England World Cup Warm Ups

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 24 Jul 2019, 11:28 am

First topic message reminder :

Don't expect the snazzy pics produced on better match threads!

England Wales 11th August
Wales England 17th August
England Ireland 24th August
England Italy 6th September.

Squad for the world cup is due 2nd September so theres a chance the 1st 3 could be used for selection purposes and likely to see some combos not considered 1st choice.

BBC saving me typing:

England: Daly; McConnochie, Slade, Francis, Watson; Ford, Heinz; Genge, Cowan-Dickie, Cole, Launchbury, Ewels, Curry, Underhill, B Vunipola.

Replacements: Singleton, Marler, Williams, Kruis, Ludlam, Youngs, Marchant, Cokanasiga.

Wales: L Williams; North, J Davies, Parkes, Adams; Anscombe, G Davies; Smith, Owens, Francis, Beard, Jones, Wainwright, Tipuric, Moriarty.

Replacements: Dee, Jones, Lewis, Ball, Shingler, T Williams, Biggar, Watkin.


Last edited by No 7&1/2 on Fri 09 Aug 2019, 12:17 pm; edited 3 times in total

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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 11:43 am

Because old boy England named a 2nd string team so Gats named his full strength team to turn Eddie over at home and embarrass him, I have heard many welsh voices say the same thing this week.

These are warm up games and should be treated as such.
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Post by RiscaGame on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 11:55 am

Navidi has had a slight niggle, which is why he missed last week.

In terms of strongest team, I would suggest our first choice 1, 4, 6, 8 and 9 were missing last week and arguably are this week too, with it being taken further from first choice with the absence of Anscombe and Tipuric.

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Post by BamBam on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 12:00 pm

RiscaGame wrote:Navidi has had a slight niggle, which is why he missed last week.

In terms of strongest team, I would suggest our first choice 1, 4, 6, 8 and 9 were missing last week and arguably are this week too, with it being taken further from first choice with the absence of Anscombe and Tipuric.

1 - Evans?
4 - Hill?
6 - Navidi?
8 - Faletau
9 - ?

Faletau is obviously a miss, but the others are there or thereabouts aren't they? Who is the 9 missing

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Post by robbo277 on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 12:03 pm

RiscaGame wrote:Navidi has had a slight niggle, which is why he missed last week.

In terms of strongest team, I would suggest our first choice 1, 4, 6, 8 and 9 were missing last week and arguably are this week too, with it being taken further from first choice with the absence of Anscombe and Tipuric.

It should read strongest available, so Faletau and Anscombe unfortunate absences though they are wouldn't come into consideration. Is the 9 Webb?

Who's the 1 I'm missing, Rob Evans? I'd go with that, is he carrying a niggle?

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Post by RiscaGame on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 12:10 pm

Yeah Evans and Lee are carrying slight niggles.

I believe Gatland would class Webb as his first choice 9, but isn't allowed to select him (it's the WRU stopping his selection). I was also thinking that he might prefer Tomos Williams to Gareth Davies too, forgetting that Williams was named on the bench before his withdrawal last week.

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Post by Rinsure on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 12:34 pm

Surprised to see Biggar starting for Wales. I was expecting them to go with Jarrod Evans. Biggar is a definite, and the only remaining experienced ten. I would have thought giving Evans game time, and at the same time protecting Biggar, was a no-brainer.

Apparently not.

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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 12:37 pm

A couple of my Welsh friends are furious at Biggars inclusion as well as AWJ's.

Gatland is rolling the dice early.
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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:00 pm

England starting XV v Wales
15 Elliot Daly (Saracens, 31 caps)
14 Ruaridh McConnochie (Bath Rugby, uncapped)
13 Jonathan Joseph (Bath Rugby, 41 caps)
12 Piers Francis (Northampton Saints, 5 caps)
11 Joe Cokanasiga (Bath Rugby, 5 caps)
10 George Ford (Leicester Tigers, 56 caps) C
9 Willi Heinz (Gloucester Rugby, 1 cap)
1 Ellis Genge (Leicester Tigers, 10 caps)
2 Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs, 12 caps)
3 Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers, 86 caps)
4 Joe Launchbury (Wasps, 59 caps)
5 Maro Itoje (Saracens, 27 caps)
6 Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints, 72 caps)
7 Lewis Ludlam (Northampton Saints, 1 cap)
8 Billy Vunipola (Saracens, 42 caps)

Finishers
16 Jamie George (Saracens, 37 caps)
17 Joe Marler (Harlequins, 59 caps)
18 Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins, 22 caps)
19 George Kruis (Saracens, 33 caps)
20 Jack Singleton (Saracens, 1 cap)
21 Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers, 86 caps)
22 Owen Farrell (Saracens, 70 caps)
23 Manu Tuilagi (Leicester Tigers, 33 caps)
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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:01 pm

Nice looking bench of finishers to rub it in.
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Post by Poorfour on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:07 pm

Interesting strategy. That's a slightly strengthened team compared to last week (though offset a little by Curry not being back - hope it's precautionary), but an exceptionally strong bench. 7 Lions on the bench, 5 of them Test Lions.

