RWC final 19 - England v SA Match Thread - 02-11-2019 - Kick Off 09:00am

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Post by miaow on Fri Oct 18, 2019 4:58 am

First topic message reminder :

The big one. The Rugby World Cup Final.

ENGLAND

Elliot Daly; Anthony Watson, Manu Tuilagi, Owen Farrell, Jonny May, George Ford, Ben Youngs; Mako Vunipola, Jamie George, Kyle Sinckler, Maro Itoje, Courtney Lawes, Tom Curry, Sam Underhill, Billy Vunipola

Replacements: Luke Cowan-Dickie, Joe Marler, Dan Cole, George Kruis, Mark Wilson, Ben Spencer, Henry Slade, Jonathan Joseph

SOUTH AFRICA

Le Roux; Kolbe, Am, De Allende, Mapimpi; Pollard, De Klerk; Mtawarira, Mbonambi, Malherbe, Etzebeth, De Jager, Kolisi (capt), Du Toit, Vermeulen.

Replacements: Marx, Kitschoff, Koch, Snyman, Mostert, Louw, H Jantjies, Steyn

Venue: International Stadium, Yokohama
Referee: Jerome Garces
AR1: Romain Poite
AR2: Ben O'Keefe
TMO: Ben Skeen

Head to Head

42 Played 42
15 Won 25
25 Lost 15
2 Drawn 2

Recent Form

16 June 2012
Ellis Park, Johannesburg
36 – 27 to South Africa

23 June 2012
Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium,
Port Elizabeth
14 – 14 draw

24 November 2012
Twickenham, London
15 – 16 to South Africa

15 November 2014
Twickenham, London
28 – 31 to South Africa

12 November 2016
Twickenham, London
37 – 21 to England

9 June 2018
Ellis Park, Johannesburg
42 – 39 to South Africa

16 June 2018
Free State Stadium, Bloemfontein
23 – 12 to South Africa

23 June 2018
Newlands, Cape Town
10 – 25 to England

3 November 2018
Twickenham, London
12 – 11 to England


Last edited by miaow on Thu Oct 31, 2019 9:20 pm; edited 4 times in total

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Post by Hoonercat on Mon Oct 28, 2019 4:18 pm

BigTrevsbigmac wrote:Also in a typical Gatland anti English barb he suggests maybe England have already played their final.
Suggesting perhaps we can’t reproduce that sort o performance next Saturday.

This was put to  EJs and he replied, quite correctly, ‘ I hope Warren enjoys the 3rd 4th place play off’ !

I would imagine there's a fair few English fans who are also concerned that this might be the case (me for one), does that mean they're anti-English? Rolling Eyes

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Post by mikey_dragon on Mon Oct 28, 2019 4:35 pm

There are a few posters on here like FatTrev who make it extremely difficult to support England. Oh well.

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Post by BigTrevsbigmac on Mon Oct 28, 2019 4:36 pm

Hoonercat wrote:
BigTrevsbigmac wrote:Also in a typical Gatland anti English barb he suggests maybe England have already played their final.
Suggesting perhaps we can’t reproduce that sort o performance next Saturday.

This was put to  EJs and he replied, quite correctly, ‘ I hope Warren enjoys the 3rd 4th place play off’ !

I would imagine there's a fair few English fans who are also concerned that this might be the case (me for one), does that mean they're anti-English? Rolling Eyes

No maybe your right. These two have history for their sledging & I guess we all feed off of it. Gatland loves to mix it up a bit particularly if he’s having a dig at the English & I guess it went down well with Welsh fans.

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Post by Rinsure on Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:22 pm

According to The Guardian, Sinckler, Farrell and May are all in good shape to be fit for the final:

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2019/oct/28/england-eddie-jones-hits-back-warren-gatland-enjoy-third-place-play-off-rugby-world-cup

Good news. As people have mentioned above, losing Sinckler in particular would be a blow given what he brings ahead of Cole, and the lack of TH cover. I think Sinckler is the best tight-head in the World currently, and it's great news he's fit.

Obviously having Faz and may fit is great news too.

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Post by Soul Requiem on Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:26 pm

Jonny May is the most important of the three and his aerial ability will be vital in both defence and counter attack, I actually think we can get away with not having Farrell or Sinckler.

