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Wales Vs England match thread for yappy now the match is going ahead

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Post by king_carlos Wed 22 Feb 2023, 8:12 pm

First topic message reminder :

What it says on the tin.

I can't believe Youngs has been dropped...

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Post by Poorfour Sun 26 Feb 2023, 1:49 pm

I’m trying to remember when Farrell last had a really good game for England, and I am struggling a bit to think of one since 2019. There was some excuse during the pandemic and to a lesser extent when Sarries were relegated, but he hasn’t performed well in this RWC cycle. To some extent that’s down to Jones’s over complicated new tactics, but most other players would be under significant pressure if they’d had this long a run without a really strong game.
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Post by lostinwales Sun 26 Feb 2023, 2:12 pm

Farrell is mostly solid. I'd agree with the comments about his defense, which was good yesterday and an area where he should always be better than Smith. I doin't think there were any turnovers - can't remember him doing that but am open to seeing evidence.

I also don't get the leadership thing anymore. I can see only one reason Genge isn't captain, and that would be because he isn't going to be on the pitch for the last 20-30 minutes - but its a role that is otherwise natural to him.

On attack there genuinely seems to be an empty space where he should be. The most he seemed to do was run a dummy line that gave a little more space to Lawrence, a player who struggled in his first international experiences (not necessarily his fault) but is absolutely thriving now. The scrum half is the decision maker.

Of course he has had an outstanding international career, I just don't think we'll win anything significant with him in place anymore. He can still pass superbly but you don't see it very often, and in general, as said,
no attacks go through him. He's got a reputation at a great kicker, but then you get days like yesterday and you wonder where the evidence is to support that.


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Post by formerly known as Sam Sun 26 Feb 2023, 2:22 pm

lostinwales wrote:Farrell is mostly solid. I'd agree with the comments about his defense, which was good yesterday and an area where he should always be better than Smith. I doin't think there were any turnovers - can't remember him doing that but am open to seeing evidence.

I think he won two breakdown penalties didn't he? One midway in our half and one in Welsh territory.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 26 Feb 2023, 2:38 pm

Farrell was involved in 4 turnovers I think.

Ford not kicking then today?

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Post by WELL-PAST-IT Sun 26 Feb 2023, 2:55 pm

If you play or sub Mitchell you have to play or sub Smith. Mitchell is the nearest 9 we have to Care and with a bit of practice would work well with Smith, playing him with Farrell is a waste as it simply negates the strengths he has. If we are playing short term knowing that Evans is not going to be here for very long and a more Borthwick style coach will be taking over fair enough. However we do have a lot of attacking talent if we care to use it, a 9,10 12 of Mitchell, Smith and Lawrence could be a potent combination.

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Post by Geordie Sun 26 Feb 2023, 3:06 pm

Farrell is a big problem.  

Malins...meh I'm really not getting the vibe others on here are.

Mako needs shuffled off with his brother.

Question...is Lawrence the 12...or will he move out to his natural 13 when actual 12s come through? Where does Slade fit in?


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Post by doctor_grey Sun 26 Feb 2023, 3:25 pm

Geordie wrote:Farrell is a bug problem.  

Malins...meh I'm really not getting the vibe others on here are.

Mako needs shuffled off with his brother.

Question...is Lawrence the 12...or will he move out to his natural 13 when actual 12s come through? Where does Slade fit in?

Agree about Farrell having a bug problem. There are over the counter medications which can rid a person of bugs, but cleanliness is important. And some bugs can give you a bad attitude, some can make you miss kicks, others can almost make a person immobile. Some bugs can impact the digestive system, others can give one a kind of nervous tick, nervous tick, tick, tick, Hmmm.

My vibe on Malins is he should be out of the squad. Gave up key plays or turnovers which led to scores in every game.
Slade doesn't fit if he plays like yesterday.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 26 Feb 2023, 4:12 pm

I don't think the driving maul Scotland are showing is going to do anything for my perfect for 2 and out flankers in 2 weeks time.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Sun 26 Feb 2023, 5:38 pm

I'm seemingly a bit more positive than the masses.....I think we went ok. I'm seeing some signs of a backline that can actually attack which is more than we've had for a while.