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Post by mr_stonelea on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:09 pm

2 Hookers on the bench?

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Post by hugehandoff on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:09 pm

2 hookers on the bench? Surprised that a few others not given a start.

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Post by LondonTiger on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:12 pm

I assume Wilson must have a knock, to explain why Billy starts again and Singleton covers back row on bench.

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Post by Rinsure on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:12 pm

Surprised to see Lawes at 6, as he got so much game time last week.

Wilson didn't feature last week, and isn't included this week either. Is he also nursing an injury as well as Underhill and Curry?

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Post by robbo277 on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:12 pm

England are starting with essentially the same team as last week. 3 changes:

McConnochie comes back in for Watson after being ruled out.
Lawes comes in for Curry after his injury last week will keep him out.
Itoje comes in for Ewels who didn't make the final cut.

A few changes on the bench with Lawes promoted to the starting line-up and Williams and Marchant dropping out the squad. Singleton covering back row over Kvesic - who has been in the squad but won't go to the World Cup - is an interesting one.

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Post by Poorfour on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:12 pm

mr_stonelea wrote:2 Hookers on the bench?

Suggests that the other back rowers aren't fully fit or Eddie doesn't want to risk them. There's also something of a tradition of back rowers converting to Hooker - Steve Thompson, Dave Ward at Quins, Ashley Johnson at Wasps. I can't find any indication that Singleton's in that mould - and surprising that Eddie hasn't called on Kvesic instead - but he may be wanting to try out some of his stopgaps.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:14 pm

Jeez is North on 84 caps! He cant be that old yet...thats some going!

If he can stay injury (and concussion) free, he should make the ton easily.

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Post by robbo277 on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:17 pm

LondonTiger wrote:I assume Wilson must have a knock, to explain why Billy starts again and Singleton covers back row on bench.

What about Mako (potentially injured) and May (not heard anything) then?

The team is near enough identical to last week that this must have been deliberate.

Why Wilson isn't on the bench over Singleton I'm not sure however. Maybe he wants it as an option for the USA game. George to start against Tonga, Cowan-Dickie against USA with both George and Singleton on the bench then? With 5 back row + Lawes it could be a way of managing resources?

This will be the last time I try and second guess Eddie Jones' selection though (until the next time).

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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:34 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Jeez is North on 84 caps! He cant be that old yet...thats some going!

If he can stay injury (and concussion) free, he should make the ton easily.

His glass ankles will be his undoing.
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Post by LondonTiger on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:35 pm

robbo277 wrote:


This will be the last time I try and second guess Eddie Jones' selection though (until the next time).

Ditto

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Post by BamBam on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:46 pm

Interesting side. Think a few have wanted to see Itoje/Launchbury paired up in the second row, this is probably the only way it could work with Lawes then playing at 6 for the lineout expertise. A lot of responsibility on Ludlam's shoulders at the breakdown, but he took it on well last week when Curry went off so would hope he can do it again

Given Kruis is on the bench with the likes of Sinckler/Youngs/Farrell/Manu, does that mean he's currently pencilled in for the starting shirt as some of us were discussing?

In this game, I'm looking for the half backs to show they can control the game especially up against a seasoned performer like Biggar. Francis looked ok last week, would like to see a bit more from him in attack before I'd be happy seeing him start in a bigger game.

Big responsibility for Daly here too, he's lost the Watson aerial security blanket from last week, not sure if its one of McConnochie's strengths but with the two inexperienced wingers, Daly has to own the high ball

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Post by robbo277 on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 1:57 pm

BamBam wrote:Interesting side. Think a few have wanted to see Itoje/Launchbury paired up in the second row, this is probably the only way it could work with Lawes then playing at 6 for the lineout expertise. A lot of responsibility on Ludlam's shoulders at the breakdown, but he took it on well last week when Curry went off so would hope he can do it again

Given Kruis is on the bench with the likes of Sinckler/Youngs/Farrell/Manu, does that mean he's currently pencilled in for the starting shirt as some of us were discussing?

