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6N 2016: Scotland v England, 6 February

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Post by GeordieFalcon Sun 07 Feb 2016, 10:26 am

First topic message reminder :

Billy and Kruis stood out for me.

And Jamie George improved things when he came on.

Farrell should probably move to 10 as ford looks so off the pace.
But farrell annoys me alot. There was NO need for that shove in the back . That sums him up.

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Post by SimonofSurrey Sun 07 Feb 2016, 8:52 pm

The Murrayfield Calcutta Cup game, for some reason, always seems to be a turgid affair. Unlike the games at HQ which, while almost always ending up one way, tend to be much more exciting and open. In the wake of RWC 2015, both sides disappointed me yesterday: Scotland never came near the same skill or commitment levels while England, in contrast, too often showed why they had left their own party so early. I saw nothing that would have even vaguely caught the attention of any of last year's semi-finalists, for example.

Is that unduly harsh or am I missing something?

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Post by RDW Sun 07 Feb 2016, 8:54 pm

SimonofSurrey wrote:The Murrayfield Calcutta Cup game, for some reason, always seems to be a turgid affair. Unlike the games at HQ which, while almost always ending up one way, tend to be much more exciting and open. In the wake of RWC 2015, both sides disappointed me yesterday: Scotland never came near the same skill or commitment levels while England, in contrast, too often showed why they had left their own party so early. I saw nothing that would have even vaguely caught the attention of any of last year's semi-finalists, for example.

Is that unduly harsh or am I missing something?

I think that is entirely fair

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Post by RubyGuby Sun 07 Feb 2016, 8:56 pm

SOS you're just a realist and have rightly used the SH teams as a barometer. Just think of this comp as our 6 nations and leave the SH barometer for the Summer. It's more fun that way and we can delude ourselves for a while thumbsup

Decent win all the same and as the song goes "Things can only get better" (well hopefully)

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Post by jamesandimac Sun 07 Feb 2016, 11:01 pm

Well if reports are true, it would appear that Launchbury's lack of fitness/form was down to a stomach bug and he spent most of the second half in the toilet. Would explain a few things. On form he's one of our best players and would be great to see him get to that level again in the coming weeks.

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Post by mikey_dragon Sun 07 Feb 2016, 11:21 pm

Stop making excuses for Launchbury, he's just overrated, and to think some England fans have the nerve to say that about AWJ. Jones is just world class and Launchbury could probably do with coming on the next Lions tour to learn a thing or two from the northern hemispheres top lock forward.

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Post by jamesandimac Sun 07 Feb 2016, 11:46 pm

Where the bloody hell did that come from?

Anyway, looking forward to next week and seeing what progress they make and what selections Jones makes. Fast track expected at Rome next week so can we expect to see Clifford get more game time?

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Post by DaveM Mon 08 Feb 2016, 12:12 am

doctor_grey wrote:
DaveM wrote:I'd imagine there will only be a small number of changes, but I'd like to see:

Clifford in at 7, with Haskell moved to 6.(Possible)
Farrell moved to 10, with Ford benched.(Possible)
Devoto starting at 12 (Possible)
Daly starting at 13, with JJ benched (Unlikely)
Goode starting at 15 with Brown dropped (Unlikely)
Lawes starting with Launchbury on the bench (Possible).
Dave,
I would be OK with most of your suggestions:
Clifford in at 7, with Haskell moved to 6.(Possible) - agree, I would try it.  Robshaw on the bench.  Not a shot a Robshaw, but we ought to see what Clifford is made of.  
Farrell moved to 10, with Ford benched.(Possible)  Agree - but I would have Alex Goode as bench cover for Farrell, not Ford.  he needs to be with his club to get his sh!t together.  
Devoto starting at 12 (Possible) No problem
Daly starting at 13, with JJ benched (Unlikely).  I would like this.  JJ was the invisible man yesterday.  Now he can be invisible on the bench.  
Goode starting at 15 with Brown dropped (Unlikely).  No, Goode is slow, Brown is simply better.  Even a mediocre Brown.  Besides I have Goode backing up Farrell (until we get Cippy in the squad as an injury replacement for Ford).  
Lawes starting with Launchbury on the bench (Possible).  Couild go either way.  If Launchbury is physically OK, give him the start again.  If not Lawes.  

I would add that I want Marler on the bench - at best.  Mako to start then let's see.

