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The Glasgow and Edinburgh General Chat. Discussions are limited to 6 people before 10pm to prevent the spread of Jimboish.

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Post by NeilyBroon Thu 24 Sep 2020, 12:16 pm

Another chat thread dedicated to speculation, rumination, and general perambulation through the trials and tribulations of the club from the west with no forwards and the club from the east without a backs coach.

One day we'll have more rugby to talk about!
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Post by jimbopip Thu 24 Sep 2020, 1:51 pm

Thank you Neily Hug

I'm thinking of dusting off my boots and asking if I can play 13 for the Luvvies this season: it won't affect my social distancing/isolation one bit. My complete lack of fitness, skill or body mass wouldn't affect the Luvvies' scintillating and expertly choreographed back line moves either.

N.B. just so we're clear: I do not want to play for the Knitwear Models, this post is merely to set the tone (unmitigated castigation and venom, with the occasional game of Yuletide soccer in no-man's-land) of the next six month's ramblings. Doncha wish Schiz was here to keep us honest?

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Post by Hazel Sapling Thu 24 Sep 2020, 3:36 pm

Ulster, Munster and Leinster for Glasgow in November

Almost like the organisers are trying to ensure Edinburgh finish above us

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Post by NeilyBroon Thu 24 Sep 2020, 6:33 pm

Tbf it's probably the best window to play those sides as they will be shorn of their internationals as well as Glasgow so it may be more equal footing. Will be interesting to see if Edinburgh can bounce back and actually get beyond the first round of finals, at which point Hodge is installed as the new Scotland head coach. Wales had Warrenball, we have Hodgepodge.
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Post by tigertattie Sat 26 Sep 2020, 2:49 pm

Finn Russell is a bit meh for racing today.

Actually quite a crap game to watch. Just error ridden
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Post by tigertattie Sat 26 Sep 2020, 2:50 pm

I stand corrected
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Post by bsando Sat 26 Sep 2020, 6:10 pm

Glad to see Russell deliver in a massive game with a lot of pressure to win. His chip over the top was inch perfect 👌🏼 so we’ll have Hoggy, Gray and SHC vs Russell in the final now. Exciting match ahead and at least one Scot will have a Champions cup medal to their name before the internationals begin.

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Post by bsando Sat 26 Sep 2020, 6:44 pm

In fact you could argue Russell, Hogg and Gray are all definite sélections for the Lions now.

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Post by NeilyBroon Sat 26 Sep 2020, 7:48 pm

Didn't see any of it. Were Hogg and gray standouts then? How did Skinner get on?
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Post by tigertattie Sat 26 Sep 2020, 7:54 pm

Hogg will be the only lion

Gray still has to up his ball carrying and aggression levels to get passed other 2nd rows.

Russell simply won’t be picked by gatland who will go with Biggar and Farrell
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Post by NeilyBroon Sat 26 Sep 2020, 7:56 pm

tigertattie wrote:Hogg will be the only lion

Gray still has to up his ball carrying and aggression levels to get passed other 2nd rows.

Russell simply won’t be picked by gatland who will go with Biggar and Farrell

Don't forget sexton. #anyonebutfinn
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Post by George Carlin Sat 26 Sep 2020, 9:03 pm

For those who missed the Sarries game, watch right until the end for the Russell moment of galusness:
https://youtu.be/FQipk0hgC6I
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Post by NeilyBroon Sat 26 Sep 2020, 9:57 pm

George Carlin wrote:For those who missed the Sarries game, watch right until the end for the Russell moment of galusness:
https://youtu.be/FQipk0hgC6I

He is a game changer that's for sure. Excited to see him back in dark blue!

Him and Hastings should be starting with Jaco on bench to allow rest weeks.
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Post by BigGee Sat 26 Sep 2020, 9:58 pm

https://www.rugbypass.com/news/we-could-name-hundreds-of-coaches-jose-mourinho-steve-hansen-eddie-jones-who-have-coached-higher-than-they-played-wilson-glasgow/

Good interview with Danny Wilson by Jamie Lyall

We are going to have to give him a bit of time, but I still believe he my turn out to be a very good call.

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Post by BigGee Sat 26 Sep 2020, 9:59 pm

NeilyBroon wrote:
George Carlin wrote:For those who missed the Sarries game, watch right until the end for the Russell moment of galusness:
https://youtu.be/FQipk0hgC6I

He is a game changer that's for sure. Excited to see him back in dark blue!

Him and Hastings should be starting with Jaco on bench to allow rest weeks.

What about Duncy?

