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Leicester Tigers 2020-21

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Post by king_carlos Mon 16 Nov 2020, 8:55 am

First topic message reminder :

No Geordie, Boris or Taylor. Borthwick definitively the top man and fair few new signings.

Head coach - Borthwick
Defence coach - Ford
Head of physical performance - Walters
Backs/attack coach - Smith (interim)

1.Genge, Gigena, Leatigaga, Bower, Whitcombe
2.Youngs, Clare, Mamukashvili, Kerr
3.Cole, Heyes, de Bruin, Dimen
4.Lavanini, Enever, Martin
5.Green, Wells, Henderson, Chessum
6.Brink, Lewis, Lavin
7.Taufua, Reffell, Wallace, Coghlan
8.Liebenberg, Wiese, Smith

9.Youngs, Wigglesworth, White, van Poortvliet
10.Ford, Bonilla, Henry, McPhillips

11.Nadolo, Williams, Simmons, Aspland-Robinson
12.Scott, Taute, Hardwick
13.Moroni, Porter, Kelly
14.van Wyk, Potter, Olowofela, Browning
15.Steward, Murimurivalu, Worth

There's a fair few things I like about that squad. The pack in particular looks promising with some good signings and a few development squad players looking ready for first XV rugby. Liebenberg, Brink, Wiese and de Bruin is a lot of Bok muscle, the sort of thing that many of us have felt was missing.

In the centre there's a few players I'm less convinced by but Steward coming through in the back three could be great for this side. Not wanting to heap pressure on the lad but if we are going to persist with a kick heavy game plan then a fullback with his boot and presence under the high ball could be vital.

I'm increasingly struggling to see where a few of the backs fit into the squad. Hardwick, McPhillips, Worth and Olowofela in particular. Kelly seemed to be getting deserved game time in the centre. Williams and Potter have signed as similar aged back three squad/project players. Aspland-Robinson regaining fitness and Simmons shifting position adds to that bracket. The Steward has broken through and Browning is coming up the rails. Plenty of good news for the squad as a whole there but perhaps not for those guys who might struggle to make an impact.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 21 Jun 2021, 12:43 pm

Tigers sign Jaun Pablo Socino from Sarries. I rate Socino but a touch surprised. I guess it's inexpensive centre and fly-half cover though I'd hope we still have a ball carrying centre and a development 10 incoming.

Tim Hoyt, Seb Smith, Lewis Chessum and Jacob Cuisick get development squad contracts as well. Hoyt, Smith and Chessum I've seen a bit of and always been impressed. I've seen less of Cuisick but he's the first centre to get a dev squad contract from the academy for a while - perhaps Javiah Pohe the last?

A bit surprised only 4 have got deals. Hopefully a few more will be at Loughborough and still involved with the club. Danny Meredith in particular always looked very promising when I saw him play.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 21 Jun 2021, 1:12 pm

Bryce Hegarty signs from the Reds. Fullback who cover fly-half. To be completely honest I've never heard of him. He has a decent amount of Super Rugby experience for his age which usually bodes well though. He isn't a Super Rugby squad player with only a handful of appearances in the last few years.

I'd guess he'd be our main fullback cover for Steward then which suggest Murimurivalu being used more as a winger.

McPhillips, Henry, Bonilla ---> Burns, Hegarty, Socino

I'd say we've upgraded on our second choice 10 and 15 options there whilst adding some centre cover.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 21 Jun 2021, 1:23 pm

Heggarty is the Reds secondary playmaker at 15 and second choice 10 I think. From memory he's a solid player that is a good option to have in the squad as backup, might be putting some pressure on Burns who isn't guaranteed to be second choice behind Ford now.

Socino is squad cover. Nothing more. With Taute's injury issues he makes sense.

There supposed to be 6 part time development players at Loughborough University so that fills out the development squad a bit.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 21 Jun 2021, 1:54 pm

Most fans who watch more Super Rugby than me seem happy with Hegarty. Sounds like about the strongest reserve fullback we could hope for with Steward looking an installment as first choice now.

