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South Africa 'A' v British & Irish Lions, 14 July

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South Africa 'A' v British & Irish Lions, 14 July - Page 7 Empty South Africa 'A' v British & Irish Lions, 14 July

Post by George Carlin Sun 11 Jul 2021, 9:09 am

First topic message reminder :

South Africa 'A' v British & Irish Lions, 14 July - Page 7 File-210                South Africa 'A' v British & Irish Lions, 14 July - Page 7 Lions_10                
SOUTH AFRICA A v BRITISH & IRISH LIONS
Wednesday 14 July
KO: 20:00 SAST / 19:00 UK / 22:00 Dubai  Very Happy
Cape Town Stadium (Newlands), Cape Town
Sky Sports Main Event

Referee: Jaco Peyper
Assistant Referees: Wayne Barnes, AJ Jacobs
TMO: Marius Jonker

TEAMS:

SOUTH AFRICA A:
15 – Willie le Roux
14 – Cheslin Kolbe
13 – Lukhanyo Am (captain)
12 – Damian de Allende
11 – Sbu Nkosi
10 – Morné Steyn
9 – Faf de Klerk

8 – Jasper Wiese
7 – Pieter-Steph du Toit
6 – Marco van Staden
5 – Franco Mostert
4 – Eben Etzebeth
3 – Trevor Nyakane
2 – Joseph Dweba
1 – Steven Kitshoff

Replacements (from):
16 – Malcolm Marx
17 – Coenie Oosthuizen
18 – Vincent Koch
19 – Nicolaas Janse van Rensburg
20 – Rynhardt Elstadt
21 – Herschel Jantjies
22 – Jesse Kriel
23 – Damian Willemse
24 – Kwagga Smith
25 – Elton Jantjies

BRITISH & IRISH LIONS:
15. Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby, England) #816
14. Louis Rees-Zammit (Gloucester Rugby, Wales) #846
13. Chris Harris (Gloucester Rugby, Scotland) #844
12. Bundee Aki (Connacht Rugby, Ireland) #837
11. Josh Adams (Cardiff Rugby, Wales) #836
10. Dan Biggar (Northampton Saints, Wales) #821
9. Conor Murray – captain (Munster Rugby, Ireland) #790

1. Wyn Jones (Scarlets, Wales) #842
2. Ken Owens (Scarlets, Wales) #829
3. Kyle Sinckler (Bristol Bears, England) #814
4. Maro Itoje (Saracens, England) #825
5. Iain Henderson (Ulster Rugby, Ireland) #808
6. Josh Navidi (Cardiff Rugby, Wales) #854
7. Tom Curry (Sale Sharks, England) #853
8. Taulupe Faletau (Bath Rugby, Wales) #779

16. Luke Cowan-Dickie (Exeter Chiefs, England) #851
17. Mako Vunipola (Saracens, England) #787
18. Zander Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors, Scotland) #848
19. Adam Beard (Ospreys, Wales) #852
20. Tadhg Beirne (Munster Rugby, Ireland) #838
21. Sam Simmonds (Exeter Chiefs, England) #849
22. Gareth Davies (Scarlets, Wales) #850
23. Elliot Daly (Saracens, England) #822

COMMENTARY:


Last edited by George Carlin on Mon 12 Jul 2021, 2:34 pm; edited 4 times in total
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Post by Old Man Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:39 pm

Mince? More mash potato if you ask me.

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Post by TJ Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:40 pm

Anyone who attacks a a man twice his size with his head gets my vote. He also go into a handbags with Farrell

he is like a jack russell terrier.

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Post by Old Man Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:43 pm

TJ wrote:Anyone who attacks a a man twice his size with his head gets my vote.  He also go into a handbags with Farrell

he is like a jack russell terrier.  

Used to have a Jack Russel, they certainly can be irritating, but other than that can be quite useless.

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Post by Dirtydave Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:48 pm

The Oracle wrote:Without wanting to start world war 3, who for the Lions put their hands up (even if just a little) and who wrote themselves out of the test team?

Great question.

I think Wyn Jones and Owens must be odds on, as with Itoje (as he always was). Beard well off the bench, Curry's 2nd half was superb, and Daly did a good job from deep. Lastly, I think Sinckler made a mark both ball in hand and in the scrum.

