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6 Nations Round 2 - Italy v England

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Tue 08 Feb 2022, 4:20 am

First topic message reminder :

Italy vs England

Stadio Olimpico, Rome
Sunday 13th of February 2022
Kick Off - 3pm


Italy Team

Padovani; Mori, Brex, Zanon, Ioane; Garbisi, Varney; Fischetti, Lucchesi, Petro Ceccarelli, Cannone, Ruzza, Steyn, Lamaro (capt), Halafihi.

Replacements: Faiva, Traore, Pasquali, Sisi, Negri, Pettinelli, Fusco, Marin.


England Team

Steward; Malins, Marchant, Slade, Nowell; Smith, Randall; Genge, George, Stuart, Ewels, Isiekwe, Itoje, Curry (capt), Dombrandt.

Replacements: Cowan-Dickie, Marler, Sinckler, Chessum, Simmonds, Youngs, Ford, Daly.


Last edited by Sgt_Pooly on Fri 11 Feb 2022, 4:31 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by majesticimperialman Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:03 pm

Great win for England and the first time they have nilled Italy in the  nations.

Lets hope this is the start of England getting back to winning ways. A week off now they need to concentrate on how to beat a rejuvenated Wales at home.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:05 pm

So can Chessum replace Ewells in the squad permanently now please

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Post by GeordieFalcon Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:05 pm

Oh and Malins on the wing is another failure

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:06 pm

GeordieFalcon wrote:So can Chessum replace Ewells in the squad permanently now please  
Ewels played well.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:06 pm

It still feels like a side that just waiting for better players to get fit.

If Manu, Lawes and May are available against Wales they will improve this side a lot.

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Post by doctor_grey Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:06 pm

formerly known as Sam wrote:
doctor_grey wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:Tell you what I was joking about the dual playmakers but don't Smith and Ford link well. Smith freed from calling the shots and allowed to link when and where he wants, suddenly he's find gaps everywhere. Ford doing Ford things and distributing close to the line. Wish they'd gone to that a bit earlier.

Slade bungles the placing. Unfortunate but pretty much sums up a lot of England's play today.
Eddie Jones was just getting Ford another game cheque.  

They had one set of attacking play and went from their own 22 to the Italian try line in fast and flowing phases. Worked didn't it. Not sure how well it would work in defence but was fun in attack.

A little Eddie experiment, maybe of we're chasing the game later in the competition.
Nah, I think there was no point in it at all. Italy was dead out. If Ford had to come on, then I would rather it was one for one for Smith. The match was over, no need to take a risk and get Smith hurt.

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Post by Yoda Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:07 pm

Heaf wrote:England would have 50 up by now if we had some wingers on the pitch ...

That and jones' mismanagement of subs, killed our momentum and lineout. Slade is not good enough at 12 period. Youngs came on and paced dropped noticeably. I don't usually like criticizing match officials but, where the hell did they dig this ref up from? No idea at break down (tackler release and hands in) hadn't a clue at scrum time and was not up to international pace.


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Post by Barney McGrew did it Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:08 pm

Can’t see either of those sides troubling any of the other teams in the competition. I thought it was funny that the coaches replaced their teams with 2 pub sides at half-time. Didn’t help that the ref and officials wanted to slow the game down to a snail’s pace. Nor that somebody had obviously treated the ball with a good coating of axle grease to liven the proceedings up. But my personal highlight was that rascal Eddie giving the rugby world the finger by generating the smallest centre partnership since mini rugby, with the introduction of ickle George - I'm surprised he didn't put him in the BR. Still, shows we’re not missing Manu.
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Post by lostinwales Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:09 pm

Youngs - that catch and maul 10m and then back to Youngs and box kick was - depressing.

Malins is OK - he does a lot of good things and is good under the high ball - but we really need that edge or pace that May or one of the young pretenders would bring.

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Post by GeordieFalcon Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:10 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:
GeordieFalcon wrote:So can Chessum replace Ewells in the squad permanently now please  
Ewels played well.

