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[2021 Six Nations] Wales vs Ireland (07/02/21)

MattGaff

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We did our best to lose that one. Thanks to Ireland for gifting it to us I guess.

Ah well, onto next week. Not much more to say about today.
 

Groundhog

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Forgot about him but yeah. Not completely sold that he's international standard but deserves a shot more than any of the lads in the squad.
He's probably not realistically but he's a good kicker from hand and has shown decent spells for Ireland.
 

munstermuffin

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I wouldn't have had POM once Doris was out. Would have had Harry Byrne on the bench with Casey and Larmour ahead of Earls. Herring is excusable but the rest were obvious imo.
True but we would all of had a few of them but in real world where IRFU because Farrell isn't 1st these were never happening
 

big ginger 8

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He's not Matt O'Connor, you don't need to defend him.

Defending someone is not wanting to lynch them right this instant. Very cool.


Looking at this match my position on Farrell isn't changed massively one way or the other...which likely means I wouldn't be too cut up about him but whatever.

Haven't watched the match back and don't plan to but just looking over the positive and negatives (yes there were actually were some things that weren't DARKNESS! NO PARENTS!!! level depressing). Already talked about individual players so going to place that to one side.

Positives:
  • There was a lot of fight shown after an initial drop in heads. It should be expected but it doesn't always happen, especially when a team goes down a man early on. Shows a good level of buy-in and maturity.
  • Our rucks are probably what impressed me the most. We had massive problems turning over the ball in opposition 22 last year. I can't remember any such instances at the ruck today. Wales aren't the greatest turnover team in the world but they did have two 7's for most of the game. Healy, Henderson and VDF all had vicious clear outs. Big ups to the players and POC there.
  • The lineout. But we ****** up one on their five and a maul transfer on their 22? Yeah, but given the level we were at last year it's still a big improvement. Also taking into context that we lost our safe option at 2 and our caller in the first 30? minutes. In fairness again, it's not an area I think Wales are particularly great but we did also get two steals and the maul actually moved forward a few times which it didn't really do last year. Only a very small positive but hopefully a good sign.
  • The scrum was solid. PotM Wyn Jones should have been penalised twice for collapsing inwards but no issues here not that I would have expected any.
  • We looked to vary our first receiver and had more forward options of nine rather than having an obvious target like we used to. Our attack wasn't overall a postive but these were good to see. The multiple lines and occasional good handling allowed our centres and Keenan to get on an outside shoulder a few times.
  • The defence with 14 men was good apart from the try but a lot of that is on Wales.
  • Apart from one knock on and one knock back (which we won) our fielding was much more confident. A lot of that is on Keenan's shoulders.
Most of those are only small positives but the rucking is an absolutely massive one for me. We used to be the best rucking team in the world and our gameplan will not work if we cannot keep the ball for long passages.

Negatives:
  • The level of discipline is rubbish. The penalty on Beirne was wrong but we just keep shooting ourselves in the foot. It's been going on since Schmidt's last year and it needs to be sorted yesterday. We don't have the attacking explosiveness to dig ourselves out of the hole it creates.
  • The over thirties didn't bring the cool heads we wanted and were responsible for a heap of individual errors. Absolutely unacceptable.
  • It's wonderful having two are three lines of attack but it's not going to work if our ten is doing his best Ross Byrne impression and not moving forward. Not sure if that's on Sexton and his dodgy hammy as Burns, for all his mistakes, was actually moving forward and bringing occasional attacking threat.
  • We still want to revert to bombs, when we're just outside the opposition 22, far too often. Looks like a dreadful mixture of coaching directive and player habit.
  • For all the good things they were doing our forwards at times looked quite lost. Hard to tell how much being down a man compounded it but we seemed to have random player shortages and players ahead of the ball without good reason far too often.
Overall I've pretty mixed feelings about this game. Being a man down for a majority of the game, losing your pack leader early on and losing your second best player at a key juncture actually do make a difference. Still this is a game we should have won. Some of the issues are ones that have been going on for ages now and haven't been fixed and that's not good enough. Some of our other long term issues have shown some improvement though. This game isn't a massive positive but it also isn't a unbelievable negative, for me.