I'm quite happy with Farrell staying at 10, I though he played pretty well bar the kicking yesterday. You can see players are slowly getting gelling somewhat....handling and passing was much sharper.

I, like many, would prefer a winger to Malins, but Borthwick obviously values what he brings. Again, I thought he was decent yesterday.

The defence was better....Ludlam and Itoje seemed to be everywhere and Farrell/Slade really marshalled the backline well.

A fluid attack doesn't happen over night, it's slowly getting there.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Sun 26 Feb 2023, 6:07 pm

Though I clearly disagree with Malins general performance there were another 2 big errors from him which cost points. The kick rather than draw and pass and obviously the pass to RZ. Those alone knock it down to a bad performance surely?

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Post by Poorfour Sun 26 Feb 2023, 7:46 pm

Interesting analysis in the highlights show - John Barclay picked out a couple of examples where England missed out on potential breaks because runners were too deep and the pass went to forwards who had fixed their defenders rather than out to back who had a potential overlap but were too far back. It’s reminiscent of where Quins were in late 2020 - players running the right lines, but without the commitment that forces defenders to make a choice or with the first receiver not picking the best available option.
On the more positive side, the tries that were scored were created by having multiple players ready to step in at first receiver and pick the right pass.
It’s very much a Nick Evans attack, and England are getting tuned in to more parts of it each week. It’s going to be interesting to see whether England stick with that post the 6N or try to do something different.
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Post by majesticimperialman Sun 26 Feb 2023, 10:09 pm

If there is one thing you could change for the next game what would it be.

For me being an England fan it would be to tell Farrell stop taking penalty kicks at goal and put your faith in the ine out and maul to score a try in the corner.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 27 Feb 2023, 12:15 am

I thought Malins did a lot of good then made that glaring error. His distribution is obviously good, particularly around contact. His high ball work is better than most wingers where he took one absolutely key ball from a very good, contested kick in the second half. He's also a very strong tactical kicker for a winger. His step is actually very good too just lacking the acceleration after to always take advantage.

The failure to draw and pass I actually thought Wales had covered using the touchline as the final man. Had they tried to go through the hands they would've been driven to touch I reckon. As such it's not the black and white wrong option, butchered try made out on comms. Probably better to keep ball in hand and recycle with momementum though.

A lot of the kicking battle these days is manipulating the back field to position an opposition player who either isn't a good kicker (where you kick long to isolate them) or who isn't good under the high ball (where you kick short to compete). Whilst Malins isn't as good under the high ball as Steward he's good there, whilst he isn't Ramos as a tactical kicker he is again good. As such he is notably a key part of how England are playing kick tennis when they drop at least two if not three of Steward, Malins and Farrell to make it difficult to isolate a poor kicker as above. We've done a lot poorly but I felt won the kicking battle against Scotland (squandering it), Italy and now Wales. Whilst I'm not a fan of Malins as a wing it would be unfair to disregard that given the key role he seems to be getting used in there.

To me his performance on Saturday sums up why I think he definitely deserves a squad place as reserve fullback but not as a winger.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 27 Feb 2023, 4:29 am

king_carlos wrote:I thought Malins did a lot of good then made that glaring error. His distribution is obviously good, particularly around contact. His high ball work is better than most wingers where he took one absolutely key ball from a very good, contested kick in the second half. He's also a very strong tactical kicker for a winger. His step is actually very good too just lacking the acceleration after to always take advantage.

The failure to draw and pass I actually thought Wales had covered using the touchline as the final man. Had they tried to go through the hands they would've been driven to touch I reckon. As such it's not the black and white wrong option, butchered try made out on comms. Probably better to keep ball in hand and recycle with momementum though.

