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Pro12 Players to Watch 15/16

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Post by GavinDragon Tue Sep 08, 2015 5:54 pm

Blatently copying the AP thread of the same topic but here it goes...

For the Dragons I am very excited about a number of our youngsters but in particular Ollie Griffiths (openside flanker), Luke Garrett (LH Prop), Joe Davies (Lock) and Ashton Hewitt (Winger)

All three have done well at u20 level for Wales, Griffiths has torn up the WP for Newport last season and captained them while Luke Garrett already looks assured at the scrum for a relatively young age. Joe Davies at 6'6 and 20 stone is our largest lock and at only 20 has some potential.

Ashton Hewitt also looked impressive in pre season and starred in the 7's win. He did, however, get gassed by Wade - but then who wouldnt?


Last edited by GavinDragon on Tue Sep 08, 2015 6:22 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by thebandwagonsociety Tue Sep 08, 2015 6:13 pm

For Leinster there is Ringrose in the centre that has been great at underage level. He and Kelleher (fullback) are two class youngsters that should do great if given a chance by Cullen this season.

In the backrow Dan Leavy (though he has been about the academy for a while) is the next back-row-forward on the production line. People might have seen some of him last year, but he should break out this season especially with Leinster feeding so many players to rwc and 6Ns along with normal injuries to aging(mature) players.

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Post by Stone Motif Tue Sep 08, 2015 6:27 pm

GavinDragon wrote:Blatently copying the AP thread of the same topic but here it goes...

For the Dragons I am very excited about a number of our youngsters but in particular Ollie Griffiths (openside flanker), Luke Garrett (LH Prop), Joe Davies (Lock) and Ashton Hewitt (Winger)

All three have done well at u20 level for Wales, Griffiths has torn up the WP for Newport last season and captained them while Luke Garrett already looks assured at the scrum for a relatively young age. Joe Davies at 6'6 and 20 stone is our largest lock and at only 20 has some potential.

Ashton Hewitt also looked impressive in pre season and starred in the 7's win. He did, however, get gassed by Wade - but then who wouldnt?
Pretty sure Wade needed gas after Harrie Keddy has finished planting him in the turf on that last try
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Post by GavinDragon Tue Sep 08, 2015 6:29 pm

Stone Motif wrote:
GavinDragon wrote:Blatently copying the AP thread of the same topic but here it goes...

For the Dragons I am very excited about a number of our youngsters but in particular Ollie Griffiths (openside flanker), Luke Garrett (LH Prop), Joe Davies (Lock) and Ashton Hewitt (Winger)

All three have done well at u20 level for Wales, Griffiths has torn up the WP for Newport last season and captained them while Luke Garrett already looks assured at the scrum for a relatively young age. Joe Davies at 6'6 and 20 stone is our largest lock and at only 20 has some potential.

Ashton Hewitt also looked impressive in pre season and starred in the 7's win. He did, however, get gassed by Wade - but then who wouldnt?
Pretty sure Wade needed gas after Harrie  Keddy has finished planting him in the turf on that last try

I don't understand why, after a good showing vs the scarlets, Hewitt wasnt involved against Connacht.

Will Harrie Keddie make the step up you think? Or is he another Ieuan Jones/Scott Matthews?

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Post by Stone Motif Tue Sep 08, 2015 6:42 pm

Depends if his work ethic is better I guess.....
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Post by Nematode Tue Sep 08, 2015 6:42 pm

From the Scottish teams there are a few that spring to mind:

Rory Hughes (Glasgow) Wing/Full Back: Powerful runner, perhaps similar to Sean Lamont. Should get opportunities during the RWC/6 Nations.

Damien Hoyland (Edinburgh) Wing: Scored twice vs Leinster, tons of gas, and great footwork thanks to his time in the sevens.

Hugh Blake (Glasgow) Back Row (Openside): Not much is really known about this scotiwi. Cotter seem to think he's the next big thing, however, after being in Scotland for nearly all of last season, he's had hardly any game time. Jury's out on him.

