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England: 8 Nations

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 20 Aug 2020, 8:28 am

First topic message reminder :

Not sure if theres already a thread kicking about but seeing as the prem is back I thought it may be nice to argue over the numerous players impressing.

As ever it seems to be scrum half, flankers, centre and full back are where there are chances for people to force their way in. Can't say I've ever been able to call what Eddie Jones thinks but Willis and hill must be tempting him to widen the player pool. A number of scrum halfs have started well also but has the time come for Spencer or Robson? Thought Maunder was very good too and Mitchell showed great flashes.

I'm at a bit of a loss for full back based on the games last week. Furbank looked anonymous and let's face it Daly is a Jones favourite.

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Post by Soul Requiem on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 12:12 pm

king_carlos wrote:With England's defense orientated game plan I don't see Curry or Underhill being left out when they are fit. The way those two dominate tackles is remarkable even at international level. On top of that they are both very good at the breakdown and on kick chase.

Since Mitchell came in as defence coach there has been a consistent tactic of lining up either Curry or Underhill to chase box kick alongside the winger. The winger will chase hard and look to compete in the air (May looks for the slap back whereas Watson tries to win the ball in the air) then Curry or Underhill will be lurking just behind either to pounce on loose ball or make a dominant hit if the opposition claim it cleanly. Underhill against NZ in the semi-final was an excellent example of this tactic.

I think any flankers coming in will need to be able to match that kick chase intensity as it's such an important part of England's game. Ludlam has shown he can do that given he's very quick. Earl is also excellent at it given his speed and strong tackling. Simmonds has the strengths to do the same.

The way Jones sets up the team seems to get ignored a lot when Willis is mentioned and I see a lot of similarities with Stef Armitage years ago, he'll turn the ball over for fun but will concede too many penalties at the same time, that negative is something Jones will zone in on rather than the positive.

Aside from possibly Hill or Dombrandt getting tried at 6 I don't see much changing in the short to mid term even with the current laws; Curry, Billy and Underhill will start if fit with back up coming from Earl, Ludlum and Wilson who can all play across the back row. That versatility is something that Jones favours over specialists, were he fit for instance Wilson would have been playing at 8 during the six nations. I'm a big Wilson fan despite his 'age' and again he's good at the breakdown and on kick chase, there was a moment in the last ten minutes of the WC semi when he seemingly came out of nowhere and bang straight over the ball.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 12:14 pm

LondonTiger wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:I am slightly surprised theres still people denying how good willis is. I'm not overly bothered who lines up in what short number after curry and willis pull on the Jersey. At the moment they are head and shoulders above the rest.

I am not denying he is good - just pointing out there are some issues in his play and suggesting this may be why Eddie will not have him straight into the team. His try saving tackle against Bristol was excellent and stopped their fightback -but it should also be noted that they were coming back at the start of the second half due to his penalty count.

Hmm. Coming back is a bit strong: bristol outplayed completely. Jones may well not start him. He will be there by the end.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 12:39 pm

You could even have...

6 Curry
7 Underhill
8 Curry

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 12:39 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:You could even have...

6 Curry
7 Underhill
8 Curry
You're just wumming me now.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 12:57 pm

i know Very Happy

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Post by Mr Bounce on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 2:52 pm

I think that given the 5 matches + Baa-Baas this autumn, Eddie may wish to experiment a bit. Italy will likely be full strength, but some players he wants to see in the England environment may be started rather than the "status quo" in the 4 Autumn 8 Nations games.

Whether that will be the back row or elsewhere remains to be seen, but I am almost certain that he'll get Dombrandt, Willis and possibly Mitchell capped at some point. Only Eddie will know what he wants. No-one predicted both Heinz and Ludlam to make the RWC squad but there they were.

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Post by Cumbrian on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 3:03 pm

It would be interesting to know what Willis' penalty count looks like when compared to Underhill and Curry. If I get chance I will have a look and see what I can turn up.
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Post by LondonTiger on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 3:25 pm

Soul Requiem wrote:
king_carlos wrote:With England's defense orientated game plan I don't see Curry or Underhill being left out when they are fit. The way those two dominate tackles is remarkable even at international level. On top of that they are both very good at the breakdown and on kick chase.

