Six Nations round 4 Scotland vs Wales

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Post by maestegmafia on Sun 24 Feb 2019, 7:09 pm

First topic message reminder :

Sat, 9 Mar, 14:15
Murrayfield Stadium

Scotland.

Kinghorn, Seymour, Grigg, Graham, Horne, Russell, Price; Dell, McInally, Nel, Gilchrist, Gray, Bradbury, Strauss, Ritchie.

Reps: Brown, Reid, Berghan, Toolis, Watson, Laidlaw, Hastings, McGuigan



Wales.

Liam Williams; George North, Jonathan Davies, Hadleigh Parkes, Josh Adams; Gareth Anscombe, Gareth Davies; Rob Evans., Ken Owens, Tomas Francis; Adam Beard, Alun Wyn Jones; Josh Navidi, Justin Tipuric, Ross Moriarty.

Reps: Elliot Dee, Nicky Smith, Dillon Lewis, Jake Ball, Aaron Wainwright, Aled Davies, Dan Biggar, Owen Watkin.



Referee Pascal Gauzere (France)
Assistant Luke Pearce (England)
Assistant Federico Anselmi (Argentina)
TMO Marius Jonker (South Africa)

Scotland v Wales is on BBC One


Last edited by maestegmafia on Thu 07 Mar 2019, 3:07 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Post by 123456789. on Fri 01 Mar 2019, 2:22 pm

Nel and Watson are back for Edinburgh this weekend. With Richie Gray coming back our pack is starting to come back together a bit. Less said about the backline the better.

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Post by BigGee on Fri 01 Mar 2019, 4:07 pm

Scotland were training at Stirling today, with the School kids from Wallace High in attendance. What a backdrop that ground is with the monument in the background.

Interestingly Grieg Laidlaw was in the photos, meaning that he has not been called back to Clermont for this weekends game.

I suppose we have benefitted from Parra and Lopez fall from grace in that respect.

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Post by tigertattie on Fri 01 Mar 2019, 4:43 pm

Wonder if the big fella will get called up into the sqaud after the weekend?

Would be absolutely magic to see him running about the field in the dark blue again!
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Post by BigGee on Fri 01 Mar 2019, 5:19 pm

Well good news that Finn is definitely fit again.

Not quite such good news in that he is starting for racing against La Rochelle this weekend. Here is hoping he comes through this one unscathed.

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Post by Pie on Fri 01 Mar 2019, 7:56 pm

SecretFly wrote:Wales used up a lot of their reserve mental energy to meet England, resist them and then claw out the win.  No doubt about it, that and the Ireland game were the big games in their heads.  That build up of tension (at home) the release of it with such a positive result then on to what on paper looks an easier challenge on paper but away from home?
Townsend will be showing his weakness on the psychological front if he isn't ready to catch Wales between a high and the contemplation of another high the week after.  Scotland have proven themselves much too good a side to be just a harmless diversion for an ambitious Wales now. They can ambush the Welsh.

What an absolute crock

You wish

This is a side with 12 from 12 and just dissembled the English juggernaut

Laugh

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 01 Mar 2019, 8:18 pm

I thought you said England choked?

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Post by BigGee on Fri 01 Mar 2019, 10:20 pm

https://theoffsideline.com/scotland-injury-woes-ease/

Toonie hinting that he might roll the dice a little bit with selection for these last two games. That is probably the right course to take at this stage in the championship for us.

Sounds like we may have a few more players back in the mix as well, I expect we will hear a few additions to the squad on Monday.

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Post by miaow on Fri 01 Mar 2019, 11:13 pm

Not surprised. Think Scotland have to chance their hand against Wales as I think that's the only way they can beat them - play it safe and Wales will grind them out of the game again, with an eye on Ireland the week after. If Scotland drag Wales into a tough game of loose rugby, result is 50:50 in my opinion.

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Post by Pie on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 12:11 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:I thought you said England choked?

England choked, it's a metaphor. Whereas some English players choked, literally. I am sure you can understand the difference.