Ewells was solid/ bareable and never going to be any better.

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Post by majesticimperialman Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:18 pm

Overall i think it was a good game, Italy strung some good plays together, but England's defence was just superb.

I do think England was lucky at times not to loose a player to the sin bin.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:20 pm

I expect that Tuilagi comes back into the team for Wales. I unfortunately see Youngs, Slade and Malins starting too. This team is quite close to being very good but there is a negativity about some of these selections.

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Post by Cumbrian Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:25 pm

I was chatting to my mate during this game and we came to a question that stumped us both. Which other nation picks players ostensibly for the fact that they can play in multiple positions? Does anybody else do it? It can be frustrating watching players struggling with the basics of a position, whilst knowing that there are very good naturals waiting in the wings
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Post by nathan Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:27 pm

I'm sure youngs will get the blame but there were alot of unforced errors and penalties given away in the 2nd half that is sure to kill any momentum.
Thought Smith was good, not excellent with a few errors in his game. He won't be getting that space against the other teams.

Thought the whole team looked knackered in the 2nd half and wondering if that's why there were so many subs.

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Post by nathan Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:28 pm

Oh and we need a big centre to make the hard yards or decoy to give Smith and Co space out wide.

A Manu or even a Kelly

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Post by hugehandoff Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:32 pm

I thought Stuart was poor, but maybe he should have stayed on a bit longer to at least give him a chance to show his stuff. Slade, Malins, Marchant, Daly all looked poor to me and no threat at all. Randall ok and Smith not bad albeit he tried too hard and made a few errors. The balance of the backs is all wrong, which everyone knows except Eddie. Bring back Manu (looking in decent nick), give Radwan a go instead of Malins and that will help. Eddie's obsession with multi skilled backs operating in a multi-faceted way with positions interchangeable is not helping us. A return to basics with specialists playing in their correct positions is much needed. If we finish down the order (defeats to Ire and Fra likely) then I think he has to go. Worked for SA last time bringing in Erasmus 18 months out.

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Post by lostinwales Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:36 pm

Agreed on Stuart. Marchant was very quiet. Malins we have covered. Daly was actually OK, caught all his high balls and looked threatening.

Smith was good. That pass that lead to his try was fantastic, and he had that way of mesmerising the defense (plus that tackle on Mori)

But we do really need more of an edge

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Post by majesticimperialman Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:36 pm

With Nowell going off with a HIA will EJ risk him against Wales or bring in the like's of Lynagh, Radwan to cover the both wings?

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Post by EnglishReign Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:42 pm

I’d start Slade/Manu v Wales with Radwan and (hopefully) Nowell on the wings. With no May, Nowell or Watson we are looking a bit thin there…

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Post by hugehandoff Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:44 pm

With our focus on England, and especially our failings, it is easy to overlook just how poor Italy were at home. Time for the relegation battles to commence.

At least our forwards are doing ok, without looking turbo charged, and with Launchbury, Lawes, Hill to return we should be able to go toe to toe in that area with the best of them.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:50 pm

Cumbrian wrote:I was chatting to my mate during this game and we came to a question that stumped us both. Which other nation picks players ostensibly for the fact that they can play in multiple positions? Does anybody else do it? It can be frustrating watching players struggling with the basics of a position, whilst knowing that there are very good naturals waiting in the wings
Almost all teams use players in multiple positions, especially to cover for experienced players being injured. Off the top of my head:

Wales
Adams at 13
North at 13
A lot of their back rows such as Navidi, Moriarty and Wainwright play across multiple positions

France
Fickou has played 11-14 recently
Woki now playing second row

New Zealand
Savea at 7 and 8
Ioane at wing and 13
Havili years as a back three player, now a centre
Jordie Barrett at wing and fullback
Beauden Barrett at 10 and 15

Australia
O'Connor and Beale play everywhere
Jordan Petaia plays centre and wing

South Africa
Mostert playing blindside to cover PSdT
Kwagga Smith at 8
Marco van Staden has also packed down at 8
Jesse Kriel out on the wing covering injuries
Steyn covering most the backline as needed

Mobile second rows also playing blindside, flankers filling in at 8, outside centres or fullbacks covering wing. These really aren't unusual things and never have been in all the time I've watched rugby.

