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English 6 Nations

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Post by No 7&1/2 Wed Jan 05, 2022 2:52 pm

First topic message reminder :

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2022/jan/05/six-nations-rugby-covid-rob-baxter

A potential answer to a potential problem. Baxter has said that if there is a risk of cancellations or playing in front of 1 man and his dog you may as well play all the games in England.

I suppose an interesting suggestion. If they could agree a slice of revenue from whichever grounds would host along with some teams giving up home advantage would people want to see this? It doesn't reduce the risk at all, merely increases it surely, gives England an advantage. It's unlikely the Government will bring in further restrictions as their hands are tied by the back benchers so reduces the risk of last minute changes. Just a big melting pot of cross contamination.


'Rob Baxter, Exeter’s director of rugby, believes that playing this season’s Six Nations in one country has “got to be better than cancelling it”.

The tournament is due to kick off in Dublin and Edinburgh on 5 February but currently finds itself shrouded in uncertainty. Under current Welsh Government restrictions imposed due to the pandemic and, specifically, the omicron variant, Wales would have to play scheduled home games against Scotland, France and Italy behind closed doors. Scotland are in a similar position for games at Murrayfield, while it has been reported that Wales could consider moving their home against Scotland, France and Italy to England.

Financial implications of behind-closed-doors home games for the Welsh Rugby Union would be significant. They faced an identical situation for last season’s tournament, with the shutters being down for matches against Ireland and England. Full crowds were, however, allowed at the Principality Stadium for Wales’ recent Autumn Nations Series before fresh restrictions took effect from Boxing Day.

Capacity crowds are currently allowed in England, provided spectators can prove full vaccination status or provide a negative lateral flow test. Against such a backdrop, playing the whole competition – it takes place across five weekends between early February and mid-March – in one country with permitted crowds has also been mooted in some quarters.

“The whole beauty of the Six Nations has been that change of environment, that change of weather conditions, going to play in Scotland, Wales, Ireland – those are the great challenges,” said Baxter. “That’s what makes the Six Nations such a great competition to win. You’ve seen French teams in that one week they can beat anyone in the world in Paris, and then the next week it doesn’t go quite so well in Cardiff. That’s the beauty of the tournament, that’s what from a rugby perspective I am sure we would all want to see happen.

“That said, we can’t all sit here and pretend the world is in an ideal place at the moment. For the national bodies, their responsibility goes beyond the professional sport, it goes right down to grassroots rugby, so if playing the tournament provides a level of income that cancelling it or no crowds doesn’t create, then we’ve got to look at the next best scenario. If the next best scenario is playing it in one country, where you can have sellout crowds, you can raise some revenue and you can keep that income stream going for all the bodies, then it’s got to be better than cancelling it.


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“I think with every sporting body, it’s revenue that is the biggest thing that has been damaged, so anything that can keep revenue online has got to be preferable to just binning things for a season,” Baxter added. “We’ve all had to try and find a way to keep going, to try and keep revenue coming in. It’s the same with any business, you’ve got to explore those options.”

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Post by Poorfour Fri Jan 21, 2022 8:50 am

BigTrevsbigmac wrote:If Farrell gets injured Slade would probably move in one & bring on Joe Marchant (bench cover) with Nowell or Malins on the wing.

That would be a disaster! A 13 playing out of position and a player Eddie sees as a wing at 13? How could we win like that? Imagine if we had to play, say 77 minutes against the reigning world champions with a makeshift backline like that. We'd have no chance.... oh. Hang on a minute...
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Post by lostinwales Fri Jan 21, 2022 9:04 am

doctor_grey wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
Poorfour wrote:Malins was considered a serious fly half option at U20 and played a JRWC final there. He may well have settled at back three, but I assume he's still got the skills. And to be fair, Furbank did an OK job there, albeit against limited opposition. As an answer to the question "do we really need a replacement fly half on the bench?" they tick the box.
If Farrell's at 12 then 10 is covered pretty well to be fair. He has his limitations as a 10 but there's worse injury cover than a 100 cap international who's been on 3 consecutive Lions tours.

