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England 2022/23

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Welsh Exile

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I'm not hugely excited by Borthwick (Razer please), but it might be the right mix of continuity + new blood.

I expect something like Genge, George, Sink, Ribbans, Itoje, Chessum, Curry, Billy, Youngs (ew), Ford (if fit), Smith, Murley, Kelly, Slade, OHC and Steward with a bench of Marler, LCD, Heyes, Hill, Martin, JVP, Manu, Radwan.
Ford and Smith would be very interesting to see, albeit incredibly lightweight and defensively suspect.
 

Geordiefalcon

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i do have sympathy for Jones...hes had many injuries to key players...who probably would have been involved in the team or squad

Dombrandt
Isiekwe
Kelly
Jack Willis - Two huge injuries
May
Watson
Kelly
Underhill
Jack Nowell has had numerous issues
Manus ongoing issues
Cokasanigas long term injury and personal issues off the field halted his progression...

BUT
England has a large playing field...there were others he could have selected...but chose not to...and reverted to his old stalwarts some of whom are not what they were.
 

Ragey Erasmus

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i do have sympathy for Jones...hes had many injuries to key players...who probably would have been involved in the team or squad

Dombrandt
Isiekwe
Kelly
Jack Willis - Two huge injuries
May
Watson
Kelly
Underhill
Jack Nowell has had numerous issues
Manus ongoing issues
Cokasanigas long term injury and personal issues off the field halted his progression...

BUT
England has a large playing field...there were others he could have selected...but chose not to...and reverted to his old stalwarts some of whom are not what they were.
I don't blame Jones for the injuries (except the England training camp ones, they were far too regular). However his determination to repeatedly select injury prone players the second they returned, regardless of form or game time, was completely on him and baffling. A player back from injury should have a few games to get back up to speed and show they still are on form, not waltz back in with barely any club time. He would then stick with them regardless of form until they were next injured again. The impression it gave was anyone else was just a seat warmer for a player who could be atrocious and still walk in the second they were available.
 

AngloScotsHybrid

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In all likelihood it will be the way that whoever takes over will go - bringing Cole in is just a pipedream because he's comfortably the best scrummager of the lot, and that's an area that's becoming a real issue for England (worst scrum stats of the top 10 this autumn)

Sinckler's not the worst scrummager in the world but he's not a set piece specialist and we don't have anyone we could rotate in in a "horses for courses" scenario (same goes for loosehead, as well - vs SA we should've rotated in Marler not effing Mako)
If Cole is such a good scrummager how come he gave away so many penalties in the world cup final?
 

AngloScotsHybrid

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Whoever is in charge can still only f#@k with the [email protected] they've got.

I expect a bit of a dead cat bounce regardless, but how many world class players do England have?

Genge- picked in the world XV of the year. Questions marks over his scrummaging.

George/LCD

Sinkler. I thought he looked OK in the autumn despite his form generally being on a downward trajectory since 2019.

Itoje- world class for most as in he'd get in most international sides. His form has dipped for England.

Other Locks. There's a gap since Kruis went to Japan/retired. A position that Jones has looked at/discarded/brought back a la Isiekwe. Hill I'm not sure he'll ever be world class.

Open side. Despite the reservations Lawes after slimming down has become a very good flanker. World class? Debatable?

Blindside. Curry has fallen off a bit for me. He's bulked up which has improved his carrying but reduced his mobility could be a form/Eddie thing.

8 Billy maybe once was but after a decent summer tour looked very ineffective in the Autumn. May bounce back under a new coach, who knows. Simmonds is a good player but to have him in any side you need to have a 6/7 that make up for his short comings and offer balance. Dombrant I think his ceiling is high.

9. Some promising youngsters but no ones had a decent run through injury and Eddie.

10. Smith loads of potential. Although the autumn wasn't a good advertisement I still reckon Farrell is a world class 10.

12. Problem position for years. Reality is Farrell is probably one of the best options at 12. No one has really had a look or when they have, quickly dropped by Eddie.

13. There's decent options there, wouldn't say any are world class. Slade is very good as was/is Marchant. A legacy of Eddie will be him investing too much in Manu being fit, which arguably as a result made a total balls up of England's back line post world cup and the entire Jones era.

Wings. Lots of good options out there to go with someone rapid on one wing and a bigger more high ball competent on the other. May was world class for me, at the moment he isn't and age is agaisnt him. Nowell isn't.

