Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

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Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Rugby Spectator on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 4:30 pm

This one is quite simple, the Rugby Spectator team are looking for your views on who Declan Kidney should start at 10 during the Rugby World Cup for Ireland. Our columnist Steve Manning is going for Sexton, see the full story below........

http://www.rugbyspectator.com/2011/07/irelands-first-choice-fly-half-ogara-sexton/

Who would you go for and why?

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Thomond on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 4:35 pm

Sexton. He offers more to the team gives our backs a good platform to operate and is a decent running threat. His defence is solid while his kicking may not be as good as ROG it is still improving. ROG will still see significant game time as Sexton still as a lot to learn and ROG has done it all.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Boyne on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 4:37 pm

Just got this from your article...

"Wallace will hopefully be left in Ulster (More on this in the next article)."

Be prepared for a barrage. I agree with you tho..

Sexton for me. Let ROG have Russia and bring him on if we are being murdered / murdering someone...

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Boyne on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 4:39 pm

"The Others


Ireland will bring two out and out 10s to New Zealand. Their back up, if one gets injured, is Paddy Wallace. Now, there are divided opinions on Wallace as a centre, but a 10 he is not. Some people, perhaps with poor eyesight, think Wallace is a good distributor of the ball and that entitles him to play at stand-off in emergency cases. They are wrong. I’m not going into the specifics as to why, because Heir Editor doesn’t have the space, but in any case if Wallace does end up in the out half role, Ireland may as well forfeit the match. Without O’Gara or Sexton on the field, the whole side will be on the back foot and you’d fancy even a USA side to run them close."

Ho ho! That wont win you any mates. Agree, again.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Thomond on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 4:40 pm

Notch will be pretty peed off with those Paddy Wallace comments despite the fact that they are mostly fact.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by AsLongAsBut100ofUs on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 4:44 pm


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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by rodders on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 4:50 pm

Thomond wrote:Notch will be pretty peed off with those Paddy Wallace comments despite the fact that they are mostly fact.

Actually they're not. They are totally nonsence. I doubt very much that anyone is going to argue that Wallace is a great out half but this idiot manning is missing the point totally.

If either ROG or Sexton get a short term injury, we will need someone to cover fly half on the bench. Wallace may not be good enough to play 80 mins of international rugby at 10 against a top side but he may just be good enough to come on and get us through a game if we are stuck. We may need someone to cover the position in training as well. Wallace has been around the squad and knows all the drills and is only player capable of stepping in if we have a crisis.

To answer the original question I'd start with Sexton any day of the week and twice on sundays.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Rugby Spectator on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 4:52 pm


Sorry new to the Forum and the 606v2 boys asked us to post a link to the odd article in here for discussion, so didn't see that it had already been discussed. If anyone has any new points though, love to hear them

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Rugby Spectator on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 4:58 pm

roddersm wrote:
Thomond wrote:Notch will be pretty peed off with those Paddy Wallace comments despite the fact that they are mostly fact.

Actually they're not. They are totally nonsence. I doubt very much that anyone is going to argue that Wallace is a great out half but this idiot manning is missing the point totally.

If either ROG or Sexton get a short term injury, we will need someone to cover fly half on the bench. Wallace may not be good enough to play 80 mins of international rugby at 10 against a top side but he may just be good enough to come on and get us through a game if we are stuck. We may need someone to cover the position in training as well. Wallace has been around the squad and knows all the drills and is only player capable of stepping in if we have a crisis.

To answer the original question I'd start with Sexton any day of the week and twice on sundays.

That's fair enough if you disagree. He is the man writing about all things Ireland for us, so I will pass on your thoughts.

No real need to call him an idiot though. Let's try and keep things constructive.

Completely take your point on the issue though. Would be a pretty major crisis if both got injured and Wallace wouldn't get Ireland very far if forced to start games, I think that was Steve's point. However, you are right, he may be able to do a job for 10-20 mins off the bench.

If we were talking about England, god only knows who we would slot in at 10 if Flood and Wilko got injured, Mike Tindall?????! At least Wallace isn't anywhere near that awful at distributing!

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Portnoy on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:00 pm

If Ireland don't pick Sexton the it really would be a travesty.

Equally not picking O'Gara (if fit) as a replacement would be foolhardy.

Like Flood and Wilkinson for England, it's that mix of talented youth and experience.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by pete (buachaill on eirne) on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:10 pm

Rugby Spectator-

We've been doing a series of articles on each irish position so if you want to send the lad who will be doing the Irish artcicles this way all he has to do is scribble in "irish" into the search abr at the top right and he will see a series of

606v2 picks the Irish Rwc squad: Props
606v2 picks the Irish Rwc squad: Hookers

etc all the way through the team. A lot of the Irish fans on 606 posted there and for the msot part (some squabbling aside) it's pretty good analytical stuff.