Henderson, Murray, Farrell, Harris, Aki all looked poor.

Everyone else was a muchness.


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Post by TJ Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:49 pm

Old Man wrote:
TJ wrote:Anyone who attacks a a man twice his size with his head gets my vote.  He also go into a handbags with Farrell

he is like a jack russell terrier.  

Used to have a Jack Russel, they certainly can be irritating, but other than that can be quite useless.

South Africa 'A' v British & Irish Lions, 14 July - Page 7 1f601

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Post by TJ Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:51 pm

Dirtydave wrote:
The Oracle wrote:Without wanting to start world war 3, who for the Lions put their hands up (even if just a little) and who wrote themselves out of the test team?

Great question.

I think Wyn Jones and Owens must be odds on, as with Itoje (as he always was). Beard well off the bench, Curry's 2nd half was superb, and Daly did a good job from deep. Lastly, I think Sinckler made a mark both ball in hand and in the scrum.

Henderson, Murray, Farrell, Harris, Aki all looked poor.

Everyone else was a muchness.


Wynn jones was boring in most of the time and lucky not to get pinged, curry did his usual 2nd rate mish impersonation - huge energy and running around a lot but ineffective

Fagerson had a decent cameo

Nobody really looked good and played their way into the test side.  Farrell. Murray surely out after that

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Post by Collapse2005 Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:53 pm

The Oracle wrote:Without wanting to start world war 3, who for the Lions put their hands up (even if just a little) and who wrote themselves out of the test team?

Itoje, the front row did well, Curry did alright. Of the backs Aki did ok, everyone else was average at best.

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Post by BamBam Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:53 pm

The players from my national side were great, the rest were terrible and should be replaced by more players from my national side

That should cover most responses

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Post by Dirtydave Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:54 pm

TJ wrote:
Dirtydave wrote:
The Oracle wrote:Without wanting to start world war 3, who for the Lions put their hands up (even if just a little) and who wrote themselves out of the test team?

Great question.

I think Wyn Jones and Owens must be odds on, as with Itoje (as he always was). Beard well off the bench, Curry's 2nd half was superb, and Daly did a good job from deep. Lastly, I think Sinckler made a mark both ball in hand and in the scrum.

Henderson, Murray, Farrell, Harris, Aki all looked poor.

Everyone else was a muchness.


Wynn jones was boring in most of the time and lucky not to get pinged

Fagerson had a decent cameo

Nobody really looked good and played their way into the test side.  Farrell. Murray surely out after that

Wyn Jones was integral in the try, and was unlucky not to score another.very few forwards got any purchase picking but he did very well. I like Mako mind.

I think your being very harsh on Farrell, he's stepped in last minute while still carrying an injury, he was awful first half, but he got better. He's the only real 12 option really, Aki was rubbish and henshaw injured.

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:54 pm

The starting halfbacks for Lions were very poor, not seen much mention of that. Thankfully AWJ is coming back in so Murrary doesn't start. Biggar will be fly-half, Farrell was ponderous at times. The only thing he can do well is pass.

Based on this the back 3 has to consist of Hogg, Williams and Watson, unless Adams squeezes in.

Back-row I'm going to say Beirne, Curry, Navidi. I guess it could easily be Conan at 8 too, and Beard has to be in the 23.

It's scary how good SA were after just coming together pretty much, but good to have this game so we can get a good look at them.

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:56 pm

Also thought Harris did well, even looking good outside Farrell. He'll probably start at 13. Hopefully Henshaw is available otherwise we stick with Aki, great carrier and defender. Very aggressive at breakdown, which is where the Lions were lacking.

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Post by The Oracle Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:57 pm

BamBam wrote:The players from my national side were great, the rest were terrible and should be replaced by more players from my national side

That should cover most responses

Haha!  I was just thinking that with the prop chat above!  Dave (I think is a Welsh fan) championing Wyn Jones, TJ a Scots fan seeing only fault and championing Fagerson’s cameo performance!  Not criticising, but it’s funny what we see/don’t see based loosely on national lines.  Alternatively you could add that Wyn Jones got a try and Fagerson (I think) knocked on at the end and snuffed out the last Lions chance.
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Post by Dirtydave Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:58 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:The starting halfbacks for Lions were very poor, not seen much mention of that. Thankfully AWJ is coming back in so Murrary doesn't start. Biggar will be fly-half, Farrell was ponderous at times. The only thing he can do well is pass.

