6 Nations - England v France

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 04 Feb 2019, 11:13 am

First topic message reminder :

Details:

Date: Sunday 10th February 2019
Time: 15:00 GMT
Location: Twickenham Stadium
Media Coverage: ITV, BBC (highlights only), Radio 5Live


Officials

Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant 1: Andrew Brace (Ireland)
Assistant 2: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)



Teams


England

15 Elliot Daly (Wasps, 26 caps), 14 Chris Ashton (Sale Sharks, 43 caps), 13 Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs, 18 caps), 12 Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers, 28 caps), 11 Jonny May (Leicester Tigers, 41 caps), 10 Owen Farrell (Saracens, 66 caps) (c), 9 Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers, 81 caps), 1 Mako Vunipola (Saracens, 52 caps), 2 Jamie George (Saracens, 33 caps), 3 Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins, 18 caps), 4 Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints, 69 caps), 5 George Kruis (Saracens, 28 caps), 6 Mark Wilson (Newcastle Falcons, 9 caps), 7 Tom Curry (Sale Sharks, 6 caps), 8 Billy Vunipola (Saracens, 37 caps).

16 Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs, 8 caps), 17 Ben Moon (Exeter Chiefs, 4 caps), 18 Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers, 82 caps), 19 Joe Launchbury (Wasps, 54 caps), 20 Nathan Hughes (Wasps, 19 caps), 21 Dan Robson (Wasps, uncapped), 22 George Ford (Leicester Tigers, 52 caps), 23 Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs, 30 caps).





France

15. Yoann Huget
14. Damian Penaud
13. Mathieu Bastareaud
12. Geoffrey Doumayrou
11. Gaël Fickou
10. Camille Lopez
9. Morgan Parra
1. Jefferson Poirot
2. Guilhem Guirado
3. Demba Bamba
4. Sébastien Vahaamahina
5. Félix Lambey
6. Yacouba Camara
7. Arthur Iturria
8. Louis Picamoles

Replacements
16. Pierre Bourgarit
17. Dany Priso
18. Dorian Aldegheri
19. Paul Willemse
20. Gregory Alldritt
21. Antoine Dupont
22. Romain Ntamack
23. Thomas Ramos


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Post by lostinwales on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 4:33 pm

eirebilly wrote:Ahh ok, cheers bud thumbsup

I like JJ but I don't think he's been at his best for a while. He was a late addition to the pre 6N training squad, having just come back from injury, but has not been called back into the squad this week.

I also don't think he fits well into the current squad, although he'd be good for a plan B.

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Post by Presuming Ed on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 4:48 pm

JJ Can't be fully fit. When 100% he is the best centre in England, guile of Greenwood with speed and lines of Guzza.

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Post by lostinwales on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 4:59 pm

Presuming Ed wrote:JJ Can't be fully fit. When 100% he is the best centre in England, guile of Greenwood with speed and lines of Guzza.

Some players just seem to peak for a couple of seasons only and I wonder if JJ is one of those, but he was brilliant back then.

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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 5:27 pm

He peaked towards the end of the 11/12 season and in SA that summer played alongside Manu in at least one test. He then seemed to lose form and I have the vague recollection of him spending his last season at LI looking overweight on the wing.

2015 and 16 were excellent, but then his form seemed to start waning a little. I would love to have a fit and in form JJ available as an option, but time is running out for him to impress Eddie before RWC.

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Post by Cyril on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 5:49 pm

JJ was always a player I wanted to see in the England side, especially during his purple patch. His performances against Toulouse for Bath and Scotland in 2017 stick out. He got injured at a bad time (when we really needed to solidify a centre partnership). Slade’s performance vs Ireland and the return of Manu (with Farrell back at 10) could see him out in the cold. Would love to see him back on that kind of form again though. Could be a bench option at some point if he’s still considered a potential wing replacement, but the endgame will generally see Farrell moved to 12 to play a full game when Ford comes on, so options are limited for him.

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Post by robbo277 on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 6:52 pm

https://www.englandrugby.com/news/guinness-six-nations-england-squad-update-france-week/

Launchbury replaces the injured Itoje.
Jones shuffles his prop options with Moon and Cole in for Genge and Williams
Shields and Cokanasiga join the squad to turn the 23 into a 25

Near enough as expected, the prop swap has thrown me a bit though.

