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NEW ZEALAND v BRITISH & IRISH LIONS, 1 July

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NEW ZEALAND v BRITISH & IRISH LIONS, 1 July - Page 5 Empty NEW ZEALAND v BRITISH & IRISH LIONS, 1 July

Post by George Carlin Wed 28 Jun 2017, 7:45 am

First topic message reminder :

NEW ZEALAND v BRITISH & IRISH LIONS, 1 July - Page 5 All_bl10                   NEW ZEALAND v BRITISH & IRISH LIONS, 1 July - Page 5 Lions_12
NEW ZEALAND v BRITISH & IRISH LIONS  
1 July 2017
KO: 19:35 NZST (8.35am BST)
WESTPAC Wellington Regional Stadium, Wellington

Live on Sky Sports HD

Referee: Jérôme Garcès (France)
ARs: [tbc]
TMO: [tbc]

A. Head to Head

39 Played 39
30 Won 6
3 Drawn 3
6 Lost 30
664 Points 360

B. Recent Form

24 June 2017
Eden Park, Auckland
30 – 15 to New Zealand

9 July 2005 
Eden Park, Auckland 
38 – 19 to New Zealand 

2 July 2005 
Westpac Stadium, Wellington 
48 – 18 to New Zealand

25 June 2005 
Lancaster Park, Christchurch 
21 – 3 to New Zealand

3 July 1993 
Eden Park, Auckland 
30 – 13 to New Zealand 

26 June 1993 
Athletic Park, Wellington 
7 – 20 to British & Irish Lions

12 June 1993 
Lancaster Park, Christchurch 
20 – 18 to New Zealand

16 July 1983 
Eden Park, Auckland 
38 – 6 to New Zealand

2 July 1983 
Carisbrook, Dunedin 
15 – 8 to New Zealand

18 June 1983 
Athletic Park (Wellington), Wellington 
9 – 0 to New Zealand

4 June 1983 
Lancaster Park, Christchurch 
16 – 12 to New Zealand

C. TEAMS:

NEW ZEALAND
NEW ZEALAND v BRITISH & IRISH LIONS, 1 July - Page 5 Kirean10
[tbc]

BRITISH & IRISH LIONS  
NEW ZEALAND v BRITISH & IRISH LIONS, 1 July - Page 5 Muppet10
[tbc]
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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:22 am

geoff999rugby wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
A much better option, and less risky defensively, would be keep Teo and bring in Joseph - but that would mean dropping a Welshman

I wasn't sure why you'd drop JD2 who has been the best centre on tour, but then I remembered you're Irish and still bitter over an out of form BOD being dropped in 2013. It's about time you got over it.


Nothing further from my mind.

As you may have noticed I am proposing the selection of 2 Englishmen, my nationality is irrelevant
It would be hard on JD2 but it is about picking the best combination not the best players.
For the record I'd pick Teo and JD2 before the current set up

Teo, Joseph
Teo, JD2
Farrell, ANOther
in that order of preference

Gatland has gone for the worst option, confirming my option he is a limited coach at the highest level

Fair enough but the best combo thus far has clearly been Te'o and JD2.

If Gatland was as limited as you say at this level then I doubt he would have all those achievements Smile. He could certainly make a difference to Ulster!

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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:23 am

LordDowlais wrote:
Scottrf wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Thanks ld. I'm. Still waiting for your reasons around Biggar but it's a start.

Pretty simple really. Biggar should be in the squad because he has been playing better than both Sexton and Farrell.
How do you know? You're comparing playing NZ to playing club reserves. Farrell wasn't great behind a dominated pack - shock horror.

You can only play against the opposition infront of you, so to say that is a bit unfair. Biggar has took his chances well. Also, none of the franchises are poor sides.

I think we better exclude Lawes then too.

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Post by Scottrf Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:25 am

mikey_dragon wrote:I think we better exclude Lawes then too.
He's been good all season and good on tour.

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Post by kingelderfield Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:27 am

Hammersmith harrier wrote:
kingelderfield wrote:*Otoje and Lawes to shuffle as they did for England.
It's Itoje.

Peddent Wink

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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:28 am

Scottrf wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I think we better exclude Lawes then too.
He's been good all season and good on tour.

He's been good on tour against weaker opposition like Biggar. He might not even be a good fit in the test team. That said I think he deserves his spot on the bench and is capable of making an impact. I was just pointing out the English hypocripsy again.