Based on this the back 3 has to consist of Hogg, Williams and Watson, unless Adams squeezes in.

Back-row I'm going to say Beirne, Curry, Navidi. I guess it could easily be Conan at 8 too, and Beard has to be in the 23.

It's scary how good SA were after just coming together pretty much, but good to have this game so we can get a good look at them.

2 injured back 3 players start and neither of the 2 form wingers in NH rugby?

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Post by No 7&1/2 Wed 14 Jul 2021, 9:59 pm

A game we really should have won all in all. Forwards wise starting front 5 will be happy as will Curry. Forwrads that came on all performed well. Backs only really Watson played well.

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Post by Dirtydave Wed 14 Jul 2021, 10:02 pm

The Oracle wrote:
BamBam wrote:The players from my national side were great, the rest were terrible and should be replaced by more players from my national side

That should cover most responses

Haha!  I was just thinking that with the prop chat above!  Dave (I think is a Welsh fan) championing Wyn Jones, TJ a Scots fan seeing only fault and championing Fagerson’s cameo performance!  Not criticising, but it’s funny what we see/don’t see based loosely on national lines.  Alternatively you could add that Wyn Jones got a try and Fagerson (I think) knocked on at the end and snuffed out the last Lions chance.

Not Welsh lol

Barely British hahahaha

I've spent the last 5/6 messages championing Farrell, Watson, Curry and Sinckler amongst Wyn Jones and Owens lol

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Post by The Oracle Wed 14 Jul 2021, 10:03 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:Also thought Harris did well, even looking good outside Farrell. He'll probably start at 13. Hopefully Henshaw is available otherwise we stick with Aki, great carrier and defender. Very aggressive at breakdown, which is where the Lions were lacking.

Yeah, I think it’s the old adage that someone posted about yesterday - take them on at their own game (and probably not come out on top) or do a Japan and try to run them ragged (again, debatable if this would work). Neither of these works with Farrell at 12 for me. I don’t think he’s physical enough to take them on in the collisions. He’s no crash ball centre. And I don’t think he has the pace to run them ragged. It’s just not his game. He’s a second distributor. A good one at that. But not sure that’s the right tactics for the Boks. With the absence of a running, allusive 12 I think someone like Henshaw or Aki would be best.
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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 14 Jul 2021, 10:10 pm

Dirtydave wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:The starting halfbacks for Lions were very poor, not seen much mention of that. Thankfully AWJ is coming back in so Murrary doesn't start. Biggar will be fly-half, Farrell was ponderous at times. The only thing he can do well is pass.

Based on this the back 3 has to consist of Hogg, Williams and Watson, unless Adams squeezes in.

Back-row I'm going to say Beirne, Curry, Navidi. I guess it could easily be Conan at 8 too, and Beard has to be in the 23.

It's scary how good SA were after just coming together pretty much, but good to have this game so we can get a good look at them.

2 injured back 3 players start and neither of the 2 form wingers in NH rugby?

How do we know they're injured by the tests? I've said it earlier in the thread (before this match) we should start with back 3 players who have the best aerial skills, and VDM or LRZ aren't there yet. Fair play 'Dave' I've seen a few of your comments over the last week and you don't half type rubbish that nobody else seems to witness. I wonder where we've seen that before Rolling Eyes

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Post by TJ Wed 14 Jul 2021, 10:13 pm

BamBam wrote:The players from my national side were great, the rest were terrible and should be replaced by more players from my national side

That should cover most responses

cynic :-)

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 14 Jul 2021, 10:13 pm

The Oracle wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:Also thought Harris did well, even looking good outside Farrell. He'll probably start at 13. Hopefully Henshaw is available otherwise we stick with Aki, great carrier and defender. Very aggressive at breakdown, which is where the Lions were lacking.

