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Wales 6 Nations Squad

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Post by munkian Tue 19 Jan 2016, 12:11 pm

First topic message reminder :

Forwards:
Rob Evans (Scarlets), Paul James (Ospreys), Gethin Jenkins (Cardiff Blues), Tomas Francis (Exeter Chiefs), Aaron Jarvis (Ospreys), Samson Lee (Scarlets), Scott Baldwin (Ospreys), Kristian Dacey (Cardiff Blues), Ken Owens (Scarlets), Jake Ball (Scarlets), Luke Charteris (Racing 92), Bradley Davies (Wasps), Dominic Day (Bath Rugby), Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys), Josh Turnbull (Cardiff Blues), Taulupe Faletau (Newport Gwent Dragons), James King (Ospreys), Dan Lydiate (Ospreys), Ross Moriarty (Gloucester Rugby), Justin Tipuric (Ospreys), Sam Warburton (CAPT) (Cardiff Blues).
Backs:
Aled Davies (Scarlets) *, Gareth Davies (Scarlets), Lloyd Williams (Cardiff Blues) Dan Biggar (Ospreys), Rhys Priestland (Bath Rugby), Cory Allen (Cardiff Blues), Jonathan Davies (Clermont Auvergne), Tyler Morgan (Newport Gwent Dragons), Jamie Roberts (Harlequins), Hallam Amos (Newport Gwent Dragons), Alex Cuthbert (Cardiff Blues), Tom James (Cardiff Blues), George North (Northampton Saints), Gareth Anscombe (Cardiff Blues), Matthew Morgan (Bristol Rugby), Liam Williams (Scarlets).
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Post by Guest Tue 19 Jan 2016, 8:25 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:The thing is though, his 'inexperience' was alluded to as being a factor when it's not. You should also note, miaow, that Hewitt is more experienced than Halfpenny and North when they made their debuts Smile.

I think it is a very important factor. North was emphatic from his first performance in a Scarlets shirt, and he is a very different player to Hewitt, the way in which he was tearing defences apart made him appear a seasoned international when only 18. That's a very poor comparison to make. North is an anomaly in many ways, including his lack of professional rugby prior to being capped at Test level. Likewise, Halfpenny showed quite early on in his club career with the Blues that he had something special. Admittedly, that special something is now never seen in a Welsh shirt, especially since he moved to full back, but- like North- he appeared to have attributes that would see him acclimatise to Test rugby quite quickly. Also, the Wales team he was capped in was very different to this one; this was a team that still moved the ball wide with pace, it suited Halfpenny's ability to finish from short-mid range distances, as he did frequently in his first few seasons at international level. Furthermore, Hewitt has not shown the kind of qualities those players have. He looks exactly the player he is; inexperienced in a rugby sense- as well as quantity of games- which is reflected in his inconsistency. As good as he was against the Blues, the very next game he was dropping passes he shouldn't have.

Ultimately, those are two very bad examples to choose; look at more recent examples like Gareth Davies or Hallam Amos (or even Scott Williams and Justin Tipuric), where both have been fed into the national set up slowly, to the point where it may feel they are being held back when the incumbent in their position is playing poorly. However, that may be a better situation than throwing them in before they're ready. I'm not sure, I see the benefits of both retaining the incumbent, and capping the inexperienced player. It would be difficult to say what is 'right' as a fan who has far less information than the coaches. I'd also point out Hewitt's lack of versatility. Where Matthew Morgan and Hallam Amos can play all across the back three, and Tom James (who will probably be in the first 15 anyway) could possibly do a job in the centre, what point is there in including him if he is solely a winger, and one who will not start in the matchday 23 due to this lack of versatility? He'd be better suited playing for the Dragons, gaining the confidence that comes with improving his game, and developing consistency in it, rather than holding tackle bags for North to run in to. His time will come; there's no burgeoning call for him to be capped because he simply he hasn't shown he's ready for that level yet, whereas Halfpenny and, certainly, North, did.

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Post by mikey_dragon Tue 19 Jan 2016, 8:28 pm

So how is it any different to North and Halfpenny being capped again? Apart from them having less experience than Hewitt of course, which I duly pointed out.

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Post by Fanster Tue 19 Jan 2016, 8:29 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:So how is it any different to North and Halfpenny being capped again? Apart from them having less experience than Hewitt of course, which I duly pointed out.

See above ^^^

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Post by Guest Tue 19 Jan 2016, 8:35 pm

Fanster wrote: On form I would hav gone with James, then Hewitt, however neither of these players have had much exposure to this system and ethos in place

I think Tom James was very much being lined up to have a big part in the World Cup. At the very least, he had a good amount of exposure to the Welsh set up at its 'best', i.e. in the run up to the World Cup. He's also settled back into regional rugby well; despite not playing every week at Exeter, the higher standard of competition seems to have worked well for him. He's also dependable in a can-tackle-but-might-do-something-stupid-and-get-sin-binned kind of way. He's relatively safe in that sense, we'll see if it's a risk worth taking.

Fanster wrote:Once Liam Williams is fully fit, and / or halfpenny returns you can consider ditching an experienced wing in poor form, until then its safety first.

I'd agree with that, and I'd also use it as another reason why Hewitt hasn't been included. With Morgan and Amos in the squad, that niche of 'small, tricky' three quarter seems to be covered. Gatland has learnt when facing the likes of Italy, Samoa, and Fiji that you don't key units in your team comprised solely or primarily of inexperienced or uncapped players. With the injury problems Wales have, if you dropped Cuthbert for Hewitt, it's a distinct possibility that a back three of 15. Amos 14. Hewitt 11. Morgan could be played if old injuries flare up for those who have hardly played this season. Against Ireland or England, that would be a massacre.

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Post by Guest Tue 19 Jan 2016, 8:37 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:So how is it any different to North and Halfpenny being capped again? Apart from them having less experience than Hewitt of course, which I duly pointed out.

Fanster wrote:See above ^^^

However, if you need a more succinct version:

miaow wrote:Ultimately, those are two very bad examples to choose [...] Hewitt has not shown the kind of qualities those players have [did prior to being capped]

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Post by Cardiff Dave Tue 19 Jan 2016, 8:43 pm

Yaaaawwwwn. When we losing to Australia next btw? It'll be Autumn soon before we know it.

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Post by mikey_dragon Tue 19 Jan 2016, 11:33 pm

miaow

Sorry but how are they bad examples when he's being compared with players in the same position? You compared him with players in an entirely different position. He has more experience than Halfpenny and North did when they got their first cap, so that shoots down your exposure/experience argument for starters. If you don't think Hewitt is in as good form it's likely because you've not been watching enough rugby - this is backed up by your claim that he's "far from consistent in either (competition)" when he is actually very consistent across the board. It also sounds like you read the WOL often as you seem to be up the ass of their new wonder boy (Tom James) - not sure how playing for Exeter is between International and Pro12 level either Headscratch. It's your opinion that he would have started against England in the RWC yet I don't see why a winger who wasn't playing for Exeter at the time would have played ahead of Amos who was in good form and playing regularly, but that's just common sense prevailing there. I'll also add that watching Tom James through his early career to now I can see that is he not a great defender and the fact that you had to dig up an example of a good tackle from 2010 should make that obvious to you, I mean, you did dig it up...