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:32 pm

Soul Requiem wrote:Jonny May is the most important of the three and his aerial ability will be vital in both defence and counter attack, I actually think we can get away with not having Farrell or Sinckler.

We only have two tightheads, so no Sinckler would be an issue.

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Post by Soul Requiem on Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:34 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
Soul Requiem wrote:Jonny May is the most important of the three and his aerial ability will be vital in both defence and counter attack, I actually think we can get away with not having Farrell or Sinckler.

We only have two tightheads, so no Sinckler would be an issue.

I'm assuming the fact he's not been replaced already means he's not a doubt for the game. Quite interesting that Cole played loosehead on occasion early in his career but Marler has never played tighthead.

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Post by TightHEAD on Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:57 pm

Any big screens in London showing the final?
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Post by BamBam on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:01 pm

BigTrevsbigmac wrote:Also in a typical Gatland anti English barb he suggests maybe England have already played their final.
Suggesting perhaps we can’t reproduce that sort o performance next Saturday.

This was put to  EJs and he replied, quite correctly, ‘ I hope Warren enjoys the 3rd 4th place play off’ !

Ha, just seen this. Is it ok to think that both of these comments are quite funny and accurate? Nothing wrong with a bit of verbal jousting

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:04 pm

BamBam wrote:
BigTrevsbigmac wrote:Also in a typical Gatland anti English barb he suggests maybe England have already played their final.
Suggesting perhaps we can’t reproduce that sort o performance next Saturday.

This was put to  EJs and he replied, quite correctly, ‘ I hope Warren enjoys the 3rd 4th place play off’ !

Ha, just seen this. Is it ok to think that both of these comments are quite funny and accurate? Nothing wrong with a bit of verbal jousting

And TBH any coaches comment needs to be taken into context, looking at the question asked. Gats and Jones are too old to change, and yeah kind of amusing from both of them.

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Post by TightHEAD on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:05 pm

Gatland is a muppet glad to see the back of him, also I think he should be removed from the Lions position as we need something better to beat the Boks and not a game plan built around aerial ping pong! Dull to watch, we deserve better.
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Post by Scottrf on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:06 pm

Can we draft in a scrum half who will actually be present at the base of rucks and can pass? Spencer straight in for the final?

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:07 pm

The Independent wrote:England boss Eddie Jones believes he will have all 31 players in his squad fit and available for the Rugby World Cup final, with Jonny May, Owen Farrell, Kyle Sinckler and Anthony Watson all expected to return to training on Tuesday.

Jones gave his squad the day off in Sunday following their momentous victory over New Zealand in last Saturday’s semi-final, before a reduced workload programme was deployed on Monday to enable their walking wounded to fully recover ahead of what will be the biggest game of their lives.

Both May and Farrell are expected to recover from dead legs suffered against the All Blacks, while Jones also confirmed that Sinckler and Watson are set to take part in training on Tuesday ahead of this Saturday’s final against South Africa.

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Post by BamBam on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:08 pm

TightHEAD wrote:Gatland is a muppet glad to see the back of him, also I think he should be removed from the Lions position as we need something better to beat the Boks and not a game plan built around aerial ping pong! Dull to watch, we deserve better.

Calm down dear

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Post by TightHEAD on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:12 pm

Why Bam,

Wales biggest ever game and Gatland reverted to a dull game plan base on kick chase, maybe he should have have come up with a better plan, how long has he been around?

What right has he got to have a dig at England, typical salty Kiwi.
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Post by Scottrf on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:14 pm

It was hardly a dig at England.

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Post by Soul Requiem on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:14 pm

TightHEAD wrote:Why Bam,

Wales biggest ever game and Gatland reverted to a dull game plan base on kick chase, maybe he should have have come up with a better plan, how long has he been around?

What right has he got to have a dig at England, typical salty Kiwi.

Give it a rest, enjoy the victory over New Zealand without having a dig at Wales.

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Post by BamBam on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:15 pm

That may be the case, but describing him a as a muppet you're glad to see the back of and a typical salty Kiwi is why I said calm down

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Post by TightHEAD on Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:58 pm

Its a shame we'll have to see his negative tactics vs SA in two years time but hey ho lets get back to the main event.
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Post by miaow on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:08 pm

BigTrevsbigmac wrote:Also in a typical Gatland anti English barb he suggests maybe England have already played their final.
Suggesting perhaps we can’t reproduce that sort o performance next Saturday.