Just think about the number of positions Lewsey and Robinson played in their careers!

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Post by king_carlos Sun 13 Feb 2022, 5:59 pm

lostinwales wrote:Agreed on Stuart. Marchant was very quiet. Malins we have covered. Daly was actually OK, caught all his high balls and looked threatening.

Smith was good. That pass that lead to his try was fantastic, and he had that way of mesmerising the defense (plus that tackle on Mori)

But we do really need more of an edge
The more I see of Stuart the less convinced I am. Similar with Malins as a wing.

I think Manu will come in against Wales. Manu and Slade at 12 and 13 outside Smith could work really well I think. It would be a fantastic if those three could string the next three rounds together.

May and Lawes were potential returnees by R3 which would be big boosts.

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Post by Cumbrian Sun 13 Feb 2022, 6:18 pm

king_carlos wrote:
Cumbrian wrote:I was chatting to my mate during this game and we came to a question that stumped us both. Which other nation picks players ostensibly for the fact that they can play in multiple positions? Does anybody else do it? It can be frustrating watching players struggling with the basics of a position, whilst knowing that there are very good naturals waiting in the wings
Almost all teams use players in multiple positions, especially to cover for experienced players being injured. Off the top of my head:

Wales
Adams at 13
North at 13
A lot of their back rows such as Navidi, Moriarty and Wainwright play across multiple positions

France
Fickou has played 11-14 recently
Woki now playing second row

New Zealand
Savea at 7 and 8
Ioane at wing and 13
Havili years as a back three player, now a centre
Jordie Barrett at wing and fullback
Beauden Barrett at 10 and 15

Australia
O'Connor and Beale play everywhere
Jordan Petaia plays centre and wing

South Africa
Mostert playing blindside to cover PSdT
Kwagga Smith at 8
Marco van Staden has also packed down at 8
Jesse Kriel out on the wing covering injuries
Steyn covering most the backline as needed

Mobile second rows also playing blindside, flankers filling in at 8, outside centres or fullbacks covering wing. These really aren't unusual things and never have been in all the time I've watched rugby.

Just think about the number of positions Lewsey and Robinson played in their careers!



I didn't say that other nations didn't do it, I said that we do it as a starting point. We seem to exclude players because they do not offer the function, even though they may be better because it is their primary position. The examples you are giving are as cover, my point being that even when we can pick a specialist, we don't. I wouldn't see Wales or Australia as positive examples of this either.

Josh Lewsey and Jason Robinson were England legends and could legitimately claim to be the best players in that position, whatever that was in the backline.

The team constantly looks like it has no idea what it is doing when we have the ball in hand, I believe the constant playing platers out of position isn't helping.
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Post by lostinwales Sun 13 Feb 2022, 6:19 pm

Positive sides

Nilling Italy
Smith
Genge
Chessum
George
Itoje (almost goes without saying)
Defense in general. I know Italy could be wayward with their kicking game but Steward and the wings were always solid

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Post by king_carlos Sun 13 Feb 2022, 6:37 pm

Cumbrian wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
Cumbrian wrote:I was chatting to my mate during this game and we came to a question that stumped us both. Which other nation picks players ostensibly for the fact that they can play in multiple positions? Does anybody else do it? It can be frustrating watching players struggling with the basics of a position, whilst knowing that there are very good naturals waiting in the wings
Almost all teams use players in multiple positions, especially to cover for experienced players being injured. Off the top of my head:

Wales
Adams at 13
North at 13
A lot of their back rows such as Navidi, Moriarty and Wainwright play across multiple positions

France
Fickou has played 11-14 recently
Woki now playing second row

New Zealand
Savea at 7 and 8
Ioane at wing and 13
Havili years as a back three player, now a centre
Jordie Barrett at wing and fullback
Beauden Barrett at 10 and 15

Australia
O'Connor and Beale play everywhere
Jordan Petaia plays centre and wing

South Africa
Mostert playing blindside to cover PSdT
Kwagga Smith at 8
Marco van Staden has also packed down at 8
Jesse Kriel out on the wing covering injuries
Steyn covering most the backline as needed

Mobile second rows also playing blindside, flankers filling in at 8, outside centres or fullbacks covering wing. These really aren't unusual things and never have been in all the time I've watched rugby.