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Post by 123456789. Sat 26 Sep 2020, 10:41 pm

Not sure if this has been done but by my reckoning we had Swinson, Maitland, Hunter-Hill, Taylor, Russell, Skinner, Hogg, Gray and Hidalgo-Clyne involved today.
As far as the Lions are concerned, Hogg aside, our best players are in competition with other teams best players. Russell is as far from a Gatland player as possible. It's not nailed on that Russell gets past Farrell, Ford, Anscombe, Carberry, Sexton and Biggar. Gray is in a good place with Kruis out the picture, but he's still up against it when you consider the series of locks across the other nations. I would say Hogg is the only probable. We have a long series of possibles including Gray, Russell, Watson, Sutherland, McInally, Fagerson and Ritchie. Then a group of outside bets that include a probably all our scrum-halves as no one has the position nailed on, then the likes of Graham, Jones, Johnson etc. who could make it with a good season. The thing is that, Hogg aside, I would say Scotland's lack of success away from home, lack of trophies (short of a special season this one coming) and the pro teams problems with knockout fixtures means our players have to be playing better as individuals than the other nations. I reckon we'll have three tourists.

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Post by Guest Sat 26 Sep 2020, 11:00 pm

Given Biggar was left out in 2013 I don't know this 2D caricature people have of Gatland. He clearly prefers Asncombe and did his best to keep Priestland in the team for as long as possible. He tried to play Farrell, a steady 10, in the first test and it failed so he brought in Sexton who takes it to the line. He'll pick Ford or Anscombe to tour, at least one of them if not both if they're fit and on form. Farrell is a given which means Russell is fighting it out with one of those two to make it as a 'running' 10. Sexton is too old, Biggar is seen as a weaker Farrell (at 10 I would disagree, when it comes to versatility i.e. 12 it makes sense).

Finn Russell has fallen out with his national coach, ego problems, clearly. He looks fat, let's be honest, because he's playing in France. He's never consistently looked top class game after game, week after week in the Six Nations. Where was he in Japan when his team were getting dumped out in the group? There are so many arguments against Finn Russell that could only be answered by consistent performances for Scotland over the next 12 months. Anything dodgy and he's behind Ford.

I think Gatland will take Farrell, Anscombe, and then take your pick. Could be Russell, my money would be on Ford, but Biggar is a warrior and a very good player to close out a game particularly against the Boks. It's all down to who plays well and who wins the 6Ns. Given that is almost certainly going to be England it'll probably be Ford.

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Post by RDW Sat 26 Sep 2020, 11:22 pm

Fantastic to see our key players playing in big games and competing for trophies.

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Post by bsando Sun 27 Sep 2020, 10:33 am

rugby racing and beer wrote:Given Biggar was left out in 2013 I don't know this 2D caricature people have of Gatland. He clearly prefers Asncombe and did his best to keep Priestland in the team for as long as possible. He tried to play Farrell, a steady 10, in the first test and it failed so he brought in Sexton who takes it to the line. He'll pick Ford or Anscombe to tour, at least one of them if not both if they're fit and on form. Farrell is a given which means Russell is fighting it out with one of those two to make it as a 'running' 10. Sexton is too old, Biggar is seen as a weaker Farrell (at 10 I would disagree, when it comes to versatility i.e. 12 it makes sense).

Finn Russell has fallen out with his national coach, ego problems, clearly. He looks fat, let's be honest, because he's playing in France. He's never consistently looked top class game after game, week after week in the Six Nations. Where was he in Japan when his team were getting dumped out in the group? There are so many arguments against Finn Russell that could only be answered by consistent performances for Scotland over the next 12 months. Anything dodgy and he's behind Ford.

I think Gatland will take Farrell, Anscombe, and then take your pick. Could be Russell, my money would be on Ford, but Biggar is a warrior and a very good player to close out a game particularly against the Boks. It's all down to who plays well and who wins the 6Ns. Given that is almost certainly going to be England it'll probably be Ford.

Russell and Toonie have made up now, he'll be back for the Autumn internationals. Your point on Russell's consistency is something we Scots fans have talked about a lot on here which was why I was desperate to see him show that he can live up to his reputation against Saracens in a big knock out game. It was left late but he got it done and that is all that matters really. How many times did Wales do that under Gatland? I recall a cross field kick to North in Paris one year that won them that game. One remarkable play can sometimes be all it takes to seal a great win and Russell managed to pull it off yesterday. Had he not unlocked the Saracens defence and put Imhoff away then he would unquestionably be looking a lot flakier as a Lions 10 choice in comparison to his international counterparts. International rugby is the most important thing though, so as you say, he'll need to translate his recent run of consistency to that level with Scotland to boost his case further.

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Post by RDW Sun 27 Sep 2020, 11:29 am

Tell you what, pro rugby really is a funny old game. 6 months ago SHC was a journeyman without a long term home, and probably questioning whether he had a future in the pro game.

Now he's likely to be in a Champions Cup final and potentially win the thing, something that not many Scottish players have ever done! Not to mention the fact they're favourites for the Premiership too.

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Post by Guest Sun 27 Sep 2020, 12:54 pm

They might have 'made up' but it shows an attitude problem. Look what Eddie Jones did to Brown and Teo. First sign of trouble even though they were good players they were gone. It goes down as a black mark against him you can't just try to wash it away as if everything's now fine. He's challenged the coach and hasn't been properly punished or sees what he's done wrong - using the media for a proxy war was even worse. This is like the bad old days of 20 years ago not something a Lions coach wants to deal with. I know Townsend clearly has his failings and isn't really a top head coach but still Russell probably would have been dropped for 2 years under Gatland at the very least or maybe never played again under him so it definitely goes down as a black mark.