OK

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by valjester on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:11 pm

Rugby Spectator wrote:
roddersm wrote:
Thomond wrote:Notch will be pretty peed off with those Paddy Wallace comments despite the fact that they are mostly fact.

Actually they're not. They are totally nonsence. I doubt very much that anyone is going to argue that Wallace is a great out half but this idiot manning is missing the point totally.

If either ROG or Sexton get a short term injury, we will need someone to cover fly half on the bench. Wallace may not be good enough to play 80 mins of international rugby at 10 against a top side but he may just be good enough to come on and get us through a game if we are stuck. We may need someone to cover the position in training as well. Wallace has been around the squad and knows all the drills and is only player capable of stepping in if we have a crisis.

To answer the original question I'd start with Sexton any day of the week and twice on sundays.

That's fair enough if you disagree. He is the man writing about all things Ireland for us, so I will pass on your thoughts.

No real need to call him an idiot though. Let's try and keep things constructive.

Completely take your point on the issue though. Would be a pretty major crisis if both got injured and Wallace wouldn't get Ireland very far if forced to start games, I think that was Steve's point. However, you are right, he may be able to do a job for 10-20 mins off the bench.

If we were talking about England, god only knows who we would slot in at 10 if Flood and Wilko got injured, Mike Tindall?????! At least Wallace isn't anywhere near that awful at distributing!

No need for him to call for people to get their eyesight tested. Wallace has better distribution than any other Irish back and would do fine against russia or usa at 10. If needed for 10 or 15 minutes against aus he would be fine. In truth if sexton is injured Ireland's chance are going to take a hit.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by WillyGilly on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:13 pm

Thomond wrote:Notch will be pretty peed off with those Paddy Wallace comments despite the fact that they are mostly fact.

Ah but are they?

Wallace gets a hell of a lot of stick from all quarters and the majority of it is unwarranted, I am sick to death defending him from Southern propaganda who seek to divert attention away from the failings of others, and focus solely on what they perceive as an easier target. Manning quite rightly says that life will be difficult with Wallace at 10, given he is a centre. The distribution point is absolute horseshit, I'll be intrigued to see how he justifies that. But stemming on from that previous point I want to make 2 quick ones.

1. If Wallace is such a poor player and offers so little to cover at 10, who was it that sat on the bench in case ROG got injured in the pre Sexton era? He rarely played albeit but if he's so poor why weren't we playing or blooding, well to put it bluntly, anyone else.

2. If Wallace is left at home who do we take as cover as third fly half? Keatley? No thanks, nowhere close to international level yet, and personally I doubt if he will be. IH? Marginally better but hands off we need him at Ulster. TOL? In the name of the holy virgin Mary please no. McFadden? See previous.

Oh and btw if 'ROG ticks all the boxes that you could look for in an international 10' why do I get so bloody terrified if someone runs straight at him. Defense essentially. A point which is then picked up on in the cons section. Well he cleary doesn't tick every box then does he Steve.

Overall though I'd agree with his prognosis. ROG will be on the bench but should start at least one of the games and to be honest I might be tempted to bring him on earlier in the Aussie match if it's tight so as maybe to close the game out, slot over the odd touchline penalty, pin them back in their own half etc.

This won't be the last time I've to defend our Paddy will it...


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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Rugby Spectator on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:15 pm

valjester wrote:
Rugby Spectator wrote:
roddersm wrote:
Thomond wrote:Notch will be pretty peed off with those Paddy Wallace comments despite the fact that they are mostly fact.

Actually they're not. They are totally nonsence. I doubt very much that anyone is going to argue that Wallace is a great out half but this idiot manning is missing the point totally.

If either ROG or Sexton get a short term injury, we will need someone to cover fly half on the bench. Wallace may not be good enough to play 80 mins of international rugby at 10 against a top side but he may just be good enough to come on and get us through a game if we are stuck. We may need someone to cover the position in training as well. Wallace has been around the squad and knows all the drills and is only player capable of stepping in if we have a crisis.

To answer the original question I'd start with Sexton any day of the week and twice on sundays.

That's fair enough if you disagree. He is the man writing about all things Ireland for us, so I will pass on your thoughts.

No real need to call him an idiot though. Let's try and keep things constructive.

Completely take your point on the issue though. Would be a pretty major crisis if both got injured and Wallace wouldn't get Ireland very far if forced to start games, I think that was Steve's point. However, you are right, he may be able to do a job for 10-20 mins off the bench.

If we were talking about England, god only knows who we would slot in at 10 if Flood and Wilko got injured, Mike Tindall?????! At least Wallace isn't anywhere near that awful at distributing!