A lot of the kicking battle these days is manipulating the back field to position an opposition player who either isn't a good kicker (where you kick long to isolate them) or who isn't good under the high ball (where you kick short to compete). Whilst Malins isn't as good under the high ball as Steward he's good there, whilst he isn't Ramos as a tactical kicker he is again good. As such he is notably a key part of how England are playing kick tennis when they drop at least two if not three of Steward, Malins and Farrell to make it difficult to isolate a poor kicker as above. We've done a lot poorly but I felt won the kicking battle against Scotland (squandering it), Italy and now Wales. Whilst I'm not a fan of Malins as a wing it would be unfair to disregard that given the key role he seems to be getting used in there.

To me his performance on Saturday sums up why I think he definitely deserves a squad place as reserve fullback but not as a winger.

That's a good sum up KC.

He didn't have a bad game at all....he was busy, got involved and produced some good attacking play. His basic skills are solid and he suits the game plan.......he will be replaced at some point by a genuine winger but he looked pretty good. Borthwick is obviously wanting a player there who has the core FB skills and Malins certainly has those.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 27 Feb 2023, 6:26 am

I do not get what you guys see with him. He's not claiming (m) any high ball. He does kick pretty well and has done a lot. And then that's it. His main contributions after that have been defensive lapses.

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Post by lostinwales Mon 27 Feb 2023, 8:07 am

Back to marking average players up because they try hard and good players down because they didn't instantly score a try in the 15 seconds of game time they had.

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Post by Geordie Mon 27 Feb 2023, 8:35 am

I have no problem with a playmaker on the wing...but as a winger they still need to possess good speed and acceleration or explosive power. to make a difference when they create the chances. I just dont see Malins with either of them. At times you can see him looking to put the foot down and theres just no acceleration at all.

However...if Evans etc are part of the selection process then clearly they know their beans...so ill bow to better knowledge.

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Post by BamBam Mon 27 Feb 2023, 9:17 am

majesticimperialman wrote:If there is one thing you could change for the next game what would it be.

For me being an England fan it would be to tell Farrell stop taking penalty kicks at goal and put your faith in the ine out and maul to score a try in the corner.

Yes, down with scoring points, we don’t need that sort of thing when a driving maul is possible

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Post by Poorfour Mon 27 Feb 2023, 10:14 am

I think there are a lot of parallels between Malins and Alex Goode. They are both age grade 10s who moved to the back three (and in both cases because of Farrell) whose vision and skillset makes them excellent club level players but whose flaws - mostly that last step of pace - get magnified at international level.

It was far more obvious with Goode (and yet he still got a very long run in the side), but Malins is still falling short - mostly in his ability to finish an opportunity. 2 tries in 15 appearances is not a great return for a winger. By way of comparison:
- Watson has scored 23 in 52 appearances
- Arundell has scored 2 in 4 (if you don't count the Wales game, but counting his 10 minutes vs Italy as a full match)
- Smith has scored 7 tries in 19 appearances over a similar period from a position that traditionally has fewer scoring opportunities.
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Post by doctor_grey Mon 27 Feb 2023, 10:40 am

Poorfour wrote:I think there are a lot of parallels between Malins and Alex Goode. They are both age grade 10s who moved to the back three (and in both cases because of Farrell) whose vision and skillset makes them excellent club level players but whose flaws - mostly that last step of pace - get magnified at international level.

It was far more obvious with Goode (and yet he still got a very long run in the side), but Malins is still falling short - mostly in his ability to finish an opportunity. 2 tries in 15 appearances is not a great return for a winger. By way of comparison:
- Watson has scored 23 in 52 appearances
- Arundell has scored 2 in 4 (if you don't count the Wales game, but counting his 10 minutes vs Italy as a full match)
- Smith has scored 7 tries in 19 appearances over a similar period from a position that traditionally has fewer scoring opportunities.
I always though Goode (Alex) was somewhat underrated as a 15.  Not the best, but usually didn't make any serious errors (in a position where errors are magnified).  His issues were his lack of pace and he really can't jump receiving kicks for beans.  But England won with him and that's not too bad.  Malins can't defend his position and his the brain farts are a problem, but is decent on attack.  

I actually think Malins is closer to Rory Hutchinson, a really good attacking player and is a finisher as well as a playmaker.  As a defender, well, he is a real good attacking player.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 27 Feb 2023, 11:00 am

Hang on a second, folks, I think I've got it figured out. Farrell's control of attacking play and kicking are letting him down, but his passing, running lines, defence and breakdown work are going well.