Since Mitchell came in as defence coach there has been a consistent tactic of lining up either Curry or Underhill to chase box kick alongside the winger. The winger will chase hard and look to compete in the air (May looks for the slap back whereas Watson tries to win the ball in the air) then Curry or Underhill will be lurking just behind either to pounce on loose ball or make a dominant hit if the opposition claim it cleanly. Underhill against NZ in the semi-final was an excellent example of this tactic.

I think any flankers coming in will need to be able to match that kick chase intensity as it's such an important part of England's game. Ludlam has shown he can do that given he's very quick. Earl is also excellent at it given his speed and strong tackling. Simmonds has the strengths to do the same.

The way Jones sets up the team seems to get ignored a lot when Willis is mentioned and I see a lot of similarities with Stef Armitage years ago, he'll turn the ball over for fun but will concede too many penalties at the same time, that negative is something Jones will zone in on rather than the positive.

Aside from possibly Hill or Dombrandt getting tried at 6 I don't see much changing in the short to mid term even with the current laws; Curry, Billy and Underhill will start if fit with back up coming from Earl, Ludlum and Wilson who can all play across the back row. That versatility is something that Jones favours over specialists, were he fit for instance Wilson would have been playing at 8 during the six nations. I'm a big Wilson fan despite his 'age' and again he's good at the breakdown and on kick chase, there was a moment in the last ten minutes of the WC semi when he seemingly came out of nowhere and bang straight over the ball.

I think Willis should be a much better player than Steffon was, but your point about Eddie concentrating on the negatives is the one I was trying to make. Now I hope (sorry GF) that Willis gets a look in ahead of Wilson but again I agree that I believe that teh way Eddie and Mitchell want the team set up it will be Curry and Underhill to start.

Injuries can have a big part to play of course. Tom Curry got his first chance due to injury to Ben. Willis himself lost his chance in SA in 2018 due to injury and on that tour CurryT was outstanding (of course Willis may have been back up, but he would have had eeh chance to show what he could do in training etc).

With the season having ended for Bath and Sale, the incumbents also have another head start on Willis in that they are available to play against teh Barbarians and will have been in camp longer to press their case for inclusion against Italy.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 3:46 pm

LT, Wilson may well be involved in the Italy game...but i cant see him having much involvement in the other four...unless Eddie wants to use him as a bruising senior captain type player to blood the youngters along side.

6 Wilson
7 Willis

6 Hill
7 Willis
8 Wilson

But i cant see it...Underhill can do that role.

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Post by rugby racing and beer on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 5:04 pm

lostinwales wrote:
rugby racing and beer wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Indeed. We only have vunipola Dombrandt Simmonds mercer curry and Hughes. Morgan as well if you want to include him. Never sure how many options are considered well stocked though.

Hughes is not a test match player, he's been proven to be pants.

Morgan likewise, decent player, but he's a Lancaster 'B student' not the top test match player needed to replace Billy V.

Dombrandt is promising but isn't capped yet.

Simmonds plays in the best team in Europe. Decent, but doesn't look top class. Also probably more of a flanker than an 8. Never shone in test match rugby.

Mercer's done nothing in the game time he's had for England, doesn't look top class at all.

Curry is a great flanker and as evidenced that this is a problem has been moved to 8. That fact also means I rest my case, but thanks for trying.

*sigh I hate replying to these posts...

Hughes and Morgan both had potential back in the day.

So why are you even talking about them? When you say potential, you mean Nathan Hughes plays well in the Prem. He was pants in an England shirt. Maybe he needed more time but the nature of English rugby is there's so much depth that players don't get the time they would for Wales, Scotland, and Ireland if they don't perform well. Morgan was decent, but not top class. Denying that is embarrassing - it's like you've learned nothing from Eddie Jones being in charge. Neither are serious 8 options. Hughes could come back in at a push but he'd be a weak link. Obviously. Morgan's too old, too broken, and I don't think he's ever been picked by EJ either.