Rory Sutherland (Edinburgh) Prop (Loosehead): Really performing well for Edinburgh both in the scrum and loose. Benefiting from Dickinson's experience no doubt, I expect Sutherland will be getting capped in the not so distant future.

Also watch out for Sam Hidalgo Clyne, Hamish Watson (both Edinburgh), Taqele Naiyaravoro (Glasgow) and John Hardie (Unattached, Scotland)


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Post by SecretFly Tue Sep 08, 2015 7:35 pm

Yeah Kelleher would be the one I'd have a close eye on at Leinster IF Cullen allows more rookies to play, that is.
Fanning is another player that seemed to be on the up until all things MOC conspired to put all things Leinster on the down. So I'd be looking out for him again.

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Post by GavinDragon Tue Sep 08, 2015 7:36 pm

Nematode wrote:From the Scottish teams there are a few that spring to mind:

Rory Hughes (Glasgow) Wing/Full Back: Powerful runner, perhaps similar to Sean Lamont. Should get opportunities during the RWC/6 Nations.

Damien Hoyland (Edinburgh) Wing: Scored twice vs Leinster, tons of gas, and great footwork thanks to his time in the sevens.

Hugh Blake (Glasgow) Back Row (Openside): Not much is really known about this scotiwi. Cotter seem to think he's the next big thing, however, after being in Scotland for nearly all of last season, he's had hardly any game time. Jury's out on him.

Rory Sutherland (Edinburgh) Prop (Loosehead): Really performing well for Edinburgh both in the scrum and loose. Benefiting from Dickinson's experience no doubt, I expect Sutherland will be getting capped in the not so distant future.

Also watch out for Sam Hidalgo Clyne, Hamish Watson (both Edinburgh), Taqele Naiyaravoro (Glasgow) and John Hardie (Unattached, Scotland)


Which Scottish side will pick Hardie up do you think?

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Post by wayne Tue Sep 08, 2015 8:24 pm

Gavin from your OP, you mention a 2nd row, for us (Ospreys) we have had 3 in that position in the Welsh U20 set up, Rory Thornton, Adam Beard and Rhodri Hughes in the last 2 seasons, I just hope these 4 can push each other on to great heights for the Welsh cause. Ben John in an interview on our website TV, said what a great prospect Owen Watkin is, and how he is so much bigger than Ben was at the same age, really looking forward to how those will progress, I would not be at all surprised that our First team 2nd row being 4) AWJ and 5) Thornton at the end of this season.

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Post by Notch Tue Sep 08, 2015 8:29 pm

Two words- Stuart McCloskey. Jonathon Spratt will agree!



The thing is, as well as being a massive unit who is extremely fast and strong, he also has footwork, a kicking game and a knack for offloading out of contact. n other words, he looks like he could develop into a centre with everything you want.
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Post by profitius Wed Sep 09, 2015 12:31 pm

For Munster Jack O'Donoghue (backrow), Rory Scannell (center, 10), John Madigan (lock) and Darren Sweetnam (back 3).
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Post by thebandwagonsociety Wed Sep 09, 2015 12:35 pm

Notch wrote:Two words- Stuart McCloskey. Jonathon Spratt will agree!



The thing is, as well as being a massive unit who is extremely fast and strong, he also has footwork, a kicking game and a knack for offloading out of contact. n other words, he looks like he could develop into a centre with everything you want.

This could be his year. He has bided his time behind a couple of other Ulster prospect but I can't see any of the other centre options keeping him out of the team this season. It could be McCloskey & Henshaw in the centres for Ireland by the 6Ns.

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Post by Pete330v2 Wed Sep 09, 2015 12:45 pm

thebandwagonsociety wrote:
Notch wrote:Two words- Stuart McCloskey. Jonathon Spratt will agree!



The thing is, as well as being a massive unit who is extremely fast and strong, he also has footwork, a kicking game and a knack for offloading out of contact. n other words, he looks like he could develop into a centre with everything you want.

This could be his year.  He has bided his time behind a couple of other Ulster prospect but I can't see any of the other centre options keeping him out of the team this season.  It could be McCloskey & Henshaw in the centres for Ireland by the 6Ns.

