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6 Nations Round 3 - England v Wales

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Wed Feb 16, 2022 3:20 am

First topic message reminder :

England v Wales

Twickers, London
Saturday 26th Feb 2022
Kick Off - 1645hrs

England team

Steward; Malins, Daly, Slade, Nowell; Smith, Randall; Genge, Cowan-Dickie, Sinckler, Ewels, Itoje, Lawes (Capt), Curry, Dombrandt.

Replacements: George, Marler, Stuart, Isiekwe, Simmonds, Youngs, Ford, Marchant.

Wales Team

L Williams; Cuthbert, Watkin, Tompkins, Adams; Biggar (capt), T Williams; W Jones, Elias, Francis, Rowlands, Beard, Moriarty, Basham, Faletau.

Replacements: Lake, G Thomas, Brown, S Davies, Morgan, Hardy, Anscombe, J Davies.


Last edited by Sgt_Pooly on Sat Feb 26, 2022 9:37 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by lostinwales Fri Feb 18, 2022 9:09 am

mountain man wrote:I think Slade be 12 and Manu 13. You'd think it should be vice versa but I reckon that's what it'll be.

The numbers will be Tuilagi 12 and Slade 13 but they will switch as required

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Post by king_carlos Fri Feb 18, 2022 9:22 am

12.Manu 13.Slade have had a decent number of games together in those shirts haven't they?

It was only the autumn when asked about Slade at 12 long term that Jones viewed him predominantly as a 13 due to his defensive organisation there IIRC.

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Post by chris_501 Fri Feb 18, 2022 9:51 am

Faletau is starting again for Bath this weekend, it will only be his second match since the Lions tour, is it too early to get him back in the fold for the England game?

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Post by The Oracle Fri Feb 18, 2022 10:49 am

For me, yes. Too early. I know he’s class but I’ve always been of the mind that EVERY player should show their form and fitness first. Is 1 game enough to show form? I dunno. I don’t think it’s fair on the club either, but that’s a separate argument. I’d personally just let Faletau regain match fitness from a string of games with his club and come back for Wales after this 6N.
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Post by majesticimperialman Fri Feb 18, 2022 11:44 am

The Oracle wrote:For me, yes. Too early. I know he’s class but I’ve always been of the mind that EVERY player should show their form and fitness first. Is 1 game enough to show form? I dunno. I don’t think it’s fair on the club either, but that’s a separate argument. I’d personally just let Faletau regain match fitness from a string of games with his club and come back for Wales after this 6N.

I totally agree with every thing you said.

To often players have been brought back too early and got injured again.

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Post by Gooseberry Fri Feb 18, 2022 11:52 am

No point in waiting for Manu to show form and fitness, he'd get injured by the time he'd had the opportunity. If England are still set on him, and lets face it amongst the current bland centres and wings they have available hes the only real game changer, then they just have to play him when hes capable of making it onto the pitch.

As for the 12 13 thing ....England have always ppretty much always had a second playmaker at 12,. Jones also kinda said he wants someone to hold Smiths hand and help him run the game, in the absence of Farrell the next best is Slade (Ford not being a viable 12) . Last time they played together (and Tuilagis last test) I think it was Tuilagi at 12 Slade at 13? But prior to that Tuilagi had played outside Farrell , and before he got injured there had been a "leaked teamsheet" suggesting he would be on the wing for the Aus game in the autumn. #


So really anyones guess!

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Post by Soul Requiem Fri Feb 18, 2022 12:04 pm

Tuilagi did play on the wing against Australia, well he wore 14 at least.

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Post by lostinwales Fri Feb 18, 2022 2:57 pm

Noticed Isiekwe is playing for Saracens at the weekend. Given he's been playing a lot of minutes for England I wonder if this indicates he's not playing vs Wales (or is it just a shortage of players at Sarries?)

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Post by king_carlos Fri Feb 18, 2022 3:08 pm

I'd say it seems less likely Isiekwe will play against Wales. I can't remember any precedent for players being released due their clubs situation?

