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The Calcutta Cup Saturday 5 Feb 2022

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Post by bsando Wed 19 Jan 2022, 7:10 pm

Scotland vs England

BT Murrayfield, Edinburgh
Saturday 5th of February 2022
Kick Off 4:45pm

What the Coaches are saying

Gregor Townsend - "The players have been in outstanding form for their respective clubs.. and that is outstanding!" *tongue click*

Eddie Jones - "There are some young players getting an opportunity. They just need to make sure they don't get distracted or else they might not do so well."

Scotland Team

1. Sutherland 2. Turner 3. Z Fagerson
4. J Gray 5. Gilchrist
6. Ritchie 7. Watson 8. M Fagerson.
9. Price 10. Russell
12. Johnson 13. Harris
11. Van der Merwe 14. Graham
15. Hogg

Replacements: McInally, Schoeman, Nel, Skinner, M Bradbury, White, Kinghorn, Tuipulotu.

England Team

1. Genge 2. Cowan-Dickie 3. Sinckler
4. Itoje 5. Isiekwe
6. Ludlam 7. Curry (c) 8. Simmonds.
9. Youngs 10. Smith
12. Slade 13. Daly
11. Marchant 14. Malins
15. Steward

Replacements: George, Marler, Stuart, Ewels, Dombrandt, Randall, Ford, Nowell.


Last edited by bsando on Thu 03 Feb 2022, 3:12 pm; edited 5 times in total

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Post by king_carlos Wed 19 Jan 2022, 8:41 pm

My best prediction for the England team:

1.Marler 2.Cowan-Dickie 3.Sinckler 4.Itoje 5.Hill 6.Lawes 7.Curry 8.Dombrandt
9.Youngs 10.Smith 11.May 12.Farrell 13.Slade 14.Malins 15.Steward

16.George 17.Genge 18.Stuart 19.Ewels 20.Ludlam 21.Barbeary 22.Quirke 23.Marchant

I hate the Farrell-Slade midfield but other than that quite like the training squad as a whole and a side such as that does have a lot of talent in it.

I don't really see Stuart and Ewels adding much long term so would rather have Heyes and Chessum from the selected training squad. As a Tigers fan I'm biased with the latter two though!

Malins and Marchant on the right wing could go either way I think. Looking at the backs selected I'd say a 6-2 split on the bench is probable though.

I think Lewis Ludlam could be a dark horse to impress this Six Nations with Underhill left out. Ludlam has been excellent for Saints, good for England in previous chances and is a really good openside.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 20 Jan 2022, 8:17 am

Offt. Early start to build up for this then!

I think king is there or there abouts for the lineup and bench. I've seen the annual optimism has returned from the Scotland thread but can't see beyond an England win here. Jones does tend to stew on matches he feels slighted for and last year will have done that! Do hope we move away from the 6 2 bench though as I feel it only benefits you full if you don't have a front five who can truly contribute for the full 80 and does place further risk for an injury to the backs. After recent inquires in the first 10 mins for both Tuilagi and Malins it does give me the heebie jeebies.

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Post by Hazel Sapling Thu 20 Jan 2022, 10:53 am

I think there is little separating the sides boxing. England won last time at Murrayfield during Storm Clara otherwise we have done quite well since 2018.

It usually comes down to whether our pack can give us parity up front. England have a bevy of carriers to pick from but it feels like it was a in 2018 where the pace and the balance of the England backrow could be skewered if Curry goes off. I will say that Dombrandt is the one that I don't like the look of. Whenever I see him play for Quins the last couple of years, he has been excellent.

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Post by George Carlin Thu 20 Jan 2022, 11:35 am

Is Eddie going to realise that we'll all die someday and pick a bat-excrement experimental side?

As a Scotland fan, I can only hope so.
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Post by lostinwales Thu 20 Jan 2022, 11:37 am

George Carlin wrote:Is Eddie going to realise that we'll all die someday and pick a bat-excrement experimental side?

As a Scotland fan, I can only hope so.

From the England side we generally have more confidence in some of the experimental players than we do in the old and tired mainstays. I haven't seen how well Curry plays at 9 yet though.