Yeah, Mako is a better LH than Marler in my view, so there is definitely a case for promoting him. I already had more changes than will actually be made though......

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Post by englandglory4ever Mon 08 Feb 2016, 7:56 am

Marler is defo the best loose head. Mako coming on when the game loosens up suits is carrying skills. But when it comes to scrummage time marler is best. We would have been in serious trouble in those first scrums if mako had started.

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Post by englandglory4ever Mon 08 Feb 2016, 8:05 am

Eddie is a scamp. He's reported in the BBC saying that they want to go to Rome next week and smack Italy and give them a good hiding. Very funny.

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:01 am

I'd make some small changes to the England XV for the next contest:

1.Marler 2.Hartley 3.Cole 4.Lawes 5.Kruis 6.Haskell 7.Clifford 8.B Vunipola 9.Youngs 10.Farrell 11.Nowell 12.Devoto 13.Joseph 14.Watson 15.Brown

16.M Vunipola 17.George 18.Hill 19.Itoje 20.Robshaw 21.Care 22.Goode 23.Daly

I am one of those who thinks that Launchbury will become one of the great locks, but he was badly off his game against Scotland and, in my opinion, outshone by both Kruis and Jonny Gray (one of the few Englishman to be bettered by his opposite man). I'd give Lawes and Kruis a shot, with young Itoje given a chance off the bench.

I thought the English backrow did some things well (good ball carrying and really physical in the tackle) but that old chestnut of the breakdown still lags (albeit others like Launchbury would have been expected to give more in this departmetn). Time to give Clifford a start I think. Robshaw will come back into the reckoning in the other games.

Ford had a pretty poor showing by his high standards. Looks like he could use a break. He'll be back. If I were to pull together a list of England players who could make that very Welsh classification: World Class, Ford would be one of them.

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Post by RDW Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:05 am

Apparently Launchbury had a bad dose of the sh!ts on Saturday and him being subbed off was as much to let him go to the toilet as anything else.

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Post by englandglory4ever Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:08 am

Sorry, anyone touting youngs to start on the evidence of that game needs their bumps felt. He took the ball from a driving maul that was powering to the line. He also nearly lost the game with an interception pass. He was incredibly slow at getting the ball away and his box kicking was woeful. He was a liability.

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Post by Barney McGrew did it Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:09 am

I think having 2 FHs on at the same time cramps their respective styles. And I'm not sure it has done anything to improve their confidence either. OF has become grumpier and GF seems to have gone into his shell a bit. I understood the logic for the 1st game away but I think it's time Eddie bit the bullet and put at IC the best IC we have currently available. But given how Devoto didn't even make an appearance unfortunately I think he'll persevere with GF & OF for pretty much all of the 6N - pretty much until Slade & Hill are available.
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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:13 am

I would only make one change to the starting side - move Farrell to 10 and bring on a proper 12 (Hill or Devoto)

I would also consider moving Haskell to 6 and bringing Kvesic on, but we wont see that. Clifford appears to be the one they want to really work on.

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Post by beshocked Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:14 am

king carlos completely agree with all that.

Glad to see most of us in agreement in what changes to see for the Italy game.

I like most of the changes being recommended.

Think Borthwick and Gustard will be quite pleased. The set piece was solid, England conceded no tries.


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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:14 am

englandglory4ever wrote:Sorry, anyone touting youngs to start on the evidence of that game needs their bumps felt. He took the ball from a driving maul that was powering to the line. He also nearly lost the game with an interception pass. He was incredibly slow at getting the ball away and his box kicking was woeful. He was a liability.

Yes but he's been on great form this season for Leicester and in my opinion is a better allround player than Care. Of the two I actually think Care is probably the better impact sub.

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:16 am

beshocked wrote:king carlos completely agree with all that.

Glad to see most of us in agreement in what changes to see for the Italy game.

I like most of the changes being recommended.

Think Borthwick and Gustard will be quite pleased. The set piece was solid, England conceded no tries.


The England defence was pretty good. We managed a few line breaks which I'm sure they'll look at, but the physicality in the tackle (lead by a pumped up James Haskell) caused us problems and in the second half we really struggled to get any foothold or momentum. The England lineout also had the better game, albeit Scotland managed to extract a few scrum penalties (a couple of which I felt were harsh).

