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Scotland - The Generic Moaning Thread 2024

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Post by George Carlin Wed 13 Sep 2023, 8:22 pm

First topic message reminder :

Scotland v Tonga
Sunday, September 24
Stade de Nice - 4.45pm kick-off.

Scotland v Romania
Saturday, September 30
Stade Pierre-Mauroy, Lille - 8pm kick-off

Scotland v Paddy Cousins
Saturday, October 7
Stade de France - 8pm kick-off

***

The 20 teams are divided into four groups as follows:

Pool A – New Zealand, France, Italy, Uruguay, Namibia

Pool B – South Africa, Ireland, Scotland, Tonga, Romania

Pool C – Wales, Australia, Fiji, Georgia, Portugal

Pool D – England, Japan, Argentina, Samoa, Chile

The top two teams from each pool advance to the quarter-finals. The teams who finish third secure automatic qualification for the 2027 World Cup, which is scheduled to take place in Australia in 2027.

The quarter-final draw is as follows:

QF1 – Pool C winner v Pool D runner-up

QF 2 – Pool B winner v Pool A runner-up

QF 3 – Pool D winner v Pool C runner-up

QF 4 – Pool A winner v Pool B runner-up

That means if Scotland manage to progress from the group stages they would be likely to face New Zealand or France in the quarter-finals if results go as expected.

The semi-final draw is as follows:

Winner of QF 1 v Winner of QF2

Winner of QF 3 v Winner of QF 4

The 2023 Rugby World Cup final takes place on Saturday, October 28, at the Stade de France, kick-off 8pm.


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Post by BigGee Mon 08 Jan 2024, 11:54 am

formerly known as Sam wrote:It's not a guarantee that Zander will retire early. Dan Cole was playing senior rugby from 20 and is still a regular 16 years later. This 6N will mark 14 years since his international debut. Luck and how committed they are to looking after their body are pretty key.

Murray McCallum is at Falcons and getting game time if Scotland are particularly desperate.

How has Will Hurd been playing for Tigers?

I see he is on the bench most weeks, has he the ability to step up?

He could even be a bolter for thus 6N squad now that Sebastian is injured.

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Post by RDW Mon 08 Jan 2024, 11:55 am

EWT Spoons wrote:On the Toonie search for SQ players, whilst it's great he's chatting with lads who are SQ, we need a new front row, or at least more depth there.

Schoeman and Sutherland are good LH options, but Suz is still struggling for club form and after those two the cupboard is pretty bare.

Hooker - Ashman is young and still developing, Turner has a horrible habit of throwing himself head first at opponents knees etc and injuring himself.  Mathews isn't particularly good (sorry Glasgow fans), he's brilliant at the back of a maul, but realistically it's the group of lads ahead of him doing the majority of the work in that scenario.  He's not especially brilliant at hooking and his darts are so so, very good club player, not really an international, especially as he's already 30.  Not really much depth after that.

Tighthead - Nel played nearly the full game in the 1872 at Murrayfield, which shows how little faith is placed on Rae who got the last few mins, and rightly so, the lad is bang average (no offence to him, but he's an okay player, but if you'd rather stick with a 37 year old for 70 odd mins rather than bring him off the bench, it shows his quality) other than that there is no one who is SQ at Edinburgh worth mentioning.  At Glasgow, there's Fagerson who is so far ahead as first choice for Scotland it's mad, but he started playing so early in his career that he's not going to have the longevity of the like of Nel, I would be amazed if he makes it to his mid 30s before the toll of playing forces him to retire.  Behind him, there's not exactly a plethora of TH talent either.

So whilst looking at scrumhalves and backs is fine, work needs to be done very soon to look at front row options.


Very good points. Toonie has brought in a lot of athletic backrows, scrum halves, wingers etc but it's the big barsteward forwards that win international rugby matches, and they're very much in short supply. Front row is definitely a weak area going forwards. A word for Jamie Bhatti though who is very experience now - he'll likely bench in the 6N over Sutherland.

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Post by EWT Spoons Mon 08 Jan 2024, 12:20 pm

You’re probably right, but I wouldn’t say Bhatti was particularly good. Yes, he’s experienced, but he’s not a player coming on where I would say it improves what we have on the pitch. He’s a decent club player and a passable International, but he wouldn’t get near any other 6n side, with the possible exception of Italy.

He’s also 30 so again closer to the end of his career than beginning.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 08 Jan 2024, 12:39 pm

BigGee wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:It's not a guarantee that Zander will retire early. Dan Cole was playing senior rugby from 20 and is still a regular 16 years later. This 6N will mark 14 years since his international debut. Luck and how committed they are to looking after their body are pretty key.

Murray McCallum is at Falcons and getting game time if Scotland are particularly desperate.