"and this is important- simply showing signs of being a good player should not necessitate a call up to the national side. I know there is a hypocrisy in place when certain players appear to be picked regardless of form or effectiveness, yet there is something to be said for earning a place in the team, and that should not be six months into your first or second season of showing signs of pedigree, rather than consistent class, which would merit a call up."

Can I just ask how we're meant to blood new players then? If we don't pick the good ones, do we pick the bad ones and have a team of Cuthbert's? Again, how did North and Halfpenny get picked after having only played two months of showing good form or pedigree, whatever you want to call it? Do you realise when Hewitt started playing his first professional games? I'm sorry but these are just stupid statements from you.

"I think it is a very important factor. North was emphatic from his first performance in a Scarlets shirt, and he is a very different player to Hewitt, the way in which he was tearing defences apart made him appear a seasoned international when only 18. That's a very poor comparison to make. North is an anomaly in many ways, including his lack of professional rugby prior to being capped at Test level. Likewise, Halfpenny showed quite early on in his club career with the Blues that he had something special. Admittedly, that special something is now never seen in a Welsh shirt, especially since he moved to full back, but- like North- he appeared to have attributes that would see him acclimatise to Test rugby quite quickly. Also, the Wales team he was capped in was very different to this one; this was a team that still moved the ball wide with pace, it suited Halfpenny's ability to finish from short-mid range distances, as he did frequently in his first few seasons at international level. Furthermore, Hewitt has not shown the kind of qualities those players have. He looks exactly the player he is; inexperienced in a rugby sense- as well as quantity of games- which is reflected in his inconsistency. As good as he was against the Blues, the very next game he was dropping passes he shouldn't have."

I'm finding my head in my hands reading this. So after I disprove your original theory you move the goal posts and try to suggest they're different? I do agree that North certainly was a special player, Halfpenny was also very good (you should note he was playing for Cardiff RFC being promoted the year he got capped, I guess you weren't watching again), but saying Hewitt isn't good enough is simply incorrect. You're trying to give the impression that we all knew that North and Halfpenny would become regular Wales players. Nobody knew unless they had a crystal ball BUT they were on form and their selection was justified. I'm glad it happened there and then. The fact of the matter is, and this isn't opinion because I think we can all see it, we have a winger showing good form and a winger showing awful form like he did through the world cup. The selection process for that one should be a no brainer.
No the Wales team back then did not play differently to now. They played the same tactics but couldn't execute as well, hence the ongoing complaints about out of form players and the tactics, so you've made that up and it isn't the first time you've made something up this evening. I think he dropped one ball against Ospreys? That isn't a sign of inconsistency my friend, though it is a sign of desperation on your part to be bringing up the one match you've seen of him this season. BTW there's also a long list of players that disprove your 'too small' argument, some of which are in our team. If you don't want Morgan and Hewitt in the same back 3 then you could easily remove Morgan from there over Hewitt.

One more thing, Roberts' distribution isn't poor and is a myth that has been busted on numerous occasions - but again, if you don't watch rugby you wouldn't know. My back three would be North, Amos, Anscombe with Liam on the bench. Hewitt is not likely to feature but the thing certain in my mind is that he, the form winger, should be in the squad over an out of sorts winger (Cuthbert). If you'd just said "I disagree" in the first place then fair enough but what peed me off is that you've just typed a load of sh*t in your two essays, giving statements that suggest you watch rugby once a month. Your opinion and rubbishing of other players isn't fact, I suggest you learn that.

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Post by mikey_dragon Tue 19 Jan 2016, 11:41 pm

Fanster wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I really don't get this. There was a case FOR Cuthbert during the world cup because of 'his experience' coupled team Wales' injuries and we all know how that went for him, unless you were sat under a rock the whole time. So how is there still a case FOR Cuthbert, how can their possibly be a case when his form is still that bad?!

Because it's better the devil you know, would you prefer Morgan and Anscombe, or Hewitt to be on the park in Dublin? Sexton and co would have a field day with that side of the park, and even if it didn't prove disastrous it would put us on the back foot from the off.

I'm not saying Cuthbert is good, or that I like him, but there is a strong case of reducing disruption to a unit when it's already disrupted.

I think this is the reason we continually see Lydiate over Tipuric, Lydiate is a constant, whereas Warburtons style of play gets him injured constantly. It's better to have ready made replacements than to totally disrupt units.

Fanster, did you watch Wales at the world cup where Cuthbert happened to feature in most/all games? Did you watch Blues versus Quins where he was running around like he was playing mini football? If you did watch all of them and also have brain cells then you certainly wouldn't be touting this guy to start. Apologies if you're just saying he should be a squad member, but your Dublin statement seems to suggest he's a starter for you. My back three would be North, Amos and Anscombe with Liam on the bench(played together in the world cup before you come up with something about inexperience). I know there's a lack of game time but from what I've seen this year they are still our best players. Sexton and co. certainly wouldn't have a field day and are hopefully on the back foot anyway, given the forwards Wales will be putting out. The only thing disruptive is Cuthbert with the way he was playing and making errors in the RWC, it's exactly how he is playing now. Saying that he should be in for experience/to cover injuries when we seen what resulted from that in said world cup is nothing short of bonkers. I doubt this will get through to you because you also seemed to think that Dixon should have been on the wing for Wales back then.

No - we see Lydiate more often because he's earned his place and for most of Tipuric's starts in a Wales jersey he's been very average. The game against Aus he was anonymous. That said for me he's now on form and is our starter at 7 with Warburton on the bench. Besides that we'll one day actually run out of ready made replacements because we didn't bring through new players - thank god you aren't the coach!


Last edited by mikey_dragon on Tue 19 Jan 2016, 11:46 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by mikey_dragon Tue 19 Jan 2016, 11:42 pm

Fanster wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:So how is it any different to North and Halfpenny being capped again? Apart from them having less experience than Hewitt of course, which I duly pointed out.

See above ^^^

Weird. Are you both one and the same?

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Wed 20 Jan 2016, 12:30 pm

Fanster wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I really don't get this. There was a case FOR Cuthbert during the world cup because of 'his experience' coupled team Wales' injuries and we all know how that went for him, unless you were sat under a rock the whole time. So how is there still a case FOR Cuthbert, how can their possibly be a case when his form is still that bad?!

Because it's better the devil you know, would you prefer Morgan and Anscombe, or Hewitt to be on the park in Dublin? Sexton and co would have a field day with that side of the park, and even if it didn't prove disastrous it would put us on the back foot from the off.

I'm not saying Cuthbert is good, or that I like him, but there is a strong case of reducing disruption to a unit when it's already disrupted.

I think this is the reason we continually see Lydiate over Tipuric, Lydiate is a constant, whereas Warburtons style of play gets him injured constantly. It's better to have ready made replacements than to totally disrupt units.

If you never blood new players, you'll never have ready-made replacements.

Also, you say Sexton would have a field day with Morgan / Anscombe / Hewitt playing, as if Cuthbert is a rock under the high ball.

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 20 Jan 2016, 12:32 pm

Luckless Pedestrian wrote:
Fanster wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I really don't get this. There was a case FOR Cuthbert during the world cup because of 'his experience' coupled team Wales' injuries and we all know how that went for him, unless you were sat under a rock the whole time. So how is there still a case FOR Cuthbert, how can their possibly be a case when his form is still that bad?!

Because it's better the devil you know, would you prefer Morgan and Anscombe, or Hewitt to be on the park in Dublin? Sexton and co would have a field day with that side of the park, and even if it didn't prove disastrous it would put us on the back foot from the off.