I think you're looking at rugby very differently to the way I see it. If 'one play' is all you're looking for then maybe Russell will create the most beautiful consolation try having failed to control the rest of the game. I'm not quite sure what point you're making about peaking at the end of the game as that is Gatland's speciality. Shane Williams's try v Scotland in 2010? England 2015? France 2019? England 2019? Honestly the list is long for Gatland's Wales side winning games late on. How about the Lions? Late comebacks v NZ and dominating Australia in the second half? Hmmm.

I think we're living in a 15 seconds of fame culture at the moment and Finn Russell looks much better on youtube highlights than he actually is.

SHC is a great player no surprise he's made a success of himself down in Exeter. Not sure why it didn't work at the Scarlets possibly an attitude/confidence issue where he just couldn't find his feet. Still more than good enough to be in the Scotland squad.

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Post by BigGee Sun 27 Sep 2020, 1:00 pm

Mark Palmer interview with Oli Keeble in the ST today.

It seem extremely likely that he will get capped this autumn and will undoubtedly bring something to our set piece.

Oli Kebble has every reason to hit the ground running when the new Pro14 season kicks off this weekend.

Glasgow will be looking for more big performances from their loose-head prop as they strive to build on the pack improvements we saw in the latter stages of Dave Rennie’s reign, while Kebble also has the carrot of trying to win a Scotland call-up next month.

Born in Durban and part of the Baby Boks team that won the Junior World Championship in 2012, the now 28-year-old prop qualified to wear the thistle on residency grounds in August, three years after his arrival from the Stormers. Test rugby was not a big part of the conversation at that stage, but now it’s within touching distance, Kebble is determined to reach out and grab it.

“When I first got here, the possibility was a long time in the future, so I wasn’t even thinking about it,” he says. “Glasgow are my employers and I wanted to put my best foot forward with them, and whatever accolades or benefits came along would be from the work I did there.

“The only thing I can do is perform well at club level. If that goes to plan, I’d be more than honoured to be called up to the squad. I’ve spoken to the Scotland coaches in passing when they’ve been at Glasgow training, and the main message is, ‘Play well for your club and we’ll see what happens.’

“My old man [Guy] played for South Africa [winning four caps at prop in the 1990s] and he’s already said he really wants to be over here if I play for Scotland. I’ll be really happy if I get to follow in my father’s footsteps in some kind of fashion.”

Allan Dell, another member of that all-conquering 2012 team, has long been part of the Scotland front-row scene on account of a Scottish grandmother, while Willem Nel became eligible three years after joining Edinburgh from Cheetahs. This autumn, Kebble could be one of three South African-born new caps in Gregor Townsend’s set-up, with Duhan van der Merwe having also qualified this summer and Jaco van der Walt to follow suit in November. Pierre Schoeman, the Edinburgh loose-head prop, will qualify next summer after World Rugby delayed plans to move the required period from three years to five.

Kebble knows this cohort will face hostility in some quarters, but insists that if the chance does come along, it will have been well-earned. After injury wrote off the vast majority of his first Scotstoun season, he has become an increasingly important figure in both the set piece and the loose and has signed a contract extension taking him to 2022.

“From my perspective, I’m living in Scotland, and I’ve been part of this great country and its rugby for a few years,” he says. “I’m not trying to steal another person’s opportunity, but at the same time if I’m good enough to play, I think I deserve to.

“I’m not doing it just as a job: it would be an honour. I’ve watched so many games at Murrayfield, it’s an unbelievable atmosphere, one of the best I’ve experienced. To get the opportunity to do that at least once, I’d be absolutely thrilled.”

Kebble is tickled pink by the thought of lining up in the same Scotland side as Huw Jones, a team-mate and close friend through their shared days at University of Cape Town Ikey Tigers, Western Province, the Stormers and now Glasgow. The pair were flatmates in South Africa and Scotland and even now that they have moved into separate apartments, they speak on the phone every night. Kebble doubtless helped keep Jones’s spirits up in that bizarre 12 months where he went from starring for Scotland to missing out on World Cup — and even Warriors — selection.

“The only advice and encouragement I’ve given him is to say that he’s still an unbelievable player who was playing incredibly and scoring ridiculous tries not so long ago. We all go through ups and downs in our careers. Rugby is an incredibly tough sport. Obviously there will be low points but then the high points should be coming again.

“We’ve been joking about it [playing together for Scotland] but the fact that it may potentially become reality is quite funny. It would be really special to be on the field with him.”

Rory Sutherland is almost certain to begin the autumn in pole position after his excellent displays earlier this year, but beyond that, there is no great strength in depth. Kebble’s first priority will be to nail the starting jersey at Glasgow, where Aki Seiuli and Alex Allan are both expected back from injury in time to feature in Saturday’s opener away to Connacht.