Just think about the number of positions Lewsey and Robinson played in their careers!
I didn't say that other nations didn't do it, I said that we do it as a starting point.  We seem to exclude players because they do not offer the function, even though they may be better because it is their primary position.  The examples you are giving are as cover, my point being that even when we can pick a specialist, we don't.   I wouldn't see Wales or Australia as positive examples of this either.

Josh Lewsey and Jason Robinson were England legends and could legitimately claim to be the best players in that position, whatever that was in the backline.

The team constantly looks like it has no idea what it is doing when we have the ball in hand, I believe the constant playing platers out of position isn't helping.
Are selections such as Malins and Marchant on the wing not as cover for Watson and May though?

Taking the Boks then as they are current world champions. Kwagga Smith was playing ahead of a specialist 8 in Jasper Wiese. Mostert ahead of specialist flankers such as van Staden and Jacques du Plessis. Kriel ahead of goodness knows how many specialist wingers in the URC.

All coaches tend to try to get their best players on the pitch. With Vermuelen, PSdT, Kolbe, etc injured Nienaber simply felt the versatile players he had were better cover than other specialists available.

I think Radwan is very talented but most Falcons fans admit his form has dipped recently and he doesn't really have any kicking game. Hassell-Collins seems to me to be in a similar bracket to Thorley currently where he's very quick and dangerous but has obvious work on in defence. I wouldn't say either are must picks.

Watson and May haven't been excluded for being specialist wingers for instance.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Sun 13 Feb 2022, 6:46 pm

KC, Radders can kick....not amazingly but he has a boot. With Radders, I think you need to focus on what he can do rather that what he can't, he's quite unique. I agree his form has dipped a little after the last England camp, possibly because the way he was treat. If Eddie was looking for a reaction to dumping him, he didn't really get it.

I suspect Radders is an arm round the shoulder type player rather than treat harshly. Italy would have been the ideal chance to give some gametime and unleash him, same with HC who is a cracking winger.

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Post by Cumbrian Sun 13 Feb 2022, 6:47 pm

king_carlos wrote:
Cumbrian wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
Cumbrian wrote:I was chatting to my mate during this game and we came to a question that stumped us both. Which other nation picks players ostensibly for the fact that they can play in multiple positions? Does anybody else do it? It can be frustrating watching players struggling with the basics of a position, whilst knowing that there are very good naturals waiting in the wings
Almost all teams use players in multiple positions, especially to cover for experienced players being injured. Off the top of my head:

Wales
Adams at 13
North at 13
A lot of their back rows such as Navidi, Moriarty and Wainwright play across multiple positions

France
Fickou has played 11-14 recently
Woki now playing second row

New Zealand
Savea at 7 and 8
Ioane at wing and 13
Havili years as a back three player, now a centre
Jordie Barrett at wing and fullback
Beauden Barrett at 10 and 15

Australia
O'Connor and Beale play everywhere
Jordan Petaia plays centre and wing

South Africa
Mostert playing blindside to cover PSdT
Kwagga Smith at 8
Marco van Staden has also packed down at 8
Jesse Kriel out on the wing covering injuries
Steyn covering most the backline as needed

Mobile second rows also playing blindside, flankers filling in at 8, outside centres or fullbacks covering wing. These really aren't unusual things and never have been in all the time I've watched rugby.

