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[2018 November Tests] Wales v Scotland (3/10/18)

ThebigARena

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Had the feel of a bit of a knock about rather than a serious contest. Wales must be delighted with their depth and defence.

Scotland showing a continued lack of execution but a lot of young players didn't disgrace themselves away from home and they were on top for long spells in the second half. The young players have probably been blooded too early due to Scottish lack of depth and I'm doubtful they'll mature in time for the RWC. However, I still think Scotland will continue to improve in the coming years.
I don't agree it had the feel of a knock about. There was huge hits going in nonquater given from both sides and to call it that I think is a disrespectful to doddie himself and the trophy both teams went in to win , Andy Nichol said earlier that it would be a friendly but then conceded it was a test match .
 

ThebigARena

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Had the feel of a bit of a knock about rather than a serious contest. Wales must be delighted with their depth and defence.

Scotland showing a continued lack of execution but a lot of young players didn't disgrace themselves away from home and they were on top for long spells in the second half. The young players have probably been blooded too early due to Scottish lack of depth and I'm doubtful they'll mature in time for the RWC. However, I still think Scotland will continue to improve in the coming years.
I don't agree it had the feel of a knock about. There was huge hits going in nonquater given from both sides and to call it that I think is a disrespectful to doddie himself and the trophy both teams went in to win , Andy Nichol said earlier that it would be a friendly but then conceded it was a test match .
 

dullonien

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Not the greatest test match ever, very stop start, and both sides guilty of putting foot to ball too often (lots of little grubbers and dinks which didn't come off). I felt that if Wales had especially kept the ball in hand and gone through some phases they were troubling the Scottish defence.

Excellent defensive display from Wales really put pressure on the Scottish midfield, forcing them backward and eventually to kick. Personally thought the ref was a little quick to yellow card Wales. I don't think we were serial offenders in our 22. Yes there was 2 offsides in that phase, but I don't think we'd conceded many other offside penalties. I think Wales might have concerted less penalties overall than Scotland as well. Either way, it was a great couple of defensive scrums when down to 7 up front, great to see from Dillon Lewis especially.

Second try was a joy to watch, very slick set piece move, with a couple of great dummy lines. Jones had no chance, because Anscombe was ready to go himself if Jones had drifted out onto JD2. On Anscombe, but of a mixed display. Some of his kicking was superb, a couple almost came off, but some were a little wayward and put us under pressure. He didn't challenge the Scottish defence like we know he can, instead opting to pass/kick. Just hope he's done enough for Gatland not to revert to Biggar v Aus.
 

bushytop

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Not the greatest test match ever, very stop start, and both sides guilty of putting foot to ball too often (lots of little grubbers and dinks which didn't come off). I felt that if Wales had especially kept the ball in hand and gone through some phases they were troubling the Scottish defence.

Excellent defensive display from Wales really put pressure on the Scottish midfield, forcing them backward and eventually to kick. Personally thought the ref was a little quick to yellow card Wales. I don't think we were serial offenders in our 22. Yes there was 2 offsides in that phase, but I don't think we'd conceded many other offside penalties. I think Wales might have concerted less penalties overall than Scotland as well. Either way, it was a great couple of defensive scrums when down to 7 up front, great to see from Dillon Lewis especially.

Second try was a joy to watch, very slick set piece move, with a couple of great dummy lines. Jones had no chance, because Anscombe was ready to go himself if Jones had drifted out onto JD2. On Anscombe, but of a mixed display. Some of his kicking was superb, a couple almost came off, but some were a little wayward and put us under pressure. He didn't challenge the Scottish defence like we know he can, instead opting to pass/kick. Just hope he's done enough for Gatland not to revert to Biggar v Aus.

Pretty much agree with everything apart from I think you were a ‘little’ harsh on Anscombe... thought it was probably his best game in a Wales shirt and while I’m still Team Patchell, he did as well as I could have hoped. Biggar should never start for Wales again unless injury forces Gats hand.
 

Bruce_ma_goose

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Agree after seeing it after the match that Huw wasn't to blame for the second try. Also thought Anscombe looked fairly handy.
 

Tooting Carmen

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A good win for Wales, although we should be mindful that they were less affected by having players based overseas than were Scotland. All the same, I don't even think the All Blacks could match that sort of defence the Welsh displayed today (N.B. they conceded five tries today to Japan!)
 

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I think some credit needs to go Lydiates way. He has been in good form at the Ospreys this season and a destructive player like him will really help against some of the better backrows and those that crave fast ball. I am a huge fan of his sportsmanship and attitude. Has had some huge injuries and showed the drive some of the younger guys need. He may not have the skillset of people like Tips but he does so much of the heavy duty graft. There is no wonder Warbs loved playing next to him!

Btw I am a blues fan so his form may keep some of our guys out so not a bias point of view.
 

dullonien

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Yeah, Lyds had a really good game, which is great to see. If the balance is right he can certainly force his way back into Wales' first choice back row. In some ways Lydiate, Tipuric, Faletau has more balance to it than when Warbs was there.

