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England 2021/22

BPM

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As everyone likes to speculate, I had the following put to me in the pub a couple of nights ago

Eddie Jones has always wanted a creative, running no10. This, the running, is actually what he said he saw in Smith when he was a school boy and was the reason that he was invited to meet up with the England team.
Jones plan, as for the previous world cup is to set a new squad with a 2 year lead in to 2023.
If Smith was to be the player he hoped for, what would be the best plan for his development?
Would it be intermittent England training camps and odd cameos off the bench with corresponding absence of consistent game time (Paolo and others have all suffered from this)) or would it be 3-4 years of development under Nick Evans where he can play week in week out, developing his game management and kicking with out the glare of publicity of the AI's and 6N's? There were times over the last few years where Smith carried Quins in a way which was unbelievable for a player his age. He has now developed to a stage where other teams will have to change their structures to counteract Smith/Quins. This is the same Holy Grail that SA have at the moment which ultimately Gatland fell for and we all saw what happened
In Eddie's dream scenario he rides the wave of public clamour to unleash Smith from this Autumn with 2 years to build a team and style of play around him.
This is not actually dissimilar to how Sir CW built into winning the world cup
Eddie is not unfamiliar with fast paced attacking running rugby (Japan) as long as he has the players to do it, which he now does
Eddie is also not afraid to jetison key squad members or indeed a captain in the pursuit of world cup plan

I thought it was an interesting proposition
There are some aspects of this that either are true or could be true.

IMO: “Eddie is not unfamiliar with fast paced attacking running rugby (Japan) as long as he has the players to do it, which he now does” is a bit of both. I think it’s factually accurate to say that his Japan side played a high tempo attacking game. I think we have the players to execute that, whether he does is another thing.

Fundamentally, I’d say Eddie coaches to win and he adapts his style according to what he thinks will work best for the players he has at his disposal. He’s previously said words to the effect of our players only being suited to a more physical, territory based game plan and that’s more or less what we’ve an in the pitch.

Re. Smith, I think Eddie is in a good situation. Unlike many players that get heavily touted for England, he can legitimately say he ‘discovered’ Smith and TBH, it is true that many Quins fans, let alone fans of other clubs had never heard of him when he first got called in to that training squad. As a Quins fan and former STH, I’ve seen the vast majority of Smith’s games and while it definitely wouldn’t have been outlandish to cap him a season or two ago, his game management has come on massively in the last 18mths. Now he is unequivocally ready. Before, he might have been found wanting, so I’m not actually unhappy with the way he’s been brought in as long as he is selected and allowed to play attacking rugby.
 

Geordiefalcon

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Guys, ill be honest i havent seen a huge amount of Kenningham. I keep hearing the Robhaw Mk 11 or Tom Wood Mark 11.

Are they good comparisons?
Hes going to have an awful lot of competition in that back row...what potentially would make him stand out over the rest?
 

TRF_Olyy

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Very good player but probably a little bit overrated because of Quins form over the last few months

Was worth his training squad spot over the summer but shouldn't be near the full EPS (though if Ludlow is in we must be in dire straights for 7s....) - Will Evans is much better IMO
 

Nudger

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Agree with comments on need for new 8, 9, 10, and 12.
Ignoring what Eddie will most likely do, I would love to see:
8. Dombrandt
9. Robson / 21. Quirke
10. Smith

But I have literally no idea about 12! Especially when trying to fit with the right 13. This feels like the biggest problem right now. I don’t want it to be Farrell, that feels like just holding back any improvement.

Manu at 12 - tempting outside of Smith, but will probably not make it through the training weeks, and then a filler 12 not having trained will have to take his place (insert Farrell here).

Manu at 13 - more tempting as a replacement 13 for inevitable injury seems an easier choice with Slade, Lawrence or Marchant.

So this leaves choices for 12 around Kellly, Lawrence, Atkinson, or who else am I missing?
Would Atkinson be the more experienced (club level only I know) older head at 12 to support Smith properly?

TLDR: Please help with a balanced team choice of England 12 & 13 that matches with Marcus Smith, and does not include Farrell (and probably Manu due to inevitable injury)?
Inside center I'm keeping my fingers crossed that ojomo at bath has a break out season
 

Not Mike Brown's Sock

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Very good player but probably a little bit overrated because of Quins form over the last few months

Was worth his training squad spot over the summer but shouldn't be near the full EPS (though if Ludlow is in we must be in dire straights for 7s....) - Will Evans is much better IMO
Wev and Kenningham at 7/6 for us could be imperious for years I think. But yeah Wev on his form last year is probably better, but not as good a carrier. We'll see what Wev comes back like tho
 

Not Mike Brown's Sock

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Do you know when he's due back?
I can't remember what his injury was but feels like he's been out forever
He had the pins out this week apparently so next 4-6 weeks in theory.

Someone on the Quins forum spoke to him last week and that's what he said. May be longer tbh cause he's gonna have to fight for a place and get fit again
 

Not Mike Brown's Sock

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Evans imo is just not a Eddie type 7.
Strong agree. Kennigham far more likely to sneak in than Wev, more in that Curry mould imo.

The Robshawn MKII comparisons are pretty accurate tbh, fantastic work rate, and a solid 7/10 at everything you could ask for but not amazing at anything beyond the engine
 

Geordiefalcon

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Strong agree. Kennigham far more likely to sneak in than Wev, more in that Curry mould imo.

The Robshawn MKII comparisons are pretty accurate tbh, fantastic work rate, and a solid 7/10 at everything you could ask for but not amazing at anything beyond the engine
When you have Curry, Underhill, WIllis etc etc....that might not be enough...
 

Ragey Erasmus

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Oh I agree, and was the exact reason people wanted Robshaw gone, but I thought there was a place for it then and I still think that now
Surely there's only a place if their engine and workrate is significantly above and beyond what we already have? If he isn't beating the workrate of Curry, Underhill or Willis then there really isn't much justification to have him in the side.
 

Reiser99

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Oh I agree, and was the exact reason people wanted Robshaw gone, but I thought there was a place for it then and I still think that now
Definitely want people with a high work-rate, but you also want extra at international level. Reality was that there wasn't a huge amount of options in the backrow when Robshaw was there. Now we have plenty of players with a high work-rate and extra.
 

Geordiefalcon

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The thing is most people have a huge engine these days as standard...so that isn't a point of difference. Tom Curry can run all day. Mark Wilson has a tremendous engine but is gone now, Ludlum , Ludlow etc all have big engines.

Kenningham will have to match Curry's all round outstanding ability, Underhills ferocious defence, or say Willis breakdown/ turnover ( and try scoring) ability.

Will his line out prowess be enough?
Not sure . Because Lawes can pretty much do the same game at 6'7.....and a far better line out option.

England's back row options are crazy.
 

Geordiefalcon

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Yeah I think after that game Quirke has put himself at the head of the queue....
 

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