My main question with these additions would be where Worth and Aspland-Robinson fit in?

I was thinking perhaps Worth would be fullback cover with Murimurivalu covering wing but Hegarty joining pushes Worth to 3rd choice FB even if considering Murimurivalu as a wing.

Similarly I was thinking that SAR might be viewed as a centre as he talked about moving there before his latest injury. Socino is another centre though. I've liked what I've seen of SAR, he just desperately needs some luck with injury.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 21 Jun 2021, 2:22 pm

SAR would be a pacey 13 though whereas Socino will be playing 12 and is able to crash or offer some playmaking. Socino strikes me as a short term squad filler until we can get hold of a target we actually want next summer possibly when both Taute and Socino are off the books.

Worth I think has an uphill struggle as he doesn't quite fit the game plan. We always needed a third choice 10 and Socino wasn't going to be good enough to offer that. Can you imagine a 6N period with Burns injured and Ford with England? We'd be desperately short of quality. 

Looks like that's all we're getting today and probably that's it for the backs for next season. A lock/6 and prop to be announced shortly and hopefully with a new attack coach.

Backs for next season;

9. Youngs, JVP, Wigglesworth, Simmonds
10. Ford, Burns, Heggarty
11. Nadolo, Murimurivalu, Porter
12. Kelly, Taute, Socino
13. Moroni, Scott, SAR
14. Potter, van Wyk, Owolfela
15. Steward, Worth

Decent set of options there. Porter, SAR and Worth able to play several positions and the back up 10s can play 15. Simmonds might be more back three than 9 now as well.


Last edited by formerly known as Sam on Mon 21 Jun 2021, 3:08 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 21 Jun 2021, 2:25 pm

i see you have signed JP Socino....

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 21 Jun 2021, 3:08 pm

Yep as squad filler.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon 21 Jun 2021, 3:40 pm

If he can find his form ...he'll be a great signing for you. In his prime was class.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 21 Jun 2021, 4:22 pm

Sarries fans seem to think he's been good for them. Some Sarries fans seem to think that if they hadn't lost that first game then Tompkins might have been used more sparingly. As it was they lost that game after their pack took a pummeling and Socino seemingly was a bystander caught in the crossfire with Tompkins available and a bit more pressure on them.

I've rated Socino for a while so think he'll be a good addition. It possibly means there are longer term worries about Taute's injury though. Latest update was he'd be fit for preseason so hopefully there hasn't been another setback.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 21 Jun 2021, 5:09 pm

Socino should be a solid option, I'm sure he'll do a reliable job if required. We've been lucky with our three centres staying fit. Taute should be back by pre season but it's another long lay off for him and he lost his pace after the big knee injury at Munster. Not sure what shape he'll be in so makes sense to have another option.

Matt Scott getting another shot with Scotland and Moroni maybe playing for the Pumas in the Autumn some options are handy.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 21 Jul 2021, 6:31 pm

Leicester Tigers 2020-21 - Page 3 Screen12
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Looks alright but bland maybe

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Post by king_carlos Wed 11 Aug 2021, 4:50 pm

George Worth and the club agree early release. Sounds like he has something lined up. Possibly back in Australia I'd guess.

Not a massive surprise given he would have been at best 4th choice fullback behind Steward, Hegarty and Murimurivalu. Add in Burns and Potter potentially being picked ahead of him there. He was unlikely to get game time.

With 62 appearances for the first team he spent a significant time around the first team squad during some tougher years for the club. He put some solid performances in at 15 sometimes in weak back lines but I just don't think he has the pace to be a fullback. I still think centre could be his best position.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 11 Aug 2021, 6:02 pm

Solid at everything but outstanding at no one thing. Could be a good squad man for somebody but unfortunately for him Tigers has moved past the need for that. Hope he's landing somewhere good, he was getting game time at the Rebels last season so he may be heading back there and can't blame him.

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Post by king_carlos Tue 24 Aug 2021, 4:24 pm

It's been discussed elsewhere but not on here yet so thought I'd give my tuppence about the Notts and Tigers partnership.