If Ewels is involved ahead of him I'll struggle to see why but I'd say Isiekwe getting released when he's played a decent number of minutes certainly suggest that he might be getting dropped.

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Post by doctor_grey Fri Feb 18, 2022 4:36 pm

king_carlos wrote:I'd say it seems less likely Isiekwe will play against Wales. I can't remember any precedent for players being released due their clubs situation?

If Ewels is involved ahead of him I'll struggle to see why but I'd say Isiekwe getting released when he's played a decent number of minutes certainly suggest that he might be getting dropped.
I'm sure it has happened, but can't recall who and when.  But that would be something which would not really lodge in my memory banks.  Ultimately though, I think you are right as applies to Isiekwe.  Not that he did anything egregious, unless that obstruction in the lineout counts against him.  I think he is a very good player, especially vis-à-vis Ewels.

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Post by WELL-PAST-IT Sat Feb 19, 2022 4:07 am

There are at least 6 locks in the premiership that are EQ and big step up from Ewels, he is another Youngs conundrum, WHY IS HE PICKED?
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Post by mountain man Sat Feb 19, 2022 4:29 am

WELL-PAST-IT wrote:There are at least 6 locks in the premiership that are EQ and big step up from Ewels, he is another Youngs conundrum, WHY IS HE PICKED?

That is question most are asking. Why is Youngs continually picked yet so obviously not the best avaialable. Likewise Ewels.

Both good players unquestionably but best available?

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat Feb 19, 2022 4:30 am

Ewels for his rucking and scrummaging. Youngs because of his experience.

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Post by mountain man Sat Feb 19, 2022 4:33 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Ewels for his rucking and scrummaging.  Youngs because of his experience.

But still not best available.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat Feb 19, 2022 5:36 am

I'd personally have Launchbury and Itoje etart now. Id have had Lawes starting lock in Launchburys absence. Without them (and Kruis) it's Ewels next in my book. I'd add though that I'd have liked to have seen Ribbans capped well in advance of now .

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Post by king_carlos Sat Feb 19, 2022 6:39 am

I don't think Ewels is as poor as some. As I've mentioned many times I think our lineout defence especially has ranged from average to outright poor since we've been variously missing Kruis, Launchbury and Lawes. Ewels is good in this area.

I think Isiekwe is just as good in the lineout and significantly better round the park though.

Like several selections Ewels feels like a placeholder until better players are available again. Ewels in Kruisers absence, Ludlam in Underhill's absence, Malins and Marchant as wingers in May and Watson's absence. I frequently see these players performances and think they're good players but we won't be going deep in RWC knockouts with them.

If we can get a significant number of Lawes, Kruis, Launchbury, Underhill, Willis, Farrell, Manu, May and Watson fit at the same time and in the 23 then I think this has the makings of a team with a huge amount of quality, depth and experience. That is the makings of a side that could do well in knockout rugby. It also feels fairly risky to be waiting on so many players with a lot of miles on the clock and/or recent injury issues.

It's great that guys like Smith and Steward are grabbing their chance. I also think Dombrandt is showing promise and Barbeary could be a very good international due to that priceless ability to make yards after contact. A lot of players tried look like solid internationals at best though. It's frustrating that more aren't really grabbing these chances.

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Post by Mr Bounce Sat Feb 19, 2022 7:54 am

I think that we must remember that very few players are "great" players from match#1. Remember how long it took May to consistently show that he was one of the best wings in the world - IIRC it took AGES.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat Feb 19, 2022 8:01 am

Nice little head to head with Ojamoh and Kelly today.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat Feb 19, 2022 8:43 am

They're both great. Both better than Slade. Pick either 1 of them depending on your preference of style.

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Post by doctor_grey Sat Feb 19, 2022 10:48 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:They're both great. Both better than Slade. Pick either 1 of them depending on your preference of style.
You mean it's a lifestyle preference?