Shields could replace Hughes with Billy Vunipola unlikely to he subbed and Wilson providing the injury cover or he could even come in for the injured Itoje with England picking 2 locks from 3. However I would have rather seen Clifford in there and possibly taking the 20 shirt from Hughes.

The other question is who wear a 14 and who wears 23. Nowell, Ashton and Cokanasiga are all in competition and it's hard to predict where Eddie will go. I've already made my thoughts clear so I won't do so again!

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 6:53 pm

Strange about the props.

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Post by BamBam on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 6:55 pm

Really wanted to see Genge rampaging off the bench, but Moon was very good in the autumn

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Post by robbo277 on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 6:59 pm

It might be that he wants to give everyone a go, but then he didn't exactly give Genge a go against Ireland.

At first I thought he just wanted to get the Exeter front row together, then saw Cole was in for Williams.

Is Moon a better scrummager? Cole is better than Williams I think. France won a late scrum penalty against Wales (nothing with their starting monsters) so maybe Eddie wants to keep that level up for the whole 80?

Hopefully we see Genge come on at some point. Maybe against Wales or in one of the last two games.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 7:01 pm

Cole is better than Williams. Personally I'd say Genge is the best we have discounting the retired marler.

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Post by Gooseberry on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 7:07 pm

Tbf most of us had written off Tuillagi when he'd spent three years injured or suspended and was in a grump off to France. After another 2 years of being injured hes now the best thing since the old Tuilagi.
Ashton too has been written off more times than Nick Easter.

It certainly is easy to forget how formidable players like JJ, Watson and Ashton were are attacking threats in their relatively short periods of high performance. But none of them should be discounted from the world cup, if nothing else than because theres bound to be a huge stack of injuries again.

Competition is a good thing though, so long as England can balance the options against the need for consistency to build a team.

I do wonder with this current model how much the impact is down to catching teams cold and unprepared, England have adjusted their personnel and style ...its hard for teams to analyse on real depth when they are facing something mot tried before. But France should be much better prepared and certainly have no excuse to get caught napping by England's early set plays like Ireland did.
The phrase "found out" is maybe unfair, but the more this midfield plays together the more teams should be able to figure out how to counter them.


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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 7:15 pm

Slightly surprised by that. Just wondering if, after the big shifts they put in last week he might even use Mako and Sinckler from the bench this week and start with the scrummagers. Would be a little odd though.

I too want to see Genge getting more playing time. He can be a really destructive scrummager.

Will be interesting to see if Cokanasiga makes the 23.

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Post by king_carlos on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 7:49 pm

LondonTiger wrote:Slightly surprised by that. Just wondering if, after the big shifts they put in last week he might even use Mako and Sinckler from the bench this week and start with the scrummagers. Would be a little odd though.

I too want to see Genge getting more playing time. He can be a really destructive scrummager.

Will be interesting to see if Cokanasiga makes the 23.

I've been wondering that with Mako and Sinckler as well. With Wales at the Millienium in round 3 I could see Mako having a shorter shift against France and Jones might be playing things safe against Frances dangerous but inconsistent scrummaging props.

1.Moon 2.George 3.Cole 4.Lawes 5.Kruis 6.Wilson 7.Curry 8.B Vunipola
9.Youngs 10.Farrell 11.May 12.Tuilagi 13.Slade 14.Nowell 15.Daly

16.LCD 17.M Vunipola 18.Sinckler 19.Launchbury 20.Hughes 21.Robson 22.Ford 23.Cokanasiga

Tactically, using technically strong scrummagers to wear Poirot and Antonio down could also force earlier substitutions from France and reduce the impact from their bench. Demba Bamba is young but very impressive and real weapon coming off the bench to replace Antonio.

I think Genge will start against Italy at Twickenham. I think we will also see Robson and Ford at 9 and 10 there as Jones rotates through his reserves.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 8:07 pm

Straight into coaching if he goes to Saracens. He's not going to get a game ahead of Kruis itoje isiekwe Skelton and Kpoku.

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Post by Presuming Ed on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 8:37 pm

For me JJ and Watson are shoe ins if fit and any percieved loss of form was down to injuries. Slade is a long way off securing his place, although his performance was encouraging. If Launchbury gets back to form too, I think he would displace Kruis and Lawes and partner Iyoje as he offers the line out nouse of Kruis and the dynamism in the loose of Lawes. Too good to leave out - he almost single handledly beat the ABs. Obviously they're all Poopie compared to AWJ Very Happy .