How has Will Hurd been playing for Tigers?

I see he is on the bench most weeks, has he the ability to step up?

He could even be a bolter for thus 6N squad now that Sebastian is injured.
Hurd is a solid player, naturally talented scrummager. He's not the most active around the park though. Props can tend to be targeted more for that at international level. Even the "set-piece specialist" props at the top level actually have huge work rates even if they aren't flashy. Cole being an obvious example. He doesn't carry like Andrew Porter but his tackle stats are always high even at international level and very high at club standard. I'm not sure Hurd has that in the tank.

I'd consider McCallum and Hurd on a similar level having watched a decent amount of both. Being a Tigers fan with Hurd and being a former Edinburgh season ticket holder with Murray.

I think Spoons description of Bhatti fits with both those THs as well.

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Post by bsando Mon 08 Jan 2024, 12:56 pm

It is a bit joke we’re approaching another six nations and neither Glasgow nor Edinburgh have provided any new options in that front row. So does that mean we’ll see Kebble involved as a tighthead? The only new player I think deserves a shot in the squad is McBeth, but surely there’s got to be some other options to help fill out the wider squad.

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Post by EWT Spoons Mon 08 Jan 2024, 1:04 pm

bsando wrote:It is a bit joke we’re approaching another six nations and neither Glasgow nor Edinburgh have provided any new options in that front row. So does that mean we’ll see Kebble involved as a tighthead? The only new player I think deserves a shot in the squad is McBeth, but surely there’s got to be some other options to help fill out the wider squad.

I'm not saying he will be good enough, but Venter qualifies for Scotland in Feb 26. He'll be 28 then.

But absolutely agree I don't think enough is being done to bring through young scottish lads who play in the front row.

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Post by sensisball Tue 09 Jan 2024, 9:40 am

Another area of concern is the back row. Currently Matt Fagerson, jack Dempsey and Rory Darge are injured.
Darge is going to is all the 6N's with a second bad knee injury, not sure when the other two will be able to play.

These injuries all but guarantee that Jamie Ritchie will retain the captaincy, which will continue to have a negative impact until he learns to communicate more effectively with the referee.


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Post by BigGee Tue 09 Jan 2024, 9:44 am

From the Glasgow injury bulletin this morning, it does not sound like Dempsey, Fagerson nor Steyn are that far away from being fit.

It sounds like they should all be ready for the 6N.

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Post by bsando Tue 09 Jan 2024, 10:07 am

Dempsey and fagerson probably needed a rest anyway after a long 2022/2023 season and World Cup. It might actually work out better for Scotland that they’ve both been injured. Especially for Dempsey who only had a cheek injury and should still be in good condition fitness wise.

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Post by BigGee Tue 09 Jan 2024, 7:46 pm

BigGee wrote:The news on Rory Darge much more positive than feared, no major structural damage to the knee, just strained ligaments. He will hopefully be back in time for the start of the 6N.

Dempsey may play next week and Fagerson not far behind.

Jamie Dobie starting to run again now, but won't play before the 6N, so presumably will miss the furst squad.

That probably opens up a slot for another SH to come in. Maybe Gus Warr?


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Post by Highland Shaun Tue 09 Jan 2024, 11:20 pm

How many fly halves do we need 🤔🤔, mail plus says we're trying for an audacious bid to lure Fergus Burke over here so I presume that means he's eligible for us and won't sit well with Fin Smith if he indeed is!!

https://www.mailplus.co.uk/scottish-edition/sport/rugby/338086/exclusive-scotland-in-bid-to-lure-kiwi-fly-half-burke?contentLayout=Scottish%20Rugby

Same paper says it's a week today that squad is announced, Rob Robertson column about eligibility for anyone wanting to read it 😀.

Oh and excellent news regarding Darge from the offside line so all is well perhaps but then again, Mr rugby analyst from YouTube big style disses us by saying our 6N record is as bad as he thought, in fact worse but he certainly isn't Anti Scottish like his fellow English fans as he states on his video that he actually wants us to win 6N if England don't!


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Post by formerly known as Sam Wed 10 Jan 2024, 11:12 am

king_carlos wrote:
BigGee wrote:
formerly known as Sam wrote:It's not a guarantee that Zander will retire early. Dan Cole was playing senior rugby from 20 and is still a regular 16 years later. This 6N will mark 14 years since his international debut. Luck and how committed they are to looking after their body are pretty key.

Murray McCallum is at Falcons and getting game time if Scotland are particularly desperate.

How has Will Hurd been playing for Tigers?

I see he is on the bench most weeks, has he the ability to step up?