Overall I see far more positives than negatives. Reduced salary cap mean having a partner club will help Tigers with training (and sometimes playing) numbers whilst Notts being semi-pro now will need the players they get on loan.

The downside for Notts would be if they lose standout players to Tigers for key periods of their season but I'd hope that the two parties can work together to mitigate that.

There is already a lot of former Tigers in the Notts squad so they should slot into training well when required. Aniseko Sio, Owen Hills and Ben Betts from the props alone are former Tigers. Add in David Williams, Charlie Thacker and new Notts signing Ronnie du Randt.

I think opportunity through this sort of partnership could be brilliant for players such as Owen Hills, Sam Lewis, Harry Simmons and Henri Lavin who missed a lot of rugby at a key time for their development.

For this season coming I'd guess that the likes of Dolly, Hurd, Ollie Chessum, Thom Smith and Olowofela could really benefit from some game time when I look at the senior squad. From the dev squad Browning and Law should be ready to press on at Championship level too.

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Post by doctor_grey Tue 24 Aug 2021, 5:34 pm

I think these kinds of link-ups make a lot of sense. Gives benefits to both partners. Unfortunately, not every Premiership club or Championship club have the geographical convenience of Nottingham and Leicester or Saints and Bedford.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Wed 25 Aug 2021, 6:28 am

Didn't realise you signed Socino.

His passing can be quite awful and I wouldn't look to play him at 10, but he can be quite the pinball when carrying and will give you a solid if unspectacular option at 12.

Looking at your other options, 12 is not a huge area of strength for you so he might end up taking the shirt. He could work well with Ford pulling the strings and a quick 13.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 25 Aug 2021, 6:42 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:Didn't realise you signed Socino.

His passing can be quite awful and I wouldn't look to play him at 10, but he can be quite the pinball when carrying and will give you a solid if unspectacular option at 12.

Looking at your other options, 12 is not a huge area of strength for you so he might end up taking the shirt. He could work well with Ford pulling the strings and a quick 13.

Dan Kelly will play 12 I'd have thought. Socino is a presumably cheap bit of squad cover. Makes sense with Moroni away with Argentina until after the AIs and then the chance of Scott getting a Scotland call up.

Tigers have signed Dan Lancaster the young 10/12 but might be a bit early for him to go straight into the first team. Socino is a handy safety blanket that may finish the season on loan at Notts as long as we don't have injuries.

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Post by king_carlos Wed 25 Aug 2021, 2:55 pm

Kelly and Scott are certainly better 12s than Socino these days IMO. Scott covered 13 a fair bit last season but with Hegarty and Saumaki signed in the back three I'm hoping that Porter will play 13 rather than wing this season.

Socino will be strong cover at 12 and 13 when injuries and call-ups inevitably strike. I always rated him as a 12 and most Sarries fans thought he performed really well last season.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 25 Aug 2021, 3:42 pm

king_carlos wrote:Kelly and Scott are certainly better 12s than Socino these days IMO. Scott covered 13 a fair bit last season but with Hegarty and Saumaki signed in the back three I'm hoping that Porter will play 13 rather than wing this season.

Socino will be strong cover at 12 and 13 when injuries and call-ups inevitably strike. I always rated him as a 12 and most Sarries fans thought he performed really well last season.

I thought Scott actually played better at 13. Porter could and has done the Kelly role previously. I'd quite like to see him get another go at centre. He could be an excellent bench option if he can do the job at centre because he's a good winger for us. He can cover 15 from his time in Australia though our back up 10s can cover 15 anyway.

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Post by king_carlos Wed 25 Aug 2021, 3:55 pm

Whilst I was very happy to see Kelly get so much game time last season I still thought that 12.Scott 13.Moroni was our best centre partnership. Whilst Kelly is very good over the ball and carries well I thought that our defensive alignment looked better with Scott looked better and he offered more distribution.