I really wouldn't want to go into a tournament game with Malins, Furbank or Slade covering 10 as we did in Autumn though. Even if they were better in open play the mere fact that they are such average place kickers would be an issue in a tight, must win tournament match.
But what happens when Farrell gets injured?  Who covers 12/13?  
I wouldn't worry about Furbank's kicking.  He has been good.  Not sure about his range, to be fair.  But I agree, going into a RWC without the right backup is a recipe for disaster.  
And now for something completely different:  Mitchell copped a yellow the other weekend and Furbank was the emergency 9 and did OK.  Does this allow Eddie Jones to go to a 7:1 split????  

I guess it would work if we had a particular kind of hybrid just in case. I am sure Nowell, May or Simmonds could be pressed into service as a back in an emergency

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Post by geoff999rugby Fri Jan 21, 2022 9:06 am

I’d agree with that don’t mess Slade about when he is playing so well at 13

On the Farrell debate, he is fine as a 10, I just think he is not good enough at 12 for the highest level

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Post by Poorfour Fri Jan 21, 2022 9:31 am

geoff999rugby wrote:I’d agree with that don’t mess Slade about when he is playing so well at 13

On the Farrell debate, he is fine as a 10, I just think he is not good enough at 12 for the highest level

As an argument, the results don't bear that out. As a 12, he's got a world record equalling unbeaten run, a Grand Slam and a further 6N title, several Lions tours and an RWC Final appearance to his name. That is a materially better record than all but a handful of international 12s can claim.

Has he been a successful international 12 at the highest level? Yes. That is not in doubt. In fact, England have been considerably more successful with him at 12 than they were when he was at 10.

Is he the right candidate at 12 to take England forward? We don't know, but a lot of us don't think so. Eddie clearly does.

Is there an obvious alternative he's keeping out of the shirt? No, unless you think Slade playing one number lower than his natural position is better than Farrell playing one number higher (which it might be, but as you note it isn't without risk). And that's the big problem.
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Post by geoff999rugby Fri Jan 21, 2022 10:04 am

What Farrell does have is leadership, and as a 10 a very good kicking game, but I just don’t believe his play as a 12 is top draw.
Very subjective I know.

I look at the England team and in a number of position they have outstanding players, for me 12 is the exception, along with 9.
At least at 9 there are some exciting prospects coming through.
Quirke would be my choice, for what it is worth.

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Post by lostinwales Fri Jan 21, 2022 12:08 pm

https://www.saracens.com/injury-update-owen-farrell/

Injured in training and missing the LI match.

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Post by Gooseberry Fri Jan 21, 2022 12:22 pm

Poorfour wrote:Malins was considered a serious fly half option at U20 and played a JRWC final there. He may well have settled at back three, but I assume he's still got the skills. And to be fair, Furbank did an OK job there, albeit against limited opposition. As an answer to the question "do we really need a replacement fly half on the bench?" they tick the box.

But as in game injury cover as opposed to being a serious second choice consideration. Slade played 10 for the Saxons, again would be in that bracket. Even if you think Malins is the second best fly half option for England (which you arent arguing) he is the first choice 15, so he popping up at 10 just leaves a gap elsewhere (Saracens put Goode at 10 and him at 15, although thats maybe a statement about Goodes pace these days).

The argument isn't "is there players in the squad who could step in in a pinch to do a job". Its is there another 10 who can enable England to play to their gameplan in the squad and any option other than Smith being considered and developed as a sushi chef? The answer is no. But I do take the point made above that Ford is still there on the outside able to step into the squad at short notice, whilst Malins/Furbank could step up "in game" it would be a real statement for Jones to not call him (or Umaga or another actual fly half) up to start the next game; either continuing with a part time utility back or putting Farrell there and changing England play style accordingly.

Its different to scrum half where theres two youngsters alongside Youngs, and its unclear who would start and who would be benched from those. Very much appears things are much more open there


...and then it turns out Farrells injured and wont be able to hold Smiths hand in the first game. Will he call up cover or take a huge risk on going into that game with no genuine cover? Again this could speak volumes about where Ford stands in regard to being written off and how much potential he sees in others.








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Post by GeordieFalcon Fri Jan 21, 2022 12:28 pm

Malins can definitely play the 10 role if required. i have no doubts what soever.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri Jan 21, 2022 12:30 pm

Big blow Farrell missing. Slade really needs to step up and deliver consistently now.

Furbank is the guy who will be covering I'd think.

