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England post 2022 6Ns, Aus tour and beyond

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Post by mountain man Mon 17 Oct 2022, 11:38 am

First topic message reminder :

Hate to say it and I don't wish him injured but I'm glad Ewels not available!
If you're disappointed with Malins and Daly being selected, imagine how most of us feel about Youngs being there.
In fairness, Malins and Daly been superb this season but please give Radwan and Arundell a run.

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Post by Cumbrian Sun 23 Oct 2022, 4:47 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Roebuck being called up then apparently. Wouldn't be on my radar for us.

Could be a Jock block, I believe Townsend was looking at him...
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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 23 Oct 2022, 5:16 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:I always thought Malins best position was fly half. Not a great kicker tho. If they're cover  then there's always the chance they are needed after 1 minute. Atkinson is a so so fly half for me so far. Smith very callow, is he still injured?

Atkinson looked to have come on this season, he's still young and covers fullback as well. In a side better than the up and down Wasps he might do quite well. Given the lack of fit options currently we are scrapping the bottom of the barrell.

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Post by Poorfour Sun 23 Oct 2022, 5:23 pm

Didn’t look to be any injuries to England players in the Sale/Quins game, thankfully. Unless you count bruised pride.
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Post by Rugby Fan Mon 24 Oct 2022, 12:32 am

Telegraph says Arundell will go to Jersey, and "could be partially involved in training this week", as his ankle recovers.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 24 Oct 2022, 8:37 am

Poorfour wrote:Didn’t look to be any injuries to England players in the Sale/Quins game, thankfully. Unless you count bruised pride.

Picking then wrong options in attack is something Sale can work on and with five wins from six they are in a good place. Sometimes a loss helps refocus a squad as well. I think Quins and maybe Smith needed that performance more than Sale did.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 24 Oct 2022, 9:04 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:
Poorfour wrote:Didn’t look to be any injuries to England players in the Sale/Quins game, thankfully. Unless you count bruised pride.

Picking then wrong options in attack is something Sale can work on and with five wins from six they are in a good place. Sometimes a loss helps refocus a squad as well. I think Quins and maybe Smith needed that performance more than Sale did.

Sale have had a good start to the season but that wasn’t about wrong options in attack. Most of the time they were making the right choices but they lost composure when faced with a team that wouldn’t let them impose their physical game plan.

Quins aren’t able to play their usual style at the moment because their 4 main ball carriers in the pack are all injured, so getting go-forward is much harder. They didn’t adapt to that against Tigers and paid the price; yesterday they made a decision not to play the ball when the defence was set and it worked well. If they can bank that and remember to use it again when they need it, they’ll win more games. But considering the injury list and the fixture list, they’re where I expected them to be at this point in the season.
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Post by mountain man Mon 24 Oct 2022, 1:42 pm

So Farrell also out of training camp with concussion. Slade and Radwan back in along with Tom Roebuck.

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Post by Rugby Fan Mon 24 Oct 2022, 3:02 pm

Slade is a centre/flyhalf option/goalkicker, so ticks similar boxes as Farrell.

Goalkicking hasn't been an issue for England under Jones. Farrell has been resilient; Ford improved; Daly has long range, and there have even been other options during his tenure, like Slade, Furbank, Lozowski, and even Care.

Even with Slade in, this squad looks light on players with kicking experience.

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Post by Oakdene Mon 24 Oct 2022, 3:07 pm

Smith has a decent kicking percentage doesn't he?

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 24 Oct 2022, 3:18 pm

Think it's among the highest in international rugby. The issue is that Furbank is back up 10 if Farrell doesn't recover in time.

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Post by Oakdene Mon 24 Oct 2022, 3:19 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Think it's among the highest in international rugby. The issue is that Furbank is back up 10 if Farrell doesn't recover in time.

Not a bad thing really to expose him to some international rugby kicking pressure in case Farrell isn't available for a game or two at the RWC or in the 6 nations.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 24 Oct 2022, 3:34 pm

Yeah but add to that he's rubbish and no one wants him in the squad at all.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 24 Oct 2022, 4:21 pm

Oakdene wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Think it's among the highest in international rugby. The issue is that Furbank is back up 10 if Farrell doesn't recover in time.

Not a bad thing really to expose him to some international rugby kicking pressure in case Farrell isn't available for a game or two at the RWC or in the 6 nations.

If only he'd had this sort of pressure earlier in the RWC cycle. Imagine if Farrell had been injured for most of the autumn series and Smith had to slot a last minute long range penalty after being clobbered in the air to win the game against the Boks. Oh. Hang on a moment...
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Post by Rugby Fan Mon 24 Oct 2022, 7:41 pm

Smith isn't a problem. The question is who to turn to, when Smith is off the pitch, or momentarily incapacitated. In the original squad, that would be Furbank, who does kick on occasion for Saints but is largely untested at international level.