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:28 am

Scottrf wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I think we better exclude Lawes then too.
He's been good all season and good on tour.

So has Biggar.

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Post by Scottrf Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:29 am

LordDowlais wrote:
Scottrf wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I think we better exclude Lawes then too.
He's been good all season and good on tour.

So has Biggar.
Hahahaha.

Nice one.

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Post by Scottrf Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:30 am

mikey_dragon wrote:
Scottrf wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I think we better exclude Lawes then too.
He's been good all season and good on tour.

He's been good on tour against weaker opposition like Biggar. He might not even be a good fit in the test team. That said I think he deserves his spot on the bench and is capable of making an impact. I was just pointing out the English hypocripsy again.
Not really.

One has been fantastic, with a player who has been awful starting.

Once has been decent, with a player at worse slightly below decent starting.

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:33 am

Hammersmith harrier wrote:
kingelderfield wrote:*Otoje and Lawes to shuffle as they did for England.
It's Itoje.

That'll be the title of his talk show when he retires from playing.

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Post by Gooseberry Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:33 am

TightHEAD wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
Pete C (Kiwireddevil) wrote:
SamTheQuin wrote:Sure I read that Sexton, Farrell and Davies have played a combined 22 minutes together on this tour. Great place to throw them in

Glad Dagg has been moved to FB as he hasn't looked great and we might get some joy with Daly and Watson's speed against him - unless it rains, which it looks likely to and means we've got another huge ball carrier to deal with.

Heavy rain forecast all day in Wellington on Saturday

So we need a big strong 12 who can carry hard yards and tackle like a demon....no wait that cant be right Shocked


Should have played Warrenball.


Such is the great joke. When we get the weather to "even things out" a bit we pick a side that looks to have limited the amount of up the jumper 10 man rugby it can play.
The Lions were a shambles in the last game where it rained, I dont hold out a great deal of hope for them other than avoiding a cricket score and having 5 good kickers on the pitch (pus Murray) at least making any aerial game theirs to be won.

Farells going to have his work cut out trying to throw passes past JD2 to bring the attacking players into it though.

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Post by Rugby Fan Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:35 am

It's remarkable how this tour has mirrored some aspects of the 2005 trip. Woodward was lambasted for trusting out-of-form favourites, and playing combinations in the Tests when he hadn't given them much of a run in the earlier tour games. Gatland is getting stick for exactly the same.

It really shows the paradox of how there are both too many games (taking a toll on squad fitness), and not enough (combinations can't bed in).

Austin Healey wondered why Gatland hadn't selected Liam Williams at 15 if that's where was going to ask him to play at Tests. The answer is surely just that he changed his mind, and didn't have a time machine to go back and re-run things.

Unless a coach is incredibly lucky, and finds players who are instantly in sympathy with each other, then there's no substitute for having game time together. The trouble is, the only way to get enough game time is if the coach makes a perfect selection decision in the first match and everything falls into place from that.

Gatland probably started with a rough idea of North and Hogg in his back three, but one didn't hit his usual heights while the other got injured. That's three games right there where the eventual back three didn't play with each other. The same goes for other combinations within the side.




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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:36 am

Scottrf wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
Scottrf wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I think we better exclude Lawes then too.
He's been good all season and good on tour.

He's been good on tour against weaker opposition like Biggar. He might not even be a good fit in the test team. That said I think he deserves his spot on the bench and is capable of making an impact. I was just pointing out the English hypocripsy again.
Not really.

One has been fantastic, with a player who has been awful starting.

Once has been decent, with a player at worse slightly below decent starting.

Another example right here, reminds me of you all pretending Kruis was better than AWJ 55 minutes in the first test when all evidence points to the contrary.

As I said, both Biggar and Lawes have looked good against weaker opposition. Both are worthy of their place in the test 23.

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Post by beshocked Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:37 am

Hansen has eased up the criticism on Gatland. I don't blame him. Must be laughing at Gatland's selections but keeping an outward appearance of respect.

Yeah sure... great selections.... Gatland is making great decisions... keep up the good work.... Laugh

Keep picking AWJ, he's really experienced, Retallick and Whitelock stand no chance.....


Oh you are going to take out 2 of your best lineout men? Good job.... OK

Want to dismantle one of the only positives of the first test? Carry on....


Wise decision to put Farrell and Sexton in at 10-12 together - it's an established combo at international level.... has worked really well on tour so far.