With regards to the metaphorical choking aspect it still requires another side to a. inspire the choking and b. capitalise on it.......which Wales did and in doing so buggered the juggernaut

Another metaphor would be to imagine the English chariot stuck up a tunnel on the M4 and with no AA. Got it noo?



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Post by Pal Joey on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 7:52 am

Pie wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:I thought you said England choked?

England choked, it's a metaphor. Whereas some English players choked, literally. I am sure you can understand the difference.

With regards to the metaphorical choking aspect it still requires another side to a. inspire the choking and b. capitalise on it.......which Wales did and in doing so buggered the juggernaut

Another metaphor would be to imagine the English chariot stuck up a tunnel on the M4 and with no AA. Got it noo?



Those bloody Romans and their narrow tunnels! Wink

Just watched the highlights again.
That was an epic final 30 from Wales. Simply overwhelming play. It tires one just to watch it. Biggar was pure class.
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Post by bsando on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 11:31 am

miaow wrote:Not surprised. Think Scotland have to chance their hand against Wales as I think that's the only way they can beat them - play it safe and Wales will grind them out of the game again, with an eye on Ireland the week after. If Scotland drag Wales into a tough game of loose rugby, result is 50:50 in my opinion.

Yeah totally agree, think there was always gonna be a lot of changes for Wales regardless. From the above article it also sounds like Price may be in contention to start ahead of Laidlaw as Townsend says he is playing very well and no position is safe, regardless of captaincy. Having Skinner back would be great for the bench options and despite no mention of him, R Gray must surely be in with a shout. It’s all well and good getting these guys back but will Scotland actually show up and play next Saturday? That’s what is so hard to know.

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Post by BigGee on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 2:25 pm

Racing are 4 tries up after half an hour, hopefully Russell will get pulled at HT!

and then he ghosts through himself for a 5th. Looks like he is right back in form!

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Post by bsando on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 3:16 pm

Unscathed and a try, perfect pre Wales prep!

Ona side note, Thomas hat-trick! Watch out Ireland

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Post by George Carlin on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 4:07 pm

Racing hammered La Rochelle. By all accounts (my wife read the French reports to me) Finn played well and his try was excellent.
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Post by miaow on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 5:07 pm

https://www.rugbypass.com/news/the-gray-brothers-gilchrist-or-toolis-theres-none-you-would-class-as-hard-men

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Post by George Carlin on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 6:12 pm

miaow wrote:https://www.rugbypass.com/news/the-gray-brothers-gilchrist-or-toolis-theres-none-you-would-class-as-hard-men
Ah yes, this has done the rounds on the Scottish club boards.

When you come away from the click bait headline, it's a combination of common sense doused with the bile of someone who's had his cornflakes enthusiastically defecated upon by a springer spaniel. He probably doesn't like Ben Toolis because he's got long hair.
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Post by majesticimperialman on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 7:48 pm

Thomas young went off injure today playing against Leicester.

How bad his injurie is do not know. Will he be avalible for Wales next week end?

With regards too injuries that Wales have, how does his injurie effect Wales?

Does his injurie inder or help Wales out by bringing in other players?

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Post by LondonTiger on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 8:13 pm

Any injury to Thomas Young unlikely to affect this match. Very much doubt Gate was planning to use him (unless there are some new injuries).

Are any of Scotland's wounded slated to return?

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Post by TJ on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 8:31 pm

A few of scotland wounded are due back

Watson and Nel played for Edinburgh today. Russell played for Racing, Big Ritchie is back playing as well

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Post by mikey_dragon on Sat 02 Mar 2019, 9:40 pm

Young did well when he played for us, but we seem pretty well stocked for flankers right now - we could probably do with a No.8 like Vunipola though...

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Post by 123456789. on Sun 03 Mar 2019, 12:08 am

mikey_dragon wrote:Young did well when he played for us, but we seem pretty well stocked for flankers right now - we could probably do with a No.8 like Vunipola though...

I think a fully fit and firing Faletau is at least the equal of Vunipola.