Dombrandt OK

Simmonds is difficult in that he is superficially very similar to Earls etc. Fast, great hands, great acceleration, great work rate but not particularly big, which meant he could look stupid running into heavy traffic, but great when he has some space. Has a huge workrate. That game vs Italy where he got MoM he made over 20 tackles and scored a couple of tries if memory has served me correctly. Again had an injury at the wrong time as well as being up against Billy for his position. I am sorry he hasn't had more chances as he seems to fit Jones' idea of a flanker, and is now up against some very similar players but he's not far off. There is a reason he's 1st choice no.8 in 'the best team in Europe'

Mercer is very young still. I haven't seen much of him so can't comment on where he is now but he has obviously taken an extra year or two to build on his U20 days. There is no guarantee that players who look good at U20 will make an impact at senior level, and forwards, (normal humans and not the Itoje's or Curry's), do take time to develop. In my mind he was superb at U20, not just because of his physical attributes but in particular because of his leadership. I think, as long as the structures are right, only very good leaders or very bad ones make a real difference. He made a difference for the right reasons.

Curry is just brilliant wherever you put him, and he'll be playing as long as he's standing. No he's not a natural no.8 but he's growing into that role. He won't be a 1st choice at 8 but Eddie is obviously much more about getting the right people on to the pitch than worrying about numbers matching roles.

Simmonds is a decent player but doesn't suit how England play under EJ. Italy are Italy, I think you're proving my point tbh: you could pick any number of English players and they'll shine against Italy or even Scotland because they're basically tier 2 nations, they very rarely provide a challenge. Simmonds plays in a team where Don Armand plays openside and Ewers plays blindside, with Vermeulen taking over from Armand. All 3 could probably do a job in the second row with ease, they are not traditional flankers in the slightest. They do his hard yards so Simmonds can hit soft shoulders and run through the weaker defenders as the other side's blindsides/8s/opensides/locks are on the floor having tackled the aforementioned. It's great rugby, but Exeter are a team that are more than the sum of their parts. Expecting Simmonds to play for England like he does for Exeter is, sadly, a delusion.

Mercer's done nothing yet.

Curry is a flanker playing at 8 because of the lack of depth there.

Again, can't believe I had to restate my case tbh.

'Sigh'...etc.

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Post by rugby racing and beer on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 5:07 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:
rugby racing and beer wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Indeed. We only have vunipola Dombrandt Simmonds mercer curry and Hughes. Morgan as well if you want to include him. Never sure how many options are considered well stocked though.

Hughes is not a test match player, he's been proven to be pants.

Morgan likewise, decent player, but he's a Lancaster 'B student' not the top test match player needed to replace Billy V.

Dombrandt is promising but isn't capped yet.

Simmonds plays in the best team in Europe. Decent, but doesn't look top class. Also probably more of a flanker than an 8. Never shone in test match rugby.

Mercer's done nothing in the game time he's had for England, doesn't look top class at all.

Curry is a great flanker and as evidenced that this is a problem has been moved to 8. That fact also means I rest my case, but thanks for trying.

Is this a WUM post?

PS - Simmonds has only played once v Italy i believe...and scored 2 tries and hit 26 tackles or something daft. He deserves a shot v the bigger boys to show he can do it!

Is yours?

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Post by rugby racing and beer on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 6:21 pm

That's a pretty 'jazzy' interpretation!

When Hughes was proven to be pants, other 8s like Simmonds were given a go because England have the luxury of a huge player pool. When he wasn't up to the grade/injured, someone else - Wilson - was given a go. Still, none of them were up to EJ's standards and so Curry started at 8 most recently. It's unlikely any of those will be given many more caps although Simmonds will probably get a call up at some point, if only like the Armand call up to quell the media pressure to give him another go. It seems much more likely that given their huge depth at flank but lack of test quality at 8, unless they can import another Polynesian, they'll play Earl or another flanker at 8. Or maybe Dombrandt will replace Billy. It's all up in there air, isn't it.

Out of interest, did you go to Uni, 7.5?

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 6:23 pm

I did.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 6:25 pm

You bored of wumming the Scotland boards?