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:22 am

I thought Haskell was excellent....as a traditional 6! Not a 7.

But checking the stats....overall we had more turnovers.


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Post by Cumbrian Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:25 am

Barney McGrew did it wrote:I think having 2 FHs on at the same time cramps their respective styles. And I'm not sure it has done anything to improve their confidence either. OF has become grumpier and GF seems to have gone into his shell a bit. I understood the logic for the 1st game away but I think it's time Eddie bit the bullet and put at IC the best IC we have currently available. But given how Devoto didn't even make an appearance unfortunately I think he'll persevere with GF & OF for pretty much all of the 6N - pretty much until Slade & Hill are available.

I agree with you, I think Farrell was basically playing FH from the 12 position and he has more of a demanding character than Ford which meant that Ford allowed himself to be pushed into the background. Ford seemed to also have been given instructions to put up bombs whenever got the ball. It is too muddled, we need a proper inside centre and either Ford OR Farrell. I disagree about them starting together for the rest of the tournament. Reckon Devoto will start against Italy. I will be very disappointed if he doesn't...
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Post by BamBam Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:27 am

RDW_Scotland wrote:Apparently Launchbury had a bad dose of the sh!ts on Saturday and him being subbed off was as much to let him go to the toilet as anything else.

Careful! You don't want to be making excuses for Joe Launchbury, or we'll be hearing more about how Alun Wyn Jones is the greatest lock in the history of the world

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Post by englandglory4ever Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:29 am

Anyone else think Borthwick looks like Jo 90 with his specs on? He could be Brains behind the set piece.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:29 am

Agree Marra

The two areas of discussion is the 7 spot and the 10/12

I wouldn't be bothered if the back row stayed the same, but that 10/12 of isn't right. He needs to have a look at that this week.

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Post by BamBam Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:35 am

I'm in agreement with most of you, think Ford needs to get benched with Devoto/Hill at 12 (I'd go Devoto) and either Kvesic or Clifford to start for either Robshaw or Haskell

Rest of the side went well, and don't think any other changes needed. The play leading up to Nowell's try was excellent, and really excited to see how that develops, especially as Jones' comments this week would imply he's going to open it up against Italy

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:35 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:I thought Haskell was excellent....as a traditional 6! Not a 7.

But checking the stats....overall we had more turnovers.


That sounds right. I think Dan Cole had a couple actually. I was a bit underwhelmed by Barclay and Hardie for Scotland, although I think they spent much of the night stopping the England ball carriers rather than getting over the ball.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:36 am

Eddie stoking the fire already...saying we should give Italy a hiding! You'd never hear Lancaster saying that...publicly anyway

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Post by beshocked Mon 08 Feb 2016, 9:39 am

If I was a Scottish fan i would be worried about the lack of power/ball carriers. Denton IMO wasnt good enough.

Billy showed the importance of having a powerful go to carrier. Swapping the no 8s would have made things interesting....

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Post by SimonofSurrey Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:05 am

BamBam wrote:
RDW_Scotland wrote:Apparently Launchbury had a bad dose of the sh!ts on Saturday and him being subbed off was as much to let him go to the toilet as anything else.

Careful! You don't want to be making excuses for Joe Launchbury, or we'll be hearing more about how Alun Wyn Jones is the greatest lock in the history of the world

As an neutral on this, I always thought that POC in his pomp shaded it over AWJ. Both great players of their generation, though.

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Post by BamBam Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:14 am

SimonofSurrey wrote:
BamBam wrote:
RDW_Scotland wrote:Apparently Launchbury had a bad dose of the sh!ts on Saturday and him being subbed off was as much to let him go to the toilet as anything else.

Careful! You don't want to be making excuses for Joe Launchbury, or we'll be hearing more about how Alun Wyn Jones is the greatest lock in the history of the world

As an neutral on this, I always thought that POC in his pomp shaded it over AWJ. Both great players of their generation, though.

I think "shaded" is a momentous understatement!!!

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Post by lostinwales Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:14 am

BamBam wrote:
RDW_Scotland wrote:Apparently Launchbury had a bad dose of the sh!ts on Saturday and him being subbed off was as much to let him go to the toilet as anything else.

Careful! You don't want to be making excuses for Joe Launchbury, or we'll be hearing more about how Alun Wyn Jones is the greatest lock in the history of the world

Apparently when AWJ has the sh*ts they are world class[tm] sh*ts....