I did remember thinking around the time of the Lions that a frightening back row would be Faletau at 6 and Vunipola at 8 with an out and out poacher at 7. If there was a tour this summer, I'd have liked to see Faletau, Watson, Vunipola as the back row.

Anyway, I digress, you've got Faletau and Moriarty in your ranks so stop moaning. We've got Ryan Wilson (although Matt Fagerson looks like he could be something special, albeit a completely different type of number 8)

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Post by Pie on Sun 03 Mar 2019, 6:10 am

Oh fgs, Faletau is a much better all rounder and carries well

Billy is a carrier, a one trick battering ram who if tackled low goes down harder than a broken chariot falling off a cliff.

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Post by miaow on Sun 03 Mar 2019, 7:20 am

Faletau's a big loss (and no doubt a far better footballer than Billy, I think he's probably Wales' best player, but Liam Williams and Tipuric push him close/sometimes surpass him) but Moriarty carried a surprising amount against England. He was the receiver of England's kick-offs, so obviously that accounts for 6 (if he caught each English restart, not sure if he fielded all of them) but he was still joint most carrier if you 'remove' those 6 carries. When you look at the other stats, how Wales shared the carrying and England failed to spread it around, it is interesting to see Moriarty being the main Welsh ball carrier.

Top 5 carriers:
20 - Billy Vunipola
20 - Ross Moriarty
18 - Liam Williams
14 - Alun Wyn Jones
13 - Ken Owens

Liam obviously took a lot from kick receipt as well, so ignoring him, Moriarty is effectively top Welsh ball carrier in the phase play game they utilised. I thought he made some good carries mid game, and I think it was one of the things I mentioned on here post-game how surprising it was to see him carry so much, but was surprised to see that stat. That, to me, shows a specific tactic to get Moriarty playing like an 8 because in his first few caps he was very much a 6 in an 8 shirt: big hits, doing the dog work, but not much carrying. I remember having a 'discussion' on here a few years ago about his carrying and I always felt he had the potential to be a good, dynamic ball carrier (others disagreed) - he's never going to be a cannonball, but nor is Faletau, really. Neither can play crashball like Billy can, so it's not as if Wales lose that with Faletau out, but this is definitely one to watch for the Scotland game.

Can Moriarty back it up, basically, against a very different opposition in Scotland? Faletau's suffered a fair amount with injury since moving to Bath and whilst you hope he'll be fit for Japan, it's possible he might not play a minute: in which case, can Moriarty cut it at 8? This is the test and it'll be interesting to see how he goes up against the Scots.

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Post by BigGee on Sun 03 Mar 2019, 10:51 am

Mark Palmer's take on the stick or twist dilemma facing Toonie in his team selection for next weekend.

I hope he twists!



Gregor Townsend’s rugby life has been one of always asking the question; always wondering if there is a different, better way. Taking the safe option has rarely appealed to him, especially if the safe option, in reality, is nothing of the kind. As the Scotland coach contemplates the personnel and approach for Wales, he will see two different kinds of risk but also opportunity. If he opts to stick, giving his backing to some well-established members of the group whose skittish displays have brought deflating defeats against Ireland and France, it will end in either redemption or yet noisier recrimination.

Should he go the other way, infusing the side with further fresh blood to complement the returning likes of Finn Russell, Hamish Watson and Willem Nel, Townsend might strike rich reward and revive a campaign where the Scots have suffered through bad luck and bad judgement. Alternatively, he and we could be transported back to Cardiff, February 2018, the last time Scotland went for broke in selection and were torn limb from limb.


With only two meaningful games before the World Cup opener against Ireland, conventional wisdom would dictate that now is not the time to be ripping out key components, however individually appealing the replacement parts appear. There is logic to this stance, yet who watched Scotland stumble through these last two rounds and felt confident they will beat Japan — even Samoa — never mind the Irish come mid-September?