He could even be a bolter for thus 6N squad now that Sebastian is injured.
Hurd is a solid player, naturally talented scrummager. He's not the most active around the park though. Props can tend to be targeted more for that at international level. Even the "set-piece specialist" props at the top level actually have huge work rates even if they aren't flashy. Cole being an obvious example. He doesn't carry like Andrew Porter but his tackle stats are always high even at international level and very high at club standard. I'm not sure Hurd has that in the tank.

I'd consider McCallum and Hurd on a similar level having watched a decent amount of both. Being a Tigers fan with Hurd and being a former Edinburgh season ticket holder with Murray.

I think Spoons description of Bhatti fits with both those THs as well.

I don't think Hurd is likely to be an option for Scotland at the minute. As KC says he's a solid club option, not particularly mobile though his tackle technique is good.

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Post by George Carlin Thu 11 Jan 2024, 7:02 am

EWT Spoons wrote:
Tramptastic wrote:Whats the issue with the main stadium? is it foundation/lifespan of concrete and structures? If its not these issues then you could certainly crack on with investing in hotels etc on the north side of MF

Age mate.  The average lifespan of a stadium is around 30 - 50 years.  The East stand is around 40 years old and the rest is in it's 30s, it also needs renovation in general.  So within the next 5-10 years there is probably going to be a need to do something with the stadium, whether that's renovating it, or thinking longer term and making it a multi use facility, which I'm not sure if totally achievable in it's current format
That is an accurate, technical answer. The other answer (and let's face it, there are plenty of interior designers in Edinburgh, if you know what I mean) is that inside Murrayfield broadly has the charm of visting a 70s multi-storey carpark. My Canadian wife was not comforted by the state of the ladies' bathroom either. It's well worth a modernisation - Dodson is probably better at that stuff than the other parts of his job, like (a) trying to look like he cares about grass roots rugby and (b) bringing the SRU's gearing down.

When I go to Murrayfield, I always think of Sydney Opera House. Lovely on the outside, a surprisingly mundate concrete block inside.
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Post by RDW Thu 11 Jan 2024, 8:11 am

George Carlin wrote:
EWT Spoons wrote:
Tramptastic wrote:Whats the issue with the main stadium? is it foundation/lifespan of concrete and structures? If its not these issues then you could certainly crack on with investing in hotels etc on the north side of MF

Age mate.  The average lifespan of a stadium is around 30 - 50 years.  The East stand is around 40 years old and the rest is in it's 30s, it also needs renovation in general.  So within the next 5-10 years there is probably going to be a need to do something with the stadium, whether that's renovating it, or thinking longer term and making it a multi use facility, which I'm not sure if totally achievable in it's current format
That is an accurate, technical answer. The other answer (and let's face it, there are plenty of interior designers in Edinburgh, if you know what I mean) is that inside Murrayfield broadly has the charm of visting a 70s multi-storey carpark. My Canadian wife was not comforted by the state of the ladies' bathroom either. It's well worth a modernisation - Dodson is probably better at that stuff than the other parts of his job, like (a) trying to look like he cares about grass roots rugby and (b) bringing the SRU's gearing down.

When I go to Murrayfield, I always think of Sydney Opera House. Lovely on the outside, a surprisingly mundate concrete block inside.

Woah! And I thought you were a man of culture. Sydney Opera House looks incredible inside too. Although as a structural engineer who loves concrete I may be biased.

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Post by NeilyBroon Thu 11 Jan 2024, 8:25 am

RDW wrote:
George Carlin wrote:
EWT Spoons wrote:
Tramptastic wrote:Whats the issue with the main stadium? is it foundation/lifespan of concrete and structures? If its not these issues then you could certainly crack on with investing in hotels etc on the north side of MF

Age mate.  The average lifespan of a stadium is around 30 - 50 years.  The East stand is around 40 years old and the rest is in it's 30s, it also needs renovation in general.  So within the next 5-10 years there is probably going to be a need to do something with the stadium, whether that's renovating it, or thinking longer term and making it a multi use facility, which I'm not sure if totally achievable in it's current format
That is an accurate, technical answer. The other answer (and let's face it, there are plenty of interior designers in Edinburgh, if you know what I mean) is that inside Murrayfield broadly has the charm of visting a 70s multi-storey carpark. My Canadian wife was not comforted by the state of the ladies' bathroom either. It's well worth a modernisation - Dodson is probably better at that stuff than the other parts of his job, like (a) trying to look like he cares about grass roots rugby and (b) bringing the SRU's gearing down.

When I go to Murrayfield, I always think of Sydney Opera House. Lovely on the outside, a surprisingly mundate concrete block inside.

Woah! And I thought you were a man of culture. Sydney Opera House looks incredible inside too. Although as a structural engineer who loves concrete I may be biased.

I think you'd struggle to find a stadium that wasn't mundane concrete, unless you fancy the temporary wooden stand that's been at the rec for years?

Nothing like that DIY build feeling!