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Post by sensisball Thu 20 Jan 2022, 12:01 pm

From the Scottish squad selection there are only 2 players who cover 10: Finn and Blairhorn. If Toonie goes for a 6, 2 bench then Kinghorn covers 10, 15 and wing. if there is an early injury to Finn or Hogg then we are truly up the smelly creek without the wooden implement required to get us out of it.
in addition, if Sebastian is truly or third best tight head then we are also doomed if Zander or WP Nell pick up an injury before any of the 5 games in this tournament. A fat lad from Wales who cannot scrummage or carry isn't really the answer to providing bench cover at tighthead.

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Post by George Carlin Fri 21 Jan 2022, 10:15 am

king_carlos wrote:My best prediction for the England team:

1.Marler 2.Cowan-Dickie 3.Sinckler 4.Itoje 5.Hill 6.Lawes 7.Curry 8.Dombrandt
9.Youngs 10.Smith 11.May 12.Farrell 13.Slade 14.Malins 15.Steward

16.George 17.Genge 18.Stuart 19.Ewels 20.Ludlam 21.Barbeary 22.Quirke 23.Marchant

I hate the Farrell-Slade midfield but other than that quite like the training squad as a whole and a side such as that does have a lot of talent in it.

I don't really see Stuart and Ewels adding much long term so would rather have Heyes and Chessum from the selected training squad. As a Tigers fan I'm biased with the latter two though!

Malins and Marchant on the right wing could go either way I think. Looking at the backs selected I'd say a 6-2 split on the bench is probable though.

I think Lewis Ludlam could be a dark horse to impress this Six Nations with Underhill left out. Ludlam has been excellent for Saints, good for England in previous chances and is a really good openside.
Austin in the Torygraph went with:

09. Youngs
10. Smith
11. Malins
12. Atkinson
13. Slade
14. Marchant
15. Steward

I just hope that Eddie picks consistently and gives the newbies a proper shake this tournament. Playing Farrell at 10 or 12 would be terribly conservative and I am tired about reading about how everyone is waiting for Tualagi to come back - England cannot wait for that - Manu breaks more often than a croissant in a wind tunnel and England have a World Cup to prepare for.
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Post by lostinwales Fri 21 Jan 2022, 11:04 am

We do the Tuilagi thing to death but he still provides a point of difference when he plays even 10 years after he first appeared.

I know it is not quite the same but if Finn was long term injured but might be fit for an RWC you'd take him like a shot.

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Post by lostinwales Fri 21 Jan 2022, 11:10 am

As for this game I expect Farrell to play unless he gets crocked again or is so completely out of form in training and the 2 club games he has before the fun kicks off.

If he shows up badly vs Scotland it might well hasten the end, as will a stuttering England performance overall. England played with such freedom in the AI's without him that I fear the straightjacket coming back on his return.

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Post by Poorfour Fri 21 Jan 2022, 11:17 am

lostinwales wrote:We do the Tuilagi thing to death but he still provides a point of difference when he plays even 10 years after he first appeared.

I know it is not quite the same but if Finn was long term injured but might be fit for an RWC you'd take him like a shot.

RWC camp and 6N are a bit different, though. Pre-RWC is the only time the coach gets the players for a long, uninterrupted period and can look at how they are holding up. If Tuilagi is playing well around the time of the camp I'd expect him to the in the wider squad, but in the meant time it's sensible to look at alternatives.
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Post by GeordieFalcon Fri 21 Jan 2022, 11:19 am

Farrell is being monitored for a start this weekend.

If he does and comes through unscathed...you know he will start...

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Post by lostinwales Fri 21 Jan 2022, 12:07 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Farrell is being monitored for a start this weekend.

If he does and comes through unscathed...you know he will start...

Injured in training so won't be playing LI.

Must be doubts over his ability to train with England next week, although I am sure he'll be there anyway.

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

Yeah he's seeing a specialist this week apparently....what was i saying about rushing back from injuries? Whistle

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Post by GeordieFalcon Fri 21 Jan 2022, 12:10 pm

I predict...