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Post by rugby racing and beer on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 6:33 pm

There's a difference between WUMming and having uncommon yet honest opinions.

That's interesting, you seem to misread things quite a lot so I just wasn't sure what the reason was. Depending on what you studied, it must be intentional misreading then?

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 6:36 pm

'Maybe he needed more time but the nature of English rugby is there's so much depth that players don't get the time they would for Wales, Scotland, and Ireland if they don't perform well.'

Like you said, so much depth. Why dont you go back to the scotland threads and tell us why Russell is overrated? You dont know much about the english league or the players so perhaps eventually you'll get on better?

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Post by rugby racing and beer on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 6:55 pm

Wow, how are you finding this so hard to understand?

There are lots of options, none of them good enough. Hence the merry-go-round of selection that England often employ, which is self defeating because no one is allowed to grow in to a test player: like the Varndell, Sackey, Ojo, Monye, Vainokolo, Voyce wing selections England went through in the mid 2000s, always chopping and changing every 6 months, never producing good test match players.

I mean, that's 'depth' of a sort if you want to try to make that weird, pointlessly indignant argument...I suppose. They have lots of options to choose from so that is depth of a kind. But none of them are good enough so that's why it's easy to say the don't have depth - it's like claiming your local fatass tighthead who plays for Old Farts thirds is 'depth' for the 3 shirt. There are levels and none of those mentioned are the type of player England need to win a RWC, which is the standard they are aiming for now.

Why are you struggling with that? Why did you feel the need to list all those players in the first place in spite of the fact that only Dombrant and possibly Mercer is in the frame as a 8 who could be good enough for long term England duty? Clearly that is much, much less depth compared to the flanker position, which is the point I made.

Why are you struggling with this? I'm genuinely interested in what the reason is as either it's something about the way you read/interpret info (maybe some kind of inability to not take things absolutely literally, for instance) or you're just winding me up.

It would be good to get clarification as it gets pretty boring and it would also save conversations from being derailed. This forum isn't just about you, after all, other people read it so you have to behave properly.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 6:57 pm

I mean it's an honour to get this talk through  by someone who think Burrell is back in the england picture.

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Post by rugby racing and beer on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 7:00 pm

Ok so you were WUMming, good to know.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 7:07 pm

Burrell. Dear me.

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Post by king_carlos on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 7:09 pm

I haven't had toad in the hole in a long time. I might have toad in the hole tonight.

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Post by rugby racing and beer on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 7:10 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Burrell. Dear me.

It's not that cold, is it?

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 7:14 pm

It'll be a cold day in hell when Jones listens to your advice about him.

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Post by king_carlos on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 7:47 pm

king_carlos wrote:I haven't had toad in the hole in a long time. I might have toad in the hole tonight.

Update. I couldn't be bothered to make the 'hole' so I'm having bangers, mash and red onion gravy instead.

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Post by rugby racing and beer on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 9:37 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:It'll be a cold day in hell when Jones listens to your advice about him.

What? Try rephrasing that, it doesn't make sense.

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Post by king_carlos on Tue 13 Oct 2020, 10:00 pm

king_carlos wrote:
king_carlos wrote:I haven't had toad in the hole in a long time. I might have toad in the hole tonight.

Update. I couldn't be bothered to make the 'hole' so I'm having bangers, mash and red onion gravy instead.

It was rather tasty.

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Post by Soul Requiem on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 8:26 am

rugby racing and beer wrote:That's a pretty 'jazzy' interpretation!

When Hughes was proven to be pants, other 8s like Simmonds were given a go because England have the luxury of a huge player pool. When he wasn't up to the grade/injured, someone else - Wilson - was given a go. Still, none of them were up to EJ's standards and so Curry started at 8 most recently. It's unlikely any of those will be given many more caps although Simmonds will probably get a call up at some point, if only like the Armand call up to quell the media pressure to give him another go. It seems much more likely that given their huge depth at flank but lack of test quality at 8, unless they can import another Polynesian, they'll play Earl or another flanker at 8. Or maybe Dombrandt will replace Billy. It's all up in there air, isn't it.