While Slade has more experience goalkicking for his club, his international stats show only 2 conversions and no penalties. Also, no drop goals. As Adam Hastings showed at the weekend, drop goals can still win matches.

In the Premiership, the leading English goalkickers this season are Owen Farrell, Piers Francis, Joe Simmonds, Freddie Burns, Marcus Smith and Jacob Umaga. Jones has included some in squads before, but none seem on the verge of selection right now.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 24 Oct 2022, 11:47 pm

Between Smith, Farrell and Ford goal kickers aren't really a worry for me. Two of them being injured at once leaves things shorter of course but isn't a long term worry.

A bit like when Bevan Rodd was starting at LH due to injuries. Whilst I rate Rodd, and really like his breakdown work as a point of difference to our other props, I don't think his scrummaging is up to international standard. Yet, anyway. But it wasn't a concern particularly when you've got a string of LHs to come back. Similar with goal kickers here.

Smith is a good goal kicker. Steward also has a huge boot that he can hopefully use more from the tee from long range as Daly can. He seems to be practicing it more and more judging by warmups.

It's a shame Xavier Bailey is injured. He looks a good prospect at 10, would've been next in line here presumably.

10.Smith 12.Tuilagi 13.Slade would make sense as a midfield.

May, Arundell and Freeman being injured at the same time is frustrating. Just as it felt like there was pace coming back into the back three. I wouldn't be surprised if Watson got a recall if he stays fit.

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Post by hugehandoff Tue 25 Oct 2022, 10:37 am

I have not been able to watch any club rugby for a while and just wondering on the form of Launchbury and Marler as I have always rated these 2 and obviously they have not done enough to warrant AI selection?

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Post by mountain man Tue 25 Oct 2022, 11:00 am

Marler was good on Sunday against Sale, not sure about Launchbury but of course he's (ex) Wasps so missed a few matches.

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Post by Poorfour Tue 25 Oct 2022, 11:38 am

Marler's form is where it's been for several seasons now. He's putting in 70 minutes plus of exceptional setpiece work and hard defence on a regular basis.

Looking at the props Eddie has selected, he seems to be skewing away from that profile and towards more dynamic carriers and breakdown specialists. He may yet revise that depending on how England go against the Boks in particular.

Eddie and Marler seem to have a unique relationship that has a lot less of the "Eddie's the boss, do what he says or you're out" quality that he has with everyone else, and if Eddie decides at some point that England need a harder edge in the scrum, Marler could be back. Don't hold your breath, though.
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Post by Rugby Fan Tue 25 Oct 2022, 2:08 pm

While Arundell is going to Jersey, his injury will keep him out of the first two Autumn Tests, and possibly all three in November.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/rugby-union/2022/10/25/henry-arundell-england-injury-autumn-argentina-japan-blacks/

Potential absence of Lawes and Farrell has led to speculation about captaincy. Tom Curry and Lewis Ludlow have been his other captains since the 2019 World Cup. Genge has a lot of love in the media. I'd be tempted to see what Itoje is like, given he is a first choice starter, and regularly plays the whole match.

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Post by Geordie Tue 25 Oct 2022, 3:09 pm

i think id have to go for Genge. Many suffocate under the captaincy (though as mentioned on here many times its maybe not as big a deal as it used to be) but Genge seems to thrive on it.

And plus going for the coin toss etc its nice to have a real powerful aggressive animal facing you...

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Post by Rugby Fan Tue 25 Oct 2022, 3:44 pm

Geordie wrote:i think id have to go for Genge. Many suffocate under the captaincy (though as mentioned on here many times its maybe not as big a deal as it used to be) but Genge seems to thrive on it.

And plus going for the coin toss etc its nice to have a real powerful aggressive animal facing you...
The trouble these days with having a prop as a captain, is that there are so many penalties at the scrum. Inevitably, a prop captain will get penalized, and that may bleed into his standing with the referee.

The whole growth of the Referee/Assistant referees/TMO unit has diminished the ability of a captain to win over officials. The best you can hope for now, is someone who can maintain a respectful dialogue. A prop giving away penalties won't be able to do that.

Generally, teams want a captain who will be close to the action, so the officials don't have to wait for him to run over. That means captains are mostly hookers, locks, back row, scrum halves or fly halves. These are also positions where a player can play eighty minutes without weakening the side. Hogg at full back was something of an anomaly, which may be part of the reason the Scottish captain is now a flanker.