The main this is that he offers another option going forward. We've got a lot of different options at blindside, especially when Shingler returns.
 

bushytop

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Yeah Lydiate has definitely put his hand up. He’s looked a bit more streamlined and a little more athletic this season and at 30, he’s a good age for a World Cup with a great deal of experience.

If everyone was fit though... I am really struggling to pick the first choice back row.
As it currently stands (and its changed many time since Warbys retirement)... Faletau is a given. At the moment I’d go Tips at 7 and at six I struggle to choose between Moriarty, Navidi, Shingler and Jenkins (I know Jenkins and even Navidi are generally thought of at 7s but so was Warby). I’d probably have all these above Lyds atm. I’d probably go for Moriarty to start but it’s a tough one. I’d also like to see Ollie Griffiths have a big year and challenge to cover 6 too. Bench place would probably go to Navidi. So 6 Moriarty, 7 Tips, 8 Faletau & 20 Navidi.

Big fan of Cubbi but on current form Tips has the 7 shirt for me and as Davies can only play 7 I wouldn’t currently have him in my World Cup squad.
 
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oj121

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I view Moriarty as a bit of a loose cannon. If he could actually focus on playing rather than constantly trying to annoy people it would be great.

We are short at options for 8. Wont happy and a bit adventurous but would like to see tips at 8 next week with lydiate and ellis. Combats the aussies nicely.

Drop in Rob Evans at 1, Watkin at 12(as I think Parkes is really flat atm) Tomos at 9 and Williams at 11 and that would be my team.
 

bushytop

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I view Moriarty as a bit of a loose cannon. If he could actually focus on playing rather than constantly trying to annoy people it would be great.

We are short at options for 8. Wont happy and a bit adventurous but would like to see tips at 8 next week with lydiate and ellis. Combats the aussies nicely.

Drop in Rob Evans at 1, Watkin at 12(as I think Parkes is really flat atm) Tomos at 9 and Williams at 11 and that would be my team.

There’s no doubt Moriarty can let his emotions get the better of him but he gets through a shed load of work too. I can see your point on him though.

I can’t get on board with Tips at 8 though (maybe I’d have to see it to believe it)... I don’t think it is even an option in Gats mind. My understanding of the Wales 8 is that Gats has Faletau first choice, Moriarty second choice and that’s about it. Gats is hoping that Seb Davies can be converted into an 8 as we are so light in the position but he ain’t getting much game time in the role and seems to go absent every time I’ve seen him play in the back row. Last resort if Tobes and Ross are injured I’d probably give Navidi a go as he’s played a bit at 8 for the Blues.
 

dullonien

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Next week will interesting. Will Gats revert to type and pick Biggar? Hope not, he should be concentrating on a giving Anscombe and Patchell game time with Jarrod Evans third choice.

Next week I'd go with the following side:

01 Rob Evans. Good impact yesterday.
02 Elliot Dee. Owens is still first choice, but I'd like to see Dee given a start.
03 Dillon Lewis. Another start after an impressive display yesterday.
04 Jake Ball. A little extra bulk wouldn't go amiss in the boilerhouse.
05 AWJ.
06 Ellis Jenkins. If fit.
07 Justin Tipuric.
08 Ross Moriarty

09 Tomos Williams. Gareth Davies was good defensively, but his kicking still leaves a lot to be desired.
10 Gareth Anscombe.
11 Liam Williams
12 Hadleigh Parkes. Tempted with Watkin, but big ask for him to come in cold v Aus.
13 Jon Davies.
14 George North
15 Leigh Halfpenny. Would prefer Liam at fullback, but we're lacking on the wing atm.

16 Ken Owens.
17 Nicky Smith
18 Samson Lee
19 Cory Hill
20 Dan Lydiate
21 Gareth Davies
22 Rhys Patchell
23 Staff Evans
 

oj121

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Tips has played 8 at Ospreys and did a very good job. He has bulked up a lot and clearly has the skill set. He is a lot closer to Toby than Ross is in skills. Pocock has shown its doable and they are very similar build and skills wise. Works well for them. RM does a lot of work but as i said has his issues. Does he offer anything that Lydiate or Navidi(when fit) doesnt other than a card on route. If carrying is an issue then Ball in at no.4 negates that problem.

I see what people are saying with Watkin but Parkes will leak a try or if he plays like that again. Cant do that with a SH team.
 

dullonien

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Tips is a good stone or two too light to play at 8 internationally. He can slot in at 6, but not 8. Pocock is a good 13kg heavier! I think Tips also lacks the explosive carrying game that an 8 requires.

I don't see why we'd try to sheo-horn someone like Tipuric (who's one of the world's best opensides) into a position that doesn't wholly suit him. Moriarty can be a little bit hot headed, but as long as he keeps it in check he's a the best option we have when Faletau isn't available.
 

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Next week will interesting. Will Gats revert to type and pick Biggar? Hope not, he should be concentrating on a giving Anscombe and Patchell game time with Jarrod Evans third choice.