I'm not saying Cuthbert is good, or that I like him, but there is a strong case of reducing disruption to a unit when it's already disrupted.

I think this is the reason we continually see Lydiate over Tipuric, Lydiate is a constant, whereas Warburtons style of play gets him injured constantly. It's better to have ready made replacements than to totally disrupt units.

If you never blood new players, you'll never have ready-made replacements.

Also, you say Sexton would have a field day with Morgan / Anscombe / Hewitt playing, as if Cuthbert is a rock under the high ball.

Agree. Thank goodness... And I was starting to think I was off my rocker being as I was the only one who could see this.

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Wed 20 Jan 2016, 12:43 pm

We had no choice but to play Cuthbert at the World Cup. That's not the case now.

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Post by Guest Wed 20 Jan 2016, 2:56 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:Sorry but how are they bad examples when he's being compared with players in the same position?

I've answered that question twice now. You seem unhappy with the extended and reduced answers I've given. Are you expecting a different answer?

mikey_dragon wrote:You compared him with players in an entirely different position.

A winger/full back (Amos) is not an entirely different position. Aside from that, they are very good examples in that both Amos and G Davies had shown promise in the league, whilst also showing deficiencies in their game that may well be exposed at Test level. Amos was given a further two seasons to develop between his first cap (against Tonga I believe?) and the World Cup. Gareth Davies was blooded slowly since he started scoring tries on a regular basis in the Pro12; he had to deputise behind Phillips and Webb until he got the opportunity. Finally, these are excellent examples to make as they are a lot more recent than 2009 and 2010, when Halfpenny and North were, respectively, capped.

mikey_dragon wrote:He has more experience than Halfpenny and North did when they got their first cap, so that shoots down your exposure/experience argument for starters.

Unfortunately it doesn't. As I've now explained to you three times. To clarify for the final time: Gatland has introduced players much more slowly into the international set up since the 2011 RWC (the first team is more settled, and youngsters/form players are more likely to gain caps from the bench rather than go straight into the starting 15), and the two examples you cite were/are clearly superior players to Hewitt before getting capped. Try to think of another Welsh player in the professional era who has been quite as devastating as North was at such an age and with so little inexperience; he is the exception to a fairly understandable and logical rule of not throwing in young players at the deep end, and hoping they can swim.

mikey_dragon wrote:This is backed up by your claim that he's "far from consistent in either (competition)" when he is actually very consistent across the board.

Much like the Dragons as a team, I don't believe he is. You disagree. That's fine. As a Dragons supporter, you are not neutral in your assessment of him as a player.

mikey_dragon wrote:If you don't think Hewitt is in as good form it's likely because you've not been watching enough rugby [..] It also sounds like you read the WOL often as you seem to be up the ass of their new wonder boy (Tom James)

You're wrong on all three of those claims. Keep it academic rather than personal. I see you getting in a lot of petty fights on this board, and it makes for painful reading. Don't start with me please. Stay away from straw man personal assumptions, I cannot be bothered to counter them.


mikey_dragon wrote: [...]not sure how playing for Exeter is between International and Pro12 level either

The English Premiership has surpassed the Pro12 in standard significantly. This is quite obvious. Also, Exeter have been in Champions/Heineken Cup for the last two (possibly three?) seasons. The Dragons have not. All quite easy to understand I would have thought.


mikey_dragon wrote:It's your opinion that he would have started against England in the RWC yet I don't see why a winger who wasn't playing for Exeter at the time would have played ahead of Amos who was in good form and playing regularly, but that's just common sense prevailing there.

Don't conflate your own opinion with common sense. He was playing on rotation in a team that is, quite evidently, a lot better than the Dragons. I'm not a fan of Tom James, he's seriously deficient in footballing ability, and has an unreliable streak that could lead to indiscipline. However, I was commenting on why I think Gatland may well have been looking to include him in the first team, as he suits Wales' gameplan. I shall, therefore, list the reasons why- in a Welsh team coached by Warren Gatland- he is a better choice than Amos:

1. Bigger
2. Stronger
3. More experienced
4. Had several Wales caps
5. Very similar to Gatland's (woefully out of form) favoured partner to George North, Alex Cuthbert: a good like-for-like replacement.

I will admit this is my opinion, or at least it is my assessment of a judgement call. I hope, from now on, you're able to differentiate between your own opinion, and 'common sense'.

mikey_dragon wrote:I'll also add that watching Tom James through his early career to now I can see that is he not a great defender and the fact that you had to dig up an example of a good tackle from 2010 should make that obvious to you, I mean, you did dig it up...

To be honest, I'm not sure what point you're making here. An example of a good tackle? Dig up? I'm relying on my memory here; I don't have the time to research my posts on this board unfortunately. I remember he pleasantly surprised me, as he had a solid game when I was anticipating him being torn apart by an excellent All Blacks team. That is why I was able to recall it. It was also for the whole game (if he played the full 80, this I'm not sure of), not one tackle. I think you may have missed the point I was making. Nevertheless, his time in Exeter appears to have improved his defending in a positional sense as well; he's always had the size and strength to be able to put big hits in, to defend the gainline (something valued very highly by Gatland and Shaun Edwards...are you beginning to see a theme here?). I suspect your opinion of him differs. That's fine.

mikey_dragon wrote:Can I just ask how we're meant to blood new players then? [...]

For what will be the third time, look at the way Warren Gatland has latterly capped young or inexperienced players; playing them against 'weaker' teams, playing them off the bench, and playing them when the rest of the unit they are in is settled. As mentioned by a poster above, with L Williams and Halfpenny probably unavailable, it may well be that 2/3rds of the unit Hewitt would come into/be training with is not first choice. You do not want to rely on a dreadful Cuthbert and/or an inexperienced Matthew Morgan or Hallam Amos to show the ropes to an even less inexperienced winger. It's not ideal. Try not to think in absolutes; he has plenty of time to be capped. The better he plays, the more he improves, and the more likely a call up will occur. You seem anxious to cap him/include him in this squad. Why? He wouldn't start ahead of the aforementioned players, so why not let him continue his career with the Dragons?

mikey_dragon wrote:If we don't pick the good ones, do we pick the bad ones and have a team of Cuthbert's?

You're arguing in absolutes. Try not to think of black and whites like 'good' and 'bad'. There's no such thing.

mikey_dragon wrote: I'm sorry but these are just stupid statements from you. I'm finding my head in my hands reading this. So after I disprove your original theory [...]

You seem swelled by a sense of self-importance. Why are you being so aggressive? You've disproved nothing, but why are you so agitated to deem yourself 'factually correct' in what is a discussion of opinions. If you can't accept the validity of others' opinions, I don't think this is the best forum- where you will come across many viewpoints that differ to yours- for you.

Also, if I'm causing you such distress, it may be best to stop reading what I have to say? However, I think this may be more to do with the fact that what I say is in disagreement with your own perspective, rather than any glaring problem with the content of it.


mikey_dragon wrote:Again, how did North and Halfpenny get picked after having only played two months of showing good form or pedigree, whatever you want to call it?