Yeah, I think it’s the old adage that someone posted about yesterday - take them on at their own game (and probably not come out on top) or do a Japan and try to run them ragged (again, debatable if this would work).  Neither of these works with Farrell at 12 for me.  I don’t think he’s physical enough to take them on in the collisions.  He’s no crash ball centre.  And I don’t think he has the pace to run them ragged. It’s just not his game. He’s a second distributor.  A good one at that.  But not sure that’s the right tactics for the Boks.  With the absence of a running, allusive 12 I think someone like Henshaw or Aki would be best.

We won't be doing a Japan on them, even Japan can't do that any more. To beat SA you match them first, and ensure that they don't beat you at the aerial game. With better halfbacks I think we'll be the superior attacking team anyway, SA seem to always go route 1 however they lineup, but they are good at it.

I've also seen that Warburton is championing Williams and Adams for their aerial game.

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Post by TJ Wed 14 Jul 2021, 10:23 pm

I would have hogg / williams and Adams back 3. I'd love to start VDM but can't find a place for him. He is fine under a high ball but those three have the experience and are in good form

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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 14 Jul 2021, 10:45 pm

How did van Staden and Weise go for SA?

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 14 Jul 2021, 10:57 pm

formerly known as Sam wrote:How did van Staden and Weise go for SA?

Both were very good, and looked like seasoned internationals. Scary depth.

Am was their best player.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 14 Jul 2021, 11:04 pm

mikey_dragon wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:How did van Staden and Weise go for SA?

Both were very good, and looked like seasoned internationals. Scary depth.

Jolly good they're both got two years at Tigers. I thought they'd both be in back up roles but circumstances have given them opportunities, glad to hear they are taking them.

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Post by RDW Wed 14 Jul 2021, 11:18 pm

Ah crap - it's never good to lose a game but sounds like this will be a good learning experience. We're likely to face 90% of those players in 10 days time whereas the Boks will likely have only played 50% or so of our test team. Hope the injuries aren't too bad.

I will need to watch the game tonight but it's funny seeing people's interpretation of player performances! Looking on here and social media, the only thing anyone seems to agree on is Curry had a stonking 2nd half, and that our halfbacks were crap. I've generally seen positive comments on Harris except a couple of people on here - he came 2nd in the fans vote for motm! Although that could have been all of Scotland voting. My dad said Fagerson didn't do well but others here say he had a decent cameo.

So really, who knows what the test team will be!

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Post by TJ Wed 14 Jul 2021, 11:22 pm

Fagerson had a decent cameo -pushed the scrums hard and pushed Sa a backwards - but didn't protect the ball in a run in the final minutes so knocked on

I didn't think much of curry - to me he runs around a lot like a headless chicken but is ineffective. But thats just my opinion.

Halfbacks were purre mince

IMO No one on the lions side enhanced their reputation Murray and Farrell should have played their way out of a test sppot - even on the bench

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 14 Jul 2021, 11:25 pm

I think Fagerson will be remembered for that knock-on at the end, unfortunately. Perhaps him and Sutherland can start against the Stormers and put in a good shift.

Henderson did seem a little disappointing, but wasn't that bad.

Harris was good in attack against an exceptional defence, whilst being put in awkward positions by Murray and Farrell. Defence in the wider channels (highlighted by Greenwood) shows why it's not a great idea to have LRZ or VDM defending outside him.

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Post by Poorfour Wed 14 Jul 2021, 11:34 pm

Dirtydave wrote:
I agree...

But context is important. I don't dislike Price, but I'd favour davies in test 1 due to the context of only having one fit 10 and it's his international partner.

Biggar’s not the only fit 10 in the squad. There’s Smith as well, however unlikely his selection might seem. He was never going to be picked for today’s game, but he will likely play on Saturday from the bench and today’s game would have suited his style of play. He has enough time on the ball to find the space behind rush defences.
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Post by doctor_grey Wed 14 Jul 2021, 11:38 pm

You guys have all let me down.

I couldn't watch the match because I was at work. So you guys were supposed to take care of business and deliver a victory and instead delivered a learning experience. aaarrrgh.