Just think about the number of positions Lewsey and Robinson played in their careers!
I didn't say that other nations didn't do it, I said that we do it as a starting point.  We seem to exclude players because they do not offer the function, even though they may be better because it is their primary position.  The examples you are giving are as cover, my point being that even when we can pick a specialist, we don't.   I wouldn't see Wales or Australia as positive examples of this either.

Josh Lewsey and Jason Robinson were England legends and could legitimately claim to be the best players in that position, whatever that was in the backline.

The team constantly looks like it has no idea what it is doing when we have the ball in hand, I believe the constant playing platers out of position isn't helping.
Are selections such as Malins and Marchant on the wing not as cover for Watson and May though?

Taking the Boks then as they are current world champions. Kwagga Smith was playing ahead of a specialist 8 in Jasper Wiese. Mostert ahead of specialist flankers such as van Staden and Jacques du Plessis. Kriel ahead of goodness knows how many specialist wingers in the URC.

All coaches tend to try to get their best players on the pitch. With Vermuelen, PSdT, Kolbe, etc injured Nienaber simply felt the versatile players he had were better cover than other specialists available.

I think Radwan is very talented but most Falcons fans admit his form has dipped recently and he doesn't really have any kicking game. Hassell-Collins seems to me to be in a similar bracket to Thorley currently where he's very quick and dangerous but has obvious work on in defence. I wouldn't say either are must picks.

Watson and May haven't been excluded for being specialist wingers for instance.

Maybe, but we just seem so stubborn about it, Curry at no.8 for instance?  I just sometimes look at the team Jones picks at various points and think we've got a 13 at 12, about 200 full backs, no wings and George Ford covering inside centre and today our best lock at six. It just seemsthat we lack direction.
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Post by king_carlos Sun 13 Feb 2022, 7:13 pm

That's kind of the point I'm making that most coaches do this stuff Cumbrian?

Kwagga Smith and Ardie Savea at 8. Jordie Barrett on the wing. Mostert at 6. Adams or North at 13. It's not something isolated to England as many imply.

A lot of fullbacks and outside centres cover wing. They have as long as I've been watching rugby.

Second rows covering blindside is a more recent trend as locks have become more athletic and back rows bigger. Again this isn't isolated to England though. Bierne, Mostert, PSdT himself was initially a lock, Skinner for Scotland yesterday, Woki for France.

With Slade at 12 you have Aki and Henshaw who play 12 and 13 for Ireland. Jon Davies has been used in both position for Wales. Fickou for France.

I'm not saying I like all these selections. I've said many times I think Slade at 12 is a waste of his best skills. Likewise I've been very skeptical of Malins as a winger.

I just think there is a blind spot by England fans sometimes to the fact that most coaches do this and have for as long as I've watched rugby. Currently Jones gets talked about like he's the only coach to ever try players in multiple positions. Before Jones it was Lancaster talked about the same way when trying Brown and Manu on the wing or Wood at 8. Before that Johnson with Erinle and Monye out of position. Robinson with Sanderson at 8 and Tindall as a 12.

Almost all teams use versatile players to their advantage. With some it comes off, with others it doesn't. New Zealand for instance used Ben Smith across multiple positions to great effect but Scott Barrett at blindside in the RWC semi didn't work at all.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 13 Feb 2022, 7:20 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:KC, Radders can kick....not amazingly but he has a boot. With Radders, I think you need to focus on what he can do rather that what he can't, he's quite unique. I agree his form has dipped a little after the last England camp, possibly because the way he was treat. If Eddie was looking for a reaction to dumping him, he didn't really get it.

I suspect Radders is an arm round the shoulder type player rather than treat harshly. Italy would have been the ideal chance to give some gametime and unleash him, same with HC who is a cracking winger.
I'm a big Radwan fan but if he has got a kicking game I'm yet to see it to be honest. I'd have stuck with him in the Autumn and would be picking him ahead of Malins currently I think. I do think Radwan, and OHC as well, have areas of their game they need to work on though. As such I don't think either are must picks with May and Watson injured just because they are specialists.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 13 Feb 2022, 7:46 pm

lostinwales wrote:Youngs - that catch and maul 10m and then back to Youngs and box kick was - depressing.