I've answered this point so many times now. To put it into numbers:

1. Very different climate in which they were capped to the one that exists now with Welsh selection; far fewer players walking straight into the team.
2. Both looked better players than Hewitt has thus far. That is the pedigree I refer to.
3. Both played in better regional teams, with more competitive selection.
4. Both players came into Welsh teams that played less defensive rugby than the current Wales team, thus they played to their strengths.
5. Test rugby on a whole has become more attritional, less suited to the smaller man (which is a shame). Makes capping an inexperienced small player a risk, as well as dangerous for them. They need time to acclimatise to that level.

mikey_dragon wrote:you move the goal posts and try to suggest they're different? I do agree that North certainly was a special player, Halfpenny was also very good (you should note he was playing for Cardiff RFC being promoted the year he got capped, I guess you weren't watching again)

Halfpenny became a Wales starter in the Six Nations of 2009. He was a Blues regular at this point, having had a good start to the season, and was excellent in a team that went on to win the EDF cup quite comfortably. That season culminated with his selection for the Lions Tour, only curtailed by injury. Please, don't try and paint Halfpenny as some wildcard selection; his rise was swift, but this was because he was shining in (what was then) a good Blues team. He was far from some average, Cardiff RFC player as you're trying to point out. I think this has less to do with the fact that you want Hewitt capped, and more to do with my assertion that you've used two very poor examples in North and Halfpenny to justify his selection. Let it go.

mikey_dragon wrote:The fact of the matter is, and this isn't opinion because I think we can all see it, we have a winger showing good form and a winger showing awful form like he did through the world cup. The selection process for that one should be a no brainer.

Firstly, it is still very much your opinion.

Secondly, if that was the only criteria, then yes, you would be correct. But it isn't. You don't simply select a player in isolation; you take into account things like form, experience, type of player, style of play, the weather conditions, opposition, the other players in your squad. When all these things are considered, as well as all the data the coaches will have that we will are not privy to, you weigh it up and select a player based on your opinion. I know it may shock you, but even Gatland relies on opinion; there is no 'fact' here. There is evidence that can inform opinion, but ultimately- as he stated himself when dropping Brian O'Driscoll- the coach must rely on his own judgement.


mikey_dragon wrote:No the Wales team back then did not play differently to now. They played the same tactics but couldn't execute as well, hence the ongoing complaints about out of form players and the tactics, so you've made that up and it isn't the first time you've made something up this evening.

What? This is getting boring. Have a lie down if you cannot refrain from accusing me of lying if you cannot understand what I am trying to convey. Alternatively, watch the tries they scored between 2009 and 2011, with the likes of Shane Williams, James Hook, and Lee Byrne in the team, and then look at the tries we score now. They're very different. The players dictate the gameplan, or perhaps it's vice versa: however, it's entirely fair to say- bar the Italy game in 2015 6N- we play less expansively now than we did then. The Australia game in the World Cup surely demonstrates that the first choice Welsh team cannot score expansive tries in the manner and with the same ease that it did six or seven years ago.


mikey_dragon wrote:I think he dropped one ball against Ospreys? That isn't a sign of inconsistency my friend, though it is a sign of desperation on your part to be bringing up the one match you've seen of him this season.

OK OK OK  

mikey_dragon wrote:BTW there's also a long list of players that disprove your 'too small' argument, some of which are in our team. If you don't want Morgan and Hewitt in the same back 3 then you could easily remove Morgan from there over Hewitt.

Yeah, that is true. I'd rather have a good, small winger over an untalented- but defensively solid- lump of a winger. However, Gatland evidently doesn't, which is what I was initially commenting upon, how well suited each player would be to Gatland's Wales, considering the current circumstances.

You could have Hewitt over Morgan, that is also true. In terms of squad selection, however, Morgan has been capped a few times, has more club experience, in my opinion is better with ball in hand, and can cover 10, 11, 14, and 15. It seems sensible to include Morgan over Hewitt, especially when neither are first choice selections for Wales (Gatland's back 3 is 15. Halfpenny 14. North 11. L Williams).


mikey_dragon wrote:One more thing, Roberts' distribution isn't poor and is a myth that has been busted on numerous occasions

Na, it really hasn't. For an international 12 who has regularly played with top drawer players, his passing should be a lot better. It also hasn't been 'busted' at all. What a strange phrase to use on such a subject as well. Have a watch of the Varsity match in which Roberts played. It's on youtube. Surrounded by amateur players, against amateur opposition, you'd think his handling skills would shine as an inexperienced international back. He looked decidedly average. I wish he were a more complete 12, and perhaps Harlequins will improve him where Racing did not, as it will benefit Wales, but he's not great with ball in hand, and the ball- when played to him- rarely goes beyond him in a Wales shirt. There is, and probably will be, plenty more evidence for Roberts' deficiencies with ball in hand in relation to his opposite number for other international teams. What a strange point to contest?

mikey_dragon wrote:but again, if you don't watch rugby you wouldn't know.

clap  clap  clap

mikey_dragon wrote:If you'd just said "I disagree" in the first place then fair enough but what peed me off is that you've just typed a load of sh*t in your two essays, giving statements that suggest you watch rugby once a month. Your opinion and rubbishing of other players isn't fact, I suggest you learn that.

I didn't say I disagree, because I'm fairly ambivalent to whether Hewitt would be picked in the squad over Cuthbert. I really dislike Cuthbert being there, but I can see the argument for his inclusion over Hewitt given the circumstances, and therefore it does make sense. Perhaps you should have spent more time reading my posts rather than refuting them (or rather repeatedly claiming I don't watch rugby/love Tom James/read the Western Mail. Bizarre...). I'm not rubbishing anyone. Hewitt is far from the finished article. As a small player in a big man's game, unfortunately the onus is on him to prove he is a better choice than the 'big man', who immediately has several advantages over the smaller man. He can do this through consistency of performance, and showing solidity in the defensive areas of his game, which will be scrutinised much more at Test level than his ability to beat a man with ball in hand, which is the main reason people are calling for him to be included for.

Have a good day, and let's try to leave any bitterness behind us. After all, we're meant to be supporting the same country OK

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Post by Guest Wed 20 Jan 2016, 3:55 pm

Good points miaow.

While I'm not in agreement with others that Hewitt should be in the first team or on the bench necessarily, what I do like is the concept of the extended squad. I haven't counted up the players here, but one thing Gats has been good at in the past is selecting an initial squad that is later trimmed down for the tournament. It is here that I would have liked Hewitt to have been selected, so that he gets exposure to 'the international environment', as Gats often alludes to. He's done it with Dixon, Amos, Tyler Morgan, et al. Get them in, get them involved in the sessions and conditioning, collect their data to start the record keeping process, give them goals and targets, but usually with the expectation that they will not likely make the final tournament squad. I think Hewitt could/should have been included in this type of wider squad as I feel he will be one for the future, and then if we suffer a few wing injuries in the tournament then at least he's better prepared for the step up as I'm not sure who else they'd parachute in if we lose a few from this position. With injuries and form he's probably next in line. It's a bit like the World Cup where Tyler Morgan was called up only because of injuries, but luckily he'd been in the training squads a few times so that probably aided his relatively smooth transition to international rugby.

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Post by johnrgby Wed 20 Jan 2016, 4:19 pm

BamBam wrote:
Seagultaf wrote:
BamBam wrote:This isn't intended as a wind up, but I count 10 players who play outside of Wales

How does that fit with "Gatland's law"?

Gatlands Law or the Participation Agreement talks about limiting the selection of players who have chosen to play for sides outside Wales in preference to the Welsh Regions. It is important that this agreement is not retrospective so does not affect players on existing contracts.