No need for him to call for people to get their eyesight tested. Wallace has better distribution than any other Irish back and would do fine against russia or usa at 10. If needed for 10 or 15 minutes against aus he would be fine. In truth if sexton is injured Ireland's chance are going to take a hit.

Ha! Fair point fella, people in glass houses and all that! Yep it's true, anyone that loses their first choice 10 is going to suffer a big hit to their RWC chances, let's just hope it doesn't happen so we can see how good Sexton is at the highest level.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Rugby Spectator on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:18 pm

pete (buachaill on eirne) wrote:Rugby Spectator-

We've been doing a series of articles on each irish position so if you want to send the lad who will be doing the Irish artcicles this way all he has to do is scribble in "irish" into the search abr at the top right and he will see a series of

606v2 picks the Irish Rwc squad: Props
606v2 picks the Irish Rwc squad: Hookers

etc all the way through the team. A lot of the Irish fans on 606 posted there and for the msot part (some squabbling aside) it's pretty good analytical stuff.

OK

Thanks very much Pete, I will send Steve in that direction. Cheers :-)

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by valjester on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:28 pm

WillyGilly wrote:

Wallace gets a hell of a lot of stick from all quarters and the majority of it is unwarranted, I am sick to death defending him from Southern propaganda who seek to divert attention away from the failings of others, and focus solely on what they perceive as an easier target. Manning quite rightly says that life will be difficult with Wallace at 10, given he is a centre. The distribution point is absolute horseshit, I'll be intrigued to see how he justifies that. But stemming on from that previous point I want to make 2 quick ones.

1. If Wallace is such a poor player and offers so little to cover at 10, who was it that sat on the bench in case ROG got injured in the pre Sexton era? He rarely played albeit but if he's so poor why weren't we playing or blooding, well to put it bluntly, anyone else.

2. If Wallace is left at home who do we take as cover as third fly half? Keatley? No thanks, nowhere close to international level yet, and personally I doubt if he will be. IH? Marginally better but hands off we need him at Ulster. TOL? In the name of the holy virgin Mary please no. McFadden? See previous.

Oh and btw if 'ROG ticks all the boxes that you could look for in an international 10' why do I get so bloody terrified if someone runs straight at him. Defense essentially. A point which is then picked up on in the cons section. Well he cleary doesn't tick every box then does he Steve.

Overall though I'd agree with his prognosis. ROG will be on the bench but should start at least one of the games and to be honest I might be tempted to bring him on earlier in the Aussie match if it's tight so as maybe to close the game out, slot over the odd touchline penalty, pin them back in their own half etc.

This won't be the last time I've to defend our Paddy will it...


I agree with you on the wallace points but I think you're being harsh on keatley, he certainly has the potential to play international rugby and hopefully will prove in time that he is good enough. Ihump is the best running 10 in the country but I will despair if I ever see him in a green jersey. There are times when he refuses to tackle, for all the stick rog gets at least he never gets out of the way. If a team wants to run at rog they are more than likely going to be met by wally standing there or another back rower, the same way if Ireland try to run at cooper they will find pocock there.

Tbh at this stage sexton is just as likely to do any of these and he is a better defender so if its tight I'd be inclined to leave him on especially as he has a longer range than rog so if there was a long penalty to win it, sexton is more likely to have the distance.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Looseheaded on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:30 pm

Sexton for me. He can tackle... Or atleast he can do a better job of it than O'Doormat. I like that in a rugby player.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Cari on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:38 pm

Both! Wink

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by WillyGilly on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:39 pm

valjester wrote:
WillyGilly wrote:

Wallace gets a hell of a lot of stick from all quarters and the majority of it is unwarranted, I am sick to death defending him from Southern propaganda who seek to divert attention away from the failings of others, and focus solely on what they perceive as an easier target. Manning quite rightly says that life will be difficult with Wallace at 10, given he is a centre. The distribution point is absolute horseshit, I'll be intrigued to see how he justifies that. But stemming on from that previous point I want to make 2 quick ones.

1. If Wallace is such a poor player and offers so little to cover at 10, who was it that sat on the bench in case ROG got injured in the pre Sexton era? He rarely played albeit but if he's so poor why weren't we playing or blooding, well to put it bluntly, anyone else.

2. If Wallace is left at home who do we take as cover as third fly half? Keatley? No thanks, nowhere close to international level yet, and personally I doubt if he will be. IH? Marginally better but hands off we need him at Ulster. TOL? In the name of the holy virgin Mary please no. McFadden? See previous.

Oh and btw if 'ROG ticks all the boxes that you could look for in an international 10' why do I get so bloody terrified if someone runs straight at him. Defense essentially. A point which is then picked up on in the cons section. Well he cleary doesn't tick every box then does he Steve.

Overall though I'd agree with his prognosis. ROG will be on the bench but should start at least one of the games and to be honest I might be tempted to bring him on earlier in the Aussie match if it's tight so as maybe to close the game out, slot over the odd touchline penalty, pin them back in their own half etc.