Is Gatland working for NZ or the Lions?


Kruis has been dropped, most people can understand why but AWJ should have gone too.

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Post by Recwatcher16 Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:40 am

The halfbacks and midfield look painfully slow and predictable. Webb & Joseph would offer far more threat ball in hand - which is the only way to take on Nz.
A few years ago the thought of kicking away possession to Nz would have been considered bonkers. Now, because Murray had some success against Nz, when they didn't have a lineout - it should now somehow still work.....

Warburton and Jones are both intelligent players and will know the level of physicality and pace that will be required - whether they can produce it for sustained periods is a major doubt and all things considered, unlikely.

Not sure whether I can watch the last twenty minutes of this next test.....

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Post by Hammersmith harrier Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:42 am

mikey_dragon wrote:
Another example right here, reminds me of you all pretending Kruis was better than AWJ 55 minutes in the first test when all evidence points to the contrary.

As I said, both Biggar and Lawes have looked good against weaker opposition. Both are worthy of their place in the test 23.

Australia, Argentina (down to 14 men), Wales, Scotland and France are weaker opposition?

Lawes was one of the best players on the pitch in all those games for England.

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Post by kingelderfield Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:44 am

Luckless Pedestrian wrote:
Hammersmith harrier wrote:
kingelderfield wrote:*O'toje and Lawes to shuffle as they did for England.
It's Itoje.

That'll be the title of his talk show when he retires from playing.

Your just being daft Luckless.

Anyway the new series is on RTE in the Autumn.


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Post by geoff999rugby Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:46 am

mikey_dragon wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:
A much better option, and less risky defensively, would be keep Teo and bring in Joseph - but that would mean dropping a Welshman

I wasn't sure why you'd drop JD2 who has been the best centre on tour, but then I remembered you're Irish and still bitter over an out of form BOD being dropped in 2013. It's about time you got over it.


Nothing further from my mind.

As you may have noticed I am proposing the selection of 2 Englishmen, my nationality is irrelevant
It would be hard on JD2 but it is about picking the best combination not the best players.
For the record I'd pick Teo and JD2 before the current set up

Teo, Joseph
Teo, JD2
Farrell, ANOther
in that order of preference

Gatland has gone for the worst option, confirming my option he is a limited coach at the highest level

Fair enough but the best combo thus far has clearly been Te'o and JD2.

If Gatland was as limited as you say at this level then I doubt he would have all those achievements Smile. He could certainly make a difference to Ulster!

You and I would improve Ulster given the coaching ticket last year laughing

Hopefully the wholesale change below Kiss will change that Fingers Crossed

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Post by Scottrf Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:49 am

mikey_dragon wrote:

Another example right here, reminds me of you all pretending Kruis was better than AWJ 55 minutes in the first test when all evidence points to the contrary.

As I said, both Biggar and Lawes have looked good against weaker opposition. Both are worthy of their place in the test 23.
But again Kruis has shown consistent form since coming back from injury. There's more evidence he can come good, it's one bad game. Not many people have argued with Kruis being dropped either.

I wouldn't disagree heavily with Biggar making the 23. I was one of the few who could see why he was picked to tour. But his form is hardly much better than the other options.

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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:50 am

Hammersmith harrier wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
Another example right here, reminds me of you all pretending Kruis was better than AWJ 55 minutes in the first test when all evidence points to the contrary.

As I said, both Biggar and Lawes have looked good against weaker opposition. Both are worthy of their place in the test 23.

Australia, Argentina (down to 14 men), Wales, Scotland and France are weaker opposition?

Lawes was one of the best players on the pitch in all those games for England.

But the argument was matches on this tour, not all games last year, some of which Biggar was very good in. As it stands right now both have looked good against the weaker opposition on tour (which was the argument before you tried shifting it).

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Post by geoff999rugby Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:52 am

LordDowlais wrote:
Scottrf wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:I think we better exclude Lawes then too.
He's been good all season and good on tour.

So has Biggar.

I don't see how you can say that Biggar was awful during the last few months of the season, along with almost the entire Ospreys side.
They only won one of their last 7 games (cant think who the win was against Run ) and Biggars poor performances were in part to blame.

For the record form dictates the second row should be Itoje sand Henderson with Lawes on the bench
Form dictates all 3 fly halves are lacking - in that situation you go with the player with more natural class
Both Sexton and Farrell have more natural talent than Biggar

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Post by beshocked Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:52 am

I didn't use to like Lawes but in the past year he's played well at all levels and deserves to be recognised as one of the best current locks in the NH.