In this game, I'm looking for the half backs to show they can control the game especially up against a seasoned performer like Biggar. Francis looked ok last week, would like to see a bit more from him in attack before I'd be happy seeing him start in a bigger game.

Big responsibility for Daly here too, he's lost the Watson aerial security blanket from last week, not sure if its one of McConnochie's strengths but with the two inexperienced wingers, Daly has to own the high ball

Itoje loves a turnover and Cole picked up a few back in the day - although that was more prevalent under Lancaster when we didn't have flankers who would regularly fulfil that role.

Kruis is basically the last lock standing at this point (not already on the pitch) and if Wilson is injured the last back 5 of the scrum player standing, so he has to be on the bench if he wants to trial this pair and not use any non squad players. He's probably favourite to start, but I wouldn't read too much into Eddie's selections, he seems to have his own ideas.

I would (at the risk of second guessing him) expect to see more first teamers start against Ireland next week, so maybe he'll go full strength? We'll have to wait and see.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 6:15 pm

Weird one for McConnochie. Huge game for him but at least hes off the wc already!

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Post by mikey_dragon on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 7:19 pm

There should be an improvement from Wales, but I am a little concerned that England can put 4 good locks on the field at once, and we don’t have lock cover on the bench. We could see a bit of a different pack in the next fixture against Ireland for those who are convinced this and last weekends Wales team is the strongest 23 in the world... Perhaps Evans, Lee, Shingler and Navidi to start - I still believe the latter two are our best options in the back-row, so nothing is set in stone yet especially when you consider how our first loss in 15 games unfolded. I’m sure EJ has a better idea what his best team is. Overall the England squad looks very strong, but I probably would have taken Brown over the Irish-English winger.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Thu 15 Aug 2019, 9:36 pm

Ruaridh McConnochie and James Davies will face each other this weekend. I think the last time they were on a rugby pitch together was as teamates at the Olympic Sevens in Rio, representing Team GB.

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Post by Pie on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 4:54 am

Pie wrote:Seems like England are taking everything and the kitchen sink out of this win over Wales as you'd expect from a side who cant perform when they need to against Wales in 6 Nations and RWC.

This is an unnecessary WUM that appears designed to do nothing other than try to incite a response. Cut it out. 

Just saw the Big Red Pen treatment absolutely hilarious. Why is this dealt with in that manner and yet Tighthead WUMS in every post with no Big Red Pen anywhere to be seen?? I wonder why Laugh

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Post by LondonTiger on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 7:02 am

Confirmed that Wilson has an injury - ribs.

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Post by BigTrevsbigmac on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 7:27 am

Sounds as though Curry, Underhill and Wilson should all be available for next week.

Slade potentially back for the Italy game

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Post by robbo277 on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 7:42 am

So we have 23 named and then:

Mako, Curry, Underhill, Wilson, Slade, Nowell with injury doubts

Leaving Watson and May (who could also be injured?) running the water on.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 7:46 am

I'm sure some of these players would be in contention was it the wc now rather than warm ups though. Jones seems to have taken the view that it's very much about the long term rather than the next game

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Post by LondonTiger on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 7:49 am

Anyone with even a hint of a knock is being rested. Makes sense.

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Post by BigTrevsbigmac on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 3:29 pm

Mako due to take some part in next weeks match to - good news

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Post by king_carlos on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 3:51 pm

BigTrevsbigmac wrote:Mako due to take some part in next weeks match to - good news
1.Marler 2.George 3.Sinckler 4.Itoje 5.Kruis 6.Curry 7.Underhill 8.Wilson
9.Youngs 10.Farrell 11.May 12.Tuilagi 13.Joseph 14.McConnochie 15.Watson

16.Singleton 17.Vunipola 18.Cole 19.Lawes 20.Ludlam 21.Heinz 22.Ford 23.Slade

Something like that next week perhaps? The Eddie tombola due another tumble.

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Post by robbo277 on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 4:19 pm

king_carlos wrote:
BigTrevsbigmac wrote:Mako due to take some part in next weeks match to - good news
1.Marler 2.George 3.Sinckler 4.Itoje 5.Kruis 6.Curry 7.Underhill 8.Wilson
9.Youngs 10.Farrell 11.May 12.Tuilagi 13.Joseph 14.McConnochie 15.Watson

16.Singleton 17.Vunipola 18.Cole 19.Lawes 20.Ludlam 21.Heinz 22.Ford 23.Slade

Something like that next week perhaps? The Eddie tombola due another tumble.