This won't be the last time I've to defend our Paddy will it...


I agree with you on the wallace points but I think you're being harsh on keatley, he certainly has the potential to play international rugby and hopefully will prove in time that he is good enough. Ihump is the best running 10 in the country but I will despair if I ever see him in a green jersey. There are times when he refuses to tackle, for all the stick rog gets at least he never gets out of the way. If a team wants to run at rog they are more than likely going to be met by wally standing there or another back rower, the same way if Ireland try to run at cooper they will find pocock there.

Tbh at this stage sexton is just as likely to do any of these and he is a better defender so if its tight I'd be inclined to leave him on especially as he has a longer range than rog so if there was a long penalty to win it, sexton is more likely to have the distance.

Perhaps I am being a bit harsh on Keatley. Joining Munster will certainly improve him in all aspects of his game. I can't see him being anything other than second fiddle to Sexton in the next 5ish years. Equally though I think you're being a bit harsh on IH. People seem to forget out first choice 10/12 axis is IH/Wallace, and with the reputation they have you'd think all teams would just run at that line as target número uno.

I've spent a lot of time shouting at ROG over the years, largely cos he's hails from Munster, but there's no player I'd rather see lining up a pressure kick.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by valjester on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:43 pm

WillyGilly wrote:
valjester wrote:
WillyGilly wrote:

Wallace gets a hell of a lot of stick from all quarters and the majority of it is unwarranted, I am sick to death defending him from Southern propaganda who seek to divert attention away from the failings of others, and focus solely on what they perceive as an easier target. Manning quite rightly says that life will be difficult with Wallace at 10, given he is a centre. The distribution point is absolute horseshit, I'll be intrigued to see how he justifies that. But stemming on from that previous point I want to make 2 quick ones.

1. If Wallace is such a poor player and offers so little to cover at 10, who was it that sat on the bench in case ROG got injured in the pre Sexton era? He rarely played albeit but if he's so poor why weren't we playing or blooding, well to put it bluntly, anyone else.

2. If Wallace is left at home who do we take as cover as third fly half? Keatley? No thanks, nowhere close to international level yet, and personally I doubt if he will be. IH? Marginally better but hands off we need him at Ulster. TOL? In the name of the holy virgin Mary please no. McFadden? See previous.

Oh and btw if 'ROG ticks all the boxes that you could look for in an international 10' why do I get so bloody terrified if someone runs straight at him. Defense essentially. A point which is then picked up on in the cons section. Well he cleary doesn't tick every box then does he Steve.

Overall though I'd agree with his prognosis. ROG will be on the bench but should start at least one of the games and to be honest I might be tempted to bring him on earlier in the Aussie match if it's tight so as maybe to close the game out, slot over the odd touchline penalty, pin them back in their own half etc.

This won't be the last time I've to defend our Paddy will it...


I agree with you on the wallace points but I think you're being harsh on keatley, he certainly has the potential to play international rugby and hopefully will prove in time that he is good enough. Ihump is the best running 10 in the country but I will despair if I ever see him in a green jersey. There are times when he refuses to tackle, for all the stick rog gets at least he never gets out of the way. If a team wants to run at rog they are more than likely going to be met by wally standing there or another back rower, the same way if Ireland try to run at cooper they will find pocock there.

Tbh at this stage sexton is just as likely to do any of these and he is a better defender so if its tight I'd be inclined to leave him on especially as he has a longer range than rog so if there was a long penalty to win it, sexton is more likely to have the distance.

Perhaps I am being a bit harsh on Keatley. Joining Munster will certainly improve him in all aspects of his game. I can't see him being anything other than second fiddle to Sexton in the next 5ish years. Equally though I think you're being a bit harsh on IH. People seem to forget out first choice 10/12 axis is IH/Wallace, and with the reputation they have you'd think all teams would just run at that line as target número uno.

I've spent a lot of time shouting at ROG over the years, largely cos he's hails from Munster, but there's no player I'd rather see lining up a pressure kick.

I reserve my right to be harsh on humpreys due to him running alongside a player and instead of tackling him deciding to fall on the ground. He has on too many occasions decided it couldnt be bothered tackling in the 'small' games. Keatley v sexton debate won't matter anyways, Paddy Jackson will be first choice by the next world cup Cool

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Irish Curry on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:44 pm

Sexton to start and bring on ROG with 15 mins to go

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Irish Curry on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:45 pm

[quote="valjester"][quote="WillyGilly"][quote="valjester"][quote="WillyGilly"]

Wallace gets a hell of a lot of stick from all quarters and the majority of it is unwarranted, I am sick to death defending him from Southern propaganda who seek to divert attention away from the failings of others, and focus solely on what they perceive as an easier target. Manning quite rightly says that life will be difficult with Wallace at 10, given he is a centre. The distribution point is absolute horseshit, I'll be intrigued to see how he justifies that. But stemming on from that previous point I want to make 2 quick ones.