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Post by king_carlos Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:15 am

beshocked wrote:If I was a Scottish fan i would be worried about the lack of power/ball carriers. Denton IMO wasnt good enough.

Billy showed the importance of having a powerful go to carrier. Swapping the no 8s would have made things interesting....

Denton was poor but Laidlaws ponderous service didn't aid the forward runners coming off him.

I felt for Jonny Gray as for much of the game it felt like he was the only forward runner really trying to hurl himself at the defense around the fringes to try to muster some momentum. The other big carriers in that pack were Denton and Richie Gray but both are guys who need momentum to work well. They won't drag a side onto the front foot but are very dangerous once there.

Ross Ford also seems to offer far less carrying than he used to which must be a worry.

Some more impact from the bench would help too. Cowan is a good player but having effectively 3 opensides in a 23 man squad leaves little room to change tactics. Strauss coming back will help that.

Swinson simply isn't powerful enough for a test second row. Ben Toolis is by no means the finished article or a world beater but he does offer far more impact from the bench.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:17 am

AWJ and Richie Gray are the most overrated locks in the Northern Hemisphere. I'm at a complete loss to which part of AWJ's game can be deemed world class???

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Post by TJ Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:21 am

funnyExiledScot wrote:

That sounds right. I think Dan Cole had a couple actually. I was a bit underwhelmed by Barclay and Hardie for Scotland, although I think they spent much of the night stopping the England ball carriers rather than getting over the ball.

I think thats what happened. Vunipola needed two tacklers at least and protected the ball well

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Post by Poorfour Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:24 am

For a while I couldn't see what the fuss was about with AWJ, but he's growing on me. I don't think it's so much his individual skills or performances, but the galvanising effect he has on his team mates. He's a good all-round player but a very good leader.

Not as good as O'Connell though.
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Post by lostinwales Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:27 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:AWJ and Richie Gray are the most overrated locks in the Northern Hemisphere. I'm at a complete loss to which part of AWJ's game can be deemed world class???

I think with AWJ he is a very competent lock. He's also very experienced and a real leader, and for those reasons important to Wales. That importance can get in the way of assessing how well he ranks against other locks. He's always going to be in the thick of the action but doubt if he'll often if ever top tackle stats like Gray the younger, steal more lineouts, make more turnovers than some of the other locks out there.

Its easy to see why people get excited about Richie Gray, because hes so big and so athletic and its an amazing sight seeing him running in space with the ball with the blond hair etc. But yes those things don't actually make him an exceptional player

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:29 am

king_carlos wrote:
beshocked wrote:If I was a Scottish fan i would be worried about the lack of power/ball carriers. Denton IMO wasnt good enough.

Billy showed the importance of having a powerful go to carrier. Swapping the no 8s would have made things interesting....

Denton was poor but Laidlaws ponderous service didn't aid the forward runners coming off him.

I felt for Jonny Gray as for much of the game it felt like he was the only forward runner really trying to hurl himself at the defense around the fringes to try to muster some momentum. The other big carriers in that pack were Denton and Richie Gray but both are guys who need momentum to work well. They won't drag a side onto the front foot but are very dangerous once there.

Ross Ford also seems to offer far less carrying than he used to which must be a worry.

Some more impact from the bench would help too. Cowan is a good player but having effectively 3 opensides in a 23 man squad leaves little room to change tactics. Strauss coming back will help that.

Swinson simply isn't powerful enough for a test second row. Ben Toolis is by no means the finished article or a world beater but he does offer far more impact from the bench.

You are both spot on, and this is exactly the issue I highlighted as well. We lack a big beast to haul us over the advantage line and our subs were all too lightweight to make a difference. Obviously Grant Gilchrist would be one had he been fit, and I think Strauss should be the other. Those two would have had much more impact than Swinson and Cowan. Cowan is a good player, but I think he should either be starting at 6 or miss out. Having him, Barclay and Hardie in the 23 lacks punch at international level.

Billy Vunipola was the biggest difference between the packs, and his brother made a real impact when he came on. Sadly I think we'll have the same issue against France at home as well. They have some monsters on the bench as well, albeit not as structured and organised as England in defence.