It was a pre called box kick, the entire backline is lined up flat waiting for it. When the mail surges forward Youngs is hesitant and keeps looking at the backline to see if they want the ball. The backline stays lined up flat for the kick, the forwards are in the maul he's got no option but to kick. Not a bad kick Italian player gets smashed as his feet touch the floor.

Some of the England attacking play did look overly scripted, the players didn't react particularly well to the emerging situation in front of them. The Genge knock on early doors was a prime example. Slade pops it to Genge with four Italians stood waiting to smash him. If Slade goes out the back there's a big overlap but it's not the play called so he doesn't. The attack just wasn't clicking consistently. When it clicked we scored pretty much, well bar the own 22 to their try line at the end when Slade fumbled.

 Incidentally Youngs had no issue moving the ball nicely in that attacking set, bit more of that Benjamin as no doubt he'll be starting Vs Wales as Randall was true to form and kicked badly in perfect conditions (shame because the rest of his game was good).

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Post by Poorfour Sun 13 Feb 2022, 7:50 pm

Youngs was consistently passing well above Smith’s head, though. Randall’s passing was a much better basis for an attack.
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Post by Sgt_Pooly Sun 13 Feb 2022, 7:52 pm

Randall kicked on the most pretty well, much better than I expected. The one straight to touch was pretty bad though.

On the flip, Youngs wasn't quite as bad as some suggest when he came on....he just made some glaring errors.

The most noticeable difference was the speed of delivery though.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Sun 13 Feb 2022, 7:53 pm

Poorfour wrote:Youngs was consistently passing well above Smith’s head, though. Randall’s passing was a much better basis for an attack.

But he does the odd good box kick PF.....

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 13 Feb 2022, 8:07 pm

Yeah Randall's passing game was nice. Smith said in the post match interview that they'd played together a lot at age grade and that showed. Shame we only got the one little dart from him, I expected a bit more of that as he's a menace around the ruck. Unlucky with the tap behind the ref's back he's got away with a couple of those in the Prem because the refs there know him and look for it whereas sir today was expecting it so didn't see it and had to pull him back to the mark.

Randall's kicks to clear were short and a couple didn't clear the 22. The shank out on the full. Until the last kick of the first half I don't think any were contestable. Italy didn't pressurise him either. If he starts Vs Wales they'll be all over him because his kicking game looks a weakness currently and England are a side that kicks and plays the percentages as soon as the attack doesn't go forward.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Sun 13 Feb 2022, 8:09 pm

You could have a point there Sam, poss a game for Youngs....he normally plays ok v Wales.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 13 Feb 2022, 8:27 pm

Hes due his good game.

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Post by Mr Bounce Sun 13 Feb 2022, 8:50 pm

I just do not understand the obsession Jones has with playing Youngs. Yes, he's experienced but I seem to recall Kyle Sinckler getting to the breakdown quicker than Youngs did at one point today and having a better (and faster) pass to boot. Plus his knock on was just careless.

And let's not talk about his obsession with bleeping box-kicks.

Time to let him go Eddie. He's too slow now.

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Post by majesticimperialman Sun 13 Feb 2022, 9:05 pm

I think he was kept in the England squad because he was going to get level caps with Jason Leonard. My personal opinion he ( Youngs) should now go into retirement. Time to give Randall, Quirke more game time. Time to think about the future Rugby World Cup and beyond.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 13 Feb 2022, 9:05 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Hes due his good game.

Him and most of the England squad.

The only changes today has made for is;

Dombrandt goes to 8 Vs Wales, very good defensively from him today. Needs more carries but that can be worked on.

Chessum to the bench for next game. Improved the lineout and got around the park to good effect and more than most of the locks we've tried in recent times. Could be useful in the normal second half England wobble.