He is enjoying the fresh perspective of Danny Wilson, the new head coach, who wants the Warriors to become a more rounded team, not least by continuing to evolve up front.

“What’s been a problem for us is playing too much rugby, especially in some of the bigger European games where we could have exited a lot earlier and transferred the pressure on to the other team sooner,” Kebble says. “Going forward, if we can play smarter in our own half it should benefit us. Building a set piece takes time. When [recently-departed scrum coach] Petrus du Plessis came in, he did a lot of good work with us. It’s been a big focus with Danny coming in, we’ve done some good work but we need to keep pushing forward if we want to be a world-class pack.

“Danny definitely recognises that we have been making gains but that we still need to work hard on it. This season coming we’ll definitely see more of that. From my point of view, that’s what I’ve always wanted and that’s what we’re focussing on now. We definitely have the personnel for it. It’s about putting more impetus into that part of our game, and having more confidence in it.

“Sometimes Scottish teams, even when they’ve got the ability, still shy away from the set piece. We need to be more confident in that aspect. When it comes to the big play-off matches, the big European ties, it’s an important part of the game, so we want to be right up there.

“Personally speaking, I think I’ve shown some really good stuff so far, but at times I’ve been injured at exactly the wrong moment. I’ve been working really hard and I firmly believe I’m getting better and stronger. I expect more from myself this year.”

More than one head coach will be watching closely.

Hastings jumps to Rennie’s defence
Adam Hastings has leapt to the defence of Dave Rennie after several current and recent Glasgow players criticised the man-management of the former Warriors coach, who is now in charge of the Wallabies.

While admitting he “wanted to rip his [Rennie’s] head off” when left out of the team in early 2019, the Scotland stand-off said Rennie, right, was “the best coach I’ve ever had in terms of what he did for me, the way my game developed under him, the way he coached me.”


Asked about unflattering comments from Alex Dunbar, Rory Hughes, Matt Smith, Adam Ashe and Huw Jones, Hastings surmised: “Obviously boys have had different experiences with him, and you can’t please everyone as a head coach. But we had some honest conversations and I honestly couldn’t say a bad word about him, what he’s done for me is brilliant.

“I’d chat to him two or three times a week on my own for half an hour each time in front of a laptop screen and just be going through stuff.

“At times it would be too much but that’s just Dave, his detail is just incredible and he wants to get the best out of you.”

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Post by bsando Sun 27 Sep 2020, 3:06 pm

rugby racing and beer wrote:They might have 'made up' but it shows an attitude problem. Look what Eddie Jones did to Brown and Teo. First sign of trouble even though they were good players they were gone. It goes down as a black mark against him you can't just try to wash it away as if everything's now fine. He's challenged the coach and hasn't been properly punished or sees what he's done wrong - using the media for a proxy war was even worse. This is like the bad old days of 20 years ago not something a Lions coach wants to deal with. I know Townsend clearly has his failings and isn't really a top head coach but still Russell probably would have been dropped for 2 years under Gatland at the very least or maybe never played again under him so it definitely goes down as a black mark.

I think you're looking at rugby very differently to the way I see it. If 'one play' is all you're looking for then maybe Russell will create the most beautiful consolation try having failed to control the rest of the game. I'm not quite sure what point you're making about peaking at the end of the game as that is Gatland's speciality. Shane Williams's try v Scotland in 2010? England 2015? France 2019? England 2019? Honestly the list is long for Gatland's Wales side winning games late on. How about the Lions? Late comebacks v NZ and dominating Australia in the second half? Hmmm.

I think we're living in a 15 seconds of fame culture at the moment and Finn Russell looks much better on youtube highlights than he actually is.

SHC is a great player no surprise he's made a success of himself down in Exeter. Not sure why it didn't work at the Scarlets possibly an attitude/confidence issue where he just couldn't find his feet. Still more than good enough to be in the Scotland squad.

I heard Andy Goode from the Rugby Pod saying pre game that if Russell beats the Saracens defence and wins Racing the game he'll be nailed on as the starting Lions ten. I think that is a ridiculous thing to say, but it just goes to show that others who are not Scottish believe he is going to tour and start for the Lions with the current form he is in.

My point on the 'one play' was that other great teams and players have been lauded with praise for winning games for the team late on in a match but not necessarily playing a very good game up until that point. Hence the win is what counts. Your point on a beautiful consolation try could equally be applied to teams who score a lot of beautiful trys and still lose the game, which was where Scotland have been for a while now until their recently updated game plan.

As for Russells disagreement with Toonie (a world class head coach I might add Wink ) neither you nor I can really know what Gatland will think of that, but I'm sure he'll be happier to let the rugby do the talking in any selections he makes.