Out of interest, did you go to Uni, 7.5?

Curry started at 8 because Billy, Simmonds and Wilson were all injured.

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Post by Recwatcher16 on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 9:25 am

Bath fans are either worried or puzzled in that it seems that Zach Mercer is being overtaken by Miles Reid who can basically play all three back row positions. Whilst Faletau has been allowed to regain form at no.8, meaning Mercer misses out.

EJ won't pick anyone who is not a club regular and putting in high energy performances, so not expecting Mercer to be in any England squads anytime soon.

The new season will be young Reid's breakout year as long as he avoids another big injury like he had earlier this year. Charlie Ewels has called him an 'absolute freak'.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 9:36 am

i get the size arguements but you simply couldnt have Mercer in over Sam Simmonds...its just not logical.

Simmonds is class. If size is the issue then put Hill in at 6 to compensate.

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Post by Gooseberry on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 9:42 am

Recwatcher16 wrote:

EJ won't pick anyone who is not a club regular and putting in high energy performances

The Dombrant situation last year could argue the exact opposite, guys who had been injured/hardly played got in ahead of him despite the entire internet believing he had reinvented sliced bread.

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Post by lostinwales on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 10:35 am

rugby racing and beer wrote:
lostinwales wrote:
rugby racing and beer wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Indeed. We only have vunipola Dombrandt Simmonds mercer curry and Hughes. Morgan as well if you want to include him. Never sure how many options are considered well stocked though.

*sigh I hate replying to these posts...

Hughes and Morgan both had potential back in the day.

So why are you even talking about them? When you say potential, you mean Nathan Hughes plays well in the Prem. He was pants in an England shirt. Maybe he needed more time but the nature of English rugby is there's so much depth that players don't get the time they would for Wales, Scotland, and Ireland if they don't perform well. Morgan was decent, but not top class. Denying that is embarrassing - it's like you've learned nothing from Eddie Jones being in charge. Neither are serious 8 options. Hughes could come back in at a push but he'd be a weak link. Obviously. Morgan's too old, too broken, and I don't think he's ever been picked by EJ either.


Why? because you mentioned them first. picard

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Post by king_carlos on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 10:41 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:i get the size arguements but you simply couldnt have Mercer in over Sam Simmonds...its just not logical.

Simmonds is class. If size is the issue then put Hill in at 6 to compensate.
It's the usual international rugby argument of fitting a game plan there though, GF.

It's hypothetical but with Kruis and Lawes being unavailable our lineout will be running with a new leader for the first time in years. Someone such as Mercer that offers a 3rd lineout jumper who's stronger than Curry could therefore be valuable to England's important set-piece.

6.Curry, Wilson
7.Underhill, Ludlam
8.Vunipola, Earl

Realistically I think we will see those 6 in the squad (i.e. the 6 Nations back row selections plus Billy) then one or two additional picks. Ted Hill fits the Jones game plan well so I'd put money on him being one of them. Then another number 8 which could be Simmonds, Dombrandt, Willis, etc.

I'm interested to see if we stick with the 6-2 bench split. During the 6 Nations it was used to allow two locks on the bench. With Kruis and Lawes out there is less depth there though. I really like the impact a 6-2 split offers in the second half so I'd happily stick with it.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 10:49 am

Would you include Johnny Hill in the squad?



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Post by king_carlos on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 11:45 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:Would you include Johnny Hill in the squad?


I'd pick Hill and Moon as my next locks in line after Itoje and Launchbury.

Ewels will likely be in the squad but his 6 Nations appearances were more underwhelming than his early appearances. In those early caps he wasn't much more than solid either.

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Post by king_carlos on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 11:53 am

Manu Vunipola, Richard Wigglesworth and Jackson Wray added to the Baabaas squad for the game against England.

Vunipola will be particularly interesting to see against England. I expect Jones is delighted with that chance to see him play.

It's nice that Robshaw is already in that Baabaas squad as well.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 12:21 pm

king_carlos wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:Would you include Johnny Hill in the squad?


I'd pick Hill and Moon as my next locks in line after Itoje and Launchbury.