Radwan, with Nowell out we need something extra in the backline and we've got no strong running option then some unpredictability and pace will do instead.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 13 Feb 2022, 9:26 pm

Mr Bounce wrote:I just do not understand the obsession Jones has with playing Youngs. Yes, he's experienced but I seem to recall Kyle Sinckler getting to the breakdown quicker than Youngs did at one point today and having a better (and faster) pass to boot. Plus his knock on was just careless.

And let's not talk about his obsession with bleeping box-kicks.

Time to let him go Eddie. He's too slow now.

Do you watch international rugby? Or indeed rugby in general it's the go to kicking tactic and has been for years, Youngs isn't doing for his health. England play ball on hand, when momentum stops we kick. That's been the Eddie tactic from day one. Playing ball in hand when you're going backwards is high risk so we don't do it. Eddie likes to play the percentages.

Knock on was careless? I don't think he thought his 8 would decide to lift his boot up as he picked the ball out for the pass. It was indicative of the errors that hampered England all game, players just not on the same wavelength. 

Personally I'd like to see Quirke come in and get game time as he genuinely looks like he could overtake Youngs before the RWC. No other scrum half currently looks likely to accomplish that and Eddie only has a contract to the next world cup so he's not likely to move on a scrum half that's been a mainstay for a decade and can adapt his game to whatever the coach wants.

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Post by Mr Bounce Sun 13 Feb 2022, 9:34 pm

Come on Sam - England had a great period of play shortly after Youngs came on - the forwards did a lot of great recycling work then Youngs box-kicks it away and Italy regain possession. Why not recycle and go again? It's because it's in his make up - the way he plays - he simply cannot veer from the game plan he's been told to use. He also spends SO long at the ruck by stopping, looking what's going on, making a decision, by which time defences are set.

Jones should have gone looking for other alternatives a while back, but Youngs is definitely a "Yes" man, hence why he stays in. Every team would give their right arm for a Dupont, but they're once in a generation. Youngs has been great in the past, but he is sliding now, and the others really should be given time to play. Otherwise it'll be Slow Hand Ben with no experienced back up. Again.

Good scrum halves play on instinct. Baby Ben's instinct left him about 5 years ago...

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Sun 13 Feb 2022, 9:48 pm

Box kicking is indeed important, but so is the rest of a scrum halfs game.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 13 Feb 2022, 10:20 pm

'The others' should get a go when they're good enough not just because they exist and wear the same number shirt. That's the point I always try to make with the endless scrum-half debate.

Quirke to me looks class but at his age the injuries are worrying so he needs to string games together. When players are a bit older they tend to be able to come back from injuries and immediately play at their best - Lawes has done that recently, Warburton was fantastic at. Someone Quirke's age needs games to keep improving though. I really hope he can strings some games together now. He's played twice since the latest injury I think?

I like Randall but refer back to my post before the game. I can't think of a good international 9 with such a poor kicking game. Bristol's results recently would suggest it's been an issue at times. With Randall starting 7 Prem games this season they've won twice. With Uren starting 5 Prem games they've won 3 times. I'd argue Randall has even bigger weaknesses in his game than Care.

Whether posters on 606v2 like the box kick or not it is a fundamental part of every strong international sides game plan for a reason.

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Post by Mr Bounce Sun 13 Feb 2022, 10:59 pm

Carlos that's not the point I am making - Youngs just box kicks regardless, today's example being a case in point. His forwards had just done a ton of work to get the ball to where it was in a good attacking position and he just kicks it back to the opposition. Box kicks work very well as part of clearing the lines and as an occasional attacking option. However with Youngs it seems to be his go to selection despite there being better ways to proceed.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 14 Feb 2022, 4:46 am

The thing is there's 2 things that are brought up for Youngs. His box kicking and his experience. In reality his box kicking these last 12 months of so has been average and he does it too much. Randall shanked 1 yesterday and the rest were good. As for experience the last 2 games in the last 20 mins I'd be surprised anyone who didn't know he had over 110 caps would have been able to tell.