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Post by king_carlos Thu 15 Jul 2021, 12:18 am

TJ wrote:I didn't think much of curry - to me he runs around a lot like a headless chicken but is ineffective.  But thats just my opinion.

I thought Curry had a very good game. He'd definitely be in my starting back row with Mish and Faletau.

1.Sutherland 2.George 3.Furlong 4.Itoje 5.Henderson 6.Curry 7.Watson 8.Faletau

16.LCD 17.Wyn Jones 18.Sinckler 19.AWJ 20.Lawes/Bierne 21.Navidi

That's hoping AWJ is genuinely fit to challenge for the 1st Test.

With the squad we've got I like the 6-2 bench split. It means we can take advantage of Lawes or Bierne's versatility by having a full replacement tight five on the bench but still have the option of a tactical change at blindside if the back row isn't clicking.

He's not flavour of the month but Mako had his best performance of the tour from the bench too. 6 test appearances out of 6 on the last 2 Lions tours shows that Gatland rates him very highly. I think some on here might need to have a cold flannel, chamomile tea and dark room ready when the 1st test squad is named just in case he makes it onto the bench.

The backs I'm struggling more.

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Post by RDW Thu 15 Jul 2021, 12:36 am

I actually think the selection for Saturday will go a long way in narrowing down the test selections. If they didn't start this game and aren't starting on Saturday they're surely highly unlikely to be starting the test (or maybe even the bench), unless any of the players on Saturday have a mare!

Scrum half is a key decision here. I get what people have been saying about Davies having his partnership with Biggar, but he's been absolutely mince this tour. Murray isn't doing much to justify the faith in him either. There's no doubt Ali Price has put in the best performances of the lot but I also appreciate these were in games that we romped to easy wins. In his defence though, his box kicking has been outstanding (a big surprise to us Scots fans!) and he's brought a lot of energy and zip at the rucks. I know this will all be put under a lot of pressure in the Tests, but it's a good starting point.

I think Murray will still start, but if Price does well on Saturday I think he's deserving on the bench.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 15 Jul 2021, 5:47 am

TJ wrote:Fagerson had a decent cameo -pushed the scrums hard and pushed Sa a backwards - but didn't protect the ball in a run in the final minutes so knocked on

I didn't think much of curry - to me he runs around a lot like a headless chicken but is ineffective.  But thats just my opinion.

Halfbacks were purre mince

IMO No one on the lions side enhanced their reputation  Murray and Farrell should have played their way out of a test sppot - even on the bench

Too used to seeing opensides run into contact and away from breakdowns?

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Post by George Carlin Thu 15 Jul 2021, 5:54 am

BamBam wrote:The players from my national side were great, the rest were terrible and should be replaced by more players from my national side

That should cover most responses

Laugh clap I laughed for about 3 minutes at this and then had to open a window to let some of the Truth out. This is henceforth officially known as BamBam's Cyclops Law.

In all seriousness, the temptation is always to apply the classic Substitutes Law where players who aren't selected (and therefore could never have proven that they would have done a better job) get better and better in the eyes of punters as the match goes on as they aren't directly associated with the whiff of a loss. We shouldn't jump to conclusions though and Gatland won't, particularly as a lot of his selections were forced by injury/COVID protocols.

Starting with the outputs in mind:

1. South Africa will kick the leather off the ball and employ the kick chase constantly.
2. The Boks have a wonderful defensive sequence and we will need to vary the play a lot to unlock it.
3. The breakdown will be a real mess.
4. A simple Lions power game will not work. But we knew this already.

Players whom I believe didn't help their cause were Murray and Farrell unfortunately. If Murray's big thing is his wonderful kicking game, then it didn't yield much fruit and he did look very slow against De Klerk - I don't recall one Murray line break and that's a big part of what his role should be, whether anyone likes it or not. I am also now constantly worried that he'll get charged down which I know is unfair as it's only happened a couple of times. Farrell does not do well on back foot ball ('who does?' - yes, I get it) and seemed to spend the whole game punting average garryowens to some of the best broken field runners in the world and flinging lateral passes from side to side.