So basically... he's started playing like a 12.
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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 27 Feb 2023, 11:03 am

doctor_grey wrote:
Poorfour wrote:I think there are a lot of parallels between Malins and Alex Goode. They are both age grade 10s who moved to the back three (and in both cases because of Farrell) whose vision and skillset makes them excellent club level players but whose flaws - mostly that last step of pace - get magnified at international level.

It was far more obvious with Goode (and yet he still got a very long run in the side), but Malins is still falling short - mostly in his ability to finish an opportunity. 2 tries in 15 appearances is not a great return for a winger. By way of comparison:
- Watson has scored 23 in 52 appearances
- Arundell has scored 2 in 4 (if you don't count the Wales game, but counting his 10 minutes vs Italy as a full match)
- Smith has scored 7 tries in 19 appearances over a similar period from a position that traditionally has fewer scoring opportunities.
I always though Goode (Alex) was somewhat underrated as a 15.  Not the best, but usually didn't make any serious errors (in a position where errors are magnified).  His issues were his lack of pace and he really can't jump receiving kicks for beans.  But England won with him and that's not too bad.  Malins can't defend his position and his the brain farts are a problem, but is decent on attack.  

I actually think Malins is closer to Rory Hutchinson, a really good attacking player and is a finisher as well as a playmaker.  As a defender, well, he is a real good attacking player.

Malins is very good under the high ball, I've seen him take some very impressive catches at club level where he's caught the ball on the dive, almost cricket style.

I'm not sure he's the future but he's solid enough for now, probably.

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Post by Geordie Mon 27 Feb 2023, 11:22 am

The issue is....IF thats what Borthwick wants as one of the wing options (a playmaker) then who is available who can fit that role as a Mark up of Malins?

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Post by Heaf Mon 27 Feb 2023, 11:23 am

Poorfour wrote:I think there are a lot of parallels between Malins and Alex Goode. They are both age grade 10s who moved to the back three (and in both cases because of Farrell) whose vision and skillset makes them excellent club level players but whose flaws - mostly that last step of pace - get magnified at international level.

It was far more obvious with Goode (and yet he still got a very long run in the side), but Malins is still falling short - mostly in his ability to finish an opportunity. 2 tries in 15 appearances is not a great return for a winger. By way of comparison:
- Watson has scored 23 in 52 appearances
- Arundell has scored 2 in 4 (if you don't count the Wales game, but counting his 10 minutes vs Italy as a full match)
- Smith has scored 7 tries in 19 appearances over a similar period from a position that traditionally has fewer scoring opportunities.

If you count minutes I think Arundell has played about half a match ...

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Post by dummy_half Mon 27 Feb 2023, 11:34 am

My thinking with Malins is that he's a bit like Chris Patterson - has a good overall rugby skillset but lacks the one outstanding attribute that would define his position on the pitch. Has some pace but is not fast enough for an international winger, has good handling and kicking skills, but not enough to be a 10, and lacks the size and physicality to play at 12. Full back may be his best option, but again he's not as good as other options England have at the moment.

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Post by mountain man Mon 27 Feb 2023, 11:41 am

Malins has said himself he is a 15, that is by far his preferred positon. He is on wing as picked there and it would be an interesting call to say the least to drop Steward to put Malins at 15.
I think be very harsh to drop Malins now, all I'd say is give Arundell more time off bench.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 27 Feb 2023, 11:48 am

Defensive position and reaction, gave away a try vs Scotland. Shooting out of the line vs Scotland helped them make a clean break outside leading to the last try. Threw an intercept that was so telegraphed my Grandma could have caught it (dead for 15 years). That should be enough to see anyone dropped.

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Post by mountain man Mon 27 Feb 2023, 12:13 pm

OK so if not Malins then who? Don't say OHC because he was pretty poor in two games he had. Not many chances but what he did have he did not do enough to replace Malins for me.
I'd happily see Arundell start but think that is unlikely so for me keep same as with Arundell getting on earlier.