Trading places: Greig Laidlaw could find himself on the bench if Gregor Townsend opts for Ali Price at scrum-half

Trading places: Greig Laidlaw could find himself on the bench if Gregor Townsend opts for Ali Price at scrum-half
ANNE-CHRISTINE POUJOULAT

Of course they were missing close to a third, and an influential third, of those we expect to form the 31-man squad. But some of the biggest questions do not surround stand-ins for Russell and Stuart Hogg, because we already know it’s a long way down from the heights where these men reside. The immediate concern for Townsend is not the limitations of the B-cast but the recent struggles of those there to supply the glue. Where the foibles of a Nick Grigg or Blair Kinghorn have not been unforeseeable, it has been striking and worrying to see Greig Laidlaw, Jonny Gray, Tommy Seymour and Sean Maitland fall short of the standards set across a vast body of work.

Just as the consistency and constancy of this quartet means you’d need a compelling reason to do without any or all of them, it wouldn’t be right to assume they will revert to their more typical selves even as Russell, Watson, Nel and potentially even Sam Skinner return.




Laidlaw, of course, has seen off many challenges and challengers, always finding a way to make himself relevant, and if the 33-year-old will travel to Japan as a figure of significance, his presence in the starting team this week merits real debate. When Scotland’s game is working at close to maximum effect against top-level opponents — a description last applicable against England 13 months ago — Laidlaw’s influence is clear in that arch-facilitator role. He gives the more expressive talents just enough rope in any situation and also kicks goals more reliably than Russell, for all that Parisian upright might be inclined to disagree.

The trouble is that Laidlaw offers precious little individual threat, certainly in comparison to an all-action attack dog like Antoine Dupont or George Horne. If the ball is as slow as it was last week, and the stand-off sits as deep, Laidlaw is not the man to inject impetus. A tight leash is no use when you’re already being strangled. Even with the caveat that he was up against a tiring defence, in 15 minutes at the Stade de France Ali Price offered more himself and brought more from his midfield than Laidlaw had in 65. And while the starting berth demands more honed stewarding skills than the Glasgow man has convinced us he possesses, it is also true that Laidlaw has been struggling to impose authority too.



–– ADVERTISEMENT ––












With due apologies for the second mention of Cardiff 2018, we all know what happened the last time Price was picked ahead of him in the Six Nations, but that in itself is not a reason for never doing it again. Indeed, there is a different precedent from the year before, when Laidlaw tore ankle ligaments in Paris and Price stepped up to help guide Scotland to their first and still only win over Wales since 2007. On the bench that day was a more Laidlaw-esque scrum-half in the shape of Henry Pyrgos and with Stuart McInally ready to assume the captaincy, it could be that Townsend opts to go with the bolder option first up, knowing that Scotland will need their full box of tricks to circumvent Shaun Edwards’ packed and dynamic defensive line.

Laidlaw cannot start every game at the World Cup, and who is to say how long he will be part of the picture after it is over? With Scotland no longer in a position to win the Six Nations, Townsend needs to think in the immediate, medium and long-term and Laidlaw does not straddle all three categories in the same way as Price.

And what of the boilerhouse Grays? Given the apparent symbiosis between them, there is every reason to want Richie and Jonny back in harness, but it won’t be this week, even if Richie today comes through his third game in as many weeks for Toulouse as he seeks to put back and hip troubles behind him. Jonny, meanwhile, is in line to win his 50th cap five days before his 25th birthday. That statistic alone goes some way to illustrating how dependable a presence the younger Gray has been in the past five years, but second-row play continues to evolve apace and we are again left to wonder about his point of difference. His recent sluggishness almost certainly owes something to a niggling shoulder injury, but the lineout looked better with Ben Toolis, who also boasts an excellent understanding with Grant Gilchrist.

There are also decisions to be made in the centres, where Sam Johnson should retain his place but could move out to 13 to accommodate Peter Horne at 12. With Hogg still injured, there will be understandable reluctance to relinquish nous and experience elsewhere in the back three. Yet both Seymour and Maitland — those bastions of aerial poise and positional alacrity — have been uncharacteristically loose in this Six Nations, Darcy Graham furthering his case with a stirring cameo last week.