This was put to  EJs and he replied, quite correctly, ‘ I hope Warren enjoys the 3rd 4th place play off’ !

It's fair points from both coaches. Unfortunately Gatland seemed content/happy/trusting that Wales would grind their way to the final. The fact they probably should have won that in the last 10 minutes given the field position they gained is perhaps testament to how close they were. That comment to me suggests he had one eye on England tbh - he mentioned them quite a lot in the post match, about how it was his first game and would have been his last etc. Think he trusted the players to get the job done against the Boks...naive, perhaps, but an admirable winner's mentality as well...but only if it works. EJ obviously doesn't need to say anymore than that.

For me - and it's not WUMming - I do question what England's response will be now and I cannot see them coming close to the level they showed at the weeked. NZ offer a good blueprint: stunning v Ireland one week, then taken apart the next. Ok, ok - I get the answers already. NZ weren't poor, England were just too good.

But then you look at the trend in rugby in the last few years.

SA beat NZ earlier this year when they had a tactical gameplan to work them out. Australia did the same, aided with a red card. Ireland did the same in Dublin. All game where NZ seemed far ahead of the opposition yet lost because their opponents had prepared to beat them more comprehensively than the favourites had prepared to win. Having sacrificed a 'big' performance themselves - against an Argentina or an Italy for SA and Ireland respectively - just scraping past those opponents allowed these teams to then focus on 'the one'. The work is mostly done off the field, starting with coaches, and picking them apart and hoping it comes off by asking the team to put everything in to this one game.

And what about other big performances against favourites? Wales scraped through the 6Ns and then put in a tactical masterclass to beat England in the MS - tiring them out, nullifying their explosivity and kicking game with high ball in play time, keeping in touch on the scoreboard, and then pouncing late once the groundwork had been laid in the previous 65 minutes. England was their 'big one' in the 6Ns and they won a Grand Slam on the back of it. Though they didn't suffer the same fate, the fact they were unable to do the same to SA - a poorer team than England - yet lost is telling. Scotland managed to do the same - they put in a 'big one' v England in 2018, worked out their gameplan, and a bit like Ireland, once that 'big one' was played, other teams were offered a blueprint to play against them, and of course England went on a losing run as a result. England effectively did the same to Ireland earlier this year to set the wheels in motion for their decline.

NZ got their 'big one' wrong. They thought it was Ireland because Ireland had beaten them - the only 'true' judge of merit to many Kiwis. Clearly, something happened between 2018 and 2019 - namely, teams worked out how to beat the Irish. England successfully took apart their gameplan and the Irish players clearly never trusted or fully believed in the fairly negative, controlling tactics Schmidt had made them believe so thoroughly in in quite the same way as they had the year before. By the end of the 6Ns, they were outplayed and nearly nilled by Wales, thumped in the warm ups by nearly 60 against the English, and then of course beaten by Japan, before beating pulverised by the ABs. But as much as Ireland got destroyed by NZ - still the best rugby players in the world - picking them as their 'big' opponents to smash, this was not the same Irish team that beat NZ in 2018. England were quite clearly NZ's 'big one' and most people could have told you that before the QFs - the fact the ABs got that horribly, horribly wrong has cost Hansen and his team the RWC. It would still have been an epic game had NZ realised England were the real danger - with England knowing NZ was their 'big one' andn putting in the performance they did - but if both teams prioritised each other, you'd back NZ to get the job done and win.

So the question, now, is do England have another performance, or have they played their final?

It's a valid question to ask - not least because the Boks haven't.

SA has played England 4 times in the last 15 or so months. This meeting will be the 5th. These 2 teams have played each other more than any other tier 1 teams in that time period, I believe: or at least equal to the Rugby Championship teams of SA and NZ who met in the RWC groups.

Does Rassie have a 'big one' gameplan for England? If he does, I think they'll win. And that's the risk for England - as much as the danger is their own prep and performances not being ready or focused on an opponent different to the one they'd built a gameplan around beating (Daly at 15 looking more and more like he was specifically picked and retained despite his failings for that purpose), there's also the added, second risk of the other team having a big performance in store.

I feel like rugby has become like NFL in that regard: if a team has put serious effort in to working out your tactics, and is decent enough that they can mitigate some (but not huge) defecits in talent/power/experience, they can beat and even comfortably beat an opponent.