By my reckoning this rule only affects two players, Roberts and Priestland and the agreement currently allows for two picks, rising to three next season when a lot more players are likely to be caught in this. These include:  Faletau, Charteris, Francis, and North, so some tough choices will be needed. From that list I would chose Roberts, Faletau and North, but I suspect the bad feeling left by Faletau's departure may result in him being one of the victims?

That explains it!
As explained by The Western Mail
Jamie Roberts (Harlequins) - Captured

Rhys Priestland (Bath) - Captured

Tomas Francis (Exeter) - Captured next season

Luke Charteris (Racing 92) - Expected to be captured next season

George North (Northampton) - Expected to be captured next season

Dominic Day (Bath) - Not captured. Out of contract at the end of this season.

Bradley Davies (Wasps) - Not captured. Existing contract runs until 2017.

Ross Moriarty (Gloucester) - Not captured. Existing contract runs until 2017.

Jonathan Davies (Clermont Auvergne) - Not captured. Returning to Scarlets next season

Matthew Morgan (Bristol Rugby) - Not captured. Joining Cardiff Blues next season
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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 20 Jan 2016, 6:11 pm

miaow wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:Sorry but how are they bad examples when he's being compared with players in the same position?

I've answered that question twice now. You seem unhappy with the extended and reduced answers I've given. Are you expecting a different answer?

You blurted out the experience argument and I proved it to be wrong. You then changed the goal posts and gave your opinion which seems a pretty naf one when you make your points on how they somehow have discrepancies - how about just admitting you made a stupid and incorrect point instead of writing boring essays?

mikey_dragon wrote:You compared him with players in an entirely different position.

A winger/full back (Amos) is not an entirely different position. Aside from that, they are very good examples in that both Amos and G Davies had shown promise in the league, whilst also showing deficiencies in their game that may well be exposed at Test level. Amos was given a further two seasons to develop between his first cap (against Tonga I believe?) and the World Cup. Gareth Davies was blooded slowly since he started scoring tries on a regular basis in the Pro12; he had to deputise behind Phillips and Webb until he got the opportunity. Finally, these are excellent examples to make as they are a lot more recent than 2009 and 2010, when Halfpenny and North were, respectively, capped.

It isn't. But didn't you compare him to Gareth Davies, Justin Tipuric and Scott Williams? Again I can only allude to the two players in a similar position, North and Halfpenny. You're not wrong, neither am I. But I don't see why you keep trying to preach your opinion as gospel? And I actually think Gareth Davies should have been capped sooner - I couldn't see why Knoyle and Williams were favoured at the time, but I guess No.9 wasn't a position we were lacking in. That said neither was No.7 and centre. But we're talking about the wing right now and that is a player where we need more good players.

mikey_dragon wrote:He has more experience than Halfpenny and North did when they got their first cap, so that shoots down your exposure/experience argument for starters.

Unfortunately it doesn't. As I've now explained to you three times. To clarify for the final time: Gatland has introduced players much more slowly into the international set up since the 2011 RWC (the first team is more settled, and youngsters/form players are more likely to gain caps from the bench rather than go straight into the starting 15), and the two examples you cite were/are clearly superior players to Hewitt before getting capped. Try to think of another Welsh player in the professional era who has been quite as devastating as North was at such an age and with so little inexperience; he is the exception to a fairly understandable and logical rule of not throwing in young players at the deep end, and hoping they can swim.

How do you know he's doing this, has he told you? The first team was young in 2011 and playing well, there was no need to make wholesale changes. But again we're talking about wing and we have an out of sorts winger in the squad who should not be there ahead of a consistently good winger. North might be bigger and stronger but back then he wasn't vastly superior as you seem to think, neither was Halfpenny who again, was in the premiership, where Ashton hasn't been since before last year.

mikey_dragon wrote:This is backed up by your claim that he's "far from consistent in either (competition)" when he is actually very consistent across the board.

Much like the Dragons as a team, I don't believe he is. You disagree. That's fine. As a Dragons supporter, you are not neutral in your assessment of him as a player.

Cool with me - it just seems odd to be saying he's inconsistent. The lad scores tries every week, he has good stats and is basically a cracking player for his age. To have such a low opinion of him can only mean you don't regularly view him, least that is the impression I get.

mikey_dragon wrote:If you don't think Hewitt is in as good form it's likely because you've not been watching enough rugby [..] It also sounds like you read the WOL often as you seem to be up the ass of their new wonder boy (Tom James)

You're wrong on all three of those claims. Keep it academic rather than personal. I see you getting in a lot of petty fights on this board, and it makes for painful reading. Don't start with me please. Stay away from straw man personal assumptions, I cannot be bothered to counter them.

So you aren't then? I was more annoyed at the WOL to be honest. Billing up Tom James as the messiah and no mention of Hewitt. If James gets his shot it will probably be like before. He's a club player nothing more (in my opinion).

mikey_dragon wrote: [...]not sure how playing for Exeter is between International and Pro12 level either

The English Premiership has surpassed the Pro12 in standard significantly. This is quite obvious. Also, Exeter have been in Champions/Heineken Cup for the last two (possibly three?) seasons. The Dragons have not. All quite easy to understand I would have thought.

I disagree and this argument was often used as a stick to beat the Irish and Welsh when the English teams couldn't win in Europe. It still has no substance. Blurting it out just comes across as a 'treacherous' point of view. The form of the Pro12 early in the season was terrible I can admit. Well Exeter being there isn't exactly doing them good when they come up against the likes of Clermont. That said Exeter are a fantastically coached team but I don't really remember James featuring much for them in his final season of the contract? Surely that makes this a null argument?

mikey_dragon wrote:It's your opinion that he would have started against England in the RWC yet I don't see why a winger who wasn't playing for Exeter at the time would have played ahead of Amos who was in good form and playing regularly, but that's just common sense prevailing there.

Don't conflate your own opinion with common sense. He was playing on rotation in a team that is, quite evidently, a lot better than the Dragons. I'm not a fan of Tom James, he's seriously deficient in footballing ability, and has an unreliable streak that could lead to indiscipline. However, I was commenting on why I think Gatland may well have been looking to include him in the first team, as he suits Wales' gameplan. I shall, therefore, list the reasons why- in a Welsh team coached by Warren Gatland- he is a better choice than Amos:

1. Bigger
2. Stronger
3. More experienced
4. Had several Wales caps
5. Very similar to Gatland's (woefully out of form) favoured partner to George North, Alex Cuthbert: a good like-for-like replacement.

I will admit this is my opinion, or at least it is my assessment of a judgement call. I hope, from now on, you're able to differentiate between your own opinion, and 'common sense'.

I don't think you're wrong here. I just don't buy into the hype surrounding James and I haven't long stated why. If he proves me wrong then good for him, and good for Wales. My argument was about Cuthbert, remember? He is the player that shouldn't be there - the world cup and recent form, actually form over this season and last is proof of that. As for the world cup well fact is Amos was in form and selected. I didn't see James' name on Exeter's team sheet for a long time apart from his first season there, and assumed he was down the pecking order. Most on here thought that James was in the world cup squad to hold tackle bags. Out of interest can you prove otherwise about him just being rotated with Exeter?

mikey_dragon wrote:I'll also add that watching Tom James through his early career to now I can see that is he not a great defender and the fact that you had to dig up an example of a good tackle from 2010 should make that obvious to you, I mean, you did dig it up...