What have Scotland got to lose? Another match, further confidence. None of that should be underestimated. But neither should this certainty: if it’s the same people doing the same things for a third game in a row, the outcome itself won’t change.


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Post by TJ on Sun 03 Mar 2019, 11:44 am

If Horne the younger was fit I would say start him.  But I'd rather have laidlaw than Price given the lack of leadership in the side and what happened against wales without him - the team looked rudderless.

I'd certainly give Darcy Graham a start and Dean has impressed in the centre along with Johnstone

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Post by maestegmafia on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 6:19 am

Looks like the rumour mill of welsh rugby is hinting at wales only making changes to cover injuries so the team is likely to remain the one that won their last.

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Post by George Carlin on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 6:50 am

maestegmafia wrote:Looks like the rumour mill of welsh rugby is hinting at wales only making changes to cover injuries so the team is likely to remain the one that won their last.
Not surprising. It's a testament to the conditioning staff (and potentially also Gat's selection policy) that relatively few Welsh players seem to be injured at any one time. Luck comes into it too, but there's no doubt good player management is key. How long can Alun Wyn Jones keep playing like that at this level? The guy is a machine.

I saw that Halfpenny was back playing Pro14 rugby at the weekend. Any chance he will be brought back in?
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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 9:16 am

Well, the break is over, now time to get down to the proper debate. It was not a good trip for the Welsh the last time we went up there, hopefully this year will be different.

dewch ymlaen Cymru. Wales

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Post by BigGee on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 9:24 am

I watched the Newcastle v Worcester game on sunday. Far from a classic, but Newcastle ground out a much needed win and Graham and Harris both had decent games and seemed to come through unscathed. They certainly won't have done their selection prospects any harm by their performances.

Nel and Watson both got a half against Benetton and looked fit.

Matt Fagerson was MoM for Glasgow in their demolition of Zebre.

Ritchie Gray came off the bench for Toulouse in their win over SF as well.

I expect their will be some updating of the squad announced at some point today. Scotland are set to be making a few changes to their team for this game, due to front line players coming back from injury and the need to shake things up a bit after a very sluggish performance in Paris.

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Post by maestegmafia on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 9:33 am

George Carlin wrote:
maestegmafia wrote:Looks like the rumour mill of welsh rugby is hinting at wales only making changes to cover injuries so the team is likely to remain the one that won their last.
Not surprising. It's a testament to the conditioning staff (and potentially also Gat's selection policy) that relatively few Welsh players seem to be injured at any one time. Luck comes into it too, but there's no doubt good player management is key. How long can Alun Wyn Jones keep playing like that at this level? The guy is a machine.

I saw that Halfpenny was back playing Pro14 rugby at the weekend. Any chance he will be brought back in?

It’s a possibility that Halfpenny will be in. He looked good for Scarlets, exemplary with the boot and in defence and managed to show a bit of pace running the ball back, but he doesn’t have the guile and eye for the gap that Williams does.

They might put him on the bench maybe? They may be going to Edinburgh to slog out a dull game and get the win, in which case his defence and goal kicking is a massive bonus.

Liam Williams has been the tournaments best fullback by some distance so far so to be honest I would just keep Halfpenny wrapped in cotton wool for the RWC.

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Post by George Carlin on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 10:05 am

BigGee wrote:I watched the Newcastle v Worcester game on sunday. Far from a classic, but Newcastle ground out a much needed win and Graham and Harris both had decent games and seemed to come through unscathed. They certainly won't have done their selection prospects any harm by their performances.

Nel and Watson both got a half against Benetton and looked fit.

Matt Fagerson was MoM for Glasgow in their demolition of Zebre.

Ritchie Gray came off the bench for Toulouse in their win over SF as well.

I expect their will be some updating of the squad announced at some point today. Scotland are set to be making a few changes to their team for this game, due to front line players coming back from injury and the need to shake things up a bit after a very sluggish performance in Paris.
Yep - Laidlaw was rested this week which smells like a deal as a result of the recent incidences of the Top 14 breaking Scottish players.

Russell did 65 minutes for Racing, scored and try and played very well so that's something.