He's upped his game considerably. He's changed my perception of him.

I used to think he was just someone who smashed the smallest man on the pitch but not now.

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Post by Scottrf Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:53 am

To be honest, smashing the smallest man on the pitch would be pretty helpful.

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Post by BamBam Thu 29 Jun 2017, 11:54 am

Biggar has been adequate

Lawes has been by pretty much consensus (excluding some Welsh "fans") the best second row on tour but is left out for a past it (did he ever have it?) Welsh has been who probably has photographs of Blockhead rogering Howley

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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:01 pm

beshocked wrote:I didn't use to like Lawes but in the past year he's played well at all levels and deserves to be recognised as one of the best current locks in the NH.

He's upped his game considerably. He's changed my perception of him.

I used to think he was just someone who smashed the smallest man on the pitch but not now.

Have to agree. Before the people's MOTM, AKA Lunch-berry, AKA Joe, I thought he was the most overhyped player in the world. That's no longer the case as he's living up to that hype.

Form dictates that he should be in this 23, his form against the same weaker opposition that Biggar faced off against.

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Post by Hammersmith harrier Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:04 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:
But the argument was matches on this tour, not all games last year, some of which Biggar was very good in. As it stands right now both have looked good against the weaker opposition on tour (which was the argument before you tried shifting it).
That's your argument Mikey not anybody elses, Lawes has been the most physical second row in the NH for some time now and peoples opinions of him aren't based entirely on the mid week matches.

Biggar has been decent in the same matches but nothing more than that, he's made numerous mistakes that are hindering his test prospects plus he was poor for most of the 6 nations.

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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:07 pm

Hammersmith harrier wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:
But the argument was matches on this tour, not all games last year, some of which Biggar was very good in. As it stands right now both have looked good against the weaker opposition on tour (which was the argument before you tried shifting it).
That's your argument Mikey not anybody elses, Lawes has been the most physical second row in the NH for some time now and peoples opinions of him aren't based entirely on the mid week matches.

Biggar has been decent in the same matches but nothing more than that, he's made numerous mistakes that are hindering his test prospects plus he was poor for most of the 6 nations.

That chat on here has been based on picking on tour form. The test team is picked on form, as it's a lot different to what most of us expected at the beginning. I'm just addressing the hypocrisy like I said and you all keep attacking me for that.

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Post by Hammersmith harrier Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:11 pm

The chat has been about picking based on form, you seem to narrowing that down to suit your argument, there is a difference between performing well in mid week games having been in poor form prior to that and being in continuous good form for 12 months. It isn't at all hypocritical to expand on that.

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Post by Kingshu Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:12 pm

AWJ starting - joke

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Post by beshocked Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:12 pm

mikey dragon even you as a blinkered Welsh fan surely can't defend the selection of AWJ.

I wouldn't have dropped Kruis but he played poorly and suffered as a consequence. AWJ played poorly and has been retained. Ridiculous.

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Post by BamBam Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:16 pm

beshocked wrote:mikey dragon even you as a blinkered Welsh fan surely can't defend the selection of AWJ.


Oh you'd be surprised

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Post by Scottrf Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:18 pm

beshocked wrote:mikey dragon even you as a blinkered Welsh fan surely can't defend the selection of AWJ.
But I don't think he has tried to to be fair?

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Post by beshocked Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:27 pm

Scottrf wrote:
beshocked wrote:mikey dragon even you as a blinkered Welsh fan surely can't defend the selection of AWJ.
But I don't think he has tried to to be fair?

Based on his last comment talking about the test team I thought he was supporting the selection of AWJ.


"That chat on here has been based on picking on tour form. The test team is picked on form, as it's a lot different to what most of us expected at the beginning. I'm just addressing the hypocrisy like I said and you all keep attacking me for that."


Not sure how anyone can think AWJ is the form pick though.

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:35 pm

beshocked wrote:Not sure how anyone can think AWJ is the form pick though.

Why are our English members constantly bringing this up when we are all agreeing on it ? We are not debating AWJ, we all agree, he should not be there.

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Post by beshocked Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:37 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:Not sure how anyone can think AWJ is the form pick though.

Why are our English members constantly bringing this up when we are all agreeing on it ? We are not debating AWJ, we all agree, he should not be there.