To be honest, I'm not sure what point you're making here. An example of a good tackle? Dig up? I'm relying on my memory here; I don't have the time to research my posts on this board unfortunately. I remember he pleasantly surprised me, as he had a solid game when I was anticipating him being torn apart by an excellent All Blacks team. That is why I was able to recall it. It was also for the whole game (if he played the full 80, this I'm not sure of), not one tackle. I think you may have missed the point I was making. Nevertheless, his time in Exeter appears to have improved his defending in a positional sense as well; he's always had the size and strength to be able to put big hits in, to defend the gainline (something valued very highly by Gatland and Shaun Edwards...are you beginning to see a theme here?). I suspect your opinion of him differs. That's fine.

Right so why on earth did you state he's a good defender and use an example from five years ago? That's null and void. James did have some good games back then, but also had a lot of bad ones. That was why he never became a main stay in the team. This could yet change but IMO it won't because his present form shows just that.

mikey_dragon wrote:Can I just ask how we're meant to blood new players then? [...]

For what will be the third time, look at the way Warren Gatland has latterly capped young or inexperienced players; playing them against 'weaker' teams, playing them off the bench, and playing them when the rest of the unit they are in is settled. As mentioned by a poster above, with L Williams and Halfpenny probably unavailable, it may well be that 2/3rds of the unit Hewitt would come into/be training with is not first choice. You do not want to rely on a dreadful Cuthbert and/or an inexperienced Matthew Morgan or Hallam Amos to show the ropes to an even less inexperienced winger. It's not ideal. Try not to think in absolutes; he has plenty of time to be capped. The better he plays, the more he improves, and the more likely a call up will occur. You seem anxious to cap him/include him in this squad. Why? He wouldn't start ahead of the aforementioned players, so why not let him continue his career with the Dragons?

I asked because you're under the impression that good players shouldn't be called up for Wales duty. Good players SHOULD be called up, even more so when we're light in the back 3 with injuries and an out of form player! BTW there is also examples of inexperienced players getting caps on the big stage; there's Rhys Gill, Matthew Morgan, Tyler Morgan, Hallam Amos - the latter 2 were fresh out of U20s rugby and that's just off the top of my head. So this will be news to you but it is not always done in the specific way you describe. I think I've made my feeling clear but I'll say it again - how can you not select a form winger when we're light in the back 3, and select a winger who's playing crap? Cuthbert's form has been THIS bad for almost two seasons and anyone who thinks otherwise is either blind or dumb. So for me this selection is criminal. I'm not in a rush for Hewitt to be capped and even if he was selected I don't think he would have been in this 6 Nations - that's not to say he won't benefit from the exposure mentally and physically.

mikey_dragon wrote:If we don't pick the good ones, do we pick the bad ones and have a team of Cuthbert's?

You're arguing in absolutes. Try not to think of black and whites like 'good' and 'bad'. There's no such thing.

There's players in good form, players in bad form, and players who are Gatland's children because they've been playing badly for so long and continue to get selected. Smile

mikey_dragon wrote: I'm sorry but these are just stupid statements from you. I'm finding my head in my hands reading this. So after I disprove your original theory [...]

You seem swelled by a sense of self-importance. Why are you being so aggressive? You've disproved nothing, but why are you so agitated to deem yourself 'factually correct' in what is a discussion of opinions. If you can't accept the validity of others' opinions, I don't think this is the best forum- where you will come across many viewpoints that differ to yours- for you.

Also, if I'm causing you such distress, it may be best to stop reading what I have to say? However, I think this may be more to do with the fact that what I say is in disagreement with your own perspective, rather than any glaring problem with the content of it.

Sorry if I came across that way, reading back I can see that I did. I actually got that impression from your posts too... You don't cause distress, and in spite of my mood late last night I think you make this article rather interesting.

mikey_dragon wrote:you move the goal posts and try to suggest they're different? I do agree that North certainly was a special player, Halfpenny was also very good (you should note he was playing for Cardiff RFC being promoted the year he got capped, I guess you weren't watching again)

Halfpenny became a Wales starter in the Six Nations of 2009. He was a Blues regular at this point, having had a good start to the season, and was excellent in a team that went on to win the EDF cup quite comfortably. That season culminated with his selection for the Lions Tour, only curtailed by injury. Please, don't try and paint Halfpenny as some wildcard selection; his rise was swift, but this was because he was shining in (what was then) a good Blues team. He was far from some average, Cardiff RFC player as you're trying to point out. I think this has less to do with the fact that you want Hewitt capped, and more to do with my assertion that you've used two very poor examples in North and Halfpenny to justify his selection. Let it go.

I don't disagree that he was awesome, and I think Hewitt is now playing in a similar vein, which happens to be much better than Cuthbert and slightly better than James due to being less erratic and error prone. Halfpenny was playing for Cardiff RFC after being shunned by Ospreys, he later got promoted to Blues and then Wales all in 2008 - debuting against SA. My point was that he was more inexperienced, not that he was average. Cobblers, it was you painting him and North as wildcards and using it to denigrate Hewitt. Again I'm not overly eager for Hewitt to be capped as I've explained. What I've also explained is that said wingers aren't a poor comparison to Hewitt - you're just upset that it had killed your inexperienced argument.

mikey_dragon wrote:The fact of the matter is, and this isn't opinion because I think we can all see it, we have a winger showing good form and a winger showing awful form like he did through the world cup. The selection process for that one should be a no brainer.

Firstly, it is still very much your opinion.

Secondly, if that was the only criteria, then yes, you would be correct. But it isn't. You don't simply select a player in isolation; you take into account things like form, experience, type of player, style of play, the weather conditions, opposition, the other players in your squad. When all these things are considered, as well as all the data the coaches will have that we will are not privy to, you weigh it up and select a player based on your opinion. I know it may shock you, but even Gatland relies on opinion; there is no 'fact' here. There is evidence that can inform opinion, but ultimately- as he stated himself when dropping Brian O'Driscoll- the coach must rely on his own judgement.

No I think we can all see that Cuthbert is crap. My opinion on Hewitt might be shared by some and not others, but one certain fact is that his form has been better than Cuthbert's since last year. Not sure why you've typed the rest but it was a fairly interesting read.

mikey_dragon wrote:No the Wales team back then did not play differently to now. They played the same tactics but couldn't execute as well, hence the ongoing complaints about out of form players and the tactics, so you've made that up and it isn't the first time you've made something up this evening.

What? This is getting boring. Have a lie down if you cannot refrain from accusing me of lying if you cannot understand what I am trying to convey. Alternatively, watch the tries they scored between 2009 and 2011, with the likes of Shane Williams, James Hook, and Lee Byrne in the team, and then look at the tries we score now. They're very different. The players dictate the gameplan, or perhaps it's vice versa: however, it's entirely fair to say- bar the Italy game in 2015 6N- we play less expansively now than we did then. The Australia game in the World Cup surely demonstrates that the first choice Welsh team cannot score expansive tries in the manner and with the same ease that it did six or seven years ago.

The tactics haven't changed. We have better players now. They can also still score tries Smile. It wasn't a first choice Wales team against Australia either.

mikey_dragon wrote:BTW there's also a long list of players that disprove your 'too small' argument, some of which are in our team. If you don't want Morgan and Hewitt in the same back 3 then you could easily remove Morgan from there over Hewitt.