And his passing is crap for an international scrum half.

He'll start vs Wales though. Wouldn't be surprised if he lasted the whole 80 mins again too.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 14 Feb 2022, 7:51 am

Mr Bounce wrote:Come on Sam - England had a great period of play shortly after Youngs came on - the forwards did a lot of great recycling work then Youngs box-kicks it away and Italy regain possession. Why not recycle and go again? It's because it's in his make up - the way he plays - he simply cannot veer from the game plan he's been told to use. He also spends SO long at the ruck by stopping, looking what's going on, making a decision, by which time defences are set.

Jones should have gone looking for other alternatives a while back, but Youngs is definitely a "Yes" man, hence why he stays in. Every team would give their right arm for a Dupont, but they're once in a generation. Youngs has been great in the past, but he is sliding now, and the others really should be given time to play. Otherwise it'll be Slow Hand Ben with no experienced back up. Again.

Good scrum halves play on instinct. Baby Ben's instinct left him about 5 years ago...

This suggests more than you have a pre conceived notion as to actually watched the game.

England didn't have a meaningful attack until Ford came on and then England played fast from the base and went the length of the field with Youngs at 9.

Eddie drops players who don't stick to the game plan. Randall did the same.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 14 Feb 2022, 7:53 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:The thing is there's 2 things that are brought up for Youngs. His box kicking and his experience. In reality his box kicking these last 12 months of so has been average and he does it too much. Randall shanked 1 yesterday and the rest were good. As for experience the last 2 games in the last 20 mins I'd be surprised anyone who didn't know he had over 110 caps would have been able to tell.

And his passing is crap for an international scrum half.

He'll start vs Wales though. Wouldn't be surprised if he lasted the whole 80 mins again too.

The one before half time was good the rest were not. Kicking from a defensive lineout and failing to clear your 22 will cost against good teams. Most international scrum halfs would expect their box kick to be heading towards halfway.

Randall's kicking game is the worse of any home nation 6N scrum half. If he improves it then he'll move his game on a lot.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 14 Feb 2022, 7:58 am

But still miles better than Youngs. It should be 114 and out.

I liked how Smith thought f it twice and just started playing scrum half as Youngs was no where.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 14 Feb 2022, 8:15 am

Dislike it as much as you want even you were complaining last week about it. It was just you were blaming the forwards. We've now seen a scrum half deliver fast quality ball and then be replaced and suddenly its slow horrible ball that is kicked away. If you think Randall isn't international quality that's fine but neither is youngs anymore. He really sticks out like a sore thumb at the moment. And that's in a team with Slade playing inside centre.

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Post by Soul Requiem Mon 14 Feb 2022, 8:19 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:
Mr Bounce wrote:Come on Sam - England had a great period of play shortly after Youngs came on - the forwards did a lot of great recycling work then Youngs box-kicks it away and Italy regain possession. Why not recycle and go again? It's because it's in his make up - the way he plays - he simply cannot veer from the game plan he's been told to use. He also spends SO long at the ruck by stopping, looking what's going on, making a decision, by which time defences are set.

Jones should have gone looking for other alternatives a while back, but Youngs is definitely a "Yes" man, hence why he stays in. Every team would give their right arm for a Dupont, but they're once in a generation. Youngs has been great in the past, but he is sliding now, and the others really should be given time to play. Otherwise it'll be Slow Hand Ben with no experienced back up. Again.

Good scrum halves play on instinct. Baby Ben's instinct left him about 5 years ago...

This suggests more than you have a pre conceived notion as to actually watched the game.

England didn't have a meaningful attack until Ford came on and then England played fast from the base and went the length of the field with Youngs at 9.

Eddie drops players who don't stick to the game plan. Randall did the same.

This definitely applies to you Sam, as soon as a Leicester players receives any criticism you're straight there defending regardless of how badly they played.

Youngs has been a fine servant for England over the years but it's time to move on and build a team that threaten the best teams.

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