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Post by king_carlos Sat Feb 19, 2022 11:04 am

Mr Bounce wrote:I think that we must remember that very few players are "great" players from match#1. Remember how long it took May to consistently show that he was one of the best wings in the world - IIRC it took AGES.
Very, very true and easy to forget.

I would note thought that with a lot of players who take time to make that step up there tend to be standout raw skills there that you can see working. In May's case, obviously his pace for instance.

With someone such as Barbeary I wouldn't worry massively if he had a slow or uneven start as that rare ability to make yards against set defences is invaluable if it comes good.

A few of these guys I just don't quite see those standout raw skills though. I think Malins is a really good player but just lacks the pace to be a standout attacking back three player but also just lacks the solidity to be a rock at the back such as Kearney. Ludlam I really rate and have frequently championed but I'm not sure where that standout skill is. He's good over the ball but no Curry, he's strong in the tackle but no Underhill, he is quick for a back row but not Croft or Tipuric.

In the absence of others I think they have earnt their chances and shown some promise. I just feel they aren't quite grabbing the opportunity with both hands though.

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Post by king_carlos Sat Feb 19, 2022 11:09 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:They're both great. Both better than Slade. Pick either 1 of them depending on your preference of style.
Kelly I'd back to put in similar solid but unspectacular international performances at international level as a 12. I've said many times I rate Slade far higher at 13 than 12.

Kelly keeps improving his game very quickly which is a great trait. His distribution is so much better now, as is his defensive alignment and organisation. I'm not quite sure he yet has the distribution to be a distributing sort of 12 or the carrying to crash over the gain line. He's good at both and standing out more and more at club level but I think both would be solid at best against top international teams. There is plenty of room for more improvement in both though. He just keeps getting better and better.

Ojomoh is very talented and has great skills in attack but a long way to go defensively. He'd be cut up at international level currently. Look at Tompkins getting targeted defensively at international level for a while when he's terrific there for Sarries. Centre is a tough place to defend in the modern international game.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat Feb 19, 2022 12:22 pm

doctor_grey wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:They're both great. Both better than Slade. Pick either 1 of them depending on your preference of style.
You mean it's a lifestyle preference?
One you go direct runner you never go back.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sat Feb 19, 2022 2:54 pm

king_carlos wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:They're both great. Both better than Slade. Pick either 1 of them depending on your preference of style.
Kelly I'd back to put in similar solid but unspectacular international performances at international level as a 12. I've said many times I rate Slade far higher at 13 than 12.

Kelly keeps improving his game very quickly which is a great trait. His distribution is so much better now, as is his defensive alignment and organisation. I'm not quite sure he yet has the distribution to be a distributing sort of 12 or the carrying to crash over the gain line. He's good at both and standing out more and more at club level but I think both would be solid at best against top international teams. There is plenty of room for more improvement in both though. He just keeps getting better and better.

Ojomoh is very talented and has great skills in attack but a long way to go defensively. He'd be cut up at international level currently. Look at Tompkins getting targeted defensively at international level for a while when he's terrific there for Sarries. Centre is a tough place to defend in the modern international game.

Agreed, Kelly does all the unflashy stuff which makes the backline tick at club level but whilst I'd back him to be solid at international level I'd struggle to see him providing the all action displays he has done at club level.

Ojomoh got stepped as Kelly set up the second try today. If he gets stepped like that at club level in midfield then international attacks will eat him alive. He's a really classy prospect though.

I think they will both be featuring heavily post RWC but probably not before.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun Feb 20, 2022 12:50 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:They're both great. Both better than Slade. Pick either 1 of them depending on your preference of style.
Kelly I'd back to put in similar solid but unspectacular international performances at international level as a 12. I've said many times I rate Slade far higher at 13 than 12.