1. If Wallace is such a poor player and offers so little to cover at 10, who was it that sat on the bench in case ROG got injured in the pre Sexton era? He rarely played albeit but if he's so poor why weren't we playing or blooding, well to put it bluntly, anyone else.

2. If Wallace is left at home who do we take as cover as third fly half? Keatley? No thanks, nowhere close to international level yet, and personally I doubt if he will be. IH? Marginally better but hands off we need him at Ulster. TOL? In the name of the holy virgin Mary please no. McFadden? See previous.

Oh and btw if 'ROG ticks all the boxes that you could look for in an international 10' why do I get so bloody terrified if someone runs straight at him. Defense essentially. A point which is then picked up on in the cons section. Well he cleary doesn't tick every box then does he Steve.

Overall though I'd agree with his prognosis. ROG will be on the bench but should start at least one of the games and to be honest [b]I might be tempted to bring him on earlier in the Aussie match if it's tight so as maybe to close the game out, slot over the odd touchline penalty, pin them back in their own half etc.[/b]

This won't be the last time I've to defend our Paddy will it...

[/quote]

I agree with you on the wallace points but I think you're being harsh on keatley, he certainly has the potential to play international rugby and hopefully will prove in time that he is good enough. Ihump is the best running 10 in the country but I will despair if I ever see him in a green jersey. There are times when he refuses to tackle, for all the stick rog gets at least he never gets out of the way. If a team wants to run at rog they are more than likely going to be met by wally standing there or another back rower, the same way if Ireland try to run at cooper they will find pocock there.

Tbh at this stage sexton is just as likely to do any of these and he is a better defender so if its tight I'd be inclined to leave him on especially as he has a longer range than rog so if there was a long penalty to win it, sexton is more likely to have the distance.
[/quote]

Perhaps I am being a bit harsh on Keatley. Joining Munster will certainly improve him in all aspects of his game. I can't see him being anything other than second fiddle to Sexton in the next 5ish years. Equally though I think you're being a bit harsh on IH. People seem to forget out first choice 10/12 axis is IH/Wallace, and with the reputation they have you'd think all teams would just run at that line as target número uno.

I've spent a lot of time shouting at ROG over the years, largely cos he's hails from Munster, but there's no player I'd rather see lining up a pressure kick. [/quote]

I reserve my right to be harsh on humpreys due to him running alongside a player and instead of tackling him deciding to fall on the ground. He has on too many occasions decided it couldnt be bothered tackling in the 'small' games. Keatley v sexton debate won't matter anyways, Paddy Jackson will be first choice by the next world cup Cool [/quote]

Why so sure Wink

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by valjester on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 5:50 pm

Irish Curry wrote:
valjester wrote:

I reserve my right to be harsh on humpreys due to him running alongside a player and instead of tackling him deciding to fall on the ground. He has on too many occasions decided it couldnt be bothered tackling in the 'small' games. Keatley v sexton debate won't matter anyways, Paddy Jackson will be first choice by the next world cup Cool

Why so sure Wink

Because he is the second coming. Very Happy

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Notch on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 6:28 pm

Some people think Wallace has good distribution skills.

Because he does. Silly man.

You may not like him as a player but that's like saying you wouldn't have Parks for Scotland because he can't kick, or O'Leary because he can't run.

Maybe some people know a little bit more about rugby and would advise you to watch the player you're talking about before you bizarrely highlight his greatest strength as a weakness OK

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by rodders on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 6:30 pm

Rugby Spectator wrote:
That's fair enough if you disagree. He is the man writing about all things Ireland for us, so I will pass on your thoughts.

No real need to call him an idiot though. Let's try and keep things constructive.


You're quite right I apologise for calling him an idiot.

However a lot of what he has put is simply inaccurate, provocative and so far of the mark it is bordering on laughable. Has he ever actually watched Wallace play fly-half, or even play at all?

Wallace put in a motm display in 2006 scoring 26 points against the Pacific Islanders and has played there at underage levels and for Ulster too. Not exactly international pedigree but not a reason to forfeit a match against the USA should we need to call on him, as the author has suggested.

As a 12 his distribution is superb at times and certainly better than any other Irish inside centre and he has generally had a very good season for Ulster.

Do I want to see Wallace play 10 for Ireland? Absolutely not. However given Kidney's failure to utilise and intergrate IHumph and Keatley into the Ireland set up, if Sexton and/or ROG get injured the Wallace is the only available option for this WC.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Notch on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 6:39 pm

I would cite the game against Italy in the 2010 Six Nations as an example of how bringing Wallace on at 10 actually made us looks sharper in attack because he took it to the line and looked for the inside ball and runner as well as the 12 and the long pass to 13.