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Post by Gooseberry Fri Jan 21, 2022 12:32 pm

Poorfour wrote:
geoff999rugby wrote:I’d agree with that don’t mess Slade about when he is playing so well at 13

On the Farrell debate, he is fine as a 10, I just think he is not good enough at 12 for the highest level

As an argument, the results don't bear that out. As a 12, he's got a world record equalling unbeaten run, a Grand Slam and a further 6N title, several Lions tours and an RWC Final appearance to his name. That is a materially better record than all but a handful of international 12s can claim.

Has he been a successful international 12 at the highest level? Yes. That is not in doubt. In fact, England have been considerably more successful with him at 12 than they were when he was at 10.

Is he the right candidate at 12 to take England forward? We don't know, but a lot of us don't think so. Eddie clearly does.

Is there an obvious alternative he's keeping out of the shirt? No, unless you think Slade playing one number lower than his natural position is better than Farrell playing one number higher (which it might be, but as you note it isn't without risk). And that's the big problem.


Im pretty sure consensus opinion on slade has always been hes OK at test level buy never really delivered anything spectacular, and he did have a dodgy run of form. I dont really buy the "England play well when slades part of the team" argument at all either factually or that the teams performance is down to him. Maybe a similar bracket to Tindall who in spite of being a world cup winner, picked by 4 successive coaches, always felt like a "well theres noone better" choice.

Sure England have bigger problems than Slade, but hes not someone I feel is an auto pick.

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Post by lostinwales Fri Jan 21, 2022 12:43 pm

Gooseberry wrote:...
But as in game injury cover as opposed to being a serious second choice consideration. Slade played 10 for the Saxons,  again would be in that bracket. Even if you think Malins is the second best fly half option for England (which you arent arguing) he is the first choice 15, so he popping up at 10 just leaves a gap elsewhere (Saracens put Goode at 10 and him at 15, although thats maybe a statement about Goodes pace these days).
...

No he absolutely is not.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri Jan 21, 2022 12:49 pm

Steward's shirt to lose ain't it.

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Post by dummy_half Fri Jan 21, 2022 2:49 pm

Gooseberry wrote:
Im pretty sure consensus opinion on slade has always been hes OK at test level buy never really delivered anything spectacular, and he did have a dodgy run of form.  I dont really buy the "England play well when slades part of the team" argument at all either factually or that the teams performance is down to him. Maybe a similar bracket to Tindall who in spite of being a world cup winner, picked by 4 successive coaches, always felt like a "well theres noone better" choice.

Sure England have bigger problems than Slade, but hes not someone I feel is an auto pick.

Harsh on Tindall, who was one of England's few very good players between 2003 and 2007 and prior to that was an excellent foil for Wilkinson / Greenwood (or Catt). The problems only happened when it was a combination like Tindall - Noon, where the two players were too similar and didn't offer much of a distribution option. Kind of the opposite of Farrell-Slade in combination, where the lack of a direct running threat lets defences cover wide early.

I don't think so far Slade has justified his selection in the way that Tindall did in the early 00s, but he has looked better in combination with a runner as his centre partner than with Farrell at 12. The right blend of players makes a big difference to the team overall.

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Post by hugehandoff Fri Jan 21, 2022 4:43 pm

Whilst I feel sorry for Farrell I think this maybe helpful for England. There is no way that he should be starting at 12 based on form and fitness. Slade offers a much better option probably with Marchant and that combo has gone alright previously. I think Ford will get the call now and he should provide the bench cover, which is thoroughly deserved.

I am looking forward to seeing some of long term injured hopefully get back out there for their clubs and maybe stick their hand up for selection at the end of the 6Ns? Farrell/Launchbury/Willis/Manu etc

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Post by Gooseberry Fri Jan 21, 2022 4:58 pm

hugehandoff wrote:I am looking forward to seeing some of long term injured hopefully get back out there for their clubs and maybe stick their hand up for selection at the end of the 6Ns? Farrell/Launchbury/Willis/Manu etc


Farrell doesnt need to evidently

Manu is as fit as he ever is

Willis playing again at all would be great

Launchberry ...its now over two years since he was last capped, which is pretty bonkers really. Have England just moved on without him now?

As for club form and regaining places ... George Ford Whistle

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Post by geoff999rugby Fri Jan 21, 2022 5:24 pm

Farrell injured at Saracens training, unlikely to make the opening match

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Post by lostinwales Fri Jan 21, 2022 5:27 pm

geoff999rugby wrote:Farrell injured at Saracens training, unlikely to make the opening match

Yes we are already all over it.