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Post by Geordie Mon 27 Feb 2023, 12:19 pm

mountain man wrote:OK so if not Malins then who? Don't say OHC because he was pretty poor in two games he had. Not many chances but what he did have he did not do enough to replace Malins for me.
I'd happily see Arundell start but think that is unlikely so for me keep same as with Arundell getting on earlier.
Was he?

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Post by mountain man Mon 27 Feb 2023, 12:23 pm

Yes he was. Well OK poor is a bit strong but didn't do anything to claim place. Anonymous is how I saw it, partly due to lack of opportunies but also what he did have he didn't take them.

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Post by No 7&1/2 Mon 27 Feb 2023, 12:27 pm

mountain man wrote:OK so if not Malins then who? Don't say OHC because he was pretty poor in two games he had. Not many chances but what he did have he did not do enough to replace Malins for me.
I'd happily see Arundell start but think that is unlikely so for me keep same as with Arundell getting on earlier.

I would say H-C if fit, not yet had the ball to show what he can do but has done nothing wrong. Let me just say Lawrence was bundled into that hasn't done much without actually getting the ball either. But in terms of wider people, Arundell as you say, Murley. I'd even go Freeman who I still see as a full back but he has the physical attributes even if not the mindset yet to make it as an international winger.

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Post by Recwatcher16 Mon 27 Feb 2023, 12:39 pm

Malins is a classy player, but he is not a winger and if you play Slade, you don't need another playmaker. I have said it before, but England need a quick bruiser on one wing to complement Watson on the other. Step forward Cokanasiga.

When England started the passing out the back, if you get big Joe tracking behind the midfield he can cause panic and I think he would have scored from Malins inside line break. I too watched John Barclay' s analysis on the bbc 6N show, of the England attack and they are not far off making it work. If George Ford had been at ten England would have scored another three tries. Farrell is bright enough to recognise what's needed, just needs to deliver.

On another note the general passing out the back with dummy runners being close to obstruction was a favourite AB tactic 15/20 years ago but eventually fell out of favour with refs ruling on obstruction with defences throwing their hands in the air after running into offside dummy runners. There were three interception tries at the weekend and a pity Joseph at OC isn't in the squad as a master of the intercept.

I fancy England against France at Twickenham but they will need to keep possession and reduce the kicking away to a lethal French backline.

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Post by Geordie Mon 27 Feb 2023, 12:47 pm

mountain man wrote:Yes he was. Well OK poor is a bit strong but didn't do anything to claim place. Anonymous is how I saw it, partly due to lack of opportunies but also what he did have he didn't take them.

Yo0u could say the same about Lawrence when he first came in to the set up last year or so? But now hes an integral part of the team.

Maybe OHC just needed some decent ball etc. And he DID go looking for the ball aswell...he didnt stay glued to his own wing despite people claiming to the contrary.

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Post by lostinwales Mon 27 Feb 2023, 1:20 pm

doctor_grey wrote:
Poorfour wrote:I think there are a lot of parallels between Malins and Alex Goode. They are both age grade 10s who moved to the back three (and in both cases because of Farrell) whose vision and skillset makes them excellent club level players but whose flaws - mostly that last step of pace - get magnified at international level.

It was far more obvious with Goode (and yet he still got a very long run in the side), but Malins is still falling short - mostly in his ability to finish an opportunity. 2 tries in 15 appearances is not a great return for a winger. By way of comparison:
- Watson has scored 23 in 52 appearances
- Arundell has scored 2 in 4 (if you don't count the Wales game, but counting his 10 minutes vs Italy as a full match)
- Smith has scored 7 tries in 19 appearances over a similar period from a position that traditionally has fewer scoring opportunities.
I always though Goode (Alex) was somewhat underrated as a 15.  Not the best, but usually didn't make any serious errors (in a position where errors are magnified).  His issues were his lack of pace and he really can't jump receiving kicks for beans.  But England won with him and that's not too bad.  Malins can't defend his position and his the brain farts are a problem, but is decent on attack.  

I actually think Malins is closer to Rory Hutchinson, a really good attacking player and is a finisher as well as a playmaker.  As a defender, well, he is a real good attacking player.