Kelly keeps improving his game very quickly which is a great trait. His distribution is so much better now, as is his defensive alignment and organisation. I'm not quite sure he yet has the distribution to be a distributing sort of 12 or the carrying to crash over the gain line. He's good at both and standing out more and more at club level but I think both would be solid at best against top international teams. There is plenty of room for more improvement in both though. He just keeps getting better and better.

Ojomoh is very talented and has great skills in attack but a long way to go defensively. He'd be cut up at international level currently. Look at Tompkins getting targeted defensively at international level for a while when he's terrific there for Sarries. Centre is a tough place to defend in the modern international game.

Agreed, Kelly does all the unflashy stuff which makes the backline tick at club level but whilst I'd back him to be solid at international level I'd struggle to see him providing the all action displays he has done at club level.

Ojomoh got stepped as Kelly set up the second try today. If he gets stepped like that at club level in midfield then international attacks will eat him alive. He's a really classy prospect though.

I think they will both be featuring heavily post RWC but probably not before.
You mean Joseph got stepped, thought he still made the tackle?

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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun Feb 20, 2022 1:41 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:They're both great. Both better than Slade. Pick either 1 of them depending on your preference of style.
Kelly I'd back to put in similar solid but unspectacular international performances at international level as a 12. I've said many times I rate Slade far higher at 13 than 12.

Kelly keeps improving his game very quickly which is a great trait. His distribution is so much better now, as is his defensive alignment and organisation. I'm not quite sure he yet has the distribution to be a distributing sort of 12 or the carrying to crash over the gain line. He's good at both and standing out more and more at club level but I think both would be solid at best against top international teams. There is plenty of room for more improvement in both though. He just keeps getting better and better.

Ojomoh is very talented and has great skills in attack but a long way to go defensively. He'd be cut up at international level currently. Look at Tompkins getting targeted defensively at international level for a while when he's terrific there for Sarries. Centre is a tough place to defend in the modern international game.

Agreed, Kelly does all the unflashy stuff which makes the backline tick at club level but whilst I'd back him to be solid at international level I'd struggle to see him providing the all action displays he has done at club level.

Ojomoh got stepped as Kelly set up the second try today. If he gets stepped like that at club level in midfield then international attacks will eat him alive. He's a really classy prospect though.

I think they will both be featuring heavily post RWC but probably not before.
You mean Joseph got stepped, thought he still made the tackle?
 
Ojomoh on the inside Joseph was on the outside. Kelly stepped past Ojomoh and then Joseph tackled him and he offloaded to Porter if I remember correctly.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun Feb 20, 2022 1:53 am

Yeah Joseph got stepped. And made the tackle. Ojamoh did not make a tackle in that sequence and was on the outside.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Sun Feb 20, 2022 2:57 am

I see Sam's new target to discredit appears to be Ojamoh.....how dare he be mentioned in the same breath of a Tigers prodigal son! Wink

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Post by mountain man Sun Feb 20, 2022 4:17 am

Maybe I'm getting wrong end of stick here and if so I apologize in advance but I get distinct impression there are posters here whose sole aim appears to be point scoring over others?

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun Feb 20, 2022 5:15 am

Aimed at me? In terms of that play if it's being used to demonstrate a frailty I'm defence of Ojamoh I think it's appropriate to point out that wasn't him but one of the best midfield defenders in the game. In terms of the game Ojamoh was often lining up at 13 in defence and came up with that good turnover.

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Post by mountain man Sun Feb 20, 2022 5:28 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Aimed at me? In terms of that play if it's being used to demonstrate a frailty I'm defence of Ojamoh I think it's appropriate to point out that wasn't him but one of the best midfield defenders in the game. In terms of the game Ojamoh was often lining up at 13 in defence and came up with that good turnover.

No, just a general impression. As I say, might be wrong but it's something that occurs.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun Feb 20, 2022 5:29 am

In general I do love to put the boot in but never to Sam. He knows his stuff even if I do think he loves Leicester Tigers too much!

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Sun Feb 20, 2022 5:32 am

It's just light hearted banter Mountain, never more. Sam will defend any Tigers player to the death to his credit and you need to some counter to that. Think of it Yin & Yang......606's version of Earths balance.