Moroni, Kelly and Scott are much better centre options than we've had for a while. With Porter, Socino and Taute backing them up it's a good place to be.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 25 Aug 2021, 6:23 pm

I'm torn on Scott. He offered more in attack and his experience was in evidence in defence, however, he also made more mistakes particularly of the give away a penalty type. Kelly wasn't as dynamic but made better decisions under pressure, particularly at the breakdown but obviously lacked the experience of Scott in terms of positioning and distribution.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Thu 26 Aug 2021, 10:07 am

Tom Youngs has opted to stand down as club captain. I presume he no longer considers himself first choice and thinks others should come through. He's had a rough time to oversee as captain but you could never question his commitment and I suspect there's a couple of years left in the tank yet. He should get that 250 Tigers caps before he hangs up his boots.

Ellis Genge is the new club captain and given how well he took the leadership role at the end of last season and over the summer with England makes a lot of sense. He's really matured since he found out he was going to become a father, no brainer choice for me.

The vice captain is also a no brainer with Hanro Liebenburg. One of our best signings in years and has captaincy pedigree from earlier in his career in SA. A firm fan favourite.

Captain and vice captain in their mid twenties prime? Been a whole since we've seen that at Tigers.

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Post by lostinwales Thu 26 Aug 2021, 10:56 am

Great choice

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Post by GeordieFalcon Thu 26 Aug 2021, 1:53 pm

doctor_grey wrote:I think these kinds of link-ups make a lot of sense.  Gives benefits to both partners.  Unfortunately, not every Premiership club or Championship club have the geographical convenience of Nottingham and Leicester or Saints and Bedford.  

We have similar links with Rotherham and Doncaster. Many of our academy lads go there to play...

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Post by doctor_grey Thu 26 Aug 2021, 2:46 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:I think these kinds of link-ups make a lot of sense.  Gives benefits to both partners.  Unfortunately, not every Premiership club or Championship club have the geographical convenience of Nottingham and Leicester or Saints and Bedford.  

We have similar links with Rotherham and Doncaster. Many of our academy lads go there to play...
I didn’t know that. Makes perfect sense. Are these newer connections or older? I wonder which other clubs have these relationships.

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Post by king_carlos Fri 27 Aug 2021, 1:04 am

Delighted for Genge and Liebenberg.

When discussing potential skippers with a friend at the end last season my choice would actually have been Liebenberg as captain (he should be with Tigers all season) with Genge and Reffell as vices.

I have no quarrel with Genge as club captain and Liebenberg as vice though.

I think it's also the right call for OTY to step down and concentrate on playing. I think he could have a bit of a golden summer to his career as an impact sub and with his workload managed more. He was showing better form at points last season but the captaincy did seem to be a bit of a millstone for him.

Montoya is a truly world class first choice, Youngs and Clare offer solidity, Dolly is a good project and Vanes looks a fabulous talent at hooker. It's a good place to be.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Fri 27 Aug 2021, 9:38 am

Agree with all that Carlos. Hooker is looking pretty well stocked. I do have the slight concern that Tom Youngs might opt to retire at the end of the season which would probably be a year to soon for the club. Clare is the ideal third choice hooker because he's never going to let you down but neither will he rip up trees. Dolly should start to push through and Vanes should also. Might be longer than a year for that to come to fruition though.

Speaking of Vanes...

Leicester Tigers players Joe Browning, Lewis Chessum, Jacob Cusick, Sam Edwards, Tim Hoyt and Archie Vanes have joined Nottingham Rugby on a season-long loan for the 2021/22 Championship campaign.

Interesting that Tim Hoyt is going straight to the Championship from the academy. He looks a big lad and the pre season videos on the Tigers website show him very much training with the first team. I'd have thought a prop of that age might play a season at Loughborough then a season at Nottingham which I think is what Vanes has done at hooker (may be wrong). Hoyt appears to be one to watch.

Gareth Evans signing to cover the back row in the short term is a good bit of business by the club. No Thom Smith in the team for the Jersey game makes me think he may have been injured in pre season. If so that league winning academy backrow really have had no luck whatsoever.