Goode had 2 good games. One vs Ireland where the appalling weather conditions played right to his strengths as a tactical kicker, and the game vs NZ. The rest of the time he could be embarrassing. The 'deceptive' pace that was so deceptive we are still deceived 10 years on... I do think he could have made an interesting international FH, and there is a good question about expectations. We have had some excellent strike runners at 15, especially Foden and Mike Brown. Getting Mr. 'jink jink splat' at full back felt like something of a climb down.

I do think Malins is similar to Goode in some respects (I may have been the 1st to say so). I think Malins is potentially a useful utility sub and (like Goode) he's got a good rugby brain which is always useful. But there is no buzz or expectation when he gets the ball, because he's not equipped to scare defenses at international level.

I see from the stats he made 6 tackles (plus 1 missed). I just remember one Welsh move down his wing where he actually just waved his hands in the air (maybe because he just didn't care).

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Post by Geordie Mon 27 Feb 2023, 1:44 pm

With Steward, Arundle and now Josh Hodge finally finding his Balshaw like feet at Exeter...malins will struggle to break the side at 15 i think.

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Post by Geordie Mon 27 Feb 2023, 1:57 pm

Wow....

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/rugby/rugby-news/twelve-welsh-rugby-players-earning-26323668.amp

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 27 Feb 2023, 2:09 pm

Geordie wrote:Wow....

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/rugby/rugby-news/twelve-welsh-rugby-players-earning-26323668.amp

Wow. Ridiculous as these are guys who have hung on to try and stay playing in Wales as opposed to just flipping the falling structure the bird on their way to France. The under funded Championship is unlikely to be paying much better.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 27 Feb 2023, 2:14 pm

Geordie wrote:With Steward, Arundle and now Josh Hodge finally finding his Balshaw like feet at Exeter...malins will struggle to break the side at 15 i think.

I'd have Freeman as the back up to Steward personally. Then again if have him starting instead of Malins as he offers a lot of solidarity at the back but more of a strike runner going forwards. Scored plenty for Saints on the wing as well.

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Post by Unclear Mon 27 Feb 2023, 2:30 pm

Geordie wrote:Wow....

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/rugby/rugby-news/twelve-welsh-rugby-players-earning-26323668.amp

What a sh*t show. Personally I think the rest of the URC needs to find some way to help in the short term. It can't stand even one season with 4 completely under-resourced teams. I've no idea what could be done to help as loans are only going to push the apocalypse slightly further down the line, but this is terrible news both for the URC and rugby in NH.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 27 Feb 2023, 2:43 pm

Geordie wrote:Maybe OHC just needed some decent ball etc. And he DID go looking for the ball aswell...he didnt stay glued to his own wing despite people claiming to the contrary.

I rate OHC and am delighted he's meant to have signed with Tigers but struggle to see the standout skillset that would make him better than Malins.

Murley I think is more rounded than OHC but if it's defense that folk have an issue with from Malins I struggle to see him being stronger in that regard either. Definitely more pace and great feet but not a standout defensive winger. Similar with Arundell, who I would be starting for his attack, but I don't see as any better than Malins defensively.

Very few wingers are strong defensively though. Ones that are rock solid defensively at international level and electric in attack are even rarer still - Kolbe and Penaud probably the best there. Back three players are isolated more often hence mistakes are more obvious, hence commented on, but so often once they are isolated the system inside them has aready failed which is the bigger problem.

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Post by Geordie Mon 27 Feb 2023, 3:43 pm

king_carlos wrote:
Geordie wrote:Maybe OHC just needed some decent ball etc. And he DID go looking for the ball aswell...he didnt stay glued to his own wing despite people claiming to the contrary.

I rate OHC and am delighted he's meant to have signed with Tigers but struggle to see the standout skillset that would make him better than Malins.

Murley I think is more rounded than OHC but if it's defense that folk have an issue with from Malins I struggle to see him being stronger in that regard either. Definitely more pace and great feet but not a standout defensive winger. Similar with Arundell, who I would be starting for his attack, but I don't see as any better than Malins defensively.