The question is: have the Boks done that prep? Have they shown they have that tactical masterclass in the locker? And have they shown the ability or potential that the players can execute it with enough accuracy?

Honestly, so far, no. They haven't shown any of that. But then that's the thing with these 'big' performances - they tend to come after some fairly underwhelming rugby, almost out of the blue.

Big questions all round. Makes for an intriguing week.

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Post by miaow on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:10 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
Soul Requiem wrote:Jonny May is the most important of the three and his aerial ability will be vital in both defence and counter attack, I actually think we can get away with not having Farrell or Sinckler.

We only have two tightheads, so no Sinckler would be an issue.

Also Farrell is the captain/legend/leader...

But in all seriousness, Farrell is vital to England and absolutely the emotional heartbeat of the team.

Both are more important than May when you consider the relative paucity of options behind Sinckler and Farrell in comparison to May, who can be replaced by Nowell or Joe C if needed.

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Post by miaow on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:12 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
The Independent wrote:England boss Eddie Jones believes he will have all 31 players in his squad fit and available for the Rugby World Cup final, with Jonny May, Owen Farrell, Kyle Sinckler and Anthony Watson all expected to return to training on Tuesday.

Jones gave his squad the day off in Sunday following their momentous victory over New Zealand in last Saturday’s semi-final, before a reduced workload programme was deployed on Monday to enable their walking wounded to fully recover ahead of what will be the biggest game of their lives.

Both May and Farrell are expected to recover from dead legs suffered against the All Blacks, while Jones also confirmed that Sinckler and Watson are set to take part in training on Tuesday ahead of this Saturday’s final against South Africa.

Kidology at this point. Why would he say anything other than all his players are fit even if they're touch and go. Have to wait and see.

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Post by Old Man on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:18 pm

Though they didn't suffer the same fate, the fact they were unable to do the same to SA - a poorer team than England

Perhaps we should wait till the final before judging who is better?

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Post by lostinwales on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:21 pm

You won't agree but May has made his name one of the first on the team sheet despite being in the single position with the most competition and also the one that is normally easiest to change.

Both Nowell and our resident Fijian are excellent players who offer their own unique threats. However nobody kick chases like May. No other England player is as good in the air or covers as much grass, and the pace he offers when he hasn't got a dead leg is enough to scare any defense.

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Post by mikey_dragon on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:26 pm

Is it too soon to start a Lions thread then... English and Welsh Lions Wink

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Post by miaow on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:42 pm

Old Man wrote:Though they didn't suffer the same fate, the fact they were unable to do the same to SA - a poorer team than England

Perhaps we should wait till the final before judging who is better?

Not really. NZ are still better rugby players than England despite losing. This English team looks better than SA and has done so far. It's a fair point. Doesn't mean SA can't win a one off game, but that also doesn't mean SA are the better team even if they win the RWC.

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Post by Poorfour on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:45 pm

Historically, raising your game to beat the All Blacks has left teams with not enough in the tank for the next game. I don’t think that will be the case for this England side.

I don’t think the likes of Curry, Underhill and Itoje are going to struggle to raise their game for next week. Ford’s on a high plateau of form. Farrell played 50 minutes against the All Blacks with an injury and gave nothing away.
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Post by lostinwales on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:46 pm

How do you define better? Just because they wear black doesn't make them into superheroes even though so many of their predecessors have been the best around.

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Post by miaow on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:48 pm

Better skills, better understanding of the game, better adaptability and range of abilities. NZ are world leaders for a reason - they understand the sport far, far better than your average European because they live for it, play it in a 'pure' way growing up etc. That translates to the big stage - but it didn't translate well enough at the weekend. The team itself is also the coache, the fitness, the analysts etc. and England clearly trumped them there. But overall? Play 10 games back to back? I'm backing NZ over England and England just marginally over SA.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:51 pm

I'm still left looking at the pack and thinking are nz better than us there anymore? A fully fit rettalick would make a huge impact. I dont fear any of the back row combos. Savea is class. Read was. The rest? Meh.

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Post by dyrewolfe on Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:57 pm

Absolutely gobsmacked by England's performance against the All Blacks.

Decidedly unimpressed by the SA - Wales semi-final...was like watching England 15-20 years ago.