He came for O'Gara and improved that part of our game- is he a better 10 than O'Gara? No, of course he isn't. He's just better in that one facet of the game. His game management, kicking from hand and tee and decision making is all worse. But you can't praise O'Gara for distribution and criticise Wallace. It's a very strange perspective.

The assertions made in the article show a worrying lack of research imo- giving him the benefit of the doubt.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by stevemanning15 on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 7:17 pm

Evening All,

I would happen to be the writer of the article! Firstly, thanks for reading, your feedback whether positive or negative is most welcome. If your apathetic towards this or any of my other articles I've failed in what I set out to achieve!

To come back to a few well made points on the forum here:

1. @WillyGilly "The distribution point is absolute horseshit, I'll be intrigued to see how he justifies that". A lot of casual supporters, or those who watch little Ulster rugby may presume that Wallace will fit into a 10 jersey, in emergency reasonably well. He won't. As he predominantly plays at 12 and sits quite deep in the Ulster line for a 12 (based on the games I have seen him in), he subsequently has more time on the ball to pick his runner and or gap, to put a ball into. At 10, the time is almost half that, if not less. A step up in tempo at 10, seeing as he may train at 12 during camp, is going to be quite a challenge at WC level. I accept he is deemed a "playmaker 12", but anytime he has been in a green jersey in that role I cant recall anything specfically brilliant to warrant this description.

2. Wallace sat on the bench as simply didnt have any other half acceptable options at the time. He also covered the centres and freed up another jersey for a specialist.

3. ROG does tick all the boxes of an international 10. You cite me referring to his defensive weaknesses as a con correctly, however when you think about it only Wilkinson stands out as an international level 10 who you would put the mortgage on to make a tackle. Few coaches will pick player for the 10 jersey specifically because he can tackle, in that respect you would remove it from an assessment risk. Certainly you rank your starters based on their comparative strengths, but not including a player for potential selection based on one aspect of his game is shortsighted and in the Irish case not possible. Thus the inclusion of Wallace as an emergency player. My article next week will identify why Wallace will travel, but also why he will be incredibly lucky to be on the plane.

3. Many of you have spoken about Ian Humphries and Ian Keatley as potential inclusions. Here's why I left them out:

Humphries lacks international experience and was very shakey in the HCup quarter. Ulster play a very tight game which is not what Ireland will do as a primary offensive threat, so in effect we never really got to see Humphries at 5th+ phase where he had to show a spark of ingenuity. I think this is what will ultimately rule him out.
Keatley has struggled to get ahead of Madigan in ML selection (disturbingly Madigan now has a HCup winners medal). He isnt even in the field of Kidneys vision. Kealtey will blossom under ROG and Munster next season. I can think of a lot of Leinster fans who would prefer him to Madigan, but Schmidt knows/see's something we dont and that's why he's in charge.

4. Jackson will be Sexton's long term understudy.

5. One the "I've spent a lot of time shouting at ROG over the years, largely cos he's hails from Munster, but there's no player I'd rather see lining up a pressure kick" comment from @WillyGilly (I promise I'm not picking on you!) I couldn't relate to this more, but you have to admit Sexton is picking up the points more frequently in high pressure situations.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by WillyGilly on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 7:32 pm

Kudos for coming on here Steven. A severe lack of Irish posters from the old BBC 606 failed to make the jump across so all opinions are welcome. I'm off for run now so I'll muse on your points then.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by stevemanning15 on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 7:45 pm

Sorry didnt get the above posted until after you all had replied...

@roddersm 2006 had a totally differnet type of rugby playing style to todays game, partly due to a combination of rules changes and positional developments. Any reference to a performance then is largely redundant, never mind the Pacific Islands.

@Notch That Italy 2010 game was horrific, pretty sure I blanked it out of memory as a result, however I accept it as a valid point on what Wallace may offer at 10 in an emergency/final 15 sub position. The question then being could he replicate it against the Wallabies?
The main issue I take with your reponse is that you seem to think I limit distribution to passing. Distribution as you point out above, does include ball in hand as well as kicking, on all accounts bar passing, Wallace is not at the same level. grubber kicking, field positioning, goal kicking, cross field kicking have been used effectively as offensive tactics/modes of distribution by Ireland in the recent past so it would be incorrect to limit to simply ball in hand. As a final caveat here I believe Ireland will look to play ball in hand, but if it came down to a dink through a gap for a match winning try or other such scenario and we could be out on our ear if Wallace had to find the gap and execute the kick.
If Ireland want to play at the level they are capable of and end up with Wallace at 10 we, in all probability, are not going to meet that standard.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by red_stag on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 7:53 pm

stevemanning15 wrote:Keatley has struggled to get ahead of Madigan in ML selection (disturbingly Madigan now has a HCup winners medal). He isnt even in the field of Kidneys vision. Kealtey will blossom under ROG and Munster next season. I can think of a lot of Leinster fans who would prefer him to Madigan, but Schmidt knows/see's something we dont and that's why he's in charge.