Very few wingers are strong defensively though. Ones that are rock solid defensively at international level and electric in attack are even rarer still - Kolbe and Penaud probably the best there. Back three players are isolated more often hence mistakes are more obvious, hence commented on, but so often once they are isolated the system inside them has aready failed which is the bigger problem.
Mateo Carreras is rapidly joining them....

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Post by Poorfour Mon 27 Feb 2023, 4:23 pm

king_carlos wrote:Murley I think is more rounded than OHC but if it's defense that folk have an issue with from Malins I struggle to see him being stronger in that regard either. Definitely more pace and great feet but not a standout defensive winger. Similar with Arundell, who I would be starting for his attack, but I don't see as any better than Malins defensively.

Murley's very good defensively. He's not a guy who makes highlights reel tackles, but his positioning is excellent and he's surprisingly strong in the tackle. His key point of difference (apart from genuine pace) is how low his error count is in both attack and defence.
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Post by doctor_grey Mon 27 Feb 2023, 5:43 pm

Unclear wrote:
Geordie wrote:Wow....

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/sport/rugby/rugby-news/twelve-welsh-rugby-players-earning-26323668.amp

What a sh*t show.  Personally I think the rest of the URC needs to find some way to help in the short term.  It can't stand even one season with 4 completely under-resourced teams.  I've no idea what could be done to help as loans are only going to push the apocalypse slightly further down the line, but this is terrible news both for the URC and rugby in NH.  
Agree, total sh!t show.  The people who own the Principality Stadium are sitting on all this equity but can't pay their players a living wage?  I think the people who run the finances at the WRU need to provide a thorough explanation.  

Makes me wonder if the WRU is solvent?  When companies can't pay their employees, bankruptcy is never too far behind and far too frequently ends badly for everyone involved.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 27 Feb 2023, 5:48 pm

king_carlos wrote:
Geordie wrote:Maybe OHC just needed some decent ball etc. And he DID go looking for the ball aswell...he didnt stay glued to his own wing despite people claiming to the contrary.

I rate OHC and am delighted he's meant to have signed with Tigers but struggle to see the standout skillset that would make him better than Malins.

Murley I think is more rounded than OHC but if it's defense that folk have an issue with from Malins I struggle to see him being stronger in that regard either. Definitely more pace and great feet but not a standout defensive winger. Similar with Arundell, who I would be starting for his attack, but I don't see as any better than Malins defensively.

Very few wingers are strong defensively though. Ones that are rock solid defensively at international level and electric in attack are even rarer still - Kolbe and Penaud probably the best there. Back three players are isolated more often hence mistakes are more obvious, hence commented on, but so often once they are isolated the system inside them has aready failed which is the bigger problem.

Exactly......Borthwick obviously wants somebody with FB like skills on one wing....if not two.

Look, Malins is obviously not the future, but he's got the jersey because of what he can do, not what he can't do. I think people are being harsh on the set-up as a whole. The set piece has improved.....defence is slowly getting there and attack....well attack takes time, a lot of time. We've had 3 games and we've seen steady improvements each time.

I'm actually really enjoying what Borthwick is building......if you look at Tigers, he did pretty much the same thing. He sorted out the basics, introduced a strong kicking game and then the attack started clicking later. He's had 3 games.......what do people want? His sides to need to be able to kick well.....and compete on the kick chase, we're doing that.

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Post by Yoda Mon 27 Feb 2023, 6:22 pm

Sgt_Pooly wrote:
king_carlos wrote:
Geordie wrote:Maybe OHC just needed some decent ball etc. And he DID go looking for the ball aswell...he didnt stay glued to his own wing despite people claiming to the contrary.

I rate OHC and am delighted he's meant to have signed with Tigers but struggle to see the standout skillset that would make him better than Malins.

Yep agree. Malins is a fullback (very noticeable) and was good in many areas sat but against stronger oppos is solid enough? Wingers have to be strong in the air now the game has moved onto pressurised contestable kicks. Who would replace malins.... Arundel, get him blooded early and give him time and he will be a worldy. I think Murley and malins are a bit vanilla with notable qualities in their game but game changers?