If you want to see concrete, Twickenham is the Barbican of rugby stadiums.

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Post by bsando Fri 12 Jan 2024, 10:09 am

So Dodson is stepping aside early this summer to make room for the next CEO at the start of a new World Cup cycle. Who would be a good fit for the job after Dodson?

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Post by Tramptastic Fri 12 Jan 2024, 10:16 am

Oh wow didnt see that coming! thought he would cling on like a limpet till the inevitable death of the Sun.

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Post by RDW Fri 12 Jan 2024, 10:17 am

Definitely didn't see that coming! Fair to say his reign will very much be seen with mixed emotions.

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Post by Tramptastic Fri 12 Jan 2024, 10:51 am

To be fair when he came in, Scottish professional rugby was in the doldrums. He changed the investment and business strategy, timed perfectly with a genuinely competitive generation of scottish players coming through the system.

Crowds out murrayfield have gone from 30,000 watching scotland v the boks (!) to close to sell outs for most games, including against minnows like Georgia and England.

Our player development is shan, grassroots needs additional support with playing numbers down, Dodsons PR could be abysmal and Cotter being booted still sticks in the craw.

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Post by RDW Fri 12 Jan 2024, 10:52 am

Tramptastic wrote:To be fair when he came in, Scottish professional rugby was in the doldrums. He changed the investment and business strategy, timed perfectly with a genuinely competitive generation of scottish players coming through the system.

Crowds out murrayfield have gone from 30,000 watching scotland v the boks (!) to close to sell outs for most games, including against minnows like Georgia and England.

Our player development is shan, grassroots needs additional support with playing numbers down, Dodsons PR could be abysmal and Cotter being booted still sticks in the craw.

laughing

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Post by BigGee Fri 12 Jan 2024, 1:37 pm

The offside line predictably sticking the boot into him!

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Post by EST Fri 12 Jan 2024, 2:30 pm

Mixed feelings towards Dodson, more negative than positive. He was commercially astute, but gave no impression that he cared about the base of the playing pyramid one iota, preferring to buy his way out of trouble through project players and kiwis with Scottish grannies. No doubt that has a place in the modern game, but it needs to complement a thriving development pathway - of which Scotland's is certainly the weakest out of the Tier one nations and very probably weaker than than the best in Tier two. We are starting to see the consequences of that disinterest in the performance of our U20 team, something that will define the senior team for the next generation.

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Post by bsando Fri 12 Jan 2024, 3:13 pm

You just hope that it’ll not take too much effort to rectify. Wales and England both have their own problems. Although we’re undoubtedly failing to produce a strong pathway to professionalism at least our pro teams are financially stable and well funded. That surely had a part in gaining players like Healy, Skinner, Lang, Dempsey etc. The only way I see us bridging the gap is making the super series better each season so we can develop more stars and keep more players involved until they have an opportunity to make the step up.

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Post by Hazel Sapling Fri 12 Jan 2024, 3:35 pm

Maybe part of the struggles we are seeing with our pathways for young players is the difficulty of getting gametime at Glasgow and Edinburgh. Glasgow have been a strong side for a decade now and Edinburgh have been strong on paper. Young players such as Bruce Flockhart, Matt Smith and Nathan Chamberlain were not given consistent opportunities for extended periods because the standard was to be immediately good enough to compete rather than for them to get through the growing pains.

The pathway for local talent is clogged and Dodson has tried to unblock it a bit with the Super Six/Nicois/London Scots/Old Glory as we could not afford a third team. You can't say he has not tried, though maybe only Super Six can be considered a success.

Dodson took advantage of Scotstoun being built for the Commonwealth games to get Glasgow a home that it has now outgrown and got Edinburgh an appropriate stadium (took longer than it should have but he did it). Women's rugby has professional contracts and semi-pro sides. None of that happens without a solid financial base that Dodson built.

Overall Dodson has been a boon for Scottish rugby but his time to leave had come. The Cattigan affair, the breakdown of the London Scots relationship and questions about the hiring/firing of staff (including Russell's Dad if memory serves) was starting to become restrictive.

The next CEO has to figure out getting Glasgow a new stadium, a Murrayfield redevelopment, building up the Super Six (including maybe rationalising that three clubs in Edinburgh and none in Dundee, Perth, Aberdeen or Inverness is a poor strategy) and rebuilding the grassroots. It will be a tall order and hopefully it can attract someone with significant management experience. Wasn't the former head of Aberdeen Asset Management a big Scotland rugby fan?

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Post by demosthenes Fri 12 Jan 2024, 4:52 pm

Hazel Sapling wrote:Maybe part of the struggles we are seeing with our pathways for young players is the difficulty of getting gametime at Glasgow and Edinburgh. Glasgow have been a strong side for a decade now and Edinburgh have been strong on paper. Young players such as Bruce Flockhart, Matt Smith and Nathan Chamberlain were not given consistent opportunities for extended periods because the standard was to be immediately good enough to compete rather than for them to get through the growing pains.