9 Youngs
10 Smith
11 May
12 Atkinson
13 Slade
14 Malins
15 Steward

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Post by doctor_grey Fri 21 Jan 2022, 12:14 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Farrell is being monitored for a start this weekend.

If he does and comes through unscathed...you know he will start...
Farrell reported as 'scathed' in training.
Out for Scotland (per BBC)
Back to figuring our 12/13 coverage (Tuilagi for the first 10 minutes, then who?).

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Post by BigGee Fri 21 Jan 2022, 12:16 pm

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/60083055

So Farrell may sit this one out!

As a Scotland fan, I might prefer if he played!

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Post by Hazel Sapling Fri 21 Jan 2022, 12:28 pm

Disappointed as a Scotland fan. We seem to let debutants/early career players do well against us.

I guess that leaves it between Atkinson, Northmore or moving Slade over. Northmore. A Northmore/Marchant combination would be interesting, just a shame that Slade is likely undroppable.

This works well for England as it always felt that having Farrell as a distributor 12 with Slade a distributor at 13 was redundant. Needed someone to actually run a line and that was why Tuilagi worked (though why Marchant and Joseph were given so few opportunities is beyond me).

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Post by GeordieFalcon Fri 21 Jan 2022, 12:38 pm

10 Smith
12 Atkinson
13 Slade

Think its probably to quick for Jones to drop Northmore in...though you just never know with Eddie....

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Post by Gooseberry Fri 21 Jan 2022, 12:45 pm

doctor_grey wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:Farrell is being monitored for a start this weekend.

If he does and comes through unscathed...you know he will start...
Farrell reported as 'scathed' in training.
Out for Scotland (per BBC)
Back to figuring our 12/13 coverage (Tuilagi for the first 10 minutes, then who?).

Tuilagi isnt even in the squad.

Assuming the plan was Smith 10 and Farrell 12 the natural swap would be Slade at 12 as a second playmaker. When Farrell and Smith were paired previously they were quite interchangeable in where they lined up. Slade also offers that experienced hand. Still a big question on whether Ford or someone else gets called up as cover, even if they dont make the bench it seems a needless risk to not have a second fit specialist 10 at all in the training squad....especially with covid still being a thing.

13 Id guess Marchant

But all this is pretty open, second guessing Jones never pans out well!

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Post by lostinwales Fri 21 Jan 2022, 12:45 pm

Slade / Marchant. Worked in the last game and very strong defensively

Malins on the wing provides yet another playmaker

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 21 Jan 2022, 12:51 pm

Northmore and Nowell it is then.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 21 Jan 2022, 1:40 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:Yeah he's seeing a specialist this week apparently....what was i saying about rushing back from injuries? Whistle

That you wouldn't pick injury prone players or players who hadn't had a run of games. This is a new injury by all account though. Given he's seeing a specialist next week sounds at least a few weeks out if not more.

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Post by Hazel Sapling Fri 21 Jan 2022, 1:44 pm

Leads to a separate question for England fans, is Bailey genuinely going to be the back-up on the bench? If Smith gets injured between now and minute 50 of the Calcutta Cup, are England happy with Furbank, Bailey or Slade covering 10?

For Scotland, it is similar with the selection of Kinghorn as the back-up 10 over Hastings and Thompson. Until we get to an hour gone, it is a risky decision that I don't understand.

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Post by lostinwales Fri 21 Jan 2022, 1:46 pm

He'll miss out for the wrong reasons but I am happy that this England team can build from their performance in the Autumn games rather than any danger of reverting to what came before.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 21 Jan 2022, 1:50 pm

Farrell in my view can comfortably play a great part in running open rugby lost. Just need to look at his 2016 performance in an England shirt and when Saracens let loose.

Jones will announce Monday if there are squad changes Hazel. I'd assume that Ford will be high on the list for replacements as Farrell not Bailey was earmarked for that. He could consider Furbank good enough at a stretch and hope Smith doesnt get injured if he wanted to call up another midfielders along the lines of Lawrence or Odogwu though.