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:32 am

Richie Gray is a good player, certainly by Scotland standards, but I do think his place will be under threat when Gilchrist returns. Gray is excellent when the game opens up and gets through a bunch of tackles (plus his lineout work is greatly improved) but when it comes down to the nitty gritty nasty stuff around the rucks and mauls, he's well off his brother (and probably Gilchrist as well).

Still, other than changing a couple of spots on the bench, I'd keep the same 23 for the game against Wales. We don't have the luxury of depth, so we should milk the benefit of continuity.

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Post by TJ Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:41 am

Was a part of this a selection choice? England went for power in the back row, Scotland went for guile and speed. Englands choice paid off, Scotlands did not. It would have only taken a couple of turnovers at the ruck to change that. But we didn't get them.

Would Harley add a bit of power?

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Post by beshocked Mon 08 Feb 2016, 10:49 am

FES having that beast is very important but there needs to be a contingency plan too.

One slight issue England need to get around is not relying too much on Billy.

England were beating Wales in the RWC with Billy at 8 but when he went off injured in the Wales game and missed out the Australia game it was a big blow.

At some point England need to consider other 8 options as having one out and out number 1 in any position leaves you exposed if they get injured.

It's partly why I was against putting Hartley on an undroppable pedestal like EJ has.

I would agree that chopping and changing is not necessarily a good thing because it hurts fluency and continuity but strength in depth is important.

People talk about England's strength in depth but that's what I think let down England in the RWC to be honest. The bench wasn't good enough vs Wales IMO and injuries left England exposed in certain areas, Wales handled their injuries, we didn't.

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon 08 Feb 2016, 11:00 am

With Ben Morgan waiting in the wings (who wasn't fully fit at the World Cup) I think England have some options in the ball carrying department. Itoje isn't exactly weak ball in hand either, and when Kieran Brookes is back in his role as impact sub he'll add some oomph as well (along with Mako off the bench). There's also the Wasps number 8 (Hughes) who I believe qualifies for England soon enough. He can play and will, I suspect, come straight in (potentially at 6).

6. Hughes
7. Underhill
8. B Vunipola

20. Clifford

Not a bad group for the future.

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Post by ChequeredJersey Mon 08 Feb 2016, 11:10 am

I'm really surprised that people have jumped up on the Underhill bandwagon already. One great game and a decent season in the RABO does not an international 7 make, as we have seen with countless other young players who have been built up and then not quite made it. At least 1 if not 2 seasons too soon to be mentioned in terms of internationals. Nowhere near te mix yet
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Post by mikey_dragon Mon 08 Feb 2016, 11:17 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:AWJ and Richie Gray are the most overrated locks in the Northern Hemisphere. I'm at a complete loss to which part of AWJ's game can be deemed world class???

Stop complaining you big baby Wink. Gray yes, AWJ is the best lock in the NH. I've thought Launchbury was overrated for a while and Saturday's game confirmed that. Stop talking up his potential and wait for him to actually do something.

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Post by funnyExiledScot Mon 08 Feb 2016, 11:20 am

ChequeredJersey wrote:I'm really surprised that people have jumped up on the Underhill bandwagon already. One great game and a decent season in the RABO does not an international 7 make, as we have seen with countless other young players who have been built up and then not quite made it. At least 1 if not 2 seasons too soon to be mentioned in terms of internationals. Nowhere near te mix yet

I love jumping on bandwagons for other nations' teams, just not my own!

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Post by mikey_dragon Mon 08 Feb 2016, 11:21 am

lostinwales wrote:
BamBam wrote:
RDW_Scotland wrote:Apparently Launchbury had a bad dose of the sh!ts on Saturday and him being subbed off was as much to let him go to the toilet as anything else.

Careful! You don't want to be making excuses for Joe Launchbury, or we'll be hearing more about how Alun Wyn Jones is the greatest lock in the history of the world

Apparently when AWJ has the sh*ts they are world class[tm] sh*ts....

thumbsup

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Post by beshocked Mon 08 Feb 2016, 11:54 am

FES I think the question about Underhill, is he big and powerful enough?