FB Freddie Stewart, borderline world class and improving all the time and could get to truly world class level.

So maybe 1-5 World class players depending on how generous you're being?

Most off all I'll just be glad if the next coach doesn't use the WC as an excuse. I want to see England compete at the top table, win games and challenge for the 6N. Too many variables to only aim for the WC which let's face it was just an Eddie cop-out.
Curry is an openside.
 

Which Tyler

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If Cole is such a good scrummager how come he gave away so many penalties in the world cup final?
A] Because that was 3 years ago, whilst Cole was playing 80 minutes every week, and was, quite simply, knackered beyond all recognition
B] Because Mako at LHP can't scrummage

I say that, as someone who's knowledge of front row play is that there's a genuine risk that if they hear that I feed them the ball, they'll actually try to eat the damned thing
 

ncurd

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People: Cole's in very good form at the moment
You: ERM WHAT ABOUT SEVERAL YEARS AGO AY
The RWC final where he played there with the scrummaging powerhouse that is and was Mako Vunipola. Clearly all Cole's fault.

Cole has had great days in the scrum Mako never has.
 

Pieter Steph du Teague

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Cole was poor in 2019 and got handily beaten in the final. To say that he wasn’t is revisionist and to blame it all on Mako is pretty unfair; things were going wrong on both sides of the scrum. Cole looked old and tired.

However, I don’t think that you need to defend his performances in 2019 in order to justify a place in the squad in 2023. He has been seriously rejuvenated in the last couple of years and is in great form now. He could definitely make his way into the 23/XV on merit.
 
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Don't Skip Leg Day

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I really don’t think our squad needs changing too much but I just want a coach to:

A) have a coherent game plan that the players can actually execute

B) have a decent set piece again

C) stop messing around with selecripn

D) never play Farrell at 12 again (any other 13 will do if we can’t find a 12, Farrell just offers nothing there)
 

ncurd

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Cole was poor in 2019 and got handily beaten in the final. To say that he wasn’t is revisionist and to blame it all on Mako is pretty unfair; things were going wrong on both sides of the scrum. Cole looked old and tired.

However, I don’t think that you need to defend his performances in 2019 in order to justify a place in the squad in 2023. He has been seriously rejuvenated in the last couple of years and is in great form now. He could definitely make his way into the 23/XV on merit.
Well the real mistake was not playing Marler.
 

AngloScotsHybrid

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People: Cole's in very good form at the moment
You: ERM WHAT ABOUT SEVERAL YEARS AGO AY
I just don't believe that his current form is so good that it makes his past failings irrelevant. He is 35. Its very unlikely that he has become a better player in the last 3 years.
 

TRF_Olyy

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I just don't believe that his current form is so good that it makes his past failings irrelevant. He is 35. Its very unlikely that he has become a better player in the last 3 years.
Do you watch premiership rugby?
 

Ragey Erasmus

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I just don't believe that his current form is so good that it makes his past failings irrelevant. He is 35. Its very unlikely that he has become a better player in the last 3 years.
Proper rest and physical care can do wonders. Jones had a thing about running players into the ground and it showed. If a player has bulk, he wants them to slim down and become athletic. If they are athletic, he wants them to bulk up. It seems to be a very Jones thing, whatever someone else thinks, Jones must do the opposite.
 

Don't Skip Leg Day

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I just don't believe that his current form is so good that it makes his past failings irrelevant. He is 35. Its very unlikely that he has become a better player in the last 3 years.
I mean that’s literally the definition of form though.
 

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Couple of Times journos (neither Barnes nor Jones) have named their preferred teams for the 6N. Their differences sum up some of the issues facing the new coach.

Aligned on Genge and Sinks. One went George the other LCD which is fine.

Both went with different row partners for Itoje in Chessum and Lawes if fit.

Both went for Curry, Dombrandt and Earl. Latter 2 were nowhere to be seen in the AI, although Dombrandt was injured at the start

Both wanted JVP. At 10, neither went for Smith - one chose Ford, the other Farrell.

12 saw Slade and Farrell. Both went for the lesser spotted Lawrence at 13.

Freeman and Steward both got the nod in the back 3. The other wing berth saw OHC and Watson

So no Hill, no Youngs, no Manu, no Vunipolae, no May, no Smith. And no lock in the back row.
 
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