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Post by Presuming Ed on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 8:40 pm

Since when does the word "Poopie" need censoring?

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Post by Presuming Ed on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 8:41 pm

The word "Poopie" is Poopie! LOL

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Post by lostinwales on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 8:47 pm

Presuming Ed wrote:For me JJ and Watson are shoe ins if fit and any percieved loss of form was down to injuries. Slade is a long way off securing his place, although his performance was encouraging. If Launchbury gets back to form too, I think he would displace Kruis and Lawes and partner Iyoje as he offers the line out nouse of Kruis and the dynamism in the loose of Lawes. Too good to leave out - he almost single handledly beat the ABs. Obviously they're all Poopie compared to AWJ Very Happy .

Launchbury is not the greatest lineout exponent- Kruis much better- but that is the only area I'd put Kruis ahead. He's also not as dynamic as Lawes but his work rate really is something

As for JJ and Watson. Both have something to prove to get back in. This game doesn't stand still and some very good players won't make it to the RWC.

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Post by king_carlos on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 8:50 pm

In his later England appearances before his injuries JJ was doing much more as a defensive lynchpin than he was in attack. His pace at 13 was vital in England defending very well in the wide channels.

Farrell moving to 10, Underhill and Curry emerging at openside and a change of coach has altered England's defensive set-up slightly though. It would be interesting to see how JJ fitted back into the systems now.

First he needs to prove fitness with Bath though.

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Post by Cyril on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 8:52 pm

I’d forgotten about Watson! If he comes back he offers a lot. In terms of Kruis, while I agree he might not be the all-round lock that Itoje or Lawes offers, we seem to play really well when he’s in the engine room. It’s a great dilemma to have.

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Post by Presuming Ed on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 8:52 pm

lostinwales wrote:
Presuming Ed wrote:For me JJ and Watson are shoe ins if fit and any percieved loss of form was down to injuries. Slade is a long way off securing his place, although his performance was encouraging. If Launchbury gets back to form too, I think he would displace Kruis and Lawes and partner Iyoje as he offers the line out nouse of Kruis and the dynamism in the loose of Lawes. Too good to leave out - he almost single handledly beat the ABs. Obviously they're all Poopie compared to AWJ Very Happy .

Launchbury is not the greatest lineout exponent- Kruis much better- but that is the only area I'd put Kruis ahead. He's also not as dynamic as Lawes but his work rate really is something


Agreed, not as adept in the lineout as Kruis but still a very efficient operator there and although not as exploseive in the loose as Lawes I think he is more disruptive to the opposition, winning lots of turnover ball. A great blend of the 2 leaving him, when fit, surely first pick over the other 2.

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Post by robbo277 on Wed 06 Feb 2019, 9:14 pm

LondonTiger wrote:Slightly surprised by that. Just wondering if, after the big shifts they put in last week he might even use Mako and Sinckler from the bench this week and start with the scrummagers. Would be a little odd though.

I too want to see Genge getting more playing time. He can be a really destructive scrummager.

Will be interesting to see if Cokanasiga makes the 23.

There's a week off next week though. I could see slightly shorter shifts, but maybe Mako doing 65 minutes and Sinckler doing 55. It's always hard to tell with Jones, sometimes it feels like there is a bit of change for change's sake.

It's the fact that both props have changed. If it was one or the other, you might think something had happened in training with the individual. But this must have been somewhat of a plan of his, just trying to work out why is the difficult bit!

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Post by Sgt_Pooly on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 5:54 am

If fit and firing I'd have JJ and Watson back as starters (for Slade and Nowell). Competition is always good, we have some great options if all fit.

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Post by LondonTiger on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 8:58 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:If fit and firing I'd have JJ and Watson back as starters (for Slade and Nowell). Competition is always good, we have some great options if all fit.
If fit and firing. Not sure Watson will come back the player he was.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 9:11 am

Watson is I hope Watson does come back somewhere near where he was. I think it'll be at full back however. We do need some of the younger options to grab that position by the scruff of the neck in the prem however.