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Post by TJ Sun 27 Sep 2020, 7:54 pm

rugby racing and beer

Have you ever actually seen Russell play?  He is playing really well for Racing and his last 3 appearances against England he was superb

There is a very good reason he is being paid the thick end of a million by racing - he is the best 10 in the NH by a long way.  He replaced Dan carter at Racing and if there was anyone better out there Racing would replace him in a heartbeat.  The reason he is at Racing is he masterminded Glasgow stuffing racing a few years ago

A high risk high reward player will also make mistakes but he will also win you matches.  Racing are in the european cup finals are they not?

I suggrest you go and have a look at a few youtube games especially for Racing and those last 3 matches against england https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHdoRDvlZcc

As for the lions - I do not think he will go. We all know Gatland has a blind spot for scots and I also do not think Finn is necessarily the man for the lions. He needs players around him who know his game and there simply is not time for that to happen on a lions tour and Gatland will never build a team around him and therre is no point him going to carry tackle bags I'd have Biggar

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Post by Guest Sun 27 Sep 2020, 8:03 pm

I don't want to turn this in to a Russell thread but praising Russell ALWAYS comse with selective arguemtns. 'Good against England' etc. Have YOU seen Russell play?! Everyone knows his flaws. Let's just see what he does for Scotland when test rugby returns. He wasn't up to much in Japan, was he. We haven't had any real test rugby since then so he's not in the frame for the Lions as it stands. And please, no one mention 3 games in the 2020 Six Nations as if they're equal a RWC. They don't. Japan counted. He didn't perform. Nor did plenty of Irish players. They have a lot to prove.

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Post by TJ Sun 27 Sep 2020, 8:10 pm

So you haven't watched him play for racing then? Over the last 3 years he has improved hugely

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Post by RDW Sun 27 Sep 2020, 10:53 pm

I'm with TJ here - he's far more consistent a player now and his all round game has significantly improved. It's a bit of a lazy stereotypes these days to say he only pulls off the odd flash bit of play but the rest of his game is a liability, because they just see the highlights reel and don't watch the games and everything else he is now bringing.

For me his passing game is uo there with the best - the speed and width of his pass is outstanding, as is the choices he makes of who to give it to. The commentators were waxing lyrical about this in the Sarries game.

I also genuinely think he has the best variety and quality of kicking game in the northern hemisphere - he has the ball on a shoestring whether it's the little chips, grubbers are longer kicks for territory.

It's also worth saying his defence is actually decent now too - he's not afraid to put his body on the line, as Alex Goode would attest to.

He's definitely on the mercurial end of the scale of 10s, but his all round game is quality now too.


There is a big BUT here though.

Firstly, he's probably as far removed as a player Gatland tends to look for as you could get and I'd be surprised if he tours. Whatever you think of his methods, in terms of results Gatland has been a successful Lions coach. As such he's earned the right to do what he wants for this tour, and if that means keeping the same formula then so be it. Whether that approach is correct to beat the boks is a whole different topic! The tour will have the shortest preparation time ever for a tour, and playing in a style that suits Finn takes time and cohesion.

Secondly is the run in with Townsend, not just in terms of the questions it raises on his character but the games he then missed. For what it's worth I don't think this raises concerns over if he should be picked to tour - he's a pretty simple guy and I genuinely think this was a culmination of a few years of sour relationship between the two, plus his genuine belief that the gameplan was hurting Scotland. Given how we were playing on that period he was probably right! From reading both viewpoints of it since I think the issues have generally been resolved, and probably actually for the better of the team. I don't personally see Finn pulling this kind of thing off on a Lion's tour - it want about his ego, it was the direction the team was going in. For the casual observer this could easily be put off as an attitude problem, but there is actually a lot of nuance to what happened here, and now that the dust has settled I genuinely think his heart was in the right place with what he did, and it took a lot of bravery for it to pan out that way.

Final thing to say on this is Finn has the chance now to put all the doubters behind him and put in performances that demand his selection. If he can win a Champions Cup (probably less likely) and pick up a few wins with Scotland (hopefully more likely), and put in some commanding performances, then he could force Gatland's hand.

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Post by EST Mon 28 Sep 2020, 10:05 am

It's funny how stereotypes of players develop and how difficult they are to shake off once established. I'm as guilty of it as anybody - my opinion of Chris Harris is still of a plodding midfielder, despite his decent try scoring record and good performances for Scotland.

Like you say RDW - he is definitely on the more mercurial end of the spectrum and can occasionally be infuriating to watch. He also plays with a grin on his face and is polar opposite personality wise to Farrell/Sexton/Biggar, which I think perpetuates his maverick image. All these things are exaggerated in the media though, he has always been a good and committed defender, his kicking game is solid and tactically he has improved lots over the years.

I honestly wouldn't change him for any other 10 in world rugby. He has given us so many amazing moments of skill that are the reason I love watching Rugby - that 2 miss pass off his bad hand to DTH in the dying minutes of the SF, THAT pass to Huw, destroying Racing at home for Glasgow, the second half performance against England and plenty more.

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Post by RDW Mon 28 Sep 2020, 11:07 am

That's something I was meaning to say EST - it saddens me that in the UK that we're so quick to cut down talented players who can produce moments of brilliance that give us so much joy. If he was an Aussie or Kiwi he'd be seen in a very different light.