Easier also perhaps to say who had very good games - for me, Itoje, Curry, Watson, Harris and Wyn Jones. Daly and Cowan Dickie had some very good moments. I thought that Henderson, Navidi, Faletau and Simmonds were kept very quiet by their standards and it's obvious that the power of the Bokke pack shocked them. I was also hoping that Aki could get us consistently on the front foot but it didn't seem to happen - Henshaw is a big, big gap in the side at the moment. A big plus was that our scrum looked solid and despite some annoying mistakes, Fagerson played a big part in that. Vunipola cut out the mistakes from his previous game and did just fine.

What we need?

1. We lacked control at 10 and controlled variation in our play most of all. I don't want to be accused of making BamBam's point any more than is necessary but Finn Russell seems to be made for these test games in the last half an hour. If you have a very solid defensive set and a fast blitz, you need a varied attacking game desperately and there's nobody better in the NH. Even those with the most 'traditional' views of how a 10 should play have to realise that you need that club in your bag or the Lions have no plan B.

2. Jacklers. There's no way around this. And it's not lost on me that the person who won more turnovers than anyone in the past 6N was Tadhg Beirne, who also got to rucks faster than any other player in that tournament (Opta Stats). If we're playing Curry then we need a Watson on the bench because the thought of Curry getting crocked in a test and having to leave the field is fairly frightening.

3. Cheslin Kolbe to admit he has a Welsh dad and a Scottish grandmother and that he's just had a huge argument with his colleagues.
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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 15 Jul 2021, 6:19 am

1 point on Farrells and Murrays performance: do people think they came up with the game plan?

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Post by TJ Thu 15 Jul 2021, 6:41 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:1 point on Farrells and Murrays performance: do people think they came up with the game plan?

No - and I have no idea if they followed the game plan. It does not matter. they were both poor. Murray slower than a wet weekend in inverness, Farrell kicking away possession straight to the SA runners. One point against 13 men he went for the diagonal kick and put it straight to the SA winger miles from the lions chasers - putting the ball thru the hand would have been a huge overlap.

Murrays box kicking was also very poor.


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Post by Old Man Thu 15 Jul 2021, 6:56 am

There were 90 kicks in this match, poor by both teams

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 15 Jul 2021, 7:23 am

TJ wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:1 point on Farrells and Murrays performance: do people think they came up with the game plan?

No - and I have no idea if they followed the game plan.  It does not matter.  they were both poor.  Murray slower than a wet weekend in inverness, Farrell kicking away possession straight to the SA runners.  One point against 13 men he went for the diagonal kick and put it straight to the SA winger miles from the lions chasers - putting the ball thru the hand would have been a huge overlap.

Murrays box kicking was also very poor.


Neither I would suggest are stupid to do their own thing. 1 thing evident to me although the kicking looked rubbish was lack of a kick chase by the wingers. Think losing Williams early there impacted but neither Daly or Rees-Zammit were glorious there. Midfield got no go forward for the most part. Perhaps we held something back. I'm certainly not as confident as others to name Biggar at 10 and expect improvement as he struggled himself last game.

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Post by RDW Thu 15 Jul 2021, 7:26 am

I wonder how much Townsend being stuck in his hotel room for the last 10 days has disrupted things. Our attack had plenty variability in the first few games, and although we scored a lot in the games afterwards most of that came from spreading it wide against an inferior defence. Essentially, 'give it to Duhan'.

Hopefully now he's back and on the coaching paddock again he can improve things.

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Post by TJ Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:15 am

I'm certainly not as confident as others to name Biggar at 10 and expect improvement as he struggled himself last game.

Russell is broken, farrell looked very poor, Marcus smith is terribly inexperienced and so who else but Biggar? Hogg? ( not serious)

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Post by LordDowlais Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:40 am

Firstly, well done South Africa A, you deserved the win.

I was absolutely fuming last night after this game, so I waited until I slept on it before I posted on here.

Firstly, the half backs, well, FFS, they were absolutely poor.

Murray could not captain a gravy boat, how the hell was he allowing a tap and go when we were two men up ? He should have stamped his authority and made them take a scrum, they would have had to put a back in the scrum leaving them two men down in defence. He was ponderous and slow releasing the ball, and his box kicking, less said the better.