I wasn't going to bother with the Jersey stream but looking at the team we've put out I am tempted. Really nice mix of abilities in there.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Fri 27 Aug 2021, 9:55 am

doctor_grey wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:I think these kinds of link-ups make a lot of sense.  Gives benefits to both partners.  Unfortunately, not every Premiership club or Championship club have the geographical convenience of Nottingham and Leicester or Saints and Bedford.  

We have similar links with Rotherham and Doncaster. Many of our academy lads go there to play...
I didn’t know that.  Makes perfect sense.  Are these newer connections or older?  I wonder which other clubs have these relationships.

Had links with Rotherham for a long time. We signed Socino from them years ago...Doncaster is slightly more recent..but still a good few years...

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Post by GeordieFalcon Fri 27 Aug 2021, 9:56 am

Sam,

I see George Martin is starting at number 8 for you tonight...

Its a tall pack!

And JVP captain...!

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Post by formerly known as Sam Fri 27 Aug 2021, 10:39 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:Sam,

I see George Martin is starting at number 8 for you tonight...

Its a tall pack!

And JVP captain...!

Yeah four lineout jumpers in the pack should mean there is little contest from the opposition. Chessum is a really good lineout jumper at 6 as well. Martin has said previously that he's working on his carrying, he always gets through a lot of carries but he wants more impact and metres. Bit of practice for him in that from 8 this evening, can't see it being a long term thing.

6 of the 8 forwards are under 25 which is nice and all EQ though the loosehead somewhat questionably (a Bok on residency). With Weise away with SA, Brink possibly still struggling with the injury he incurred at the end of last season and Liebenburg unlikely to play all three friendlies we are a bit stretched at 8. Hence Evans on a short term deal.

JVP as captain, well he captained the under 20s well so I suppose why not. Nice to see him getting game time with Burns and then the likelihood of Youngs and Lancaster in the second half. Unless Lancaster comes on at 12, will be interesting to see where Borthwick is seeing him fitting in. Good for Vanes to get a run out between two experienced props from the bench as well.

Haven't seen the Jersey team yet but I hope they are going fairly strong.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Fri 27 Aug 2021, 11:08 am

Maybe they are looking at George for the 6 spot long term...big, high work rate, big carrying unit.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Fri 27 Aug 2021, 2:24 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Maybe they are looking at George for the 6 spot long term...big, high work rate, big carrying unit.

Maybe. I think more likely a short term thing over the next couple of years as he bulks out. We have our long term answer at 6 coming through currently in Ilione, that kid looks explosive. If Martin can translate his all action lock game at academy level to senior level he'll be an international star but that's easier said than done. I'm hoping it's a process where his time at six is used to acclimatise and develop his carrying and tackling (his tackling has come on a treat) before he moves into the row where he can hopefully maintain those loose abilities with the added tight game requirements.

Didn't Itoje play a bit of 6 early doors for Sarries? Kruis did and so did Wells via Tigers link with Bedford at the time. My thinking is that Borthwick's using a similar idea with Martin so that he doesn't become just focussed on pushing and the tight stuff as opposed to his all round game. He's certainly mobile enough to play in the backrow.

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Post by king_carlos Sat 04 Sep 2021, 12:56 pm

Olowofela on a season long loan to Dragons and starts @ 11 against Tigers today. I hope he does well there but do worry we've seen the last of Jordan in a Tigers shirt. He didn't really perform in a lot of chances but being a back three player coming into such a poor Tigers side didn't give him much chance. If he doesn't fulfill the talent shown at age grade then he'll feel like one that got away sadly.

STARTING XV:
15 Freddie Steward
14 Kobus van Wyk
13 Guy Porter
12 Dan Kelly
11 Hosea Saumaki
10 Freddie Burns
9 Jack van Poortvliet
1 James Whitcombe
2 Nic Dolly
3 Joe Heyes
4 Ollie Chessum
5 Cameron Henderson
6 Hanro Liebenberg (c)
7 Tommy Reffell
8 Gareth Evans
REPLACEMENTS: Francois van Wyk, Tom Youngs, Dan Cole, Eli Snyman, George Martin; Jonny Law, Dan Lancaster, Juan Pablo Socino, Jacob Cusick, Harry Potter, Nemani Nadolo, Kini Murimurivalu

That's the side vs Dragons today. I'm really happy to see two of young second rows starting together at lock and seeing Porter in the centre. Great that Burns was just a short term injury as well. With Wiese, van Staden and Brink all absent it will be interesting to see what Evans can offer ball in hand from number 8.