Anyone else coming back into consideration? How far off is Skinner?

Keep thinking about Jim Telfer's comments that Gilchrist seems to have become the form lock for us and the fact he works so well with Toolis cannot be ignored. Is this the time to rest Gray the Younger for the return of Gray the Elder?
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Post by BigGee on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 10:18 am

I have a feeling he will just leave RG in France for the rest of the tournament, he is only just back from long term injury and there is no need to throw him back in, we have alternatives at lock who are on form and playing well. Let him recover his fitness and form with Toulouse and then bring him back into the squad this summer.

Skinner may well be one of those and if he is fit, then expect him to come back into the squad, the mood music was good on that one before the weekend. Toolis and Gilchrist to start and Skinner on the bench I fancy. JG just does not look right atm so give him a rest.

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Post by RDW on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 10:32 am

Toolis and Skinner are our best set piece locks so I think one of them needs to start - given Wales's gameplan we may struggle for territory and possession so we need a rock solid set piece to make sure we retain the ball when we get the chance. Gray should carry the can for the poor lineout against France - it improved significantly when Toolis took it over.

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Post by NeilyBroon on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 10:32 am

TJ wrote:If Horne the younger was fit I would say start him.  But I'd rather have laidlaw than Price given the lack of leadership in the side and what happened against wales without him - the team looked rudderless.

I'd certainly give Darcy Graham a start and Dean has impressed in the centre along with Johnstone

Agree with you on Horne Jr, such a bummer he's injured.

As for Laidlaw, the team have looked rudderless with him. Time for a shake up I think. Put McInally as captain and Price on the pitch. Laidlaw can bench if it ends up being a tight game and we want to squeeze out a win. Likelihood of that happening? 50/50.

Price has some demons to put to rest, at home with the crowd behind him is his best chance to do that. As said before, what do we have to lose? May as well test the boys who have put their hands up rather than pish aboot with those who have looked lacklustre all tournament.

With that in mind this would be my pick:

Dell
McInally (c)
Berghan/Fagerson
Gilchrist
Toolis
Graham
Ritchie
Fagerson

Price
Russell

Maitland (not on board with the Mait hate on here, I think he's just not been outstanding like he has in the past, he had a good game for Sarries and plays better with a better team around him, Seymour is more culpable of having absolute howlers to be honest)
Johnson (our best player in the backs by far this 6Ns with the exception of Finn)
Johnstone (I'm really keen to see what he can do at this level, again, we have no depth at OC right now, what have we got to lose? Worst case we have another squad player)
Graham (has played well this season and had a nice cameo against France)
Kinghorn (still learning on the job, more exposure at this level is only a good thing)

Subs
Brown
Allan
Nel
Gray Sr (Give Gray Jr a rest and see how Richie copes with a return)
Watson (to bring an edge to the bench)
Laidlaw (as discussed)
Hastings (played really well in France and seems to have refound some form)
A. N. Other - Nairn? We need another winger to step up as Seymour definitely doesn't have it at the moment



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Post by RDW on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 10:32 am

Biggee called it - no Richie Gray. Wonder if we'll see Stafford McDowell??

Head Coach Gregor Townsend today welcomed the return of five Scotland squad players from injury – and added three others – ahead of this Saturday’s Guinness Six Nations Test against Wales at BT Murrayfield Stadium (9 March, kick-off 2.15pm) - live on BBC.

Forwards Hamish Watson, Willem Nel (both Edinburgh) and Sam Skinner (Exeter Chiefs) are joined by Glasgow Warriors pair Stafford McDowall (centre) and Grant Stewart (hooker) in returning to the squad.

They are accompanied by incoming trio Matt Fagerson and Byron McGuigan – who missed out on initial selection through injury – and London Irish prop Gordon Reid.

As a consequence of their inclusion the following eight players, split evenly between injury and those released back to their clubs, are no longer part of the current Scotland squad.