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Post by Gooseberry Fri 21 Jan 2022, 2:04 pm

Sure Jamie Noon was great in that one test vs Ireland too.

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Post by Sharkey06 Fri 21 Jan 2022, 2:21 pm

Picking Ford would go against Eddie's principles of ever even slightly admitting that he made a mistake.  It could also potentially undermine Bailey and Furbank.  Plus Slade is more than capable of playing 10 if required, as is Malins.  Ford just feels like a backward step, as he hasn't been dropped by Eddie because of his club form or fitness.

I would be happy with a Smith, Slade and Marchant or a Smith, Slade and Northmore midfield combo, however, as Atkinson was picked as a 12 and is the only 12 left standing in the squad, he should come in - if not why pick him.

There is plenty of midfield cover from the likes of Marchant and Nowel

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Post by lostinwales Fri 21 Jan 2022, 2:32 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Farrell in my view can comfortably play a great part in running open rugby lost. Just need to look at his 2016 performance in an England shirt and when Saracens let loose.

Jones will announce Monday if there are squad changes Hazel. I'd assume that Ford will be high on the list for replacements as Farrell not Bailey was earmarked for that. He could consider Furbank good enough at a stretch and hope Smith doesnt get injured if he wanted to call up another midfielders along the lines of Lawrence or Odogwu though.

Oh he's played very well in some terrific games, and he's a very talented guy but to summarise there is always a danger of trying to fight the next war using the tactics and technology from the last.

It is also a team game and our most important player is no longer him.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 21 Jan 2022, 2:33 pm

Sharkey06 wrote:Picking Ford would go against Eddie's principles of ever even slightly admitting that he made a mistake.  It could also potentially undermine Bailey and Furbank.  Plus Slade is more than capable of playing 10 if required, as is Malins.  Ford just feels like a backward step, as he hasn't been dropped by Eddie because of his club form or fitness.

I would be happy with a Smith, Slade and Marchant or a Smith, Slade and Northmore midfield combo, however, as Atkinson was picked as a 12 and is the only 12 left standing in the squad, he should come in - if not why pick him.

There is plenty of midfield cover from the likes of Marchant and Nowel

Do you pay attention to Jones? He's one of the most open coaches I've seen in acknowledging mistakes. Not sure this example is a particularly good example of a mistake though, he's said previously that he likes to give players opportunities in training to actually go and play and so limits the amount of fly halfs and scrum halfs in the squad, having 3 9s in this squad is very unusual. Just because he now considers Smith a good long term option doesn't mean he considers Bailey as a better back up or starter to Ford; you just need to look at George in the AIs for an example on that regard.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 21 Jan 2022, 2:43 pm

Yeah I get that lost but I don't Farrell would go back to previous tactics unless Jones directed him to do that, and I think the player choice does suggest that he is at least trying to move to a different type. I don't think England have played a consistent style from 16-21.

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

No 7&1/2 wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:Yeah he's seeing a specialist this week apparently....what was i saying about rushing back from injuries? Whistle

That you wouldn't pick injury prone players or players who hadn't had a run of games. This is a new injury by all account though. Given he's seeing a specialist next week sounds at least a few weeks out if not more.
And rushing people back form injury....I rest my case

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Post by WELL-PAST-IT Sat 22 Jan 2022, 10:13 am

I am not a great Farrell fan, but he did have an amazing couple of years at 12 outside Ford when England played an attacking game. He used to be able to do it, the question is, can he still?

If he can, defense will have a serious problem, do they track Smith when he goes wandering off or do they stay close to Farrell who from a long an distant memory was great at either little pop passes inside to wingers or forwards running lines against the grain. Also belting out great flat passes that could cut two people out and put a runner in space.

Ford is probably the nearest thing we have to Smith, so it is not an impossible play style.