Hold on while I wipe off the drool Smile
McCloskey has been biding his time and developing brilliantly. His form (if it remains) will surely force a centre partnership with Henshaw and himself. Mind you knowing the rugby boffins at the IRFU they'd force a McCloskey / Payne partnership Wink

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Post by LordDowlais Wed Sep 09, 2015 1:57 pm

Rory Thornton from Ospreys looks like a good prospect.

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Post by SecretFly Wed Sep 09, 2015 2:02 pm

Pete330v2 wrote:
thebandwagonsociety wrote:
Notch wrote:Two words- Stuart McCloskey. Jonathon Spratt will agree!



The thing is, as well as being a massive unit who is extremely fast and strong, he also has footwork, a kicking game and a knack for offloading out of contact. n other words, he looks like he could develop into a centre with everything you want.

This could be his year.  He has bided his time behind a couple of other Ulster prospect but I can't see any of the other centre options keeping him out of the team this season.  It could be McCloskey & Henshaw in the centres for Ireland by the 6Ns.

Hold on while I wipe off the drool Smile
McCloskey  has been biding his time and developing brilliantly. His form (if it remains) will surely force a centre partnership with Henshaw and himself. Mind you knowing the rugby boffins at the IRFU they'd force a McCloskey / Payne partnership Wink

Okay, nice enough. But on the evidence of that video....much, much too slow for full International pace Wink

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Post by munkian Wed Sep 09, 2015 2:28 pm

For the Dragons I'd also add our new saffa scrum half Mr Sarel Pretorius - very quick and very experienced - seems to be a tidy signing already - very much in Rees's mould.



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Post by munkian Wed Sep 09, 2015 2:33 pm

Stone Motif wrote:
GavinDragon wrote:Blatently copying the AP thread of the same topic but here it goes...

For the Dragons I am very excited about a number of our youngsters but in particular Ollie Griffiths (openside flanker), Luke Garrett (LH Prop), Joe Davies (Lock) and Ashton Hewitt (Winger)

All three have done well at u20 level for Wales, Griffiths has torn up the WP for Newport last season and captained them while Luke Garrett already looks assured at the scrum for a relatively young age. Joe Davies at 6'6 and 20 stone is our largest lock and at only 20 has some potential.

Ashton Hewitt also looked impressive in pre season and starred in the 7's win. He did, however, get gassed by Wade - but then who wouldnt?
Pretty sure Wade needed gas after Harrie  Keddy has finished planting him in the turf on that last try

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Post by funnyExiledScot Wed Sep 09, 2015 2:48 pm

GavinDragon wrote:
Nematode wrote:From the Scottish teams there are a few that spring to mind:

Rory Hughes (Glasgow) Wing/Full Back: Powerful runner, perhaps similar to Sean Lamont. Should get opportunities during the RWC/6 Nations.

Damien Hoyland (Edinburgh) Wing: Scored twice vs Leinster, tons of gas, and great footwork thanks to his time in the sevens.

Hugh Blake (Glasgow) Back Row (Openside): Not much is really known about this scotiwi. Cotter seem to think he's the next big thing, however, after being in Scotland for nearly all of last season, he's had hardly any game time. Jury's out on him.

Rory Sutherland (Edinburgh) Prop (Loosehead): Really performing well for Edinburgh both in the scrum and loose. Benefiting from Dickinson's experience no doubt, I expect Sutherland will be getting capped in the not so distant future.

Also watch out for Sam Hidalgo Clyne, Hamish Watson (both Edinburgh), Taqele Naiyaravoro (Glasgow) and John Hardie (Unattached, Scotland)


Which Scottish side will pick Hardie up do you think?

It's almost certain he'll join Edinburgh.

If I had to pick one back and one forward for each of Glasgow and Edinburgh it would be as follows:

Edinburgh: 1. Nasi Manu. MOTM in the first game of the season. He looks to be a monster ball carrier with a massive work ethic. We were concerned he wouldn't be match fit, but he was hugely influential at number 8. 2. Phil Burleigh. After a settling in season last year I think he'll be one of the major creative influences on the Edinburgh team this year, as we try to transition from a very narrow game plan. He can play 10 or 12, and seems to have time on the ball whenever it comes his way.