They are injured quartet scrum-half George Horne (shoulder), prop D’arcy Rae (ankle), hooker George Turner (graduated return to play protocol for concussion) and centre Chris Dean (back), plus deselected foursome prop Alex Allan, back-row Rob Harley (both Glasgow Warriors), back-row John Hardie (Newcastle Falcons) and stand-off Duncan Weir (Worcester Warriors).

Full-back Stuart Hogg will not join the squad in the camp this week as he is not being considered for this Saturday’s game against Wales, following the shoulder injury he sustained against Ireland in the second round of the championship.

He remains under the joint care of the Glasgow Warriors and Scotland medical teams, with his rehabilitation progress and review ongoing.

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Post by Noble-Surfer on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 10:45 am

I don't think Halfpenny should be brought straight back in to start- maybe give him some time off the bench in the last 20, or if one of the starting back 3 is having a bad game. I think Williams & Adams at least have to keep their starting places- not sure that anyone who has played in the back three for us so far has done anything to warrant being dropped, or not done enough to keep their starting place. I'd probably start Holmes too- just to give him more exposure to Test rugby. We know what North & Halfpenny bring.

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Post by BigGee on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 10:46 am

Toonie clearly likes the cut of young Stafford's Jib, why wouldn't he?

I wonder if we might see him benching for this one, he can play both centre positions (and FB if required), if we are going to experiment a bit, then why not, he is going to get capped, so why not sooner rather than later.

Another thing about having Laidlaw on the bench is that he could potentially cover both half back slots as well, so we don't necessarily need Hastings on the bench, though you would imagine he will want him on the pitch to build up his gametime, but as he probably won't pull Finn unless injured, that may be at 12 not 10.

So time for a stab at the team:

1. Dell
2. McInally (capt)
3. Nel
4. Toolis
5. Gilchrist
6. Ritchie
7. Watson
8. Fagerson M
9. Price
10. Russell
11. Maitland (McGuigan an outside call)
12. Horne P
13. Johnson
14. Graham D
15. Kinghorne

Subs
Bhatti
Brown
Fagerson Z (tough on Bergs who has not done much wrong)
Skinner (JG needs a rest)
Graham G
Laidlaw
Hastings
McDowell

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Post by RDW on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 11:09 am

That's a pretty lightweight backrow Biggee against a very physical Welsh defence, especially with Toolis who isn't a heavy carrier. We had a problem in the AIs of just not getting over the gainline and I fear the same would happen there. Bradbury or Strauss at 8 for me. Could we finally see the Ritchie-Watson-Bradbury backrow that has so much potential?

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Post by BigGee on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 11:18 am

Yes, I forgot about Bradbury, he is going to be in the mix somewhere, probably ahead of Fagerson.

I still fancy Gary Graham into the squad somewhere though, he brings a bit of dog that we otherwise lack and need.

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Post by miaow on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 12:24 pm

Stafford McDowall sounds like he should look like this:

Six Nations round 4 Scotland vs Wales - Page 4 Benjamin-Lyman-Morrison-of-Ripley-Massachusetts-born-in-1828

So disappointing to see what he really looks like...

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Post by maestegmafia on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 12:30 pm

I don’t think I’m under any illusions that tho game is a gimme of any sort.
Wales are a hard team to read but so are Scotland especially with “Dancer” back at ten.

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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 12:42 pm

Who has said this game was a gimme ?

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Post by George Carlin on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 12:46 pm

LordDowlais wrote:Who has said this game was a gimme ?
Me. Cry
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Post by jimbopip on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 1:26 pm

it is such a foregone conclusion that the programmes should be printed with the tables showing Wales already having an extra five points.

1. Dell
2. McInally (capt)
3. Nel
4. Toolis
5. Gilchrist
6. Graham (Micro, deserves a start for taking on the whole French pack single handed)
7. Watson
8. Fagerson Middle (very tough on Ritchie, but Hamish fae the glen is a class act and should start)
9. Aldi Price, who should be given the chance to make up for ruining tattie Scone's Day Out in Cardiff last year.
10. Russell
11. Maitland (McGuigan an outside call)
12. Johnson
13. Stafford McD
14. Graham D
15. Kinghorne

Subs
Shrek, just to keep up the abrasiveness in the last 20
Brown
Fagerson Z (more mobile than  Bergs )
Skinner (JG needs a long, long rest)
Ritchie
Frodo, in case we need to slow things right down
Hastings
Furra Linee


Last edited by jimbopip on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 1:36 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by tigertattie on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 1:30 pm

Agree with most of the comments above but there are a few odd calls that baffle me!