Thing is, if Farrell plays, who takes the kicks. Smith has been awesome for Quins.
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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat 22 Jan 2022, 10:21 am

GeordieFalcon wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:Yeah he's seeing a specialist this week apparently....what was i saying about rushing back from injuries? Whistle

That you wouldn't pick injury prone players or players who hadn't had a run of games. This is a new injury by all account though. Given he's seeing a specialist next week sounds at least a few weeks out if not more.
And rushing people back form injury....I rest my case  

It's a pretty poor case tbf.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat 22 Jan 2022, 10:24 am

Sounds as if Smith will get at least a couple of games kicking WPI. If it goes well I can't imagine he'll want to stop. There was a brief question on his kicking from some following that 1 dodgy game (BBC seem heavy on it) but he's been superb in that aspect along with a few last min pressure kicks of course.

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Post by George Carlin Sat 22 Jan 2022, 11:41 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Sounds as if Smith will get at least a couple of games kicking WPI. 
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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat 22 Jan 2022, 11:46 am

Probably should be a comma there or something. WPI - WELL-PAST-IT.

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Post by Poorfour Sat 22 Jan 2022, 12:03 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Sounds as if Smith will get at least a couple of games kicking WPI. If it goes well I can't imagine he'll want to stop. There was a brief question on his kicking from some following that 1 dodgy game (BBC seem heavy on it) but he's been superb in that aspect along with a few last min pressure kicks of course.

Farrell (on form) has better range and accuracy overall, I think, but Smith has a phenomenal record with kicks that really matter, regardless of how difficult they are.
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Post by doctor_grey Sat 22 Jan 2022, 12:40 pm

Poorfour wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Sounds as if Smith will get at least a couple of games kicking WPI. If it goes well I can't imagine he'll want to stop. There was a brief question on his kicking from some following that 1 dodgy game (BBC seem heavy on it) but he's been superb in that aspect along with a few last min pressure kicks of course.

Farrell (on form) has better range and accuracy overall, I think, but Smith has a phenomenal record with kicks that really matter, regardless of how difficult they are.
For me, it's about how they kick under real pressure. I think both have done that quite well.

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Post by lostinwales Sat 22 Jan 2022, 12:49 pm

George Carlin wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Sounds as if Smith will get at least a couple of games kicking WPI. 
Headscratch Without Professional Insurance? When Properly Inebriated? With Panties Intact?

More like poor WPI

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Post by Rugby Fan Sat 22 Jan 2022, 1:28 pm

Nasty head knock for Underhill in the Bath match against Leinster. He's had concussion before, so that's not ideal. He's sitting up, but will have to be checked. He was looking active over the opening 15 minutes.

EDIT: Underhill didn't return, which is probably for the best even if he had been able to pass an HIA.

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Post by king_carlos Sat 22 Jan 2022, 2:55 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:Nasty head knock for Underhill in the Bath match against Leinster. He's had concussion before, so that's not ideal. He's sitting up, but will have to be checked. He was looking active over the opening 15 minutes.

EDIT: Underhill didn't return, which is probably for the best even if he had been able to pass an HIA.
Such a shame he's a brilliant player.

Ludlam has a great chance to convert his Saints form onto the international stage over the Six Nations.

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Post by Hazel Sapling Sat 22 Jan 2022, 5:22 pm

Bayliss concussed right before Underhill as well (smacked head against ground). Don't like to assume with head injuries it will be a week so that could be England off the cards (not that he was likely to make the line-up with the way Bradbury and Darge have been playing).

Did not see much of the second half. Redpath's tackling was pretty passive though in the horror show that Bath played, he was not the worst offender. He did try a couple of things going forward but most things Bath tried to do fell apart.

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Post by RDW Sat 22 Jan 2022, 11:23 pm

A few players potentially playing themselves out of contention after this round of fixtures, or at least might give Townsend a reason to pick someone else in a close cal.

M Fagerson made an awful limp tackle attempt on the La Rochelle hooker which would have made Dan Parks blush, leading to a soft try. He's normally very physical in the tackle but that was so poor.

Kebble not doing much to prove Townsend wrong about being left out.

Redpath has been mentioned - I think it's too soon to bring him into the team early, but being part of a humping and terrible defensive performance really won't help his case.

Problem is it's not overly comparable to the Edinburgh players who had an easy romp against a disinterested French team.

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Post by WELL-PAST-IT Sun 23 Jan 2022, 10:53 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Probably should be a comma there or something. WPI - WELL-PAST-IT.