Glasgow: 1.Leone Nakawara. Regardless of his World Cup absence, and the fact that I suspect this will be his last season at the Warrior, he is an epic specimen of a player, combining power and pace with endless offloads. Jonny Gray is the engine room, but Nakawara is the player who makes the difference from lock in the big games. 2. Finn Russell. Similarly absent during the World Cup, but we're starting to see a special talent actually delivering on the big stage. He was very good for Glasgow last season but clearly green as an international player. He was excellent against Italy and France in the warm-ups and I hope he takes that form into the tournament. One for Ford, Sexton, Biggar et al to worry about in two years time when it comes to Lions selections.

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Post by GavinDragon Wed Sep 09, 2015 3:05 pm

munkian wrote:For the Dragons I'd also add our new saffa scrum half Mr Sarel Pretorius - very quick and very experienced - seems to be a tidy signing already - very much in Rees's mould.




I agree - very sharp!

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Post by funnyExiledScot Wed Sep 09, 2015 3:28 pm

Actually, re: Hardie, it's also possible that he won't sign for a Scottish side at all. I could easily see him at Leicester or one of the French sides. I just do see him joining Glasgow rather than Edinburgh, purely down to the numbers each side has at 7.

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Post by Nematode Wed Sep 09, 2015 4:30 pm

Hard to tell re Hardie.

Glasgow have quite a few openside options in Fusaro, Favaro, Holmes, Blake & Bordill so I can't see him going there.

Edinburgh really just have Grant and Watson so there could be room and he'd fit in with AS's style of play too. Roddy Grant could possibly be moving on after this season too so in the LT Hardie could be a good match. For me this is the most likely.

I wouldn't be surprised though if he looked to join a French/English (or even Japanese) side with the RWC an opportunity for him to advertise himself.


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Post by funnyExiledScot Wed Sep 09, 2015 4:57 pm

Nematode wrote:Hard to tell re Hardie.

Glasgow have quite a few openside options in Fusaro, Favaro, Holmes, Blake & Bordill so I can't see him going there.

Edinburgh really just have Grant and Watson so there could be room and he'd fit in with AS's style of play too. Roddy Grant could possibly be moving on after this season too so in the LT Hardie could be a good match. For me this is the most likely.

I wouldn't be surprised though if he looked to join a French/English (or even Japanese) side with the RWC an opportunity for him to advertise himself.


It would fit his profile. Gun for hire. He'll probably retire from international rugby after the World Cup, and come out of retirement for the Lions.

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Post by the-goon Wed Sep 09, 2015 7:19 pm

Notch wrote:Two words- Stuart McCloskey. Jonathon Spratt will agree!



The thing is, as well as being a massive unit who is extremely fast and strong, he also has footwork, a kicking game and a knack for offloading out of contact. n other words, he looks like he could develop into a centre with everything you want.

I think Stuart should be in the 31 right now! The only like for like replacement at 12 for Henshaw (and maybe even better...)

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Post by Stone Motif Wed Sep 09, 2015 7:27 pm

munkian wrote:
Stone Motif wrote:
GavinDragon wrote:Blatently copying the AP thread of the same topic but here it goes...

For the Dragons I am very excited about a number of our youngsters but in particular Ollie Griffiths (openside flanker), Luke Garrett (LH Prop), Joe Davies (Lock) and Ashton Hewitt (Winger)

All three have done well at u20 level for Wales, Griffiths has torn up the WP for Newport last season and captained them while Luke Garrett already looks assured at the scrum for a relatively young age. Joe Davies at 6'6 and 20 stone is our largest lock and at only 20 has some potential.

Ashton Hewitt also looked impressive in pre season and starred in the 7's win. He did, however, get gassed by Wade - but then who wouldnt?
Pretty sure Wade needed gas after Harrie  Keddy has finished planting him in the turf on that last try

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