Update on injuries from Borthwick confirmed that Taute is still rehabbing but no news on Green, Brink or Clare who haven't featured yet in the warm-up games and I haven't seen in training videos from pre-season so perhaps a few more struggling with knocks. Green and Brink, along with Taute, were out at the end of last season so perhaps still rehabbing.

Genge, Ford and Wigglesworth also haven't featured yet but are such experienced players that I wouldn't be surprised if Borthwick just isn't too concerned about their form going into round 1. Genge and Ford will likely feature against Scarlets next week in a near enough full strength side (minus injuries and Rugby Championship absentees) I'd guess.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sat 04 Sep 2021, 2:26 pm

Van Wyk off early having shown nothing again and quite frankly Owolfela up against him had looked sharper.

JVP looks electric. Chessum at lock is carrying plenty and taking a few lineouts as well I can very much see him more at lock this season. Reffell stealing ball well, might be best to get him off early in case a Welsh coach cottons on to how good he is.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sat 04 Sep 2021, 2:49 pm

Potter has looked since he came on for van Wyk. Very physical in the tackle and won a turnover penalty at the breakdown.

21-0 at half time without much threat to the Tigers try line. Still a few things for Tigers to work on but the young players are looking good. Burns is a bit underwhelming so far. I'm interested to see how the Fijians fire things up after half time. Freddie Steward looks just as good as last season. 

Bit of rust still in evidence but this game and next week Vs Scarlets should knock that off.

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Post by king_carlos Sat 04 Sep 2021, 3:59 pm

Saw some of the second half. Socino looking very physical still. Great news with Taute still injured and Moroni away with Argentina.

Interesting that Socino played more at 10 with Lancaster wider out when both were on the field.

Potter just looks a very good winger to me. Quick with good basics. He'd be my first choice 14 with Nadolo at 11 when everyone is fit.

1.Genge 2.Youngs 3.Cole 4.Wells 5.Henderson 6.Martin 7.Reffell 8.Liebenberg
9.Youngs 10.Ford 11.Nadolo 12.Kelly 13.Scott 14.Potter 15.Steward

16.Dolly 17.Leatigaga 18.Heyes 19.Chessum 20.Evans/Smith 21.JvP 22.Socino 23.Murimurivalu/Hegarty

I'd be looking at something like that for Scarlets to try to get some combinations working before round 1.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sat 04 Sep 2021, 5:21 pm

Second half we were a bit loose. A couple of interception tries really got Dragons back into it and Liebenburg not coming back out for the second half was really noticeable.

Socino made some good carries and linked well with Lancaster when he came on but Jamie Roberts who was anonymous all first half suddenly made a break and scored a try and made a couple of other carries. A useful player to have but I think he's a physical back up player only.

It was good that Dragons came back into it and made us work for the win. A one sided pre season game doesn't help anybody so that will have helped knock the rust off. 

Plenty of work ons but a lot of positives, most notably how the young guys are stepping up in a lot of positions to compete for places. Chessum was a real stand out, particularly in the first half. Dolly had a tidy game, JVP was man of the match by a country mile, Whitcombe was solid and involved, Heyes as well and Martin looked powerful when he came on. We could name a pack under the age of 25 for the first game bar a number 8 and be confident of them doing a job. A nice headache for Borthwick to have.

I'd quite like to see something like;

Genge, Youngs, Cole
Snyman, Wells (presuming Green is injured)
Martin, Reffell, Liebenburg

For the Scarlets game because the tight five are playing for their shirts currently. Genge should show enough but Cole, Youngs and the locks need a performance. Cole was quite good after he came on today but Youngs looked very rusty to me.