It's a big howler by Gatland. It's critical. Plus it seemed to be that mikey dragon was supporting the selection.

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Post by Gooseberry Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:37 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:Not sure how anyone can think AWJ is the form pick though.

Why are our English members constantly bringing this up when we are all agreeing on it ? We are not debating AWJ, we all agree, he should not be there.


Are you Eglish? You sem very keen to talk about it constantly

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Post by Gooseberry Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:40 pm

Scottrf wrote:To be honest, smashing the smallest man on the pitch would be pretty helpful.


Im not sure that Connor Murray would thank him, he gets enough of that already

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:41 pm

beshocked wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:Not sure how anyone can think AWJ is the form pick though.

Why are our English members constantly bringing this up when we are all agreeing on it ? We are not debating AWJ, we all agree, he should not be there.

It's a big howler by Gatland. It's critical. Plus it seemed to be that mikey dragon was supporting the selection.

Look, not very often do I see eye to eye with mikey, but not once on here has he supported that. He may congratulate him, but that as far as it goes.

Also, he does have a point in what he is saying about form on tour, with Lawes and Biggar.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:41 pm

Ld. I've stated with examples as to why I think Biggar played poorly. Can you answer any of those points ie why you don't believe a big swing high tackle affects his performance and also talk a little with some.more detail on why you think Biggar did play well. It's a forum but you seem loath to actually debate your own thoughts.

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:43 pm

Gooseberry wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:Not sure how anyone can think AWJ is the form pick though.

Why are our English members constantly bringing this up when we are all agreeing on it ? We are not debating AWJ, we all agree, he should not be there.


Are you Eglish? You sem very keen to talk about it constantly

Do I ?

Please tell.

I am questioning Gatland's choice of players, their nationality is irrelevant.

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Post by beshocked Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:43 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:Not sure how anyone can think AWJ is the form pick though.

Why are our English members constantly bringing this up when we are all agreeing on it ? We are not debating AWJ, we all agree, he should not be there.

It's a big howler by Gatland. It's critical. Plus it seemed to be that mikey dragon was supporting the selection.

Look, not very often do I see eye to eye with mikey, but not once on here has he supported that. He may congratulate him, but that as far as it goes.

Also, he does have a point in what he is saying about form on tour, with Lawes and Biggar.

Lorddowlais mikey dragon said the test team is picked on form. Clearly it isn't with AWJ in there. Then he goes on to bash Lawes by saying he only looks good vs weak opposition which I think is unfair.


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Post by Mad for Chelsea Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:44 pm

I'm going to be somewhat controversial and say I don't mind the team too much. Yes AWJ shouldn't be there, and it's ridiculously harsh to consign Kruis seemingly to the scrapheap for one bad game (in which he still ran a good line-out) whereas AWJ has been poor whenever he's played on tour and seems undroppable. But that one's been debated over and over and most agree it's a poor pick.

As for the other changes/non-changes. I believe that AWJ aside that's the best tight five the Lions have. They didn't do well in the first Test, but I genuinely don't think there is a great way of strengthening it. The back row is OK, I'd have picked Tipuric, but Gats doesn't seem to rate him. Faletau had an ordinary first Test, but is class, and deserves to keep his spot. Warburton coming in to add competitiveness at the break down makes some sense, even if his form hasn't been great (would have picked Tipuric ahead of him, also would have added a better line-out option).

I actually like the idea of pairing Sexton with Farrell. Farrell has played very well at IC for England over the last two years, and the extra playmaker should allow the Lions to bring their back three into the game more which is badly needed. Yes it's a huge gamble, but the Lions weren't winning with their previous tactics, so why not? Think Murray is a tad fortunate, but the familiarity of having Sexton outside him might help.

Finally, the bench is good. Plenty of impact.

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Post by Gooseberry Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:47 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:
LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:Not sure how anyone can think AWJ is the form pick though.

Why are our English members constantly bringing this up when we are all agreeing on it ? We are not debating AWJ, we all agree, he should not be there.

It's a big howler by Gatland. It's critical. Plus it seemed to be that mikey dragon was supporting the selection.

Look, not very often do I see eye to eye with mikey, but not once on here has he supported that. He may congratulate him, but that as far as it goes.

Also, he does have a point in what he is saying about form on tour, with Lawes and Biggar.