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Post by carpet baboon on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 9:16 am

https://amp.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2019/feb/06/france-building-rugby-force-england-six-nations?CMP=share_btn_tw&__twitter_impression=true

Interesting article on France from Ben Ryan

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Post by majesticimperialman on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 9:56 am

So reading what he is saying that France will be fired up for this game.

France are always fired up when it comes to playing England. The French backs have always been dangerous with ball in hand. So again have Ireland's backs, but England coped with them.

It will be Le crunch game for me, a hard fought game, but i expect England to cope with what ever France throw at them.

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Post by BamBam on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 10:16 am

Its an interesting one, for the good of the European game I think we need a strong France, both internationally and at club level but they just seem such a mess at the moment.

The talent is definitely there, the likes of Bamba, Joseph and Ntamack look like they could be 10 year starters at three of the cornerstone positions, and they have a plethora of talented scrum halves. It just needs a coach who will pick them in their best positions, and more game time at club level, I don't know what the arrangements between the clubs and the FFR are, but it seems very like football in England with the club game outweighing all.

In football we're seeing young English talent go overseas to get experience, I wonder if that will be the future for young French rugby kids if they aren't getting the game time

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Post by LordDowlais on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 10:23 am

BamBam wrote:In football we're seeing young English talent go overseas to get experience, I wonder if that will be the future for young French rugby kids if they aren't getting the game time

That is a good idea, but the only stumbling block is the stupid three year residency rule in rugby, football seems to be a lot stricter.

I would have thought that France would not fancy the risk of losing a decent talent that could be potentially "poached" if they sent their youngster abroad for exposure.

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Post by BamBam on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 10:32 am

It's 5 years now though isn't it? Not sure what the rules are in football, but I would have thought the onus would be on the player there, but that is a possibility. I don't know if loan deals are possible in Rugby, but a 2 year loan could be the way around it

Not just the French either, the English clubs could see the same. Only issue would be that the Pro14 teams wouldn't want to block their own youngsters, so would really end up only an option for the English and French clubs

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Post by majesticimperialman on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 1:46 pm

I have been wandering what Mike Brown has done not to get selected in the match day 23.

But then looking at the game again and England's second try, Brown would never had grubber that ball through like Daily did. So may be he needs to change his style of play before being considered again.

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Post by robbo277 on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 2:09 pm

BamBam wrote:Its an interesting one, for the good of the European game I think we need a strong France, both internationally and at club level but they just seem such a mess at the moment.

The talent is definitely there, the likes of Bamba, Joseph and Ntamack look like they could be 10 year starters at three of the cornerstone positions, and they have a plethora of talented scrum halves. It just needs a coach who will pick them in their best positions, and more game time at club level, I don't know what the arrangements between the clubs and the FFR are, but it seems very like football in England with the club game outweighing all.

In football we're seeing young English talent go overseas to get experience, I wonder if that will be the future for young French rugby kids if they aren't getting the game time

It's not a lack of opportunity. If the club game is prioritised over the international game, it's a question of priorities.

France and England both have more top flight home-qualified rugby players available than the other 4 nations. If you look at the game time of the relative Under 20s squads, it's France and then England that are way out in front.

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Post by Collapse2005 on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 2:16 pm

Anyone know who France's captain for this game will be? Do they know themselves?

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Post by BamBam on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 2:25 pm

robbo277 wrote:
BamBam wrote:Its an interesting one, for the good of the European game I think we need a strong France, both internationally and at club level but they just seem such a mess at the moment.

The talent is definitely there, the likes of Bamba, Joseph and Ntamack look like they could be 10 year starters at three of the cornerstone positions, and they have a plethora of talented scrum halves. It just needs a coach who will pick them in their best positions, and more game time at club level, I don't know what the arrangements between the clubs and the FFR are, but it seems very like football in England with the club game outweighing all.

In football we're seeing young English talent go overseas to get experience, I wonder if that will be the future for young French rugby kids if they aren't getting the game time

It's not a lack of opportunity. If the club game is prioritised over the international game, it's a question of priorities.

France and England both have more top flight home-qualified rugby players available than the other 4 nations. If you look at the game time of the relative Under 20s squads, it's France and then England that are way out in front.