I am not suggesting that every player needs to be a gym monkey but it's obviously important to not be outmuscled by the opposition.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 08 Feb 2016, 1:39 pm

ChequeredJersey wrote:I'm really surprised that people have jumped up on the Underhill bandwagon already. One great game and a decent season in the RABO does not an international 7 make, as we have seen with countless other young players who have been built up and then not quite made it. At least 1 if not 2 seasons too soon to be mentioned in terms of internationals. Nowhere near te mix yet

No-one is pretending Underhill is ready for international rugby now - but Eddie seems clear that he sees him as the most likely candidate to fill the spot by 2019. In order to do that he needs to get him back into the England fold both to make sure he doesn't get representative rugby elsewhere (beware the Wales U20s!) and to get input into his development. You can bet that if he were at an AP club Eddie would be giving him and his DoR very clear instructions on training and on what he wants to see.

All of that said, from the couple of games I have seen, I can see what the fuss is about. For a 19yo to be physically able to mix it with some of the players he's come up against is impressive, but what has caught my eye more is his decision-making. He seems to have the knack of knowing when and how to enter the contest for the ball to maximum effect - you can see him shaping his body angle to enter a ruck or tackle based on what he sees in front of him and he seems to have a good sense of what he can go for without being penalised. That nous is something England have been lacking at times and are still somewhat shaky on.

Watching and reffing Poorfour Jnr and his cohort come up through the age grades has taught me a lot about breakdown play (it happens more slowly so you get a better sense of what to look for). Most players just target an opposing player in a ruck or a maul and then scrap over the ball - something which happens at pro level too. The really good ones, though, know what they are going to do before they hit it and their target is usually much more precise. You can see it in their body shape. Not only can you see what they're trying to do, but you learn that they have a much higher success rate in doing it. From what I have seen, Underhill has that quality more than the other contenders for the shirt.
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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 08 Feb 2016, 1:49 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:AWJ and Richie Gray are the most overrated locks in the Northern Hemisphere. I'm at a complete loss to which part of AWJ's game can be deemed world class???

Stop complaining you big baby Wink. Gray yes, AWJ is the best lock in the NH. I've thought Launchbury was overrated for a while and Saturday's game confirmed that. Stop talking up his potential and wait for him to actually do something.

Who mentioned Launchbury?

And thus proving my point about AWJ being overrated.....

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 08 Feb 2016, 1:58 pm

ChequeredJersey wrote:I'm really surprised that people have jumped up on the Underhill bandwagon already. One great game and a decent season in the RABO does not an international 7 make, as we have seen with countless other young players who have been built up and then not quite made it. At least 1 if not 2 seasons too soon to be mentioned in terms of internationals. Nowhere near te mix yet

Pretty similar to Clifford (bar the U20's) yet Underhill is 19 and Clifford 22.

To be fair, I think they're both outstanding prospects and could well line up on the flanks in a few years.

Underhill has a unique set of skills for an English flanker. He's very strong over the ball and physical in the contact. I think he's getting targeted early so he can be moulded??

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Post by Alex_Germany Mon 08 Feb 2016, 5:46 pm

RDW_Scotland wrote:Apparently Launchbury had a bad dose of the sh!ts on Saturday and him being subbed off was as much to let him go to the toilet as anything else.

I just read this in the Telegraph. That to my mind is poor coaching. Spending Friday night in the toilet would have knocked 10% of his game, and turns a world class player into a Division 2 player.

Launchbury should have been quarantined and a plane sent to fetch Itoje.

-1 for Eddie Jones there.

The good news is that Launchbury should be more rested for Italy.

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Post by nickj Wed 10 Feb 2016, 9:57 am

I'm not sure if this has already been posted, but I thought it was a very interesting insight into the game from Nick Bishop, an analyst with the England team:

http://www.rugbyworld.com/countries/scotland/six-nations-analysis-three-key-areas-from-england-15-9-scotland-53954

In summary, England pinpointed 3 key areas to Saturday's game:

• Effective high kicking game versus Scotland’s backfield - we need to sort this
• Ball retention in the 13 channel - Bennett was key and potentially not 100%
• Neutralising WP Nel at the scrum - surprising to hear we had one Scots put-in

Nick's conclusion is pretty positive from a Scot point of view:

This game proved the value of a sound knowledge of your opponent and showed how it can have a decisive influence on the outcome of a match. On the other hand, the result was no more than a solid 6 out of 10 for Eddie Jones’ England. Scotland made twice the number of line-breaks, beat more defenders and made more offloads, and they were never more than one score away right to the end.



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Post by RDW Wed 10 Feb 2016, 10:50 am

That is very interesting. Incredible stat that we only had one scrum!

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