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Post by doctor_grey Sat 04 Sep 2021, 5:42 pm

I came back in from work, cracked a pint, and saw the last 10-20 minutes of the second half. Saw Nadolo's try late on - he is so good when switched on and is fun to watch - and JVP being intercepted for a try. Seems like Tigers were generally in command. Just like watching a bit o' Rugby coming back from work.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sat 04 Sep 2021, 10:18 pm

doctor_grey wrote:I came back in from work, cracked a pint, and saw the last 10-20 minutes of the second half.   Saw Nadolo's try late on - he is so good when switched on and is fun to watch - and JVP being intercepted for a try.  Seems like Tigers were generally in command.  Just like watching a bit o' Rugby coming back from work.    

Was about the only mistake JVP made all game, just tried to hard to make a move work. There was a bit of that from Tigers, we were in control but the attacking structure was new and you could definitely see some of the players trying too hard to make things work given the number of 22 visits we were having.

Nadolo is great to watch. He's been a great signing for us, hopefully we're going to see him marauding down the flank more and being the crash option less which is where our lack of attacking threat last season meant we had to deploy him. There's some serious competition on the back three this season. We could have a back three of Sumaki, Nadolo and Steward where Sumaki at 6ft3 and 16 stone is the little one.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 11 Oct 2021, 1:50 pm

4 from 4 then. An excellent start obviously but the last two performances in particular were far from perfect.

Worcester (A), Sale (H), Saints (A) before the AI's. We will then lose our England, Argentina and South Africa players for Bath (H). After that we have the Prem Cup games against Sale (H) and Wasps (A) where we will presumably see a lot of rotation before a tough December of Quins (H), Bordaeux (A), Connacht (H) and Bristol (A).

I'd expect us to be near full strength for Sale at home and the Saints derby. That would mean some rotation for Worcester but by and large Borthwick seems to be making a few changes each week rather than wholesale rotation.

I'd presume we will try to move towards something such as below for Sale and Saints.

1.Genge 2.Montoya 3.Cole 4.Wells 5.Green 6.Liebenberg 7.Reffell 8.Wiese
9.Youngs 10.Ford 11.Nadolo 12.Kelly 13.Moroni 14.Potter 15.Steward

16.Dolly 17.Leatigaga 18.Heyes 19.Martin 20.van Staden 21.JvP 22.Burns 23.Scott

I'm very interested to see if Martin moves into lock if Liebenberg, Wiese, Reffell and van Staden are all available in the back row. Personally I'd consider starting him at lock with Wells he's been that impressive so far.

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Post by propdavid_london Mon 11 Oct 2021, 3:27 pm

Tigers are well positioned to do well in the international window too - with only Genge and Youngs likely to be with England, and Montoya out.
I am sure I am missing a few but cant think of them.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 11 Oct 2021, 3:34 pm

propdavid_london wrote:Tigers are well positioned to do well in the international window too - with only Genge and Youngs likely to be with England, and Montoya out.  
I am sure I am missing a few but cant think of them.

Ford, Steward, Martin and Heyes will also be in the England frame. I could see Martin and Heyes potentially adding to their caps against Tonga. I think Steward will be in the frame for the 15 shirt throughout.

Moroni certainly with Argentina if fit.

Wiese and van Staden with South Africa.

Nadolo and Murimurivalu with Fiji but they only have one fixture.

I'd presume Hosea Saumaki will play against England in the Tonga fixture if they tour.

There's only 1 round of Prem rugby in that window then 2 PRC games though so not the highest stakes. Bath will lose a few as well for our Premiership game against them in the first week of the AIs.

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Post by propdavid_london Mon 11 Oct 2021, 3:51 pm

A fair few then.
I thought Ford was left out in the wilderness by Eddie - although perhaps that was just for the recent training squad!
Heyes will no doubt be in England squad.
Martin I am still not sure about - is he a back row or 2nd row? Back Row seems like it could be extremely competitive.
And I feel that Stewart will be up against Malins for that 15 shirt and will depend on the kind of game Eddie wants to play.