Launchbury - feels like he's been injured most of the last 2 years

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Post by Gooseberry Fri Jan 21, 2022 5:43 pm

Missed this from a Jones interview after the squad was announced:

"Sam [Underhill] is not quite ready. He has had a fairly truncated period since the autumn but we are hopeful he will get himself fit and match ready for later in the tournament"

"He [Manu Tuillagi]has had a wee setback but we will just have to wait and see what he is up to. He needs to get some training, needs to play a few games. If we are 100 per cent optimistic we’d say yes (he will feature in the Six Nations). If we are realistic it’s probably about a 50/50.

“Elliot [Daly] is a bit the same. He hasn’t played a lot of rugby, needs to get some good match fitness and some good match form behind him.”

So it sounds like Tuillagi and Underhills initial exclusions were solely down to fitness at the moment and have a strong chance of getting selected in future games. Daly "some good match form" suggests that the doors not closed on him, but he needs to knock it down.

Maybe not quite as ruthless a selection as it first looked.

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Post by majesticimperialman Fri Jan 21, 2022 6:12 pm

Given the a mount of time Farrell has been injured i was amazed he is even in the squad tbh.

I am not a fan of player/s who have been out for a long period of time coming straight back in to the squad with out getting game time at club level first.

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Post by king_carlos Fri Jan 21, 2022 9:22 pm

With Dombrandt seeming likely to start I'm really interested to see how his running lines around the ruck work against international defences.

You see those lines tight to ruck run pretty rarely at international level compared to club level these days. Himeno for Japan does it well. Savea for NZ will occasionally run lines 'against the grain' off 9 but is largely used wider out.

The trend with carries of 9 at international level have been forwards trying to carry wider out from the ruck. The plan presumably being you attack at least the 3rd or even 4th defender out from the ruck. That in turn forces the defence to work harder around the corner for the next phase, this sucks defenders in and slowly tires out the defending side over the course of the game.

Faster forward carriers such as Dombrandt tend to be used wider out at international level now. Big boys suck the defence in with those carries off 9 then dynamic forwards often pop up running at the 13s defensive channel. Savea, Tipuric, Hamish Watson, Ollivon and Aldritt for France are all excellent at this. Ireland have a couple of back rows in Conan and Doris who are good there.

When I talk to friends who coach at a decent level about that they reckon that a big step-up from club to international rugby is the fringe defence. Players are fitter, reset the defence faster, communicate better, have better line speed, etc. Hence forwards have increasingly been used to attack different channels.

Dombrandt's running lines tight to the ruck are absolutely fantastic, it will be fun to see whether they have that same impact at international level.

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Post by WELL-PAST-IT Sat Jan 22, 2022 10:03 am

His hat trick last night will not have harmed his starting chances
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Post by Poorfour Sat Jan 22, 2022 12:01 pm

WELL-PAST-IT wrote:His hat trick last night will not have harmed his starting chances

With any other coach, you’d think so. But this is Eddie. For all we know, that first try will have secured Alex a bench spot with 23 on his back as inside centre cover...
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Post by Sharkey06 Sat Jan 22, 2022 11:11 pm

I fully expect Curry to start at no 8:

1. Because most of us want Dombrandt to start at 8.

2. To screw up Curry who is possibl the best no 7 in world rugby right now.


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Post by Gooseberry Sun Jan 23, 2022 8:37 am

Jokes aside there are a couple of points to consider

Firstly what was it about Dombrant that kept Jones from selecting him previously? Hes always been a threat a club level running through people. From memory there was something about him being slow to get up and rejoin play? Has that been addressed?

Secondly from the comments made by ex coaches and players Jones does seem to like to test players and make judgements on them in camp. How they react and how coachable he thinks they are can make or break a career in an instant. Youngs and the bag of sweets being an example of someone who benefited from this.

Someone shining at a club game a couple of weeks before the squad get together isnt always a great indicator of whos going to impress. Jones doesnt even go off short term form that much, he does like to think long term. Even with Smith hes still clear the kid is a project player and is being judged on where jones thinks he could be. Club form must count for something (and he did say Daly needs to show some), but its not as big a deal as the internet makes it out to be.

All that aside he does look the most natural fit for the 8 position in the squad, and with a few backrows and second rows out youd think there would be a slot for him in the team.