The pathway for local talent is clogged and Dodson has tried to unblock it a bit with the Super Six/Nicois/London Scots/Old Glory as we could not afford a third team. You can't say he has not tried, though maybe only Super Six can be considered a success.

Dodson took advantage of Scotstoun being built for the Commonwealth games to get Glasgow a home that it has now outgrown and got Edinburgh an appropriate stadium (took longer than it should have but he did it). Women's rugby has professional contracts and semi-pro sides. None of that happens without a solid financial base that Dodson built.

Overall Dodson has been a boon for Scottish rugby but his time to leave had come. The Cattigan affair, the breakdown of the London Scots relationship and questions about the hiring/firing of staff (including Russell's Dad if memory serves) was starting to become restrictive.

The next CEO has to figure out getting Glasgow a new stadium, a Murrayfield redevelopment, building up the Super Six (including maybe rationalising that three clubs in Edinburgh and none in Dundee, Perth, Aberdeen or Inverness is a poor strategy) and rebuilding the grassroots. It will be a tall order and hopefully it can attract someone with significant management experience. Wasn't the former head of Aberdeen Asset Management a big Scotland rugby fan?

I think the next CEO needs to have the financial background / nous to put structures in place to allow others below in the pyramid to look after property redevelopment; growing the pro / semi-pro game (including womens); and rebuilding / reinvigorating the grassroots, especially at youth level. You cannot really expect someone to have the expertise in all of these disparate areas, plus figureheading the organisation and dealing with day-to-day matters.

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Post by RDW Fri 12 Jan 2024, 8:38 pm

demosthenes wrote:
Hazel Sapling wrote:Maybe part of the struggles we are seeing with our pathways for young players is the difficulty of getting gametime at Glasgow and Edinburgh. Glasgow have been a strong side for a decade now and Edinburgh have been strong on paper. Young players such as Bruce Flockhart, Matt Smith and Nathan Chamberlain were not given consistent opportunities for extended periods because the standard was to be immediately good enough to compete rather than for them to get through the growing pains.

The pathway for local talent is clogged and Dodson has tried to unblock it a bit with the Super Six/Nicois/London Scots/Old Glory as we could not afford a third team. You can't say he has not tried, though maybe only Super Six can be considered a success.

Dodson took advantage of Scotstoun being built for the Commonwealth games to get Glasgow a home that it has now outgrown and got Edinburgh an appropriate stadium (took longer than it should have but he did it). Women's rugby has professional contracts and semi-pro sides. None of that happens without a solid financial base that Dodson built.

Overall Dodson has been a boon for Scottish rugby but his time to leave had come. The Cattigan affair, the breakdown of the London Scots relationship and questions about the hiring/firing of staff (including Russell's Dad if memory serves) was starting to become restrictive.

The next CEO has to figure out getting Glasgow a new stadium, a Murrayfield redevelopment, building up the Super Six (including maybe rationalising that three clubs in Edinburgh and none in Dundee, Perth, Aberdeen or Inverness is a poor strategy) and rebuilding the grassroots. It will be a tall order and hopefully it can attract someone with significant management experience. Wasn't the former head of Aberdeen Asset Management a big Scotland rugby fan?

I think the next CEO needs to have the financial background / nous to put structures in place to allow others below in the pyramid to look after property redevelopment; growing the pro / semi-pro game (including womens); and rebuilding / reinvigorating the grassroots, especially at youth level.  You cannot really expect someone to have the expertise in all of these disparate areas, plus figureheading the organisation and dealing with day-to-day matters.

Exactly - the CEO provides strategic direction and makes the key appointments of the people whose ultimate jobs will be to deliver these things. If anything those people are more important.

I actually think strong commercial ability is the number 1 trait we need. We can't achieve any of these things without the finances to do it. Look at the mess the WRU have got themselves into.

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Post by RDW Fri 12 Jan 2024, 8:44 pm

Btw should we be worried for the 6N that our first choice centre partnership basically haven't played together since the WC, and one of them has generally been playing on the wing?

I posted a Twitter thread a while ago about how crucially important a centre pairing is to a team, and that experience of playing together is fundamental.

Stafford McDowell is a good solid club man but I don't see him as international class.

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Post by NeilyBroon Fri 12 Jan 2024, 9:24 pm

RDW wrote:Btw should we be worried for the 6N that our first choice centre partnership basically haven't played together since the WC, and one of them has generally been playing on the wing?

I posted a Twitter thread a while ago about how crucially important a centre pairing is to a team, and that experience of playing together is fundamental.