This is a glaring lack of knowledge and I fail to take any point seriously after reading this.

Keatley has over 50 Magners League appearances and been first choice for Connacht for 3 years. He hasn't been in direct competiton with Madigan who is 3 younger than Keatley.

He is very much on Declan Kidneys radar and has already more Irish caps than the likes of Kevin McLaughlin, Felix Jones or Fergus McFadden.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by stevemanning15 on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:00 pm

red_stag wrote:
stevemanning15 wrote:Keatley has struggled to get ahead of Madigan in ML selection (disturbingly Madigan now has a HCup winners medal). He isnt even in the field of Kidneys vision. Kealtey will blossom under ROG and Munster next season. I can think of a lot of Leinster fans who would prefer him to Madigan, but Schmidt knows/see's something we dont and that's why he's in charge.

This is a glaring lack of knowledge and I fail to take any point seriously after reading this.

Keatley has over 50 Magners League appearances and been first choice for Connacht for 3 years. He hasn't been in direct competiton with Madigan who is 3 younger than Keatley.

He is very much on Declan Kidneys radar and has already more Irish caps than the likes of Kevin McLaughlin, Felix Jones or Fergus McFadden.


Cant explain that at all bar a brain fart...two totally different players!



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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by red_stag on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:04 pm

Ah right no probs. So I'm confused now what do you think of Keatley who is join Munster from Connacht.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Notch on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:07 pm

I would term kicking as kicking myself, but what do I know... I would not include kicking in my definition of distribution, because the primary method of distribution is ball in hand. I would discuss kicking from hand as a different skill. He can't kick as well from hand as you'd want a 10 to do, that's why I've never seen him as an outright 10.

Look, I don't want to see Wallace start WC games at 10 but he is the best cover we have (without taking a space on the plane away from the outside backs and giving it to a specialist). What we need is a guy who can play there in addition to his main portfolio, if you will.

Yeah, I'd agree it would be a challenge to move from 12 to 10 during a RWC but I can think of no outside back more capable of covering 10. I think saying we would 'forfeit the game; should he be called upon is, well, ridiculous. O'Gara pulls up injured in the warm-up before the Australia game, we're 7 points up with minutes to go and Sexton is injured... well of course you're going to put him in.

I would direct your attention to the last three games we've played against Australia for examples of Wallace bringing more players around him into the game from the 12 jersey in terms of looking for runners and offloading the ball.

I also feel you've failed to highlight the weaknesses O'Gara has in an attacking sense. I'd argue that more important than distribution (because all three players mentioned- O'Gara, Wallace, Sexton- have the high level of passing skills you'd expect of international rugby players in that position) to attacking is positioning. O'Gara is a more conservative player who likes to hang further back in the pocket, Wallace and Sexton like to come to the line.

That makes the backs outside him look a lot more impotent both for Ireland and Munster because it's a lot easier to shine if you're running onto the ball from your 10 at pace who's already committed at least one defender... there's nothing wrong with O'Garas passing ability, he's a fine passer of the ball. I think against Scotland in the Six Nations we saw a more adventurous O'Gara who played a lot flatter and seemed to run more (bit like the way he was playing in 2007). So he can do it.

I think that's what I miss when he's in the team. Contepomi's sneer that he would 'hide behind his pack' always had a ring of truth to it. It's right for one gameplan, which is sometimes what we need, but it doesn't fit the attacking way we play the game. What its perfect for is closing out games and I'm delighted we have such an experienced 'closer' to bring on.

I also have no idea about your comments on Ulster. We try to play an expansive, structured game with two playmakers at 10 and 12 and quick service from 9. A lot of our tries come from planned moves after several phases and Humphreys is normally involved.

Ulster play a very tight game which is not what Ireland will do as a primary offensive threat, so in effect we never really got to see Humphries (sic) at 5th+ phase where he had to show a spark of ingenuity.

That is just not true- full stop. Here's one from Humphreys after multiple phases which was just forward;

http://www.youtube.com/user/TheUAFC#p/u/9/bdJiy4Yl7-w

It's the kind of thing he's been doing at Ulster for years. We don't really play a tight game at all. The way we play is very similar to the way Ireland play, we use our backrow and wings to provide targets in the midfield and look to play off the second/third/fourth phase.


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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by red_stag on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:10 pm

Notch all that showed was Ulster can't pass backwards or catch a ball under pressure Whistle

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Notch on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:12 pm

red_stag wrote:Notch all that showed was Ulster can't pass backwards or catch a ball under pressure Whistle

Cheers!