Farrell, well, I do not know what people see in this player, he is slow, he cannot defend, and he is always kicking the ball away too deep. It wouldn't hurt to pass the ball now and then, our wingers hardly saw the ball in attack. I felt so sorry for them.

Iain Henderson, well he was anonymous, not good enough, sorry. Average in the set piece, and not good enough around the park, left his fellow forwards trying to make up for his lack of work.

Bundi Aki was poor, his strength of breaking the gain line was negated, I do not know what having Farrell inside him was like for him, but it looked as though it didn't help.

There are some positives, Itoje was immense, our front row was awesome, both in the scrum and in the loose. I thought the wingers were excellent in defence, especially with dealing with Steyn's high bombs, LRZ was under every one of them, OK he lost a few 50/50's, but the opposition never caught them either, he was unlucky not to be awarded a try with 4 people trying to stop him.

I have said this before, Adam Beard was absolutely immense when he came on, and I would not be surprised to see him part of the test squad.

Ken Owens, Wyn Jones, Kyle Sinckler, were brilliant. I wouldn't mind seeing those three for the tests. Our back row came alive in the second half, especially Curry in the second half, first half he was just a busy fool. Navidi was everywhere, and Faletua was always making the hard yards. Itoje was MOM for the Lions, although Beard pushed him close when he came on.

All in all, thank god AWJ is back to captain the side, we lost that last night because of poor game management. Our half backs played themselves out of the test side, as did Henderson, I am very disappointed with how we managed that game last night, but at least now we can separate the wheat from the chaff.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:41 am

My point being I don't think it would matter were it Farrell, Biggar or Russell if the main plan is to hit a 12 to get over the gainline then pump a ball to the wings, if we have wings who aren't particularly strong in that department (Adams and Watson will be better, but it's looking more odd he didn't take May who excels there) and the midfield isn't getting the ground. Re Smith, cracking player and has the potential to far surpass the others but yes he's at the start of him international career. I thought he would be next in line on this tour but also that Gatland would be reluctant to play him in the tests. At present he may well be tempted depending on what happens this weekend and in the first test.

How impacted has Hogg been by Covid?

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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:45 am

Oh I must have forgot Mish was on tour... He starts at 7 for me, with Curry or Navidi at 8. Navidi seemed more consistent in this game.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:46 am

Beard pushed Itoje close for POTM after 17 mins on the pitch? Jesus.

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Post by RDW Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:49 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:My point being I don't think it would matter were it Farrell, Biggar or Russell if the main plan is to hit a 12 to get over the gainline then pump a ball to the wings, if we have wings who aren't particularly strong in that department (Adams and Watson will be better, but it's looking more odd he didn't take May who excels there)  and the midfield isn't getting the ground. Re Smith, cracking player and has the potential to far surpass the others but yes he's at the start of him international career. I thought he would be next in line on this tour but also that Gatland would be reluctant to play him in the tests. At present he may well be tempted depending on what happens this weekend and in the first test.

How impacted has Hogg been by Covid?

It's being pretty well kept under wraps. It's never actually been confirmed, and all they've said is he's recovering from a dead leg. Yet he's not been in any training photos or videos, or available for selection.

Hopefully he doesn't have Covid - he's desperate for a test cap and will be devastated if that is the reason he misses out.

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Post by TJ Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:49 am

mikey_dragon wrote:Oh I must have forgot Mish was on tour... He starts at 7 for me, with Curry or Navidi at 8. Navidi seemed more consistent in this game.

Can we afford both curry and Mish on the pitch together? Two smallish back rows who play a similar game? Thats a question for Gatland.


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Post by Poorfour Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:50 am

TJ wrote:
I'm certainly not as confident as others to name Biggar at 10 and expect improvement as he struggled himself last game.

Russell is broken, farrell looked very poor, Marcus smith is terribly inexperienced and so who else but Biggar?  Hogg? ( not serious)

Smith is inexperienced (at international level - he's already played over 100 games for Quins) but he's almost certain to feature on Saturday purely on the basis that Gatland won't want to risk Biggar. I expect Biggar to start (if recovered) but to come off early if there's any recurrence or purely on a precautionary basis. And unless Russell makes a miraculous recovery or Farrell - carrying an injury - can play two games in a week, that only leaves Smith.