Well not really, as has been mentioned above. Lawes has been outstanding and playiong some of the best rugby of his career prior to the Lions, and continued that into the tour. As it is hes just managed ot force hi way onto the bench ahead because someone else got a stupid yellow card and inspite of the worst performing player in his position getting picked to start.
Bigger is missing out because he doesnt cover 12, isnt as good as either of the players ahead of him, and hasnt shown better form than them ...or at least not to the point where theres concencous on that.
The tour form pick at 10 is Russell.

So you can advance your tour form argument and still Biggar isnt a shoe-in, just a possible.

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:48 pm

beshocked wrote:Lorddowlais mikey dragon said the test team is picked on form. Clearly it isn't with AWJ in there. Then he goes on to bash Lawes.

No he doesn't.

He actually said that Lawes performances on the tour merits a place in the test squad. As does Dan Biggar when you compare the players in their positions.

All the English members think it only applies to Lawes.

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Post by Scottrf Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:49 pm

Gooseberry wrote:
Scottrf wrote:To be honest, smashing the smallest man on the pitch would be pretty helpful.


Im not sure that Connor Murray would thank him, he gets enough of that already
Shouldn't give 3 minutes notice every time he box kicks then.

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Post by beshocked Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:50 pm

Mad for Chelsea wrote:I'm going to be somewhat controversial and say I don't mind the team too much. Yes AWJ shouldn't be there, and it's ridiculously harsh to consign Kruis seemingly to the scrapheap for one bad game (in which he still ran a good line-out) whereas AWJ has been poor whenever he's played on tour and seems undroppable. But that one's been debated over and over and most agree it's a poor pick.

As for the other changes/non-changes. I believe that AWJ aside that's the best tight five the Lions have. They didn't do well in the first Test, but I genuinely don't think there is a great way of strengthening it. The back row is OK, I'd have picked Tipuric, but Gats doesn't seem to rate him. Faletau had an ordinary first Test, but is class, and deserves to keep his spot. Warburton coming in to add competitiveness at the break down makes some sense, even if his form hasn't been great (would have picked Tipuric ahead of him, also would have added a better line-out option).

I actually like the idea of pairing Sexton with Farrell. Farrell has played very well at IC for England over the last two years, and the extra playmaker should allow the Lions to bring their back three into the game more which is badly needed. Yes it's a huge gamble, but the Lions weren't winning with their previous tactics, so why not? Think Murray is a tad fortunate, but the familiarity of having Sexton outside him might help.

Finally, the bench is good. Plenty of impact.

Mad for Chelsea the problem is that one poor selection could be very costly indeed. It's only one selection but that's enough.

Taking out Mahony and Kruis damages the lineout. Itoje doesn't fix this.

If you want to get improved performances from the tight five, AWJ has to go. Not retained.

It's about combinations. AWJ in this front five just doesn't work IMO.


Especially against the might of the NZ 2nd rows and also lock was meant to be a Lions strength.

Lock is a Lions weakness not a strength thanks to Gatland.

Competition for lock was so great and yet it's one of the starters in the worst form who is starting.


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Post by Hammersmith harrier Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:51 pm

LordDowlais wrote:
beshocked wrote:Lorddowlais mikey dragon said the test team is picked on form. Clearly it isn't with AWJ in there. Then he goes on to bash Lawes.

No he doesn't.

He actually said that Lawes performances on the tour merits a place in the test squad. As does Dan Biggar when you compare the players in their positions.

All the English members think it only applies to Lawes.


Why are you two struggling with the concept of Lawes having played at that level for 12 months now so it is based on that not just the mid week games.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:52 pm

Can you share your thoughts on Biggar and those questions ld? May help me to understand why you're rating Biggar performances so highly. I'm not expecting anything other than a side step.

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:53 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Can you share your thoughts on Biggar and those questions ld? May help me to understand why you're rating Biggar performances so highly.I'm not expecting anything other than a side step.

Which is more than you can expect from Biggar.

drumroll

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:55 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Can you share your thoughts on Biggar and those questions ld? May help me to understand why you're rating Biggar performances so highly. I'm not expecting anything other than a side step.

I've told you this already. Christ on a bike, I wish I never took you off ignore.

The reason why I think he should be in the test squad is because he has been playing better than both Sexton and Farrell. I am not 100% on this, but in the games he has played, we have scored more tries, and look to have created a lot more.

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Post by beshocked Thu 29 Jun 2017, 12:57 pm

I don't feel Biggar would add anything extra.

Lawes on the other hand....

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