Isn't that the same thing robbo? The priority is winning at club level, so experienced players are favoured as a known quantity, rather than giving opportunity to a talented young kid

To a degree, you'd expect that to be true for France and England, as they have at least 3 times the professional sides of any of the other NH countries

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Post by robbo277 on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 3:22 pm

No, I don't think so. Maybe I didn't explain it well enough.

It's not that French clubs are too league focussed and aren't giving their young players a chance. The stats don't bear that out. Their Under 20 squad is more experienced than England's and far more experienced than the rest of the 6 Nations.

My feeling is that the players are too club focused. I don't know whether they have an EPS-like deal, but I wouldn't be surprised if the clubs held the players until the mandated release day, rather than allowing extra camps etc.

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Post by whocares on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 7:03 pm

robbo277 wrote:No, I don't think so. Maybe I didn't explain it well enough.

It's not that French clubs are too league focussed and aren't giving their young players a chance. The stats don't bear that out. Their Under 20 squad is more experienced than England's and far more experienced than the rest of the 6 Nations.

My feeling is that the players are too club focused. I don't know whether they have an EPS-like deal, but I wouldn't be surprised if the clubs held the players until the mandated release day, rather than allowing extra camps etc.

It used to be the case but these days players have enough time in training camps and their top14 playing time is capped. The truth is that there is no more excuses in terms of lack of preparation or game time etc but the current generation is just doomed to lose so we should better drop all the older guard and concentrate for 2023 now .

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Post by Poorfour on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 7:10 pm

majesticimperialman wrote:I have been wandering what Mike Brown has done not to get selected in the match day 23.

But then looking at the game again and England's second try, Brown would never had grubber that ball through like Daily did. So may be he needs to change his style of play before being considered again.

What Mike Brown has done to be not selected is play 72 tests for England and show that he can come back from being out of the squad and play well immediately. He is a known quantity and a proven international fullback.

Daly is a superb player but not a proven international fullback. For the RWC, Eddie needs at least two players who can play fullback at international level, and prior to the AIs he only had one.

Let's play the Eddie Jones Choose Your Own Adventure gamebook:

"You are looking to win the Six Nations but also to build your RWC squad. You really like the idea of Eliot at fullback, but he's only done it a couple of times. You've got some tough games coming up, though, and Mike has always done a great job, unlike Andy, who was hopeless under the Dublin blitz a couple of years ago. Do you:
- Pick Mike - Go to paragraph 11
- Pick Eliot - Go to paragraph 15

"Paragraph 11 - You win in Dublin but in the RWC pool game against France, Mike gets clattered in the air and lands awkwardly. He fails the HIA and is out of the tournament. You try Eliot in the Quarter Final but the opposition peppers him with high balls and he drops one that leads to a crucial score. Your adventure ends here.

"Paragraph 15 - Eliot still looks shaky under the high ball, but his confidence is growing and Johnny helps him out. Victory in Dublin has helped him as well. He continues to develop through the 6 Nations and going into the pool games you are confident switching between Mike and Eliot as conditions and opposition dictate. Go to paragraph 20092019."

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Post by formerly known as Sam on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 8:57 pm

whocares wrote:
robbo277 wrote:No, I don't think so. Maybe I didn't explain it well enough.

It's not that French clubs are too league focussed and aren't giving their young players a chance. The stats don't bear that out. Their Under 20 squad is more experienced than England's and far more experienced than the rest of the 6 Nations.

My feeling is that the players are too club focused. I don't know whether they have an EPS-like deal, but I wouldn't be surprised if the clubs held the players until the mandated release day, rather than allowing extra camps etc.

It used to be the case but these days players have enough time in training camps and their top14 playing time is capped. The truth is that there is no more excuses in terms of lack of preparation or game time etc but the current generation is just doomed to lose so we should better drop all the older guard and concentrate for 2023 now .

I think the issues with France center around the need for transformation. Too long France have been big up front and looked for individual brilliance alongside more brute force in the backs. The move away from this fairly ineffective game plan was evidenced in part (mainly during the first half) against Wales where the French flair of years ago was back with offloads and support lines cutting Wales apart. If France keep building on that (Toulouse are showing the way) then with the bright prospects that are emerging they could become a serious force. This RWC might be too soon.