It looked from last night as if the Lions would benefit from a player who can vary the point of attack and put some doubt in the rush defence. Absent Russell, Smith has the best skill set for that. He may well be in for a combination of a meteoric ascent and a baptism of fire. I hope he's packed his sunscreen.
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Post by TJ Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:50 am

RDW wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:My point being I don't think it would matter were it Farrell, Biggar or Russell if the main plan is to hit a 12 to get over the gainline then pump a ball to the wings, if we have wings who aren't particularly strong in that department (Adams and Watson will be better, but it's looking more odd he didn't take May who excels there)  and the midfield isn't getting the ground. Re Smith, cracking player and has the potential to far surpass the others but yes he's at the start of him international career. I thought he would be next in line on this tour but also that Gatland would be reluctant to play him in the tests. At present he may well be tempted depending on what happens this weekend and in the first test.

How impacted has Hogg been by Covid?

It's being pretty well kept under wraps. It's never actually been confirmed, and all they've said is he's recovering from a dead leg. Yet he's not been in any training photos or videos, or available for selection.

Hopefully he doesn't have Covid - he's desperate for a test cap and will be devastated if that is the reason he misses out.

My understanding is that he is isolating as a contact not that he has had it. Could be wrong tho

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Post by RDW Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:52 am

TJ wrote:
RDW wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:My point being I don't think it would matter were it Farrell, Biggar or Russell if the main plan is to hit a 12 to get over the gainline then pump a ball to the wings, if we have wings who aren't particularly strong in that department (Adams and Watson will be better, but it's looking more odd he didn't take May who excels there)  and the midfield isn't getting the ground. Re Smith, cracking player and has the potential to far surpass the others but yes he's at the start of him international career. I thought he would be next in line on this tour but also that Gatland would be reluctant to play him in the tests. At present he may well be tempted depending on what happens this weekend and in the first test.

How impacted has Hogg been by Covid?

It's being pretty well kept under wraps. It's never actually been confirmed, and all they've said is he's recovering from a dead leg. Yet he's not been in any training photos or videos, or available for selection.

Hopefully he doesn't have Covid - he's desperate for a test cap and will be devastated if that is the reason he misses out.

My understanding is that he is isolating as a contact not that he has had it.  Could be wrong tho

If he is then he should be free now - Townsend was pitchside at the game. Hopefully he can play at the weekend.

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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:55 am

TJ wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:Oh I must have forgot Mish was on tour... He starts at 7 for me, with Curry or Navidi at 8. Navidi seemed more consistent in this game.

Can we afford both curry and Mish on the pitch together?  Two smallish back rows who play a similar game?  Thats a question for Gatland.


If we play Beirne at 6 then yes. I feel both are good at the breakdown, something we lacked. If not then Conan or Faletau, the latter whilst not bad doesn't seem to be playing his best yet.

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Post by MichaelT Thu 15 Jul 2021, 8:55 am

I think what dictated Farrells play and options was the service from Murray. I thought he was dreadful.

Very disappointed with Sam Simmonds when he came on - the game was tailor-made at that point for someone like him, and he really should have better use of the opportunity. The Lions were finding space on the outside from 50 - 70 mins, but there never seemed to be anyone there. Why Simmonds couldn't track the ball with his speed and make himself available? That should have been the plan with someone as quick as him, and he ether didn't follow instruction or the instruction wasn't given. Very poor anyways I thought.

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Post by TJ Thu 15 Jul 2021, 9:01 am

mikey_dragon wrote:
TJ wrote:
mikey_dragon wrote:Oh I must have forgot Mish was on tour... He starts at 7 for me, with Curry or Navidi at 8. Navidi seemed more consistent in this game.

Can we afford both curry and Mish on the pitch together?  Two smallish back rows who play a similar game?  Thats a question for Gatland.


If we play Beirne at 6 then yes. I feel both are good at the breakdown, something we lacked. If not then Conan or Faletau, the latter whilst not bad doesn't seem to be playing his best yet.

Aye - maybe that would work. Its as good an answer as any

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