Yeah, that is true. I'd rather have a good, small winger over an untalented- but defensively solid- lump of a winger. However, Gatland evidently doesn't, which is what I was initially commenting upon, how well suited each player would be to Gatland's Wales, considering the current circumstances.

You could have Hewitt over Morgan, that is also true. In terms of squad selection, however, Morgan has been capped a few times, has more club experience, in my opinion is better with ball in hand, and can cover 10, 11, 14, and 15. It seems sensible to include Morgan over Hewitt, especially when neither are first choice selections for Wales (Gatland's back 3 is 15. Halfpenny 14. North 11. L Williams).

Fair enough. Cuthbert currently isn't suited to playing international rugby whatever the style of play is.

mikey_dragon wrote:One more thing, Roberts' distribution isn't poor and is a myth that has been busted on numerous occasions

Na, it really hasn't. For an international 12 who has regularly played with top drawer players, his passing should be a lot better. It also hasn't been 'busted' at all. What a strange phrase to use on such a subject as well. Have a watch of the Varsity match in which Roberts played. It's on youtube. Surrounded by amateur players, against amateur opposition, you'd think his handling skills would shine as an inexperienced international back. He looked decidedly average. I wish he were a more complete 12, and perhaps Harlequins will improve him where Racing did not, as it will benefit Wales, but he's not great with ball in hand, and the ball- when played to him- rarely goes beyond him in a Wales shirt. There is, and probably will be, plenty more evidence for Roberts' deficiencies with ball in hand in relation to his opposite number for other international teams. What a strange point to contest?

Yes it has. Quins use him better than Wales from what I've seen, but play a different style of rugby. So there have been a few examples this year for starters. LOL why are you using the varsity match where he went off injured as an example? I've seen his good handling skills on numerous occasions for Wales. I actually think he's a whole lot more to Wales than just a solid 12 BTW.

mikey_dragon wrote:If you'd just said "I disagree" in the first place then fair enough but what peed me off is that you've just typed a load of sh*t in your two essays, giving statements that suggest you watch rugby once a month. Your opinion and rubbishing of other players isn't fact, I suggest you learn that.

I didn't say I disagree, because I'm fairly ambivalent to whether Hewitt would be picked in the squad over Cuthbert. I really dislike Cuthbert being there, but I can see the argument for his inclusion over Hewitt given the circumstances, and therefore it does make sense. Perhaps you should have spent more time reading my posts rather than refuting them (or rather repeatedly claiming I don't watch rugby/love Tom James/read the Western Mail. Bizarre...). I'm not rubbishing anyone. Hewitt is far from the finished article. As a small player in a big man's game, unfortunately the onus is on him to prove he is a better choice than the 'big man', who immediately has several advantages over the smaller man. He can do this through consistency of performance, and showing solidity in the defensive areas of his game, which will be scrutinised much more at Test level than his ability to beat a man with ball in hand, which is the main reason people are calling for him to be included for.

Have a good day, and let's try to leave any bitterness behind us. After all, we're meant to be supporting the same country OK

You seem to be dragging up the small man argument again when you've even admitted is a daft point? For me he's already proved it by playing exceptionally well ever since debuting for Dragons, but ah well. I also think that if Morgan can play for Wales, Hewitt who is a better defender certainly can.
Thanks, you have a good few weeks.



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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 20 Jan 2016, 6:12 pm

Cardiff Dave wrote:Yaaaawwwwn.

Is how we all feel about your love affair with amateur clubs.

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Post by Cardiff Dave Wed 20 Jan 2016, 6:38 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:
Cardiff Dave wrote:Yaaaawwwwn.

Is how we all feel about your love affair with amateur clubs.

Eh? Mine's fully pro btw. Has been for ages and ages.

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Post by gregortree Wed 20 Jan 2016, 6:41 pm

Wales 6 Nations Squad - Page 2 1347041234

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 20 Jan 2016, 6:52 pm

Cardiff Dave wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
Cardiff Dave wrote:Yaaaawwwwn.

Is how we all feel about your love affair with amateur clubs.

Eh? Mine's fully pro btw. Has been for ages and ages.

I never said otherwise. I said you have a love affair with Newport, Cardiff and Llanelli RFC. It's even got to the point where you can't even distinguish so I'm actually pleasantly surprised you allude to supporting a fully professional Cardiff Blues, not RFC Smile.

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Post by gregortree Wed 20 Jan 2016, 6:59 pm

Gloucester...we are doing our best to support Welsh players.
But only Moriarty picked so far.

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 20 Jan 2016, 7:01 pm

gregortree wrote:Gloucester...we are doing our best to support Welsh players.
But only Moriarty picked so far.

He's the only one good enough. Any idea when his current contract is up and do you think he'd be looking to play for a team in Wales?

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Post by gregortree Wed 20 Jan 2016, 7:02 pm

Henson is available too..just over the Bridge in Bristol.

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Post by Cardiff Dave Wed 20 Jan 2016, 7:10 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:
Cardiff Dave wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
Cardiff Dave wrote:Yaaaawwwwn.

Is how we all feel about your love affair with amateur clubs.

Eh? Mine's fully pro btw. Has been for ages and ages.

I never said otherwise. I said you have a love affair with Newport, Cardiff and Llanelli RFC. It's even got to the point where you can't even distinguish so I'm actually pleasantly surprised you allude to supporting a fully professional Cardiff Blues, not RFC Smile.

Ych a fi.

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Post by Guest Wed 20 Jan 2016, 7:36 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:
miaow wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:Sorry but how are they bad examples when he's being compared with players in the same position?

I've answered that question twice now. You seem unhappy with the extended and reduced answers I've given. Are you expecting a different answer?

mikey_dragon wrote:You blurted out the experience argument and I proved it to be wrong [...]

It's at this point that I stopped reading, there's only so long I can remain civil when engaging with idiocy. I'll again refer you to the below:

miaow wrote:Have a good day, and let's try to leave any bitterness behind us. After all, we're meant to be supporting the same country OK

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 20 Jan 2016, 7:47 pm

miaow I see you were just trying to get the last word in with that one then? How childish.

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Post by gregortree Wed 20 Jan 2016, 7:50 pm

Ok Mikey, Miaow stop scribbling now.......and when you finish Mikey can have the last word. Wales 6 Nations Squad - Page 2 1347041234

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Post by Gwlad Thu 21 Jan 2016, 1:44 am

gregortree wrote:Henson is available too..just over the Bridge in Bristol.

Bubbly

Please just once more

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Post by TightHEAD Thu 21 Jan 2016, 11:18 am

Henson doesn't play Warrenball.
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Post by LordDowlais Thu 21 Jan 2016, 11:26 am

TightHEAD, your obsession with Wales is not healthy. Rolling Eyes

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Thu 21 Jan 2016, 11:32 am

There's no such thing as an unhealthy obsession with Wales. Very Happy

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Post by maestegmafia Thu 21 Jan 2016, 11:44 am

Luckless Pedestrian wrote:There's no such thing as an unhealthy obsession with Wales. Very Happy

Can you blame him. Success breeds admiration.

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Post by Dontheman2 Thu 21 Jan 2016, 11:53 am

Bore da. Wales is a state of mind!

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Thu 21 Jan 2016, 11:59 am

maestegmafia wrote:
Luckless Pedestrian wrote:There's no such thing as an unhealthy obsession with Wales. Very Happy

Can you blame him. Success breeds admiration.

I meant the country, not the national side.