Nope, I refuse to play this game any more! He's just as likely to pick essentially the same team for a third week running. It's potentially disrespectful and Eddie would never say it (well, most coaches would never say it) but we don't have to peak for the first game of the World Cup. If someone like Curry isn't fit to play Ireland or Italy he can still use the USA game to get up to pace. We should beat them even below our best. As long as we're firing by the third weekend when we have our game against Argentina, that's when we need to be firing on all cylinders. So any doubts and I still wouldn't be worried about putting players in this week.

Good to hear that Mako is on his way back though. He will be a big player for us if we're to get into those latter stages.

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Post by king_carlos on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 4:37 pm

robbo277 wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
BigTrevsbigmac wrote:Mako due to take some part in next weeks match to - good news
1.Marler 2.George 3.Sinckler 4.Itoje 5.Kruis 6.Curry 7.Underhill 8.Wilson
9.Youngs 10.Farrell 11.May 12.Tuilagi 13.Joseph 14.McConnochie 15.Watson

16.Singleton 17.Vunipola 18.Cole 19.Lawes 20.Ludlam 21.Heinz 22.Ford 23.Slade

Something like that next week perhaps? The Eddie tombola due another tumble.

Nope, I refuse to play this game any more! He's just as likely to pick essentially the same team for a third week running. It's potentially disrespectful and Eddie would never say it (well, most coaches would never say it) but we don't have to peak for the first game of the World Cup. If someone like Curry isn't fit to play Ireland or Italy he can still use the USA game to get up to pace. We should beat them even below our best. As long as we're firing by the third weekend when we have our game against Argentina, that's when we need to be firing on all cylinders. So any doubts and I still wouldn't be worried about putting players in this week.

Good to hear that Mako is on his way back though. He will be a big player for us if we're to get into those latter stages.
A good point about England's schedule. Their, hopefully, more straightforward two group stage games in the first week then they will be looking to field close to full strength each weekend until eliminated.

If Jones is protecting key players then the top ones for me would be Farrell, Billy Vunipola, Youngs and Jamie George. Mako Vunipola is one of the best players in the squad but has excellent backup. Similar with May.

It's an England squad that I find very exciting but the fragility at full-back and lack of depth at 8 are just preventing me feeling hugely optimistic about the later stages. A solid set-piece and Farrell's boot should stand them in good stead for nervy knockout matches. Even then a lot of that set-piece strength sits on Jamie George's shoulders.

It feels like a case of the RWC coming a couple of years too early with Mercer, Hill, Dombrandt and Willis emerging in the backrow. I feel I've been saying that before World Cups for years with England though. Tom Rees is injured, if only Harry Ellis were fit, it's just too soon for Maro Itoje, etc.

The talent keeps coming through but just isn't quite converted into top level internationals. Hopefully the keys players, especially the test match Lions, in this squad can stand up when needed. In Underhill, Curry and Ludlam this squad does at least have plenty of breakdown nous going into a tournament usually won by defence.

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Post by Poorfour on Fri 16 Aug 2019, 11:47 pm

I think it will play out differently. England will have to play five matches against tier 1 teams in succession; it's very unlikely that they can do that with the same 23 players playing each week and still win.

If England's early matches go well, I suspect that Eddie will rotate the squad - possibly swapping things around completely for the Argentina and France games so that the key players are rested before the knockout stage. It's likely that England will be able to afford to lose the France game and still qualify, and they may have to take that risk so as not to burn out their most critical players.

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Post by robbo277 on Sat 17 Aug 2019, 7:02 am

I think Jonny May has taken a knock to the hip. In one of those inside the camp videos he has sn ice pack on it after training. Maybe that's not what's kept him out these two games but it would be consistent.

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Post by robbo277 on Sat 17 Aug 2019, 7:04 am

Poorfour

If we have qualified (or good as) by the time we're playing France I think he may rest anyone with knocks. I doubt we'd go all-change though and risk upsetting momentum.

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Post by kingelderfield on Sun 18 Aug 2019, 8:32 am

Just a warm up game.....yer
Players flogged......mayber
Injured players protected......yer
Same old rubbish Jones game plan.....yep
Keeping powder dry......don't buy that
Too much useless kicking wasting possession, giving quality opportunities to the opposition....same old rubbish from Ford anf Ferrelll....who is Francis?
Winning rugby played with ball in hand..... not by this england team.
Semi final.....not that far
Jones stays on.....
Rfu continues with obscene moneyatorised corporate bonus culture unconcerned about actual delivering a winning national side.....ofcourse jobs for the city boys
Game development beyond the privileged few.....waste of time just source the reducing talent pool on scholarships and maintain the veneer status quo mediocrity failure
England win the wc again....not this generation
Is the world game development stalling.....who gives duck!