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Post by Mr Bounce Sun Jan 23, 2022 10:24 am

Well it's clear that Jones doesn't see Simmonds as an 8, more of an impact flanker. And with Underhill currently not in the squad, maybe Curry will be the starting 7 with Dombrandt at 8.

That said, we'll probably have 6. Lawes, 7. Ludlam, 8. Curry knowing Eddie.

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Post by lostinwales Sun Jan 23, 2022 11:06 am

There is a logic to what Eddie does. It isn't always clear what that is.

I think the thing about Dombrandt was the overall work rate, which seems to have improved a great deal. Eddie is never that keen on promoting people based on their highlights reel no matter how impressive those are.

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Post by doctor_grey Sun Jan 23, 2022 1:08 pm

It's a bit hard to knock Dombrandt's work rate when he is able to power over the line in the 84th minute.

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Post by lostinwales Sun Jan 23, 2022 1:43 pm

doctor_grey wrote:It's a bit hard to knock Dombrandt's work rate when he is able to power over the line in the 84th minute.  

That is indeed the point. It seems he listened to Eddie when told what he needed to do.

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Post by lostinwales Sun Jan 23, 2022 6:49 pm

Seems like anything Dombrandt can do Simmonds can do too

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Post by Gooseberry Sun Jan 23, 2022 7:20 pm

lostinwales wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:It's a bit hard to knock Dombrandt's work rate when he is able to power over the line in the 84th minute.  

That is indeed the point. It seems he listened to Eddie when told what he needed to do.


If youve got enough in the tank to do that in 84 minutes you werent trying hard enough for the other 83 Whistle

Jokes aside we will see when it comes to selection time, Im not going to try and second guess EJ on this one! Just noting that the tries alone wont be the main piece of his decision, and any player who turns up to a camp thinking his earned his starting spot already is heading for trouble (unless its Farrell)

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Post by king_carlos Sun Jan 23, 2022 7:26 pm

doctor_grey wrote:It's a bit hard to knock Dombrandt's work rate when he is able to power over the line in the 84th minute.  
Power somewhere close to the line if we're being pedantic...

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Post by Poorfour Sun Jan 23, 2022 7:27 pm

lostinwales wrote:Seems like anything Dombrandt can do Simmonds can do too

Except actually score the winning try.

Eddie didn’t like Dombrandt’s work rate off the ball, but he’s worked hard on his fitness and now completes a decent number of tackles and turnovers for an 8, along with being able to make decisive plays at critical moments.
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Post by doctor_grey Sun Jan 23, 2022 8:12 pm

lostinwales wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:It's a bit hard to knock Dombrandt's work rate when he is able to power over the line in the 84th minute.  

That is indeed the point. It seems he listened to Eddie when told what he needed to do.
Agree. Now let's hope the club performance does indeed translate.

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Post by doctor_grey Sun Jan 23, 2022 8:14 pm

king_carlos wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:It's a bit hard to knock Dombrandt's work rate when he is able to power over the line in the 84th minute.  
Power somewhere close to the line if we're being pedantic...
I would agree with you, but the TMO might disagree.....

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Post by majesticimperialman Sun Jan 23, 2022 8:21 pm

Eddie is going to have a head scratch come the 6ns. who plays at 8? Dombrandt, Simmonds? hard choice to make.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun Jan 23, 2022 9:48 pm

Farrell looks to be done for the 6N, Ford to be called up tomorrow according to reports.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon Jan 24, 2022 9:29 am

SO Underhill suffered concussion again this weekend...will he be out for a long term stint now.

And Ford called up...

With Malins, Furbank and Slade in the squad would it not have been better to maybe call up Dan Kelly or someone.

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Post by Poorfour Mon Jan 24, 2022 9:37 am

I don’t think so. Eddie wants two primary fly halves in training (and no more) but then a range of players who can cover multiple positions.

I read over the weekend that RWC squads are still pegged at 33 players, and I don’t think there are any special COVID dispensations (though arguably there should be). In that context, Eddie’s focus on utility players makes more sense and may actually be the right strategy for the RWC.

In a long competition with a limited player pool and a high probability that at least a couple of players will be out for a week at some point during the run, getting maximal cover from the players in the squad is the right plan, as is having a bench that gives maximum flexibility.