Stafford McDowell is a good solid club man but I don't see him as international class.

Not too worried, I think redpath slots in well and has a partnership with Russell. One of any of our centres outside him would work.

As alluded to earlier in the thread the forwards should be the worry. I'm surprised our forwards coaching set up hasn't been shaken up. Dalziel hasn't exactly made the most of our strengths up front, but our weaknesses have definitely been exposed.

Also there must be a few big lumps with Scottish grannies? We're not exactly particularly big peoples so the more genetically dilute the better. Gone are the days where the pack wasn't a worry while the highlights in the backs were strictly limited to hair. What I'd give for Jason white, chunk and Hines now.

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Post by RDW Fri 12 Jan 2024, 9:52 pm

NeilyBroon wrote:
RDW wrote:Btw should we be worried for the 6N that our first choice centre partnership basically haven't played together since the WC, and one of them has generally been playing on the wing?

I posted a Twitter thread a while ago about how crucially important a centre pairing is to a team, and that experience of playing together is fundamental.

Stafford McDowell is a good solid club man but I don't see him as international class.

Not too worried, I think redpath slots in well and has a partnership with Russell. One of any of our centres outside him would work.

As alluded to earlier in the thread the forwards should be the worry. I'm surprised our forwards coaching set up hasn't been shaken up. Dalziel hasn't exactly made the most of our strengths up front, but our weaknesses have definitely been exposed.

Also there must be a few big lumps with Scottish grannies? We're not exactly particularly big peoples so the more genetically dilute the better. Gone are the days where the pack wasn't a worry while the highlights in the backs were strictly limited to hair. What I'd give for Jason white, chunk and Hines now.

I guess.it depends but Toonie's target for this 6N is. If he sees this as a genuine chance to win it then he's got to go tried and tested and those who have been in the trenches together for a long time. That's what you need to win championships. Huwipoluto have played the vast majority of our matches in the last few years, with Harris not far behind, so any change from that then comes into the development category. Redpath, McDowall, Hutchinson etc are still very inexperienced at international level.

I really like Redpath and the different dimension he can bring to our attack, but our gameplan and attacking plays then need to build to his strengths. That's why Hutchison's had such sporadic involvement as he's been ask to shoehorn into a style that didn't suit his abilities.

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Post by Highland Shaun Fri 12 Jan 2024, 11:41 pm

Squad announced on Tuesday at some point so that gives us something to discuss other than Dodson news 😁.

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Post by NeilyBroon Sat 13 Jan 2024, 10:02 am

RDW wrote:
NeilyBroon wrote:
RDW wrote:Btw should we be worried for the 6N that our first choice centre partnership basically haven't played together since the WC, and one of them has generally been playing on the wing?

I posted a Twitter thread a while ago about how crucially important a centre pairing is to a team, and that experience of playing together is fundamental.

Stafford McDowell is a good solid club man but I don't see him as international class.

Not too worried, I think redpath slots in well and has a partnership with Russell. One of any of our centres outside him would work.

As alluded to earlier in the thread the forwards should be the worry. I'm surprised our forwards coaching set up hasn't been shaken up. Dalziel hasn't exactly made the most of our strengths up front, but our weaknesses have definitely been exposed.

Also there must be a few big lumps with Scottish grannies? We're not exactly particularly big peoples so the more genetically dilute the better. Gone are the days where the pack wasn't a worry while the highlights in the backs were strictly limited to hair. What I'd give for Jason white, chunk and Hines now.

I guess.it depends but Toonie's target for this 6N is. If he sees this as a genuine chance to win it then he's got to go tried and tested and those who have been in the trenches together for a long time. That's what you need to win championships. Huwipoluto have played the vast majority of our matches in the last few years, with Harris not far behind, so any change from that then comes into the development category. Redpath, McDowall, Hutchinson etc are still very inexperienced at international level.

I really like Redpath and the different dimension he can bring to our attack, but our gameplan and attacking plays then need to build to his strengths. That's why Hutchison's had such sporadic involvement as he's been ask to shoehorn into a style that didn't suit his abilities.

I think toonie needs to look at the combos that are working currently outside the international scene. It's not like redpath has no caps either and the outside backs will all be experienced. We're going to have to take a leap of faith at some point. It could be argued that our scrum half conundrum has been born out of conservative selection. When he went bold and picked white it paid dividends.

Once huwipolotu was found out by the bigger teams our attack just fell apart, so I'm not convinced it's a fix all. Different teams for different opposition and all that.

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Post by bsando Sat 13 Jan 2024, 7:48 pm

I'm long on a Redpath/Tuipulotu centre partnership. Huwipulotu had it's time last season but it feels to me at least that times have moved on. With Russell and Redpath starting the majority of their games together this season at Bath and Tuipulotu looking very solid at outside centre at Glasgow, swapping out Jones and bringing in Redpath seems like the simplest, most obvious change to make in that backline.