Your just greedy 15/2, you have 3 full stops and a ? and now you want a comma as well!

How does that do you one, comma, one exclamation mark and a question mark.

Written English has never been my strong point, and at the moment I am trying to type with a dislocated thumb.
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Post by WELL-PAST-IT Sun 23 Jan 2022, 10:55 am

lostinwales wrote:
George Carlin wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Sounds as if Smith will get at least a couple of games kicking WPI. 
Headscratch Without Professional Insurance? When Properly Inebriated? With Panties Intact?

More like poor WPI

Writing Probably Isn't....................

Perhaps I should change it to TDI, Typing Definitely Isn't
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Post by lostinwales Sun 23 Jan 2022, 11:07 am

WELL-PAST-IT wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Probably should be a comma there or something. WPI - WELL-PAST-IT.

Your just greedy 15/2, you have 3 full stops and a ? and now you want a comma as well!

How does that do you one, comma, one exclamation mark and a question mark.

Written English has never been my strong point, and at the moment I am trying to type with a dislocated thumb.

What happened? Was that from the kicking?

Take care WPI

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Post by doctor_grey Sun 23 Jan 2022, 1:00 pm

lostinwales wrote:
WELL-PAST-IT wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Probably should be a comma there or something. WPI - WELL-PAST-IT.

Your just greedy 15/2, you have 3 full stops and a ? and now you want a comma as well!

How does that do you one, comma, one exclamation mark and a question mark.

Written English has never been my strong point, and at the moment I am trying to type with a dislocated thumb.

What happened? Was that from the kicking?

Take care WPI
Haven't you learned to be mindful where you put your hands??????

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Post by Mcsweens Sun 23 Jan 2022, 2:36 pm

The 10s fascinate me - Kinghorn and Smith specifically.

Eddie would have wanted lots of experience around Smith going into Murrayfield.
He's also a stubborn bugger though, so with Farrell out I doubt he will bring Ford back in now.
So, Smith stays at 10, with maybe Slade moving to 12 as 2nd receiver with Care or Youngs nailed on at 9. People saying Atkinson at 12, but I think that's too little experience for Eddie.


I saw Kinghorn for Edinburgh on Friday night v Brive. He looked pretty good and distributed well. Mike Blair hooked him at 60 minutes for Savala, as he did v Cardiff for Jaco, straight after a couple of handling errors, and where his head went down straight after. That is where he is just now: you can get 60 minutes out of him at 10 at a URC / European Challenge Cup level. Can you get 60 minutes out of him as a 10 at International Level? No bleedin chance.
I'd rather have Hogg or Redpath deputising there, and I have no idea what Townsend is up to!


Last edited by Mcsweens on Mon 24 Jan 2022, 1:04 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by lostinwales Sun 23 Jan 2022, 3:22 pm

Mcsweens wrote:The 10s fascinate me - Kinghorn and Smith specifically.

Eddie would have wanted lots of experience around Smith going into Murrayfield.
He's also a stubborn bugger though, so with Farrell out I doubt he will bring Ford back in now.
So, Smith stays at 10, with maybe Slade moving to 12 as 2nd receiver with Care or Youngs nailed on at 9. People saying Atkinson at 12, but I think that's too little experience for Eddie.


I saw Blairhorn for Edinburgh on Friday night v Brive. He looked pretty good and distributed well. Blair hooked him at 60 minutes for Savala, as he did v Cardiff for Jaco, straight after a couple of handling errors, and where his head went down straight after. That is where he is just now: you can get 60 minutes out of him at 10 at a URC / European Challenge Cup level. Can you get 60 minutes out of him as a 10 at International Level? No bleedin chance.
I'd rather have Hogg or Redpath deputising there, and I have idea what Townsend is up to!

Care is long gone and won't come back no matter how well he plays. Atkinson is very experienced, just not at international level. I think it would be a surprise if he plays but in some ways may suit Smith given what he's used to at Quins. As for Ford the thinking seems to be that if Smith got injured he might be back in but is not versatile enough to go on the subs bench. Smith starts regardless

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