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Post by doctor_grey Tue 25 Oct 2022, 5:40 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:
Geordie wrote:i think id have to go for Genge. Many suffocate under the captaincy (though as mentioned on here many times its maybe not as big a deal as it used to be) but Genge seems to thrive on it.

And plus going for the coin toss etc its nice to have a real powerful aggressive animal facing you...
The trouble these days with having a prop as a captain, is that there are so many penalties at the scrum. Inevitably, a prop captain will get penalized, and that may bleed into his standing with the referee.

The whole growth of the Referee/Assistant referees/TMO unit has diminished the ability of a captain to win over officials. The best you can hope for now, is someone who can maintain a respectful dialogue. A prop giving away penalties won't be able to do that.

Generally, teams want a captain who will be close to the action, so the officials don't have to wait for him to run over. That means captains are mostly hookers, locks, back row, scrum halves or fly halves. These are also positions where a player can play eighty minutes without weakening the side. Hogg at full back was something of an anomaly, which may be part of the reason the Scottish captain is now a flanker.
I would have no problem with Genge being captain under the current circumstances. John Smit was the Boks captain forever from both prop and hooker. Dylan Hartley was pretty successful as England captain (he actually started in the bad graces of the refs and worked his way somewhat back). Allan Alaalatoa recently captained Aus from prop. Didn't Phil Vickery (!) captain England in the 2007 RWC? We could bring him back, btw.

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Post by mountain man Tue 25 Oct 2022, 5:57 pm

I think too much is made of captaincy, its not like cricket where decisions are made every over or more. First thing is it has to be a nailed on starter. Which means one of Genge, Itoje, Curry, Billy V. Smith, Steward. So, out of those assuming I've not missed an obvious one of those should be capt and I think likely to be Curry but not bothered who it is to be honest.

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Post by yappysnap Wed 26 Oct 2022, 12:38 am

I don't think Tuilagi looks particularly sharp at the moment, yes he steps up for England but he's not close to the form center.

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Post by Rugby Fan Wed 26 Oct 2022, 1:57 am

An international captain nowadays needs to be able to alert the officials to illegal opposition tactics, without winding them up, and make good tactical calls on the pitch.

One reason Itoje or Genge might benefit from being captain is that both are guilty of behaviour which is getting more noticed by referees. Itoje was reprimanded in Australia for shouting at a line-out, to disrupt the throw-in. Though he wasn't penalised then, it's easy to see referees getting tougher. Genge is getting a lot of credit for his role at Leicester last season, and maturity around the England set-up. However, Christophe Ridley marched him back ten yards on two separate occasions during Bristol's match against Exeter earlier this month. He was already on a yellow card (which could have been red).

If Itoje or Genge had the captaincy, then it might keep their excesses in check. Dylan Hartley is a good example of a player who responded well to the responsibility.

Then again, it doesn't always pay dividends. As captain, Farrell has never moderated his competitiveness, so is rarely onside with officials. That's one reason Jones told him not to bother approaching referees.

The other side of captaincy is making good tactical decisions. Increasingly, teams have to get the balance right about when to kick a penalty for goal, and when to go for touch, or take a tap, to get a try. The captain has to have a good sense of the momentum in a match, and how his team is executing on the day.

It's not clear that's an England strength right now. We've sometimes taken a scrum for the penalty, when we aren't that solid on our own ball. It feels like the team thinks "What would Eddie do?", instead of taking charge on the pitch.

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Post by Poorfour Wed 26 Oct 2022, 1:58 am

yappysnap wrote:I don't think Tuilagi looks particularly sharp at the moment, yes he steps up for England but he's not close to the form center.

Oh, I dunno. He was pretty close to Joe Marchant a few times on Sunday. Sadly it doesn’t look like he will be for the Autumn Internationals.


I’ll get me coat.
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Post by mountain man Wed 26 Oct 2022, 8:28 am

yappysnap wrote:I don't think Tuilagi looks particularly sharp at the moment, yes he steps up for England but he's not close to the form center.

He was pretty quiet on Sunday against Quins I thought.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 26 Oct 2022, 8:31 am

Rugby Fan wrote:
. Genge is getting a lot of credit for his role at Leicester last season, and maturity around the England set-up. However, Christophe Ridley marched him back ten yards on two separate occasions during Bristol's match against Exeter earlier this month. He was already on a yellow card (which could have been red).

To be fair on current form Ridley is the worst ref in the Prem and in that game made some pretty shoddy calls that hampered Bristol. Genge is always going to be fiesty that's just his nature. He was fantastic as Tigers captain and already has a vice captain role with Bristol. At England I believe that Eddie has him in the leadership group and he's responsible for squad bonding which should mean he's popular amongst the squad.