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Post by Poorfour Sun Feb 20, 2022 6:39 am

Banter or not, can we please spell “Ojomoh” correctly? We’ve only had two generations to get it right…
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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun Feb 20, 2022 6:41 am

I started watching in 05 but yeah point taken.

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Mon Feb 21, 2022 3:30 am

majesticimperialman wrote:
The Oracle wrote:For me, yes. Too early. I know he’s class but I’ve always been of the mind that EVERY player should show their form and fitness first. Is 1 game enough to show form? I dunno. I don’t think it’s fair on the club either, but that’s a separate argument. I’d personally just let Faletau regain match fitness from a string of games with his club and come back for Wales after this 6N.

I totally agree with every thing you said.

To often players have been brought back too early and got injured again.

They've done it anyway:

'Taulupe Faletau has been called into Wales' Six Nations squad for Saturday's game against England at Twickenham after recovering from injury.'

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/60455167

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Post by mikey_dragon Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:33 am

We don't need another back-row. Pivac eh.

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Post by Poorfour Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:37 am

Faletau put in a full shift against Tigers but he didn't look up to his normal standards (possibly because Hughes was in the primary carrying role). No doubt he would raise his game for England but then the intensity also rises in an international and I am not 100% sure he'd be ready for it based on what was on show.
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Post by Soul Requiem Mon Feb 21, 2022 4:52 am

When was the last time Faletau performed that well for Bath? He's always played much better for Wales while his club performances aren't up to much playing at 6.

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:00 am

It's a fairly simple calculation, if we lose on Saturday then that's our defence of the title over, so they're thinking they may as well play him.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:05 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I see Sam's new target to discredit appears to be Ojamoh.....how dare he be mentioned in the same breath of a Tigers prodigal son! Wink

Woah I like Ojomoh. I think he's just as not quite ready for international duty as Kelly. If you could merge the two you'd have the international 12 we need. Ojomoh has all the creative talent but is learning the defensive role and adapting to the physicality of senior rugby which is normal for a player his age.

Kelly has an unusually good grasp of defensive play for a youngster but needs to work on those creative elements that come so naturally to Ojomoh. At the minute Kelly's kicking and passing game isn't international standard and he's never going to be the type of wrecking ball physically to escape the need for those skills.

Going to enjoy the battle for the 12 shirt in the coming years.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:13 am

Is it possible though that you've mistaken Joseph for Ojomoh more often? Both looked good to me this weekend, and both better than Slade at 12.

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Post by dummy_half Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:14 am

Luckless Pedestrian wrote:It's a fairly simple calculation, if we lose on Saturday then that's our defence of the title over, so they're thinking they may as well play him.

But is a Faletau after 2 games back this season, so obviously missing match sharpness, going to be a better option than any of your others at 8? While he's obviously a class and experienced player, is he that much of an upgrade on who else you have available there - not convinced. Unlike with Manu and England's 12 shirt, where he plays as long as the sticky tape holds him together because at present we don't have anyone else that can do the things he does, and God we missed that go forward he gives us in midfield.

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Post by Luckless Pedestrian Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:21 am

dummy_half wrote:
Luckless Pedestrian wrote:It's a fairly simple calculation, if we lose on Saturday then that's our defence of the title over, so they're thinking they may as well play him.

But is a Faletau after 2 games back this season, so obviously missing match sharpness, going to be a better option than any of your others at 8? While he's  obviously a class and experienced player, is he that much of an upgrade on who else you have available there - not convinced. Unlike with Manu and England's 12 shirt, where he plays as long as the sticky tape holds him together because at present we don't have anyone else that can do the things he does, and God we missed that go forward he gives us in midfield.

The coaches obviously think so. It seems a bit desperate to me, but I can see their thinking, and he brings so much experience of big games with him, that's probably a factor too. He's been there and done it at Twickenham.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon Feb 21, 2022 5:53 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Is it possible though that you've mistaken Joseph for Ojomoh more often? Both looked good to me this weekend, and both better than Slade at 12.

