhythm if he has to be removed once again)
He needs to do his work - not overly look for the big moments. Just play hard but within himself. Better to have him in Japan and up to speed fitness-wise than banging the bejaysus out of himself in the 6N and off on another long break from the game with another bone break.

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Post by rodders on Mon 28 Jan 2019, 1:44 pm

SecretFly wrote:
rodders wrote: If SOB can't string a run of big performances between now and end of season they'd be crazy to take him to Japan ahead of the likes of Leavy or Ruddock.

I don't know, rodders.  (Not disagreeing with you all the time on purpose here Wink -

I even didn't realize you were fly... right where is that ignore button
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Post by geoff999rugby on Mon 28 Jan 2019, 3:46 pm

rodders wrote:SOB is a world class player and has a lot of credit in the bank so I think it is fair enough that Schmidt is giving him every opportunity to prove himself fit - the same applies to Kearney.

That said it has to be last chance saloon time. If SOB can't string a run of big performances between now and end of season they'd be crazy to take him to Japan ahead of the likes of Leavy or Ruddock.


Whilst true Leavy needs to sting a series of games together as well
I remain convinced it is 2 from 3 from those two and VDF and injuries will probably make the decision for Schmidt

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Post by George Carlin on Mon 04 Feb 2019, 8:45 am

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Post by Pot Hale on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 2:46 am


Is that who we’re playing next?  The weeks go by so fast in here, I can’t keep up...
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Post by George Carlin on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 9:52 am

SecretFly wrote:
rodders wrote: If SOB can't string a run of big performances between now and end of season they'd be crazy to take him to Japan ahead of the likes of Leavy or Ruddock.

I don't know, rodders.  (Not disagreeing with you all the time on purpose here Wink - it's just your posts are as always thought provoking)  I think the message from Schmidt to SOB, if played, needs to be contain the madman antics a bit.  Problem for SOB is that the minute he comes on the field he's trying to make big statements because he knows very well that pressure from other players.  But that can be a negative for him and indeed the team.  Too ambitious means he overdoes the force of his connects and risks everything (his fitness and our team strategy and rhythm if he has to be removed once again)
He needs to do his work - not overly look for the big moments.  Just play hard but within himself.  Better to have him in Japan and up to speed fitness-wise than banging the bejaysus out of himself in the 6N and off on another long break from the game with another bone break.
SOB will be playing against a Scotland pack which is probably now missing our first choice 3, 4, 5, 7 and 8. 

If he can't get amongst it against this depleted Scotland side, then Joe does need to look carefully at whether he should be on the plane to Tokyo.
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Post by rodders on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 10:37 am

Billy Holland called up too.
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Post by Pot Hale on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 12:50 pm

George Carlin wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
rodders wrote: If SOB can't string a run of big performances between now and end of season they'd be crazy to take him to Japan ahead of the likes of Leavy or Ruddock.

I don't know, rodders.  (Not disagreeing with you all the time on purpose here Wink - it's just your posts are as always thought provoking)  I think the message from Schmidt to SOB, if played, needs to be contain the madman antics a bit.  Problem for SOB is that the minute he comes on the field he's trying to make big statements because he knows very well that pressure from other players.  But that can be a negative for him and indeed the team.  Too ambitious means he overdoes the force of his connects and risks everything (his fitness and our team strategy and rhythm if he has to be removed once again)
He needs to do his work - not overly look for the big moments.  Just play hard but within himself.  Better to have him in Japan and up to speed fitness-wise than banging the bejaysus out of himself in the 6N and off on another long break from the game with another bone break.
SOB will be playing against a Scotland pack which is probably now missing our first choice 3, 4, 5, 7 and 8. 

If he can't get amongst it against this depleted Scotland side, then Joe does need to look carefully at whether he should be on the plane to Tokyo.

Yes - but it’s Scotland in Murrayfield. Ireland haven’t won there in years. And they’re missing 3 locks, 2 scrum-halves, best midfielder, with a underperforming 9&10, a wonky wing, hooker and full-back. Hogg for a hat-trick, I reckon. Piece of cake.
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Post by Pot Hale on Sat 09 Feb 2019, 8:49 pm

Pot Hale wrote:
George Carlin wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
rodders wrote: If SOB can't string a run of big performances between now and end of season they'd be crazy to take him to Japan ahead of the likes of Leavy or Ruddock.

I don't know, rodders.  (Not disagreeing with you all the time on purpose here Wink - it's just your posts are as always thought provoking)  I think the message from Schmidt to SOB, if played, needs to be contain the madman antics a bit.  Problem for SOB is that the minute he comes on the field he's trying to make big statements because he knows very well that pressure from other players.  But that can be a negative for him and indeed the team.  Too ambitious means he overdoes the force of his connects and risks everything (his fitness and our team strategy and rhythm if he has to be removed once again)
He needs to do his work - not overly look for the big moments.  Just play hard but within himself.  Better to have him in Japan and up to speed fitness-wise than banging the bejaysus out of himself in the 6N and off on another long break from the game with another bone break.
SOB will be playing against a Scotland pack which is probably now missing our first choice 3, 4, 5, 7 and 8. 

If he can't get amongst it against this depleted Scotland side, then Joe does need to look carefully at whether he should be on the plane to Tokyo.

Yes - but it’s Scotland in Murrayfield.  Ireland haven’t won there in years.  And they’re missing 3 locks, 2 scrum-halves, best midfielder, with a underperforming 9&10, a wonky wing, hooker and full-back.   Hogg for a hat-trick, I reckon.   Piece of cake.

On the other hand, maybe not...
Sorry
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Post by Taylorman on Sat 09 Feb 2019, 9:00 pm

Yeah not after the italy effort. Scotland werent overly great on attack in a match they should have scored more even if italy seem to be bringing a bit more bubbly to this years party than usual. At home at least. RedWine

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Post by majesticimperialman on Sat 09 Feb 2019, 9:01 pm

Does any one think that Sexton will be avalable for for Ireland's next game?

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Post by Geen sport voor watjes on Sat 09 Feb 2019, 11:30 pm

Is this thread a desperate attempt to paper over the cracks regarding Ireland's form or to show how much strength in depth we have. In reality only three are first choice under Schmidt - still at least we arent as bad as scotland...

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Post by Pot Hale on Sun 10 Feb 2019, 5:36 pm

Geen sport voor watjes wrote:Is this thread a desperate attempt to paper over the cracks regarding Ireland's form or to show how much strength in depth we have. In reality only three are first choice under Schmidt - still at least we arent as bad as scotland...

No idea. Still - it’s you keeping it real - that’s the main thing.
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