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Post by yappysnap Thu 27 Oct 2022, 12:55 am

Poorfour wrote:
yappysnap wrote:I don't think Tuilagi looks particularly sharp at the moment, yes he steps up for England but he's not close to the form center.

Oh, I dunno. He was pretty close to Joe Marchant a few times on Sunday. Sadly it doesn’t look like he will be for the Autumn Internationals.


I’ll get me coat.

Pretty close, but still unable to lay a hand on him.

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Post by Rugby Fan Thu 27 Oct 2022, 1:55 pm

formerly known as Sam wrote:...To be fair on current form Ridley is the worst ref in the Prem...
I won't argue that. However, referees have been biting back a bit recently, famously when Mathieu Raynal penalized Bernard Foley for time-wasting.

Arguably, it's the knock-on effect of the refereeing team conferring together over TMO decisions. These conflabs started taking too long, so senior referees are trying to impose themselves on the game again by keeping the tempo up. They are ignoring the TMOs more than before, which means trusting their own on-field judgement. This makes them a bit sensitive to players querying decisions, or calling for TMO intervention, and they are reacting with verbal warnings and penalties. They also don't like instructions being ignored (cf. Raynal).

If it was a huge officiating trend, then everyone would already see it. Instead, it's in its early stages. A bit like the crackdown on tip tackles which saw Sam Warburton sent off at a World Cup. In the run-up to that tournament, Rolland had started getting tough in that area but it still wasn't something most pundits and fans had noticed.

If this trend has legs, then abrasive (i.e. gobby) players like Farrell, Sexton, Biggar and Hooper might have to watch how they express themselves to officials.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Thu 27 Oct 2022, 4:21 pm

I'd love Sexton to get pulled up, he never shuts up all game.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Thu 27 Oct 2022, 5:21 pm

It's up to the ref to decide how he wants players to communicate. A lot of fans dislike the way Farrell speaks to the refs but the refs themselves speak highly of him. I think the one they point to the most was the Wales game with the pen kicked out to the wing. For me he did well as I'd probably have been sent off!

Amused me that Care cited Itoje being noisy at lineouts...something that wasn't really against the laws when they started but has been clarified to be so now, all the while being a gob sh#$e scrum half!

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Post by Collapse2005 Thu 27 Oct 2022, 5:37 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:I'd love Sexton to get pulled up, he never shuts up all game.

Best out half in the world by some distance, maybe best player. Out half, kicker, on field coach, captain, he even refs the game these days too. Not much he cant do.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Fri 28 Oct 2022, 9:18 am

Collapse2005 wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:I'd love Sexton to get pulled up, he never shuts up all game.

Best out half in the world by some distance, maybe best player. Out half, kicker, on field coach, captain, he even refs the game these days too. Not much he cant do.

Never really been a fan, I think he's always been hugely overrated. Possibly the best FH in Ireland but you'd be reaching to put him in any top 5 list these days.

Best player.......I think you need a lie down lad.

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Post by mountain man Fri 28 Oct 2022, 9:24 am

I rather suspect he was being sarcastic.

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Post by Collapse2005 Fri 28 Oct 2022, 10:17 am

Sgt_Pooly wrote:
Collapse2005 wrote:
Sgt_Pooly wrote:I'd love Sexton to get pulled up, he never shuts up all game.

Best out half in the world by some distance, maybe best player. Out half, kicker, on field coach, captain, he even refs the game these days too. Not much he cant do.

Never really been a fan, I think he's always been hugely overrated. Possibly the best FH in Ireland but you'd be reaching to put him in any top 5 list these days.

Best player.......I think you need a lie down lad.

Haters gonna hate

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Post by No 7&1/2 Fri 28 Oct 2022, 2:27 pm

Names on the back of the short to help brand identity this AIs apparently.

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Post by carpet baboon Fri 28 Oct 2022, 4:46 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:

Amused me that Care cited Itoje being noisy at lineouts...something that wasn't really against the laws when they started but has been clarified to be so now, all the while being a gob sh#$e scrum half!

I think you will find being a gob Sh**e is in the job description of all scrum Half's

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat 29 Oct 2022, 8:44 am

Looks like Rettalick will be missing then from the England. Just been sent off.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat 29 Oct 2022, 8:45 am

Brainless red as well. Contest already lost at a ruck and he just puts a shoulder to the head.

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Post by Collapse2005 Sat 29 Oct 2022, 9:03 am

No 7&1/2 wrote:Looks like Rettalick will be missing then from the England. Just been sent off.