I did the replay of the try last night and may have got the two centres confused for the try. 

I think they are both potentially high quality 12s. I just think they aren't the obvious selections that say Steward was at a young age and having an inexperienced 10 and 12 might not be the best thing when coupled with a new attack coach. Come the summer I'd hope they would both be included in the squad as they were last summer. By the summer they'll both have plenty of Prem game time under their belt, Ojomoh has even been covering 10 at times and Kelly is now Tigers first choice.

A good summer tour could set one up to join the then settled in Smith for the AIs.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon Feb 21, 2022 6:19 am

I just see either as better than the current lot, or at least until Tuilagi rocks up. I'm left scratching my head that they're not even getting the squad time the likes of Barbeary, radwan, H-C are.

Not overly fussed about the experience either. They've got the joint most capped England player next to them after all!

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Post by Big Mon Feb 21, 2022 8:01 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:

I did the replay of the try last night and may have got the two centres confused for the try. 


I just did a replay after reading all this... seems to me that Ojomoh's error was buying the dummy before the step on Joseph. Seems to hesitate and think about dashing forward to get a good hit on Porter, but instead leaves a gap for him when the pass is delayed as the rest of the defensive line has dropped back. Looks good when it works and you get a dominate tackle, looks less good when you've been played and leave a bit of a gap for the oppostion.

Talking of centres though, I'm really not sure what Joseph did wrong. England seemed to play a lot of good rugby with him there, but he has seemingly been abandoned or is at least considered very much on the fringes post world cup. I don't really watch much of Bath so don't know if he has been injured/out of form - but from what I've seen I've generally been impressed with him and I am surprised not to have seen more of him the last couple of years.

As a final thought, if that Bath game tells you anything about who England are missing - it is that it isn't Manu, Kelly or Ojomoh, it's Steve Borthwick.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Tue Feb 22, 2022 11:59 am

Same old squad then. Stuck with Youngs again and 1 out and out winger. Launchbury and Barbeary back to Wasps.

Say same old but Marchant dropped for Tuilagi.

Really wish we got more than the breadcrumbs on decisions. What are the coaches looking at from Youngs, Slade, Malins that's making them go yup that's exactly what we want. I can't see it.

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Post by king_carlos Tue Feb 22, 2022 12:35 pm

Forwards
Ollie Chessum
Luke Cowan-Dickie
Tom Curry
Alex Dombrandt
Charlie Ewels
Ellis Genge
Jamie George
Maro Itoje
Nick Isiekwe
Courtney Lawes
Joe Marler
Bevan Rodd
Sam Simmonds
Kyle Sinckler
Will Stuart

Backs
Elliot Daly
George Ford
Max Malins
Jack Nowell
Harry Randall
Henry Slade
Marcus Smith
Freddie Steward
Manu Tuilagi
Ben Youngs

Lawes and Manu returning was already known about but massive.

Surprised that Launchbury has been released. If he's not yet judged to be fully fit then it's the right call. Really disappointing to not have his maul work against the Beard run Wales lineout though.

Really good news that Nowell has bounced back from his HIA. I'd probably favour Nowell and Daly as starting wingers. Harsh on Malins perhaps as he's done some good things, particularly under the high ball but he just doesn't look comfortable on the wing to me.

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Post by king_carlos Tue Feb 22, 2022 12:36 pm

1.Genge 2.George 3.Sinckler 4.Itoje 5.Isiekwe 6.Lawes 7.Curry 8.Dombrandt
9.Youngs 10.Smith 11.Nowell 12.Tuilagi 13.Slade 14.Daly 15.Steward

16.Cowan-Dickie 17.Marler 18.Stuart 19.Chessum 20.Simmonds 21.Randall 22.Ford 23.Malins

I'd probably go with that from the 25 man squad.

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