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Post by TightHEAD Thu 21 Jan 2016, 12:03 pm

LordDowlais wrote:TightHEAD, your obsession with Wales Rugby is not healthy. Rolling Eyes
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Post by maestegmafia Thu 21 Jan 2016, 12:04 pm

Luckless Pedestrian wrote:
maestegmafia wrote:
Luckless Pedestrian wrote:There's no such thing as an unhealthy obsession with Wales. Very Happy

Can you blame him. Success breeds admiration.

I meant the country, not the national side.

What's not to like..?

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Post by TightHEAD Thu 21 Jan 2016, 12:06 pm

maestegmafia wrote:
Luckless Pedestrian wrote:
maestegmafia wrote:
Luckless Pedestrian wrote:There's no such thing as an unhealthy obsession with Wales. Very Happy

Can you blame him. Success breeds admiration.

I meant the country, not the national side.

What's not to like..?

Port Talbot.
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Post by GavinDragon Thu 21 Jan 2016, 12:06 pm

Cardiff Dave wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
Cardiff Dave wrote:Yaaaawwwwn.

Is how we all feel about your love affair with amateur clubs.

Eh? Mine's fully pro btw. Has been for ages and ages.

I think we may differ on the definition of "pro" Whistle

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Post by RubyGuby Fri 22 Jan 2016, 10:42 am

I think we need to be careful, from what I'm reading England are about to take over the rugby world again, lead by the mighty Josh Beaumont who at 6 ft. 7 ins and 17 stone is apparently a unit. He smashed through a world class Dragons team with ease. Time to quake again I think. Bookies as per usual have England form favourites for the 6 Nations so perhaps we're best focussing on runners up. Those bookies know a thing or 2, remember the RWC !!!!!!!!!!!!!! thumbsup

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Fri 22 Jan 2016, 10:53 am

Well England have a better coaching team compared to last year, and they only lost out on points difference then, so it's not much of a stretch to make them favourites. They also play two other contenders, Ireland and Wales, at Twickenham.

Also, if we're referring to the same post / thread, it was a Welsh poster who described him as a unit.

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Post by maestegmafia Fri 22 Jan 2016, 12:23 pm

Luckless Pedestrian wrote:Well England have a better coaching team compared to last year, and they only lost out on points difference then, so it's not much of a stretch to make them favourites. They also play two other contenders, Ireland and Wales, at Twickenham.

Also, if we're referring to the same post / thread, it was a Welsh poster who described him as a unit.

Not sure this England coaching team will make much difference. In England they get stuck by the PRL deal that hinders their coaches selection. Realistically Eddie Jones can only change a handful of players. He can't just select who he thinks will be best for the job as in the rest of the world.

So their will be a lot of very similar faces and that similarity of character as when Lancaster was coach.

I expect Ireland to have had a huge kick up the backside by Schmidt. They under performed at the RWC. Their players are looking really good for their provinces.

I think Gats is right and Ireland are very much favourites to get a first three consecutive wins.

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Post by Guest Fri 22 Jan 2016, 1:58 pm

Is that true Maes? Jones can't name who he wants? What part of the PRL deal forces his selection policy? Not disagreeing, just curious!

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Post by True Raven Fri 22 Jan 2016, 2:04 pm

To be fair, England just had a bad world cup. It happens. We've been there in 07 yet won the 08 Grand Slam, who says England under a coach (who has coached at international level) can't do the same, especially with Sarries being so dominant at club level and should form the spine (in my opinion)

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Post by lostinwales Fri 22 Jan 2016, 2:09 pm

Griff wrote:Is that true Maes?  Jones can't name who he wants?  What part of the PRL deal forces his selection policy?  Not disagreeing, just curious!

The deal was that they are unable to change more than 10 from the current squad, plus one because of Burgess quitting RU. Medical replacements are also allowed. It's all to do with the agreements on access and compensation between the RFU and PRL.

I have read on here that most of the AP DOR's would have been prepared to let Eddie make more changes, but right now there would probably only be minor differences between what we have and what we would have got had he a free hand.

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Post by Gwlad Sat 23 Jan 2016, 1:00 am

maestegmafia wrote:
Luckless Pedestrian wrote:Well England have a better coaching team compared to last year, and they only lost out on points difference then, so it's not much of a stretch to make them favourites. They also play two other contenders, Ireland and Wales, at Twickenham.

Also, if we're referring to the same post / thread, it was a Welsh poster who described him as a unit.

Not sure this England coaching team will make much difference. In England they get stuck by the PRL deal that hinders their coaches selection. Realistically Eddie Jones can only change a handful of players. He can't just select who he thinks will be best for the job as in the rest of the world.

So their will be a lot of very similar faces and that similarity of character as when Lancaster was coach.

I expect Ireland to have had a huge kick up the backside by Schmidt. They under performed at the RWC. Their players are looking really good for their provinces.

I think Gats is right and Ireland are very much favourites to get a first three consecutive wins.

Unless Scots do England and Wales beat Ireland and my money is on both those results. Ireland are class but they are also a two trick pony and with one of them gone the pressure on Sex becomes massive. With us likely to play two 7s I can see him being shut down early on. Then its a forward battle. Best is the right choice for skipper but Ireland with no POC is a very dimisnhed side

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Post by True Raven Sat 23 Jan 2016, 7:58 am

There's more chance of that missing lottery ticket ending up in my back pocket than there is of Scotland beating England. I was gutted Scotland lost how they did in that world cup but against Australia they were gifted a couple of tries and got demolished by south Africa. They're a young team who are developing nicely but not good enough yet to beat england....and wales wont play with two 7s, it will be a back row of lydiate, Warburton and faletau no matter how little game time they've had

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Post by yappysnap Sat 23 Jan 2016, 8:13 am

Roberts is in fine form at the moment, he's playing some of the best rugby I've seen since he went to France. Should be a very good combination with Biggar and who ever you have at 13? Depending upon tactics though obv.

Please keep him fit for Quins.

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Post by bedfordwelsh Sat 23 Jan 2016, 8:25 am

yappysnap wrote:Roberts is in fine form at the moment, he's playing some of the best rugby I've seen since he went to France. Should be a very good combination with Biggar and who ever you have at 13? Depending upon tactics though obv.

Please keep him fit for Quins.

That will be JD, they already have a well formed partnership and both operate well together. Of all our injuries in the world cup Davies was the one I felt we really missed.
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Post by BigTrevsbigmac Sat 23 Jan 2016, 8:26 am

yappysnap wrote:Roberts is in fine form at the moment, he's playing some of the best rugby I've seen since he went to France. Should be a very good combination with Biggar and who ever you have at 13? Depending upon tactics though obv.

Please keep him fit for Quins.

Yappy with Roberts at 12 we all know what tactics Wales will employ no matter what Howley says to the press.

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Post by True Raven Sat 23 Jan 2016, 8:30 am

BigTrevsbigmac wrote:
yappysnap wrote:Roberts is in fine form at the moment, he's playing some of the best rugby I've seen since he went to France. Should be a very good combination with Biggar and who ever you have at 13? Depending upon tactics though obv.

Please keep him fit for Quins.

Yappy with Roberts at 12 we all know what tactics Wales will employ no matter what Howley says to the press.

This....its why I hoped rob howley would have lost his job after the world cup after our dismal attack. With howley as coach, Roberts will constantly run into his opposite number without even the hope of an offload

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