Next week I'd go with the following side:

01 Rob Evans. Good impact yesterday.
02 Elliot Dee. Owens is still first choice, but I'd like to see Dee given a start.
03 Dillon Lewis. Another start after an impressive display yesterday.
04 Jake Ball. A little extra bulk wouldn't go amiss in the boilerhouse.
05 AWJ.
06 Ellis Jenkins. If fit.
07 Justin Tipuric.
08 Ross Moriarty

09 Tomos Williams. Gareth Davies was good defensively, but his kicking still leaves a lot to be desired.
10 Gareth Anscombe.
11 Liam Williams
12 Hadleigh Parkes. Tempted with Watkin, but big ask for him to come in cold v Aus.
13 Jon Davies.
14 George North
15 Leigh Halfpenny. Would prefer Liam at fullback, but we're lacking on the wing atm.

16 Ken Owens.
17 Nicky Smith
18 Samson Lee
19 Cory Hill
20 Dan Lydiate
21 Gareth Davies
22 Rhys Patchell
23 Staff Evans

The win against Oz is such a big deal coming off of 13 losses in a row and the World Cup next year that I reckon Gats will choose his strongest possible 23.

I think he’ll pick the Sherriff at 2, and I have a suspicion that he was saving Samson for the Oz game and he’ll get the start. Gareth Davies’ kicking is definitely his main weakness but while a massive fan of Tomas (& I believe he will be our first choice 9 at some point) he is still a little erratic and can creat as much problems for his team as he does for the oppo.

I’d go:

1. Rob Evans
2. Ken Owens (I’m a big Dee fan too though as well as a big Elias fan).
3. Samson Lee
4. Jake Ball
5. AWJ
6. Ellis Jenkins
7. Tips
8. Ross Moriarty
9. Gareth Davies
10. Gareth Anscombe
11. Liam Williams
12. Hadleigh Parkes
13. Jonathan Davies
14. George North
15. Leigh Halfpenny

16. Elliot Dee
17. Nicky Smith (big Wyn Jones fan too but I think Nicky done enough yesterday to give himself another chance)
18. Tomas Francis (tough on Lewis but he’ll get more game time the following week)
19. Cory Hill (quiet game yesterday)
20. Lydiate (not sure that he is the impact finisher type but given the injuries and his performance yesterday it is tough to keep him out of the 23).
21. Tomos Williams
22. Jarrod Evans (if Patchell comes through training and is up to playing I would choose Patchell)
23. Steff Evans
 

MikeTheNative

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It was a decent performance from Wales, defence particularly was the highlight although it never really clicked in attack. As other posters have said already Anscombe tried way too many dinks and chips, those you can get away with at regional level but at test they will be covered. I would give him another chance against Tonga but he hasn't convinced me he is a good as Biggar or Patchell at 10. Biggest disappointment for me though was how poor Scotland where, Hastings really struggled with the blitz defence and Scotland never really got their running game going, way too many one up runners who got smashed behind the game line. Reminded my of Argentina in the summer.
I was very critical of Hill when he first started getting in the team but he has definitely proved me wrong, still not sure he has that physicality to match the likes of South Africa though so for the time being Ball would be my choice to partner AWJ. North in full flight is always a glorious sight and he is starting to look like he is getting his top form back, bit gutted for Luke Morgan, hopefully he isn't forgotten about and doesn't really get a chance again, Liam Williams would be starting for me next week though.
 

bushytop

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... As other posters have said already Anscombe tried way too many dinks and chips, those you can get away with at regional level but at test they will be covered. I would give him another chance against Tonga but he hasn't convinced me he is a good as Biggar or Patchell at 10...

If everyone were fit I would definitely go Patchell at 10 but I think you’re being a little unfair on Anscombe. He provided an assured and professional performance yesterday and managed the game pretty well. He also played an integral part in the move of the match, which is as good a set-piece first phase move as you’ll see anywhere.

I was always a fan of Biggar but after seeing him slotted straight into the side against Ireland last 6N (& how different our attack looked from the previous matches) I now actually think that it was Biggar (more than Howlers, Gats etc.) that caused the Welsh attack to look so blunt... sure he can manage a game etc but a back line under his marshalling just looks devoid of ideas.
 

oj121

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I dont agree with the anscombe negatives. People saying he chipped too much need to accept it doesnt always come off. Scots stood off him allowing the tries because he was chipping and running. It caused space to become available for others. If he always passed he wpuld just become a flat nothing 10 like none of us want.
 

MikeTheNative

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Don't get me wrong I think he was fine, nothing amazing but he didn't have a bad game either. Yes, those chips are not going to come off all the time but a number of times he just gave away possession rather cheaply when it wasn't on. It's a bit splitting at hairs though, if he starts the next 3 games I would rather start Pacthell but I would be ok with it.
 

oj121

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IMO Jarrod Evans is clearly the future but this WC is just going to be too soon for him. Hope he gets a start this series. Patchell has all the skills but I just feel he is still a bit fragile under a rush. Anscombe isnt as big a threat as him but copes better under pressure.

In 2 years time we will have Patchell, Evans, Dan Jones(who i like too) and Cai Evans (some promise). We are not in a bad way at 10. Nice to have these concerns when its been a clear no.1 and no.2 for so long.
 
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