If England can deliver another performance anywhere near the level of the NZ match, the trophy is in the bag.


Still expect the Angry Kiwis to win the 3rd place play-off. Think Wales have too many injury problems to be at their best.
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Post by lostinwales on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:02 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:I'm still left looking at the pack and thinking are nz better than us there anymore? A fully fit rettalick would make a huge impact. I dont fear any of the back row combos. Savea is class. Read was. The rest? Meh.

The NZ front row were powderpuff. I obviously do have an England bias but I'd go with Itoje over Retallick on current form, and Whitelock was nowhere.

The only NZ forward who actually showed up well was Savea, and he still was not as good as Underhill and Curry.

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Post by Soul Requiem on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:03 pm

miaow wrote:Better skills, better understanding of the game, better adaptability and range of abilities. NZ are world leaders for a reason - they understand the sport far, far better than your average European because they live for it, play it in a 'pure' way growing up etc. That translates to the big stage - but it didn't translate well enough at the weekend. The team itself is also the coache, the fitness, the analysts etc. and England clearly trumped them there. But overall? Play 10 games back to back? I'm backing NZ over England and England just marginally over SA.

Yet got thoroughly dominated for the whole 80 minutes.

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Post by TightHEAD on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:07 pm

At the moment the score is 0-0.

Eddie is right we haven't achieved anything yet. SA are deservedly in the final and are the current rugby championship champs plus they had an easy Semi final. We will prepare for them in the correct way.

The job is not done.


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Post by miaow on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:07 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:I'm still left looking at the pack and thinking are nz better than us there anymore? A fully fit rettalick would make a huge impact. I dont fear any of the back row combos. Savea is class. Read was. The rest? Meh.

You say that, but take any of those All Blacks, drop them in the English Premiership alongside the England stars, and in 12 months you'd think of them as at least the equals if not better than the English players. Codie Taylor and Dane Coles are considerably better hookers than George, for starters. Take nothing - and I mean nothing - away from England's win yesterday, but NZ are not 'meh'. They're weaker than they've probably been for 15 years, but they're still the best rugby players in the world.

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Post by Scottrf on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:12 pm

miaow wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:I'm still left looking at the pack and thinking are nz better than us there anymore? A fully fit rettalick would make a huge impact. I dont fear any of the back row combos. Savea is class. Read was. The rest? Meh.

You say that, but take any of those All Blacks, drop them in the English Premiership alongside the England stars, and in 12 months you'd think of them as at least the equals if not better than the English players. Codie Taylor and Dane Coles are considerably better hookers than George, for starters. Take nothing - and I mean nothing - away from England's win yesterday, but NZ are not 'meh'. They're weaker than they've probably been for 15 years, but they're still the best rugby players in the world.

Some of them are, some are not. England's locks are the best in the world. Taylor and Coles are not considerably better than George, nor are their props. Super Rugby is better for handling, running play etc. But New Zealand can't put in a defensive performance like England did. Their backs are still better but pack, no.

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Post by LondonTiger on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:14 pm

TightHEAD wrote:At the moment the score is 0-0.

Eddie is right we haven't achieved anything yet. SA are deservedly in the final and are the current rugby championship champs plus they had an easy Semi final. We will prepare for them in the correct way.


Cannot agree that their semi was easy. It was different, but still pretty bruising and one day less to recover.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:16 pm

George is class. Hes shown it for a while. While I say meh I would like to clarify that's at international level. I'm sure the majority would go great in the prem.

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Post by Soul Requiem on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:17 pm

TightHEAD wrote:At the moment the score is 0-0.

Eddie is right we haven't achieved anything yet. SA are deservedly in the final and are the current rugby championship champs plus they had an easy Semi final. We will prepare for them in the correct way.

The job is not done.

Winning with a 76th minute penalty is easy? Stop the trolling.

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Post by englandglory4ever on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:17 pm

Faf De Klerk is the biggest threat to England. Nullify his game and we will win. He's tricky and abrasive and gets the whole SA show on the road. England will need to mark him very closely.

People ask have England got another performance like that? The answer is an emphatic "YES". They showed what they're about against Australia and put 40 points on a very good Australian side who were desperate to win. The following week they went even better against NZ and almost nilled them but for an overthrown lineout. There's no doubt they can do it again.


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Post by TightHEAD on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:19 pm

Easy in the sense that it could have gone to extra time, it didn't.