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Sun 18 Aug 2019, 9:28 am

Francis is an inside centre and plays for Northampton.

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Post by LondonTiger on Sun 18 Aug 2019, 9:34 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Francis is an inside centre and plays for Northampton.

He knows that. He is just excited to be able to push his same old hackneyed views.

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Post by majesticimperialman on Sun 18 Aug 2019, 9:38 am

England need to find away of changing the game plan on the hoof. Wales worked out early on that when England have a line out in the Welsh half/near the line they ( England ) will be going for the catch and drive to the line, and stop it by making it a maul and getting the turn over.

 And yet England still kept doing it. why?

Teams like the All Blacks are able to play the game and change the game too get the better of the opposition, England do not seem able to do that.

Friendly or not England should of played to win. and not just  give players a chance to prove them selves good enough to be in the team/squad.

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Post by WELL-PAST-IT on Sun 18 Aug 2019, 9:50 am

England did play to win, just not well enough, although it would have been a draw but for a certain aberration by the ref.

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Post by LondonTiger on Sun 18 Aug 2019, 10:09 am

majesticimperialman wrote:England need to find away of changing the game plan on the hoof. Wales worked out early on that when England have a line out in the Welsh half/near the line they ( England ) will be going for the catch and drive to the line, and stop it by making it a maul and getting the turn over.

 And yet England still kept doing it. why?

Teams like the All Blacks are able to play the game and change the game too get the better of the opposition, England do not seem able to do that.

Friendly or not England should of played to win. and not just  give players a chance to prove them selves good enough to be in the team/squad.

While they were playing to win, the point of these games is preparing for the world cup. Eddie claimed there were other options available for close to the line, but that the team were under instruction not to show them. Quite possibly coach kidology, but just as there was far too much read into last week's big win (and too much praise handed out) there is too much being read into this defeat.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Sun 18 Aug 2019, 10:28 am

Sometimes hard to tell LT!
I think the big thing we've learned or at least reinforced for most of is the importance of 2 proper flankers one of which is an open side.

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Post by LondonTiger on Sun 18 Aug 2019, 11:01 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Sometimes hard to tell LT!
I think the big thing we've learned or at least reinforced for most of is the importance of 2 proper flankers one of which is an open side.

Yet all the noises are that Lawes will be on the flank for sides that have a linocut in future. So Eddie willing to play 2 7s against Wales who tend not to compete but not against the likes of Australia and NZ. 

As we see more of this team I do believe we can beat anyone, but do not believe we can win 5 matches in a row against Tier 1 opponents.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Sun 18 Aug 2019, 11:08 am

If we play lawes we have to drop vunipola imo. And I wouldn't do that if hes fit in a month of sundays.

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Post by robbo277 on Mon 19 Aug 2019, 7:25 am

So if you're Eddie Jones, how do you line up for the Ireland game? Do you start your bench players from this week?

Ignoring Singleton, that would give:

Marler, George, Sinckler, ... , Kruis,
Youngs, Farrell, ... Tuilagi

Forwards - Itoje has played the least rugby of the second rows, Underhill, Curry and Wilson should all be in contention if fit.
Backs - Slade and Nowell won't make it. May and McConnochie haven't yet featured so could be the starting wings? Possibly a chance for Watson at 15, and potentially Daly at 13?

Could then see Mako return on the bench and look to play more of a part against Italy in a couple of weeks.

That's probably how I'd line up for this test in any rate. I'm sure Eddie has his own ideas and we'll see what he goes with.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon 19 Aug 2019, 8:13 am

Presumably vunipola will be rested and so wilson will start along with underhill and curry if fit enough.

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon 19 Aug 2019, 8:50 am

Resting Billy is a hard one to decide upon. We have no like for like replacement in the squad and so we do not want to break him. However he is a player who is better when he gets a run of games, and we do not have a like for like player in the squad so replacing him changes the style of play. Also I would be wary of Underhill and Curry playing if we do not have the bulk of Billy between them.

Assuming they are fit to play Marler, Mako, George, Sinckler, Underhill, Curry, Wilson, Farrell, Manu, May & McConnochie all need significant game time (so do Slade and Nowell but we know they are not fit for Saturday). Some of them will have to start against Italy rather than against Ireland.

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