Murley I think is more rounded than OHC but if it's defense that folk have an issue with from Malins I struggle to see him being stronger in that regard either. Definitely more pace and great feet but not a standout defensive winger. Similar with Arundell, who I would be starting for his attack, but I don't see as any better than Malins defensively.

Very few wingers are strong defensively though. Ones that are rock solid defensively at international level and electric in attack are even rarer still - Kolbe and Penaud probably the best there. Back three players are isolated more often hence mistakes are more obvious, hence commented on, but so often once they are isolated the system inside them has aready failed which is the bigger problem.

Exactly......Borthwick obviously wants somebody with FB like skills on one wing....if not two.

Look, Malins is obviously not the future, but he's got the jersey because of what he can do, not what he can't do. I think people are being harsh on the set-up as a whole. The set piece has improved.....defence is slowly getting there and attack....well attack takes time, a lot of time. We've had 3 games and we've seen steady improvements each time.

I'm actually really enjoying what Borthwick is building......if you look at Tigers, he did pretty much the same thing. He sorted out the basics, introduced a strong kicking game and then the attack started clicking later. He's had 3 games.......what do people want? His sides to need to be able to kick well.....and compete on the kick chase, we're doing that.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 27 Feb 2023, 6:55 pm

I think about 80% of what Borthwick has done so far is great. He's got a pack that is working well (albeit against the weaker 6N opponents - the next two matches will show how far they've come), the defence is starting to tighten up, and some aspects of the attack are working very well.

England have generally not had much problem making yards in midfield and breaking into the 22, the rolling maul and close range forward attack isn't too bad, and we've seen flashes of rapid fire recycling and good choices to create space. The tries out wide have tended to come from multiple phases with several players stepping in as playmaker.

What worries me is the ceiling for the current backline. France and Ireland will give us an indicator of how high it is. I worry that faced with a more organised and aggressive defence we won't be able to rely on rapid phase play and don't have enough creativity in the backline to spark the attack under those conditions.
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Post by Sgt_Pooly Mon 27 Feb 2023, 7:03 pm

I'm probably with you there Poorfour, but what more could SB do? I rate Smith very highly....but I don't think he's the answer at the minute. I honestly think even Farrell is keeping the 10 shirt warm for Ford who SB knows and trusts.

Yes....I'd love us to have 2 exciting wingers, but they need to execute the game plan currently. I think we're in for a structured game plan, at least till after the WC, when things should change.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 27 Feb 2023, 7:36 pm

The question is why Borthwick - even with Nick Evans on his coaching team - doesn't trust Smith even enough to give him a decent run against Italy.

Since the RWC his record is comparable to Farrell's whether alone or apart. I also think that of the current crop of fly halves he's the most capable of opening up a defence off turnover ball or in a single phase. If Borthwick really is planning to go back to Ford then I worry that it won't be enough against the best defences.

After the Australia series, Gatland made a comment to the effect that Smith would need game time to adapt to the increased pace of international rugby but that if he did then by the RWC he would likely be seeing the game in slow motion. That isn't going to happen if he doesn't get the game time.
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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 27 Feb 2023, 10:01 pm

I suspect that Borthwick has been opting for Farrell because so much of the team is being rebuilt and he wanted some experience and a leader for stability. It's turned out fairly badly but at least we now have a centre combination that works, two good scrum halfs, a coherent lock combination and a balanced backrow. Scrum works and the back three is slowly coming together.

Farrell isn't going to last much longer but it seems Borthwick has little confidence in Smith, maybe Evans has doubts if there's not experienced options at 9 and 12. Once the backline and game plan are working as wanted then maybe he'll come back in. Maybe Ford will reach match sharpness before then and it'll all be a moot point as we get our best all round flyhalf back in the 10 shirt.

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Post by Sgt_Pooly Tue 28 Feb 2023, 12:18 am

As much as I rate Smith, he can't be the easiest 10 to build a structured attack around. He's a bit like Finn....he does things you don't often expect. With only a limited number of games, I can see SB thinking in not going with him tbh.

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