Fully agree that there's no need to Rush Ritchie Gray back. It would be different if we didn’t have options, but we do, so leave him to get back to 100% in France and then look to bring him in for the WC squad.

I also don't see the need to rush back Skinner. It would be different if he'd been ripping up trees but after his first outstanding start, while he's done nothing wrong, he's not forced his way into the shirt so the incumbents still have a hold of it.

I think Toonie does need to roll the dice though on a few positions. Seymour has been consistency guff for Scotland this tournament, so Darcy needs to take his place. Maitland is also at risk but he's not been as terrible as Seymour.

I'd also go as far as to say "Give His Royal Messiahness, Lord Stafford of World Classness a start at 12, 13 or a spot on the bench" He's been playing well but it's more we don’t have alternatives so bash on.

I'd not suggest starting Matt Fagerson though. Sure, he had a good outing against Zerbe, but they were bloomin awful in the first half and it wasn't until Glasgow switched off that they started playing. He needs more good games to get into the reckoning I say.

And why are we shoehorning Zander into the squad? He's still getting back to full fitness and Berghan did hee haw wrong over the last three games to warrant being dropped in place of someone who hasn’t exactly been on fire now!
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Post by LordDowlais on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 1:34 pm

George Carlin wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:Who has said this game was a gimme ?
Me. Cry

I seen it as nothing of the sort.

Scotland are more than a match for Wales, especially at home. I think this could be the "one" that Wales lose. It's always a cracker up there though.

I will never forget the time we went up there, and we had not won there for years, but in 1997 we went up there and after going behind we just went wild with Arwel Thomas using up almost the whole in goal area to score. What a day that was, I was up there for my 20th birthday.

But then I went up for my 30th birthday 10 years later and we lost in the most boring game ever. No tries, just kicks. But since then we have had the hoodoo over you lot.

Scotland is my most favourite trip of them all.


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Post by jimbopip on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 1:36 pm

Agree with most of what you say TT.

However, 8 is a real problem for us and I think that with Toonie's harum-scarum gameplan we will be at our best with a more athletic, mobile Batman type rather than a "run into the first defender" Bluto type. So for me it's either Arthur Ashe or Micro Fagerson.

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Post by NeilyBroon on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 1:42 pm

jimbopip wrote:it is such a foregone conclusion that the programmes should be printed with the tables showing Wales already having an extra five points.

1. Dell
2. McInally (capt)
3. Nel
4. Toolis
5. Gilchrist
6. Graham (Micro, deserves a start for taking on the whole French pack single handed)
7. Watson
8. Fagerson Middle (very tough on Ritchie, but Hamish fae the glen is a class act and should start)
9. Aldi Price, who should be given the chance to make up for ruining tattie Scone's Day Out in Cardiff last year.
10. Russell
11. Maitland (McGuigan an outside call)
12. Johnson
13. Stafford McD
14. Graham D
15. Kinghorne

Subs
Shrek, just to keep up the abrasiveness in the last 20
Brown
Fagerson Z (more mobile than  Bergs )
Skinner (JG needs a long, long rest)
Ritchie
Frodo, in case we need to slow things right down
Hastings
Furra Linee

Six Nations round 4 Scotland vs Wales - Page 4 Jesus-wallpaper
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Post by RDW on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 1:44 pm

I really don't get how people can justify dropping Ritchie.

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Post by No9 on Mon 04 Mar 2019, 1:44 pm

Looks like its a sell-out... Going to loads of mad Welshmen traveling up last minute this week hunting down tickets in the bars and clubs the night before....

C'mon Wales.. Wales

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