Might be to NZ’s advantage. It’s been a long time since Retallick has consistently played well. Tupou Vaii will need to step up as Englands locks are already better than NZs.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sat 29 Oct 2022, 9:11 am

Hes not the same player since his injury but hes still their best lock by a distance for me. The others I'm not that bothered about. Big set of games coming for englands lock s, we still need some back to back performances from whoever is to partner Itoje. We have some new guys in their and I'd love to see 1 or 2 step up.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 30 Oct 2022, 12:25 am

I think I'd still take Retallick, Whitelock and Tuipolotu over our partners for Itoje to be honest.

Hill has been inconsistent. Whilst Tizard and Chessum are very talented but raw. Personally I'd invest in Tizard and think Chessum offers a very good bench option currently. I wouldn't discard Hill entirely but would invest in others ahead of him now.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 30 Oct 2022, 12:42 am

Aaron Hinckley must be pushing close to consideration for a training squad if there's an injury. He was a Curry level talent at u20s before all the injuries. If he can stay fit the ceiling there in attack and defence is huge.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Sun 30 Oct 2022, 10:24 am

king_carlos wrote:I think I'd still take Retallick, Whitelock and Tuipolotu over our partners for Itoje to be honest.

Hill has been inconsistent. Whilst Tizard and Chessum are very talented but raw. Personally I'd invest in Tizard and think Chessum offers a very good bench option currently. I wouldn't discard Hill entirely but would invest in others ahead of him now.

Kruis and Launchbury when in full song would be a different matter, but I agree our stable isn't that strong these days.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 30 Oct 2022, 2:54 pm

I've probably written a novel on here by now about how big a loss Kruis has been for England. His set-piece work was fantastic. Especially running the defensive lineout which is easy to overlook. The packs decision making on when to compete in the air or compete the maul has declined without him as has their execution of either option.

Launchbury was a long time favourite of mine but I do feel he's declined since the injuries. It would be fantastic if he could rediscover his best but I don't quite see it. The loose work, especially his carrying/offloading and jackaling, aren't as prominent now. For a lock who was never an international standard lineout jumper that's an issue as his loose work compensated that weakness. On the defensive lineout thing again though, Launchbury is still a fantastic defensive mauler. Definitely one of England's best at disrupting mauls.

Even with Hill's inconsistency for England I would still consider him a slightly better option than Launchbury of the last couple of years. Pains me to say it given where Launchbury was at his peak but it's been a lot of injuries now. If you're a lock that relies on dynamic loose work rather than set-piece it will always be more difficult to maintain that style of play late into a career.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 30 Oct 2022, 3:34 pm

It's a crying shame we haven't seen more of Launchbury and Itoje together but we hopefully have some locks coming through now that could see us get back to where we were 5 or so years ago. Not a huge fan of Hill but he looks to be the chosen one by Jones and Proudfoot.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 30 Oct 2022, 6:57 pm

Thinking about the RWC squad size going up to 33 rather than 31 I can't help but think that a fair bit of England's squad must be pretty nailed on when I think about a potential 33-man squad (not necessarily what I'd pick but what I reckon the coaches might be thinking). Guessing at how you'd structure a 33 man squad (i.e. how much cover you want in certain positions) and then plugging in the obvious names I get:

1.Genge, Mako, Marler
2.George, LCD
3.Sinckler, Stuart, Heyes
4.Itoje, Chessum
5.Hill, Tizard
6.Lawes, Willis
7.Curry, Ludlam/Underhill
8.Vunipola, Dombrandt

9.JvP, Quirke, Youngs
10.Smith, Ford

11.May, Freeman
12.Farrell, Porter/Dingwall/Marchant/Lawrence
13.Tuilagi, Slade
14.Watson, Nowell
15.Steward, Arundell

I'd say you're probably looking at carrying 3 SHs and an extra front row compared to previous RWC selections. Maybe that extra front row is a 3rd hooker (Blamire, Dolly, McGuigan, Singleton, Walker all in the running there it seems) rather than 3 props on each side.

If (some big and worrying ifs with several of our best outside backs) most are fit I'd guess that squad structure and many of those players must have a very good chance of selection though?

A centre spot clearly up for grabs though that's for sure.

On the wings I feel it's fairly reliant on Watson and May staying fit or Arundell really settling as a starter.

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Post by Rugby Fan Mon 31 Oct 2022, 1:11 am

Sam Cane (fractured cheek) and Dane Coles (calf) are out of the tour. for NZ.

https://www.bbc.com/sport/rugby-union/58722224

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 31 Oct 2022, 7:30 am

Dowson said on Saturday that Lawes is running biking and doing weights but still getting concussion symptoms. Surely has to be ruled out.

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