Also I didn't think it was that bruising, Wales clearly had players on the field who were less than 85/90%. Both teams spent most of the game preparing for scrums and lineouts, I bet a thew of their necks are aching having to watch so many high balls in the air!
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Post by LondonTiger on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:23 pm

SA made as many tackles as England did.

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Post by lostinwales on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:25 pm

miaow wrote:Better skills, better understanding of the game, better adaptability and range of abilities. NZ are world leaders for a reason - they understand the sport far, far better than your average European because they live for it, play it in a 'pure' way growing up etc. That translates to the big stage - but it didn't translate well enough at the weekend. The team itself is also the coache, the fitness, the analysts etc. and England clearly trumped them there. But overall? Play 10 games back to back? I'm backing NZ over England and England just marginally over SA.

It's just human nature

We rate our own team high and have inbuilt bias about other teams, depending on how well they are performing. The bias is strongest with the All Blacks - because as a team they have dominated the sport.

I have not been watching them much beyond the last couple of games but this current version are decent all the way through but I am struggling to see them as more than that. They are better than the sum of their parts, but individually they are actually human. Their best players are showing their mileage and the young guns are still too raw. Also Worth mentioning that they have lost several games in the last year. It has not just been a one off thing.

I don't see game breaking players. I can't remember the last time we have played them and I have looked at their wingers and not really seen much in the way of danger. Bridge just seems very average. Reece is better but he seems to be a good all rounder rather than a serious running threat. The fly half is good but inexperienced, and it showed when things went wrong with the forwards. He may turn into something special but it is not so easy to look good behind a retreating pack.

This current England squad feels much more like the real thing. Of course the biggest problem will be maintaining the current level of performance, and we could easily end up looking stupid after next weekend. But I do think the quality of the individual players needs to be reassessed given their performance levels.




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Post by Rinsure on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:27 pm

englandglory4ever wrote:Faf De Klerk is the biggest threat to England. Nullify his game and we will win. He's tricky and abrasive and gets the whole SA show on the road. England will need to mark him very closely.

I'd be inclined to agree with this. He's the one operator in the SA side I would happily poach for England. Also punches way above his weight in defence (recall him driving one Nathan Hughes back some metres on an occasion).

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Post by lostinwales on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:28 pm

Scottrf wrote:
miaow wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:I'm still left looking at the pack and thinking are nz better than us there anymore? A fully fit rettalick would make a huge impact. I dont fear any of the back row combos. Savea is class. Read was. The rest? Meh.

You say that, but take any of those All Blacks, drop them in the English Premiership alongside the England stars, and in 12 months you'd think of them as at least the equals if not better than the English players. Codie Taylor and Dane Coles are considerably better hookers than George, for starters. Take nothing - and I mean nothing - away from England's win yesterday, but NZ are not 'meh'. They're weaker than they've probably been for 15 years, but they're still the best rugby players in the world.

Some of them are, some are not. England's locks are the best in the world. Taylor and Coles are not considerably better than George, nor are their props. Super Rugby is better for handling, running play etc. But New Zealand can't put in a defensive performance like England did. Their backs are still better but pack, no.

Some of their backs. Bridge and Reece vs May and Watson?

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Post by TightHEAD on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:28 pm

LondonTiger wrote:SA made as many tackles as England did.

..................and.

As already stated I don't believe Wales were 100% fit, the Kiwis were a lot more physical in contact than what Wales were. SA didn't have to empty the tank and just Like England to beat their semi final opponent in the end.


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Post by miaow on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:29 pm

Scottrf wrote:England's locks are the best in the world. Taylor and Coles are not considerably better than George

Just your opinion, man.

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Post by miaow on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:31 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:George is class. Hes shown it for a while. While I say meh I would like to clarify that's at international level. I'm sure the majority would go great in the prem.

Na, they're only 'meh' by NZ standards, which are higher than anyone else's. If England had had NZ's tournamnt - destroyed Ireland and then lost out in the manner NZ did in the semis - you wouln't call them 'meh'. You're holding the ABs to higher standards, for obvious reasons.

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Post by TightHEAD on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:32 pm

Did Ireland turn up to the RWC?

No, they were a spent force a year ago relying on Sexton. Who is done IMHO.
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Post by miaow on Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:34 pm

Irrelevant.

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