Not that it matters because we need more props!


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Post by RDW Sun 14 Jan 2024, 8:39 am

https://www.bbc.com/sport/rugby-union/67962116?fbclid=IwAR3i34I9giD8vxGfjOxodA9DeCgQjPxZbe3YrGCaZl5z9qzCEVpom95B5bc

Unexpectedly, a bit more balanced conclusion from Tom English.

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Post by BigGee Sun 14 Jan 2024, 8:45 am

I read that yesterday and I think Uncle Tom Grumpy got that just about right.

Even the Glasgow Warriors forum, not known for its calm analysis of situations, has been generally supportive of his time in charge.

Whatever everyone feels about him though, probably most agree his time was done now and a change is a good thing.

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Post by jimbopip Sun 14 Jan 2024, 12:29 pm

12 for Scotland?
It can be argued that Stafford is keeping Wee Shona out of the Glasgow 12 jersey. Wee Shona is keeping Shug out of the 13 jersey.
Redpath and Dancer are on fire at Bath.
Hutchinson is tearing it up at Saints.
And Chris Harris is....still Chris Harris.

The Tombola must be due a service the amount of spinning it must be doing at the moment.

of course we all know that in his heart of hearts Toonie really wants

10 Blarehorn
12 Lang
13 Harris.
and a back three of

11 Shug
14 Seaman
15 Duhan

You know that's what he really, really wants.

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Post by bsando Sun 14 Jan 2024, 12:42 pm

Hazel Sapling wrote:Maybe part of the struggles we are seeing with our pathways for young players is the difficulty of getting gametime at Glasgow and Edinburgh. Glasgow have been a strong side for a decade now and Edinburgh have been strong on paper. Young players such as Bruce Flockhart, Matt Smith and Nathan Chamberlain were not given consistent opportunities for extended periods because the standard was to be immediately good enough to compete rather than for them to get through the growing pains.

The pathway for local talent is clogged and Dodson has tried to unblock it a bit with the Super Six/Nicois/London Scots/Old Glory as we could not afford a third team. You can't say he has not tried, though maybe only Super Six can be considered a success.

Dodson took advantage of Scotstoun being built for the Commonwealth games to get Glasgow a home that it has now outgrown and got Edinburgh an appropriate stadium (took longer than it should have but he did it). Women's rugby has professional contracts and semi-pro sides. None of that happens without a solid financial base that Dodson built.

Overall Dodson has been a boon for Scottish rugby but his time to leave had come. The Cattigan affair, the breakdown of the London Scots relationship and questions about the hiring/firing of staff (including Russell's Dad if memory serves) was starting to become restrictive.

The next CEO has to figure out getting Glasgow a new stadium, a Murrayfield redevelopment, building up the Super Six (including maybe rationalising that three clubs in Edinburgh and none in Dundee, Perth, Aberdeen or Inverness is a poor strategy) and rebuilding the grassroots. It will be a tall order and hopefully it can attract someone with significant management experience. Wasn't the former head of Aberdeen Asset Management a big Scotland rugby fan?

Well said Sapling. There is plenty to be done to improve the super series and women's game. The idea of a third pro side just seems impossible, especially given the struggles in Wales and Zebre. Highland Rugby Club are leading the way north of Perth in the National League One. If they could get promoted to the Premiership we'd finally have a team away from the Scottish rugby heartlands mixing it with the best amateur players in the country.

Sadly most kids are drawn to football before any other sport in Scotland. Any new CEO should seriously consider how they can break down the perceived class barriers in Rugby Union at Schoolboy level. Plucking players from Merchiston, Melvilles, Watsons, Strathallan, Glenalmond etc etc may supply the bulk of our homegrown pros now, but that does nothing to encourage more participation in local authority schools. They're essentially not involved. After mulling it over for many years, I think this is probably the biggest aspect of the Scottish system that has to change. In theory that should make the super series more competitive and ensure we have home grown players making up the bulk of players in that league.

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Post by NeilyBroon Sun 14 Jan 2024, 2:57 pm

jimbopip wrote:12 for Scotland?
It can be argued that Stafford is keeping Wee Shona out of the Glasgow 12 jersey. Wee Shona is keeping Shug out of the 13 jersey.
Redpath and Dancer are on fire at Bath.
Hutchinson is tearing it up at Saints.
And Chris Harris is....still Chris Harris.

The Tombola must be due a service the amount of spinning it must be doing at the moment.

of course we all know that in his heart of hearts Toonie really wants

10 Blarehorn
12 Lang
13 Harris.
and a back three of

11 Shug
14 Seaman
15 Duhan

You know that's what he really, really wants.