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by rodders on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:16 pm

Hi steve thanks for coming on to explain yourself.

Firstly I disagree that Humphreys was flaky in the HEC final. In fact he was superb behind a beaten pack.He has had an excellent season overall and if you think he or Ulster do not play through multiple phases then here is some examples for you to mull over:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-YsLXvgDoj0
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mvs-rEKYVkI
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Az585oNdJdM

I agree he does not have the international experience needed and defensively he is very poor but one thing he does not lack is inginuity.

Regarding Wallace. I've seen him stand both flat and deep for Ulster. His distribution is superb, in fact I would criticise him for forcing the pass too much. His head on tackling is excellent and he's deceptively strong and quick.

Far from being lucky to travel, he was unlucky not to be starting 12 in the 6 Nations given his form leading into the tournament this year.

ROG is a superb player but to claim that he is a complete 10 is nonsence. His defence is better than some make out but his ability to release a backline is questionable at times and he is very poor in contact. What he does he does exceptionally well but Dan Carter he is not.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Notch on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:18 pm

Who said ROG is the complete 10? He's never really been creative enough ball in hand to earn that title... his moments of brilliance come through the boot.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by rodders on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:27 pm

stevemanning15 wrote:
@roddersm 2006 had a totally differnet type of rugby playing style to todays game, partly due to a combination of rules changes and positional developments. Any reference to a performance then is largely redundant, never mind the Pacific Islands.


Well as far as I can see the role of the fly half hasn't changed and if it has then it is more to suit Wallace strengths with the ball in hand. Can you point out which of the law changes you feel make Wallace's performance redundant? I presume you disregard all players performances prior to 2010 or is it just paddy wallaces?

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by WillyGilly on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:28 pm

We don't play a tight game at all. Our attack is pretty well coreographed. Pienaar to Humphreys. Humphreys goes 3 steps forward at an angle and pops it up for D'Arcy who has timed his run on the inside perfectly.

But here keep it on the down low. Wink

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by stevemanning15 on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 8:32 pm

red_stag wrote:Ah right no probs. So I'm confused now what do you think of Keatley who is join Munster from Connacht.

In the games I've seen him play he has done very little wrong, if anything. Good decision making for a young guy. Seems to have a good work ethic, clear communication, a good boot and soft hands too. I suspect with growing confidence and with a bit of mentoring from ROG he should gain a lot from his time there. A highger calibre of player will bring him on no end. Unfortunatly this season in Connacht he would be guaranteed HCup games which may not be the same in Munster, but its still a better longer term move for him and Irish rugby in general. Obviously certain people in munster view him as a capable long term replacement to ROG, which are very big boots to fill. Come to think of it he is extremely similar to Warrick including his versatility. Will be interesting to see post-ROG era battle with himself and Sexton.

@Notch: I think we're making ground here buddy! Kicking is a mode of distribution for many OH's now. Even that damn Quade Cooper is at it in his own try zone. Chips on through gaps and the cross field ball to Shaggy whether from ROG or Sexton are always an option. Bowe and Kearney also options for it too as they both are quite tall. Matter of opinion on that one I suppose.

Just quickly, on the ROG defence/contact thing, its a serious frailty to his game but I stated that he doesnt need to look for contact with his players out and inside being more capable of doing it. Dont think he hides behind his pack as much since sexton came along and forced the issue. Still Id have him in my side before anyother 10 in the NH, excluding Sexton and Wilkinson. I have to admit an irrational dislike for Toby Flood.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Thomond on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 9:17 pm

I can't believe I got so many bites! laughing I am a fan of Paddy Wallace and even called for him to start in the 6 Nations! He is a good 2nd 5/8 type of centre who has great distribution who could give us a huge attacking platform.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by WillyGilly on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 9:29 pm

Why do I feel there's a 'but' coming?

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by Notch on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 9:37 pm

No, I agree the kick as an attacking weapon is an important thing to have in an outhalfs armoury and Wallace- given he plays most of his rugby at 12 where such tactics are less used- is less consistent when he tries this. Although actually he's fine with chips and grubbers, I've seen him use these, although he definitely prefers to run the ball or pass.

What I mean by distribution is generally different to what you mean because distribution implies ball in hand to me...

I think you're in danger of overstating the importance of kicking in attack. It's a bit of a hail mary option- if it's on go for it and reap the rewards. If you look at the way we played against Wales, we kicked far too often in their half.

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Re: Ronan O'Gara or Jonny Sexton?

Post by WillyGilly on Mon 18 Jul 2011, 9:45 pm

Anyhow he can use his feet to good effect...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ZUEEndxq6Q&feature=youtube_gdata_player

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