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Post by whocares on Thu 07 Feb 2019, 9:20 pm

Agreed. France never really caught up with the changes required by modern rugby in the last 10 years. Only now they realise that skill and speed are also important for forwards but the players they have up front (with some exceptions) are not built for that. There is also a serious confidence issue amongst this group of players, you just need to look at Guirado post match interviews : the poor man is looking more and more depressed, it is kind of sad really.

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Post by maestegmafia on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 12:34 am

There is a different attitude in different nations towards selection. This may be due to the respect for the league they play in it may be something else.

I remember a conversation on here with the sarries fan, beshocked? A few years back he was lamenting sarries chances versus a decent scarlets team because of their lack of scrum halves, sarries had injuries to key players so Ben Spencer was likely to play, probably twenty years old at the time.

Beshocked considered Spencer to be too inexperienced for Heineken or Lv= cup rugby, whichever it was. The scarlets team had Gareth Davies and Aled Davis as their two scrumhalves Aled is the same age, Gareth a year older than Spencer. Both already had a season under their belt at least.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 3:00 am

Chris Ashton thinks the pace of the club game in France is too slow to prepare players for the step-up required at test level.
The speed of their domestic game is definitely affecting the step-up to international level. The Top 14 is a slow, stop-start game. When you’re in an international game it’s the highest intensity it could possibly be whereas their league isn’t at that level. I’m speaking from experience. It’s not anywhere near. Maybe that step-up shocks them in that first couple of games but they will get up to speed very quickly. I’d definitely say the Premiership is a lot more intense. The ball is in play a lot more and the whole game is a lot quicker.
https://www.rugbypass.com/news/its-not-anywhere-near-chris-ashton-blasts-slow-top-14

Most pundits, who are familiar with the game in France, seem to have few doubts about the skill, strength and ability of French players but do wonder about the attitude, and game management under pressure. I think the fear for any opposition is that a French side just clicks on the day. For them do so consistently, though, would probably need more specific coaching.

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Post by whocares on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 4:51 am

Eww JB selected both (!) Bastareaud and Doumayrou as centres for this weekend... not exactly a statement of intent towards playing more positive rugby.... Crying or Very sad

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Post by Rugby Fan on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 5:54 am

Ben Ryan is optimistic about French rugby.

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/blog/2019/feb/06/france-building-rugby-force-england-six-nations

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 8:29 am

Roll on the teams. I assume its going to be 11ish 12 ish again. And again a few decisions which I'm.not sure how Jones will.roll the dice. Will he pull a surprise for the props? At 6? Cokanasiga? And how will the bench look?

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Post by lostinwales on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 8:48 am

Cole to start. Cokanasiga on the bench. 2nd row anybody's guess but apart from that same as last week. I do think Sinckler is very much our no.1 tighthead, but think Cole's better scrummaging will be useful 1st half before we bring the bowling ball on for the 2nd. Sinckler won't last much longer than a half anyway, especially if he's still sore from last week.

Only other questionmark is Shields vs Hughes on the bench

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Post by LondonTiger on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 8:55 am

England naming team at 10, according to this:

https://www.sixnationsrugby.com/2019/02/04/when-are-this-weeks-guinness-six-nations-team-announcements/

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Post by LondonTiger on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 9:05 am

Le XV de départ: Huget - Penaud, Bastareaud, Doumayrou, Fickou - (o) Lopez, (m) Parra - Iturria, Picamoles, Y. Camara - Lambey, Vahaamahina - Bamba, Guirado (cap.), Poirot
Remplaçants: Bourgarit, Priso, Aldegheri, Willemse, Alldritt, A. Dupont, Ntamack, Ramos

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Post by LondonTiger on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 9:09 am

Of the six changes, three apparently are due to injuries (Atonio, Fofana and Medard)

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 9:35 am

I have to admit it looks better for England without Fofana but Fickou pops up enough to give England a kicking.
Looking forward to seeing Bamba. Full of potential and should go onto be a very good player for France to say the least. Looked decent last week when he came but conditions weren't great for him.

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Post by miaow on Fri 08 Feb 2019, 9:37 am

Lots of talk about France being stereotypically French in the game against Wales.

Just before the England team is announced I thought it might be nice to see if we could compile some 'classic' French moments. Maybe we'll see some (if not all?) at the weekend!

Let's start with this beauty from the infamous 3-way final weekend in 2015: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OdHzAAxg6YQ

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