Anyone expecting massive change from outside the squad except in the case of injury is going to be massively disappointed. It's never been the way any of our coaches have operated. If any such changes do come it'll be for Italy since there's the week off.

Changes that can happen for France that I'd like to see at least a few of are Kelleher, Beirne at 6 if Ryan is fit, Ruddock if not, Larmour in, Casey on the bench and Baird ahead of Dillane for the bench.
 

Tooting Carmen

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If Ireland won that match they'd have deserved it. Gareth Davies' kick at the end was incredibly stupid. And the lineout and ball maintenance need to be VASTLY improved.
 

MikeTheNative

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A win is a win I suppose..... There's still a lot of issues that haven't really been addressed from the Autumn. While the scrum was good, line out is still woeful. While the defence was a bit better, it was against 14 men and Ireland who aren't the most creative with runners in attack, quite worried about Scotland next week. While Wales did reasonably soak up the attacks, it's worrying that 14 men were able to control that much of the game. Wales really struggled to impose themselves in defence, they struggled to slow down ball and get many turnover. Attack is still a mixed bag, Tipuric and Faletau do look dangerous in the wide channels, however that tight 5 isn't that good at carrying and struggle to create quick ball for Faletau and Tipruic to feed off. Wales also picked up 4 injuries which isn't too great. Amos will not really be missed to be honest, Liam Williams returning is a massive step up. Lydiate is a shame but Navidi is the more rounded player. Johnny Williams and definitely Tomos Williams is a loss though.
 

jcahill1

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Not being contrarian, but doesn't Porter go down there?
 

big ginger 8

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Not being contrarian, but doesn't Porter go down there?

Can't really tell looking on it at on my phone now. Porter may have had a boot slip or Wyn Jones may have buckled in like he definitely did a few times. Not sure of it matters for Corbiesero's wider point either way. Usually in such a situation Wales but be looking for a big drive there but couldn't gain any traction even with a long enough fight.
 

MikeTheNative

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Porter's knee goes to ground first on 6 seconds, he regathers himself then goes down again. Scrum is always a bit of a lottery anyways, so I'm happy for the ref make the team play it, if ball is clean at the back of the scrum.
 

Welsh Exile

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A win is a win I suppose..... There's still a lot of issues that haven't really been addressed from the Autumn. While the scrum was good, line out is still woeful. While the defence was a bit better, it was against 14 men and Ireland who aren't the most creative with runners in attack, quite worried about Scotland next week. While Wales did reasonably soak up the attacks, it's worrying that 14 men were able to control that much of the game. Wales really struggled to impose themselves in defence, they struggled to slow down ball and get many turnover. Attack is still a mixed bag, Tipuric and Faletau do look dangerous in the wide channels, however that tight 5 isn't that good at carrying and struggle to create quick ball for Faletau and Tipruic to feed off. Wales also picked up 4 injuries which isn't too great. Amos will not really be missed to be honest, Liam Williams returning is a massive step up. Lydiate is a shame but Navidi is the more rounded player. Johnny Williams and definitely Tomos Williams is a loss though.

Yeah this is how I feel pretty much. I’d imagine the pack will stay the same with the backs being

9. Davies
10. Biggar
11. Liam Williams
12. tomkins
13. North
14 LRZ
15. Halfpenny

Personally I’d start Watkin as I think he’d deal with Redpath better but Tomkins did ok when he came on. Can’t see there being much in it but line out is **** and Scotland’s is solid which makes me think that will be the edge but we tend to get better as tournaments go on so who knows. Should be a close game
 

ragerancher

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Nicked from Facebook:

1612875643933.png
 

Welsh Exile

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*Gets ready 'AWJ did something positive, GOAT' post.*

Itoje, as I’m constantly reminded by Englishman and the media, is the best player in the world, nay, the best player that has ever lived.

Even against Scotland where he was very average you get people singing his praises.
 

Reiser99

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Itoje, as I’m constantly reminded by Englishman and the media, is the best player in the world, nay, the best player that has ever lived.

Even against Scotland where he was very average you get people singing his praises.
Hey everyone look, I hooked a live one!
 
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