Ewels will likely be in the squad but his 6 Nations appearances were more underwhelming than his early appearances. In those early caps he wasn't much more than solid either.

yes i would have Hill in the squad definitely. Ewells has not impressed me in the slightest

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Post by mikey_dragon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 12:24 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:Would you include Johnny Hill in the squad?


I'd pick Hill and Moon as my next locks in line after Itoje and Launchbury.

Ewels will likely be in the squad but his 6 Nations appearances were more underwhelming than his early appearances. In those early caps he wasn't much more than solid either.

yes i would have Hill in the squad definitely. Ewells has not impressed me in the slightest

Yeah that's why Ribbans is set to earn his first England cap. Too bad you lost out on Rowlands though, form lock forward in the prem.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 12:27 pm

You are welcome to him Mikey.

We have far more potential coming through...

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Post by mikey_dragon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 12:38 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:You are welcome to him Mikey.

We have far more potential coming through...

Thanks, he was needed. His grandfather is over the moon too.

Yeah you do. His name is David Ribbans.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 12:44 pm

Ribbans does look a pretty powerful guy. Continue with 6 forward subs and hes potentially a injury or 2 from the bench. Prefer him to Moon tbh as the peripheral figure.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 12:45 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:You are welcome to him Mikey.

We have far more potential coming through...

Thanks, he was needed. His grandfather is over the moon too.

Yeah you do. His name is David Ribbans.

We have more than him coming through...

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 12:51 pm

So do you pick a full strength England v barbarians in prep for the Italy game....or a mixed side, with lots of subs.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 1:00 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:So do you pick a full strength England v barbarians in prep for the Italy game....or a mixed side, with lots of subs.

Can't be full strength as the prem final is the day before.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 1:01 pm

Ah of course, i forgot all about that.

So whats the team likely to be without Wasps and Exeter


Last edited by GeordieFalcon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 1:03 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 1:01 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:So do you pick a full strength England v barbarians in prep for the Italy game....or a mixed side, with lots of subs.

Can't be full strength as the prem final is the day before.

Though the back row can still be full strength Run

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Post by Gooseberry on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 1:17 pm

Let's not forget the age old tradition of the barbarians picking the player the Internet is not outraged missed out on the extended englands third team squad

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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 1:43 pm

Gooseberry wrote:Let's not forget the age old tradition of the barbarians picking the player the Internet is not outraged missed out on the extended englands third team squad

Richard Wigglesworth has been called up by the Barbarians - so will be good to see a young contender for the No9 spot playing against England Very Happy

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Post by LondonTiger on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 1:45 pm

PS I have done a bot of tidying up of this thread, to try and keep things on topic and not personal.

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Post by king_carlos on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 1:46 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:Would you include Johnny Hill in the squad?


I'd pick Hill and Moon as my next locks in line after Itoje and Launchbury.

Ewels will likely be in the squad but his 6 Nations appearances were more underwhelming than his early appearances. In those early caps he wasn't much more than solid either.

yes i would have Hill in the squad definitely. Ewells has not impressed me in the slightest
Ewels hasn't impressed me massively but he is a reliable lineout leader. England have been spoiled by having either/both Lawes and Kruis available for a few years. They are excellent in the lineout and around the pitch. Both being unavailable simultaneously is a big blow.

I'd really like to see Itoje calling the lineout. He hasn't done it that much in senior rugby but he's a good jumper and very bright bloke so the ingredients are there. If it goes well then Itoje and Launchbury is a potentially excellent partnership. If it goes to pot then Kruis and Lawes will become better with every game they don't play and someone steady such as Ewels may suddenly seem more valuable.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Wed 14 Oct 2020, 1:49 pm

This for the Baa baas?

1 Genge / Mako
2 George
3 Sinkler
4 Itoje
5 Ewells - Meh but he's been in the squad or Isiekwe
6 Curry
7 Underhill (Wilson or Earl covering whole back row)
8 Billy V

9 Youngs
10 Ford
11 May
12 Farrell
13 Lawrence / Merchant
14 Thorley
15 Daly

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