What do Tigers fans think of Harry Potter? Looked pretty decent in the games I have seen.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 11 Oct 2021, 3:59 pm

Sinckler was dropped from the corresponding squad in 2017 after the last Lions tour so not much of an indicator really. I think Smith will get a run of starts but would be surprised if Ford isn't around the squad, maybe on the bench.

Martin is mainly playing 6 for Tigers at the minute but I think he'll end up at lock. He's an absolute unit with a high work rate, makes dominant tackles and offers a lineout option so Jones might even fancy him at 6.

Potter's a cracking winger but I wouldn't have him near the England squad personally. Just too many wingers that offer more. No slight on Potter. There's nothing wrong with be a rock solid Premiership performer.

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Post by propdavid_london Mon 11 Oct 2021, 4:16 pm

Its true that Eddie does like to play games with some players - I just would be surprised if Eddie has 3 10s in the squad. And Farrell seems untouchable!
Martin probably fits the mould of what Eddie might want then - but again he would need to get infront of Lawes in that versatile role. Or Charlie Ewels (who I have never really understood his inclusion other than just being a steady eddy - or a good guy to have in the squad)

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Post by Old Man Mon 11 Oct 2021, 4:57 pm

I hope Wiese isn't called up for SA, his performances in the tests he played was not up to test standard, very ill disciplined and poor decision making.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 11 Oct 2021, 5:15 pm

I suspect that Martin, Liebenburg and Weise will be rotated round over the next few weeks so that the first two get some rest games and Weise is eased back in. Van Staden and Reffell will also rotate.

I'd broadly go with the suggested side for the Sale and Saints games though I think Snyman will start Vs Sale and Green Vs Saints.

It's been an excellent start to the season but we desperately need to rotate a few Vs Wuss. There's a few key players that have played a lot of minutes.

The Bath game will push our resources but after that I'm hoping we'll see a lot of the younger squad players get games over the cup games.

Whitcombe, Dolly, Heyes
Chessum, Henderson
Ilione, Reffell, Smith
JVP, Burns
Kelly, Cusick
Van Wyk, Heggarty, Browning

Vanes, Richardson, Hurd, Snyman, Wells, Edwards, Lancaster, Saumaki

Something like that will give us a fair mix. If Brink or one of the injured hookers are returning they could slot in.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 11 Oct 2021, 5:29 pm

propdavid_london wrote:A fair few then.
I thought Ford was left out in the wilderness by Eddie - although perhaps that was just for the recent training squad!
Heyes will no doubt be in England squad.
Martin I am still not sure about - is he a back row or 2nd row?  Back Row seems like it could be extremely competitive.
And I feel that Stewart will be up against Malins for that 15 shirt and will depend on the kind of game Eddie wants to play.  

What do Tigers fans think of Harry Potter? Looked pretty decent in the games I have seen.

If Eddie wants a younger Lawes style player at 6 that Martin is quickly becoming that. He carried very well Vs LI with a couple of really nice breaks from well angled runs (Sinfield's influence I bet). He developed a really good tackle technique last season where he hits around the midriff and tries to cut the other guy in half. He's played very well for Tigers this season, 40 tackles and 7 defenders beaten so far this season per the Prem website.

Steward Vs Malins will come down to what balance Eddie wants in the backrow. Steward is an absolute rock and a physical presence. Malins still good under the high ball but more creative.

Potter I agree with KC. He's a really good Prem winger but there's other options who are far more lethal ball in hand. Bit comparable to Bassett at Wasps, really good all rounder but just lacking that bit of magic.

Ford I can see being in the overall squad but maybe missing out on the 23, might make the bench for the SA game as an insurance policy.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 11 Oct 2021, 5:49 pm

propdavid_london wrote:Its true that Eddie does like to play games with some players - I just would be surprised if Eddie has 3 10s in the squad.  And Farrell seems untouchable!  

Farrell's started 40 games at centre and 17 at fly-half under Jones. He's predominately been used at 12.

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Post by lostinwales Mon 18 Oct 2021, 1:30 pm

Feck
https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/58956163

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