Ally miller to cover FB?

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Post by NeilyBroon Mon 15 Jan 2024, 10:32 am

So, any further selection speculations about tomorrow? My money is on some random playing in France for one of their u23 sides who moved over from new Zealand hoping to play for England

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Post by BigGee Mon 15 Jan 2024, 11:02 am

I am expecting a couple of ringers, but as we all know, it is never easy to second guess Toonie

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Post by bsando Mon 15 Jan 2024, 12:27 pm

Gus Warr, Aaron Reed, the other Smith at Northampton (Hooker) and maybe two young guns at Edinburgh or Glasgow.

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Post by EWT Spoons Mon 15 Jan 2024, 1:07 pm

bsando wrote:Gus Warr, Aaron Reed, the other Smith at Northampton (Hooker) and maybe two young guns at Edinburgh or Glasgow.

Telegraph reporting Reed is going to be in the squad, not sure about the rest

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Post by mountain man Mon 15 Jan 2024, 1:20 pm

What's the Scottish thoughts on Fin Smith?
Will he choose England or Scotland?
Would you want him for Scotland?
As an England fan I hope he chooses England but was wondering how you guys feel.

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Post by BigGee Mon 15 Jan 2024, 1:31 pm

I"d be delighted and surprised if he choose us.

He is very good player but he will choose England.




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Post by Tramptastic Mon 15 Jan 2024, 1:46 pm

We'll get another WC out of Russell but keeping the cabinet stocked well at 10 is vital for Scotland.

However, angry forwards are higher on the shopping list for the SRU recruiters.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 15 Jan 2024, 2:01 pm

EWT Spoons wrote:
bsando wrote:Gus Warr, Aaron Reed, the other Smith at Northampton (Hooker) and maybe two young guns at Edinburgh or Glasgow.

Telegraph reporting Reed is going to be in the squad, not sure about the rest

I think Robbie Smith the Saints hooker is injured. Has barely played this season which is a shame as he's a decent player.

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Post by BigGee Mon 15 Jan 2024, 2:13 pm

A bit to early for him this squad, but by all accounts Gregor Hiddlestone had a pretty impressive debut for the Warriors this weekend.

Another one, who, if he gets some game time, may be one for the future.

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Post by EWT Spoons Mon 15 Jan 2024, 2:25 pm

The blues posted a video this morning of Cole Forbes running about a bit in training, with a wee Saltire next to his name. We do need another FB in the squad...

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Post by George Carlin Mon 15 Jan 2024, 3:18 pm

RDW wrote:
George Carlin wrote:
EWT Spoons wrote:
Tramptastic wrote:Whats the issue with the main stadium? is it foundation/lifespan of concrete and structures? If its not these issues then you could certainly crack on with investing in hotels etc on the north side of MF

Age mate.  The average lifespan of a stadium is around 30 - 50 years.  The East stand is around 40 years old and the rest is in it's 30s, it also needs renovation in general.  So within the next 5-10 years there is probably going to be a need to do something with the stadium, whether that's renovating it, or thinking longer term and making it a multi use facility, which I'm not sure if totally achievable in it's current format
That is an accurate, technical answer. The other answer (and let's face it, there are plenty of interior designers in Edinburgh, if you know what I mean) is that inside Murrayfield broadly has the charm of visting a 70s multi-storey carpark. My Canadian wife was not comforted by the state of the ladies' bathroom either. It's well worth a modernisation - Dodson is probably better at that stuff than the other parts of his job, like (a) trying to look like he cares about grass roots rugby and (b) bringing the SRU's gearing down.

When I go to Murrayfield, I always think of Sydney Opera House. Lovely on the outside, a surprisingly mundate concrete block inside.

Woah! And I thought you were a man of culture. Sydney Opera House looks incredible inside too. Although as a structural engineer who loves concrete I may be biased.
Not biased so much as the occulars now suffering from decades of self abuse. picard It looks like a multi-story car park inside.
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Post by bsando Mon 15 Jan 2024, 5:47 pm

EWT Spoons wrote:The blues posted a video this morning of Cole Forbes running about a bit in training, with a wee Saltire next to his name.  We do need another FB in the squad...

Shame he got homesick because he was a great player. Sure he'll do well at Blues in that sunnier Auckland weather.

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Post by BigGee Mon 15 Jan 2024, 7:25 pm

bsando wrote:
EWT Spoons wrote:The blues posted a video this morning of Cole Forbes running about a bit in training, with a wee Saltire next to his name.  We do need another FB in the squad...

Shame he got homesick because he was a great player. Sure he'll do well at Blues in that sunnier Auckland weather.


Apparently that was nonsense

He went back because Glasgow did not offer him a decent contract.

I suspect that ship has sailed.

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