Finn has definitely caused some hair pulling out and shouting at the TV in his career, but the instances of that are way down on what they used to be.

He's also been at the forefront of our best performances of the last 5 years - beating Australia at home and (in particular) away, that England game X2, that NZ game, beating Ireland, Wales and France and serval big wins over Italy - he was at his brilliant best. There's also been countless games for Glasgow and particularly Racing over the last few years. Would we have had the same performances without him? I don't think we would have.

By his very nature there will still be times we'll get frustrated with him and he'll make mistakes, but I don't think any Scotland fan would give him up.

Again does that mean he will tour with the Lions? Odds aren't in favour of it, but he should at least be part of the conversation.

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Post by EST Mon 28 Sep 2020, 11:39 am

RDW wrote:That's something I was meaning to say EST - it saddens me that in the UK that we're so quick to cut down talented players who can produce moments of brilliance that give us so much joy. If he was an Aussie or Kiwi he'd be seen in a very different light.

Finn has definitely caused some hair pulling out and shouting at the TV in his career, but the instances of that are way down on what they used to be.

He's also been at the forefront of our best performances of the last 5 years - beating Australia at home and (in particular) away, that England game X2, that NZ game, beating Ireland, Wales and France and serval big wins over Italy - he was at his brilliant best. There's also been countless games for Glasgow and particularly Racing over the last few years. Would we have had the same performances without him? I don't think we would have.

By his very nature there will still be times we'll get frustrated with him and he'll make mistakes, but I don't think any Scotland fan would give him up.

Again does that mean he will tour with the Lions? Odds aren't in favour of it, but he should at least be part of the conversation.

Absolutely - the good out weighs the bad by far with Finn, we're lucky to have him.

On the Lions, rightly or wrongly, I think it will take huge performances both individually and from Scotland to get him on the plane - fully expect Farrell, Sexton and one of Anscombe/Biggar to get the nod. He just doesn't fit the Gatland mould.

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Post by Hazel Sapling Mon 28 Sep 2020, 11:46 am

Russell is competing for the top 10 in the world jersey. Defensively he is a solid low tackler, he has ones of the best passes in the game and his tactical kicking game has become much more consistent. His kicking from the tee can sometimes be lacklustre, however there are more questions about that than is fair considering how good Laidlaw was off the tee and Iberrin (or however you spell it) is for Racing. He can also be prone to bouts of impatience and trying to force things though this has become less and less common as Scotland have improved.

The key to pushing him on has been that Scotland have a genuine option if he is not playing well in Hastings. Russell can no longer get away with having a dumpster fire 50 minutes because he won't get another half hour to put it right.

I don't think he will go to Lions though unless the media force the issue. Gatland does not like an open FH and won't have liked some of Finn's attitudes for the Lions (the HIA incident in 2017) and Scotland. If Gatland can shift the conversation and make it seem like a 50-50 call (Trump has done this many times in a different arena) between Finn and Anscombe or Ross Byrne, he won't take him.

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Post by Guest Mon 28 Sep 2020, 2:18 pm

TJ wrote:So you haven't watched him play for racing then?  Over the last 3 years he has improved hugely

As I said, selective arguments, because no one can counter the fact he's clearly not good enough overall based on test match performances.

A lot of the above is too dense to really address but it's wishful thinking and self soothing for the most part. Hogg is an example of a top player (even if he's also overrated by Scottish fans desperate to explain/mitigate the team's flirtations with tier 2). Russell isn't.

Would Russell start for any of the other 3 home nations?

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Post by Guest Mon 28 Sep 2020, 2:24 pm

RDW wrote:It's also worth saying his defence is actually decent now too - he's not afraid to put his body on the line, as Alex Goode would attest to.

I would pick this out though as important. Firstly, it's one highlight - exactly what I'm talking about with Russell's 'aura'. However, he was up against Alex Goode at 10 for Saracens. Yes he produced against Leinster but that was the platform their pack provided. He was not facing a top class 10 in this game and for me it was obvious. Had Farrell been playing it would have been a different result, I have no doubt about that, Saracens would have been out of sight.

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Post by EST Mon 28 Sep 2020, 2:28 pm

rugby racing and beer wrote:
TJ wrote:So you haven't watched him play for racing then?  Over the last 3 years he has improved hugely

As I said, selective arguments, because no one can counter the fact he's clearly not good enough overall based on test match performances.

A lot of the above is too dense to really address but it's wishful thinking and self soothing for the most part. Hogg is an example of a top player (even if he's also overrated by Scottish fans desperate to explain/mitigate the team's flirtations with tier 2). Russell isn't.

Would Russell start for any of the other 3 home nations?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHdoRDvlZcc

I've self soothed quite a few times to this tbf Very Happy Whistle

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Post by NeilyBroon Mon 28 Sep 2020, 2:55 pm

rugby racing and beer wrote:
RDW wrote:It's also worth saying his defence is actually decent now too - he's not afraid to put his body on the line, as Alex Goode would attest to.