But at the same time, going into a tournament with only one specialist international fly half is madness.
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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon Jan 24, 2022 10:32 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:SO Underhill suffered concussion again this weekend...will he be out for a long term stint now.

And Ford called up...

With Malins, Furbank and Slade in the squad would it not have been better to maybe call up Dan Kelly or someone.

Hmm you say that but minute 1 against Scotland, freak accident and Smith is concussed. Which of Malins, Slade, Furbank do you want playing flyhalf up against Russell? Bailey won't be in the squad so he's a moot point.

Farrell though we don't rate him was at least an experienced flyhalf unlike those three cover options, as an aside I wouldn't have Furbank in the 23 anyway.

Better to have the two form English flyhalfs available to you. Ford is the top points scorer in the Prem this season and has taken two of the four player of the month awards. No one else is going to have a better back up flyhalf this 6N. If we want to change the game then we have that option.

Big fan of Dan Kelly but he's a bit raw for the 6N. Summer tour night be the best option for him to keep developing. He's getting there, just need to keep developing his skills as the defence and carrying is there. Passing is coming along nicely and we've seen a couple of alright kicks, just needs to bring it all to the party consistently.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon Jan 24, 2022 10:39 am

I rate Malins Highly...id be comfortable with him at 10.

PS Im a big Ford fan....and its great hes in the squad.


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Post by GeordieFalcon Mon Jan 24, 2022 10:41 am

So we have two likely outcomes...

10 Smith
12 Atkinson
13 Slade

10 Smith
12 Slade
13 Marchant

I know which id prefer and i know which i think itll be.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:39 pm

Malins isn't even the back up flyhalf at his own club, fourth choice at Sarries? 

I suspect we'll get either;

Youngs, Smith, May, Atkinson, Slade, Marchant, Steward
Or
Youngs, Smith, May, Slade, Marchant, Malins, Steward

Bench is a bit more out there depending on whether Eddie wants a 5/3 or 6/2 split. If it's 6/2 then it's Quirke and Furbank as you need the added coverage of Furbank. If it's 5/3 then Quirke, Ford and either Atkinson or Malins depending on which isn't starting.

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Post by lostinwales Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:48 pm

He could surprise us but would not be shocked if it was 6-2 with Simmonds, Ludlam, Furbank and Quirke on the subs bench.

Not convinced he'll play Atkinson at all. 10 days or so until we find out

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Post by MichaelT Mon Jan 24, 2022 4:12 pm

If it is 6-2 then Barbeary has to be in there. Along with Simmonds thats direct ball carrying threat that we are missing in the backs.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon Jan 24, 2022 5:55 pm

lostinwales wrote:
Not convinced he'll play Atkinson at all. 10 days or so until we find out

Yeah I'm not particularly a fan of Atkinson but think it could be one of the options Eddie goes to as a Farrell replacement at 12. It keeps Slade the defensive organiser in his preferred 13 channel and allows for the strike option off the wing use of Marchant.

However, it is Eddie so craw baring Northmore in at 12 for his debut and then dropping him when he doesn't shine when out of position isn't out of the question either.

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Post by king_carlos Mon Jan 24, 2022 6:54 pm

https://www.englandrugby.com/news/article/eddie-jones-updates-guinness-six-nations-squad

May out as well as Farrell. Lawes also has a knock.

Ford, Daly (deep breaths 15/2) and Isiekwe called up as a cover.

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Post by doctor_grey Mon Jan 24, 2022 7:15 pm

Elliot Daly???  Has he played much?  He was way off my radar for this Six Nations.

Glad Isiekwe is recalled.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon Jan 24, 2022 7:17 pm

Be interesting to see whether Daly comes in on the wing to add some experience to the back three or whether Jones goes like for like speedster with OHC.

Lawes potentially missing is a bit of a blow but I'm pleased to see Isiekwe called up. A very good lineout operator.

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Post by lostinwales Mon Jan 24, 2022 7:17 pm

Its not clear how bad the knee injury is for May but I don't think he's been playing that regularly for Gloucester. I can't see anything saying if he's going to miss all the 6N or not.

Radwan must be in very bad form, although Daly is the experienced guy.

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Post by lostinwales Mon Jan 24, 2022 7:19 pm

On Lawes we can't win. Apparently a head knock so things dependent on how his recovery goes this week. I'd expect him to be available.

Good to see Isiekwe but why not Martin?

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