I would pick this out though as important. Firstly, it's one highlight - exactly what I'm talking about with Russell's 'aura'. However, he was up against Alex Goode at 10 for Saracens. Yes he produced against Leinster but that was the platform their pack provided. He was not facing a top class 10 in this game and for me it was obvious. Had Farrell been playing it would have been a different result, I have no doubt about that, Saracens would have been out of sight.

Wid they aye.
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Post by 123456789. Mon 28 Sep 2020, 9:42 pm

I am not convinced Russell would be starting for the other three nations, and rugby is the worse for it.

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Post by RDW Mon 28 Sep 2020, 11:18 pm

Rugby Racing and Beer - I'm not sure what your purposes on this thread is. This is an Edinburgh and Glasgow general discussion thread full of Scottish posters that covers all things Scottish rugby, and is usually in good humour and banter. You're essentially on here telling us we're all wrong in thinking that Finn Russell is a top class player that we're proud to have in our team, despite us being the ones that watch him the most and, well, it being our team.

It's not like we're all lambasting Gatland or demanding Finn's Lions selection either - for the most part people have been saying he doesn't suit the Gatland style and he probably won't be picked, but we'd love it if he was given the chance. We're not signing petitions to erect statues of Finn or lauding him as the best player ever to grace a rugby pitch. WE have been given detailed discussions of how we think his all round game has come on significantly and cited numerous games where this is the case, and some specific examples (which for some reason is all you've picked up on). If you can't be bothered to address the more detailed posts, that's not our problem.

Basically what I'm saying is if you hate Finn so much, start a new thread and tell us all about it. thumbsup

Not only that you're telling us why we're wrong to think Hogg is a world class player and apparently that is to hide our insecurities about being classed as a top rugby nation! That is quite a claim. In that instance all you need to do is watch BT Sport cover any of the Exeter games and you'll very much see that all of the Hogg cheerleading comes from plenty non-Scots just now, plus any Rugby Pass/Rugy lad/Ultimate Rugby Ultimate whatever social media page these days.

It's almost like you don't actually like attacking, exciting rugby and players that get fans excited and proud to call their own.


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Post by bsando Mon 28 Sep 2020, 11:30 pm

I may have mentioned it on here before that I do some refereeing for after work tag rugby here in London. Tonight I got to referee Rory Lawson and some of his mates! It didn’t click straight away but I realised halfway through the match who he was. I’m not one for selfies but I said hi afterwards and that it was nice to meet him. Still very fit and smaller than I remembered.

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Post by RDW Mon 28 Sep 2020, 11:35 pm

bsando wrote:I may have mentioned it on here before that I do some refereeing for after work tag rugby here in London. Tonight I got to referee Rory Lawson and some of his mates! It didn’t click straight away but I realised halfway through the match who he was. I’m not one for selfies but I said hi afterwards and that it was nice to meet him. Still very fit and smaller than I remembered.

Does he still have it? KNowing Rory Lawson I bet he still put the shoulder in a few times.

Tag rugby is the only time I've ever been sent off on the rugby pitch. It was a mixed team schools tournament when I was 13 - the year previously we won the 'sportsmanship award' which was typically given to the team that was a bit pish but were nice and polite. Needless to say I wasn't happy with our previous performance so was doing all I could to win. In schools rugby tag you're meant to politely pass back the velcro tag to the opposition after removing it. In this instance the guy passed the ball after I tagged him and wasn't pinged, so I set off chasing down the person with the ball and tossed the tag back in the general direction of the other guy.

I got sent off for it! And we lost the sportsmanship award. Erm

Mrs RDW was playing in that tournament too - she still brings it up occasionally that I lost the team the sportsmanship award.


(Fun fact - Rowan Shephard was refereeing the game and he clearly didn't want to be there - maybe why he sent me off).

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Post by bsando Tue 29 Sep 2020, 9:13 am

RDW wrote:
bsando wrote:I may have mentioned it on here before that I do some refereeing for after work tag rugby here in London. Tonight I got to referee Rory Lawson and some of his mates! It didn’t click straight away but I realised halfway through the match who he was. I’m not one for selfies but I said hi afterwards and that it was nice to meet him. Still very fit and smaller than I remembered.

Does he still have it? KNowing Rory Lawson I bet he still put the shoulder in a few times.

Tag rugby is the only time I've ever been sent off on the rugby pitch. It was a mixed team schools tournament when I was 13 - the year previously we won the 'sportsmanship award' which was typically given to the team that was a bit pish but were nice and polite. Needless to say I wasn't happy with our previous performance so was doing all I could to win. In schools rugby tag you're meant to politely pass back the velcro tag to the opposition after removing it. In this instance the guy passed the ball after I tagged him and wasn't pinged, so I set off chasing down the person with the ball and tossed the tag back in the general direction of the other guy.

I got sent off for it! And we lost the sportsmanship award. Erm

Mrs RDW was playing in that tournament too - she still brings it up occasionally that I lost the team the sportsmanship award.


(Fun fact - Rowan Shephard was refereeing the game and he clearly didn't want to be there - maybe why he sent me off).

Haha! That is probably why he sent you off. How funny to be reffed by an ex pro. I think that was a very harsh sending off considering the context. It would only be a penalty in Try Tag (advantage being played first). I've only sent off one person and that was for booting the ball away in frustration three times and finally swearing at me (which is when I lost my patience and sent him off). Competition is good but it's after work sport for christ sake!

Our league is based on Rugby league (Oz tag) so union players struggle to adapt to it initially, I certainly did when I started playing. As it is usually mixed contact is just a big no-no

Yes Lawson still has it for sure! He just seemed super alert compared to other players around him and his floated passes seemed like missiles compared with the average player. He did fend off a girl though after making a break which I obviously pinged him for. That made me laugh because it was just so ridiculous, he apologised immediately and said "Oh No! Wrong sport, wrong sport!" Laugh

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Post by EST Tue 29 Sep 2020, 9:34 am

Sounds good fun Bsando, I've been thinking about getting into touch after hanging up the boots a few years ago - not heard of Oz Tag before.

I managed to knock myself out tackling Rowan Shepard at a charity club game when I was about 16 - not sure if he even noticed my attempt to be honest.

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Post by RDW Tue 29 Sep 2020, 9:48 am

I know this sounds stupid, but it's amazing just how much better ex pros are than everyone else, even when they're pretty old.

I played in a charity match (under 21s v ex Scotland players) and we were absolutely horsed. There were a few big borders forwards close to my dad's age and they were hard as nails. Hodge completely ran the show at 10 and was absolutely class. Jonny Petrie completely burried our fullback for showboating! Was chuffed with myself the one time I tackled him (he basically tripped over me).

I was up against Craig Joiner - they say don't meet your heroes.....I didn't!

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Post by jimbopip Tue 29 Sep 2020, 9:54 am

May I just add my tuppence worth of wisdom on the Finn-Gats debate?

FWIW* I thought he had a very good game against the Tax Evaders; his passing was crisp and his tackling superb. Finn kept his backs moving and dealt calmly with the blitz defence. In one sense the Sarries blitz is as Bokkie as you'll get in the NH so that was a good performance from him.

However, late in the second half he did make one Finnhowler. He received an above the head pass with three defenders bearing down on him. He slapped the ball on one handed. Vakatawa fumbled the pass the sarries' 13 hacked on and Racing were lucky not to concede 7. Mind, IF the slap pass had gone to hand Racing had a 5 on 2 overlap. Finn plays these fine margins. Gats doesn't.

* FWIW see how DWTK I am? LOL YOLO RDW BFF Hug


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Post by TJ Tue 29 Sep 2020, 11:51 am

Would Russell start for any of the other 3 home nations?
considering he is clearly the best 10 in the NH then yes.

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Post by RDW Tue 29 Sep 2020, 12:08 pm

Just saw some stats of Finn from the champions cup - he tops the list of attacking kicks regathered with 19.  That's a remarkable number that's proved to be a real weapon for Racing - really hope Scotland can use it.

He's also top of the list with try assists on 7.

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Post by BigGee Tue 29 Sep 2020, 1:27 pm

I see Finlay Christie's elder brother (Gregor), also a SH has signed to play super 6 with Watsonians this season.

I don't know if that bodes any suggestion that the younger brother might also be heading this way?

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Post by bsando Tue 29 Sep 2020, 4:50 pm

RDW wrote:Just saw some stats of Finn from the champions cup - he tops the list of attacking kicks regathered with 19.  That's a remarkable number that's proved to be a real weapon for Racing - really hope Scotland can use it.

He's also top of the list with try assists on 7.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/p08st8wv

Good interview with Russell on Ugo Monye and Danny Care's Rugby Union Weekly. It's as if they read this thread and cleared up some of the doubts regarding his game. Monye was particularly critical of Russell back in 2018 but he seems to view him in a very different light now.

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Post by bsando Tue 29 Sep 2020, 4:52 pm

BigGee wrote:I see Finlay Christie's elder brother (Gregor), also a SH has signed to play super 6 with Watsonians this season.

I don't know if that bodes any suggestion that the younger brother might also be heading this way?

Ah yes I forgot he was playing over here. I think he might have been playing here for a wee while but that is great to see him in the Super 6. You never know! I'm probably leaning more towards an AB's call-up now but Fingers Crossed

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Post by TJ Tue 29 Sep 2020, 8:45 pm

Rugby Racing and Beer - I'm not sure what your purposes on this thread is

Which previously banned troll returning is he? Style seems very familiar

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The Glasgow and Edinburgh General Chat. Discussions are limited to 6 people before 10pm to prevent the spread of Jimboish. Empty Re: The Glasgow and Edinburgh General Chat. Discussions are limited to 6 people before 10pm to prevent the spread of Jimboish.

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