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England vs New Zealand - 19/11/22

Pieter Steph du Teague

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I disagree, he is a 13 he dabbles at 12 when needed but he isnt a 12, doesnt have the passing game of a 12, not that his bad. He also doesnt have the power to make up for it, he is powerful but more breaking contact by running smart lines. He's quick, pretty powerful and runs great lines with decent hands...he's a 13 all day long.

Please no more playing a 13 at 12. Please.
He had a pretty excellent game at 12 against Leicester last weekend. I think you’re underrating both his power and passing game.

I’m not suggesting that we chuck him straight in at 12 for England but if he was getting regular game time there for his club then I definitely think that he could become top class in that position. He’s 23, he’s got plenty of time to add strings to his bow. But as I said, I don’t think that he will get regular game time at 12 for the foreseeable while Bath have Redpath and Ojomoh, so it’s a bit of a moot point.
 

Scotty

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He had a pretty excellent game at 12 against Leicester last weekend. I think you’re underrating both his power and passing game.

I’m not suggesting that we chuck him straight in at 12 for England but if he was getting regular game time there for his club then I definitely think that he could become top class in that position. He’s 23, he’s got plenty of time to add strings to his bow. But as I said, I don’t think that he will get regular game time at 12 for the foreseeable while Bath have Redpath and Ojomoh, so it’s a bit of a moot point.
I dont fully disagree as i believe he could do a job there and even be good there with gametime but IMO he is built for 13, its like EJ making Daly a 15, he did well there and was there all the way to a world cup final but will he ever actually be considered a world class 15?

I think he needs to stick at 13 and get better and better and at 23 he has time and talent to be a world class 13, i dont want him to be a 12 because we need 12s. Then we have the likes of Ojomoh, Kelly, Anyanwu in a few years when they develop. And any other 12s who step up.
 

Geordiefalcon

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Lawrence is a 13...keep him there.

Look at the 12 options post WC as we know Farrells going nowhere.

All at different stages of development but all with potential...
Dan Kelly Established Prem winners 12!
Ojomoh
Seb Atkinson
Ollie Hartley
Anwanyu
Greenlaw
Ethan Grayson
 

Which Tyler

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Tuilagi still has something to offer but the idea that there is simply no competition to the other options, particularly Lawrence, is ridiculous. He should not be undroppable, especially given how injury prone he is. He has spent more time recovering from injury than he has playing for the last 5 years or so, if not longer. I'd say Lawrence is consistently outperforming Tuilagi and I'd even say has him beaten for pace and power now. On top of that he has a decent passing game, runs good lines, doesn't go missing in defence and has a better tactical brain. He is an all round improvement on current form I'd say and should at the very least be getting a look in.
Define "consistently" - "currently" then I'd absolutely agree with you; but he has been a little hit and miss at Worcester (whilst Manu has been a bit present or absent at Sale, of course), but I wouldn't list consistency as one of Lawrences main attributes

Yeah I watched some highlights of a Bath game recently and he played really well. Made breaks when there didn't look to be any gaps. Maybe England has become too obsessed with size. Sam Burgess and Barrie-Jon Mathers are two names that jump to mind. IMO a 12 needs to have the skills to play 10 and he needs pace. They come before size. Can you imagine Burgess playing 10... Does Lawrence play 12 or 13 or both?
Become? I'm not sure you can really use a player with 1 cap, 23 years ago, as evidence that something has "become too obsessed with"


As for Lawrence, 13 is his position of best fit, and fortunately, where he actually plays most of his rugby, and where he fits best in his Bath team.
He can do a job at 12, but it doesn't get the best out of him; and I wouldn't want to try moving him there because that's the England shirt that happens to be empty.
If we're going to move any of our 13s to 12 to suit England, and convince a club to go along with it, it should be Slade; at least for him 12 is his position of best fit, he just hasn't played there enough to get used to it and stop second guessing himself all the time (for that matter, I wish he'd stop second guessing himself at 13 for England).

I'd also add that Redpath has 1 more year left at Bath, if Ojomoh continues to develop, and Cameron wants a move to Scotland (or in my dream world, Ojomoh develops to be better than Redpath!); Ojomoh, Lawrence could become the go-to combination for club and country (though I always seem to rate club combinations more highly than international coaches). As could Kelly, Porter, of course.
 
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Scotty

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Define "consistently" - "currently" then I'd absolutely agree with you; but he has been a little hit and miss at Worcester (whilst Manu has been a bit present or absent at Sale, of course), but I wouldn't list consistency as one of Lawrences main attributes


Become? I'm not sure you can really use a player with 1 cap, 23 years ago, as evidence that something has "become too obsessed with"


As for Lawrence, 13 is his position of best fit, and fortunately, where he actually plays most of his rugby, and where he fits best in his Bath team.
He can do a job at 12, but it doesn't get the best out of him; and I wouldn't want to try moving him there because that's the England shirt that happens to be empty.
If we're going to move any of our 13s to 12 to suit England, and convince a club to go along with it, it should be Slade; at least for him 12 is his position of best fit, he just hasn't played there enough to get used to it and stop second guessing himself all the time (for that matter, I wish he'd stop second guessing himself at 13 for England).

I'd also add that Redpath has 1 more year left at Bath, if Ojomoh continues to develop, and Cameron wants a move to Scotland (or in my dream world, Ojomoh develops to be better than Redpath!); Ojomoh, Lawrence could become the go-to combination for club and country (though I always seem to rate club combinations more highly than international coaches). As could Kelly, Porter, of course.
I agree with everything except Slade. He on paper is a 12 but at 12 it doesnt give him the space to run pass kick step dummy ect. He is good because he keeps defender guessing. At 12 he gets rushed and forced to make a decision where as 13 he has that bit more tome to draw then pass on the move.

Attacks in a completely different way to Lawrence who looks for a weak shoulder or runs a strong lines off the 12.
 

Pieter Steph du Teague

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I think we’re far too picky and impatient with developing 12s.
I agree with everything except Slade. He on paper is a 12 but at 12 it doesnt give him the space to run pass kick step dummy ect. He is good because he keeps defender guessing. At 12 he gets rushed and forced to make a decision where as 13 he has that bit more tome to draw then pass on the move.
Most of this can be said of literally any centre on the planet. In offence, of course Slade and Lawrence both look better at 13 than at 12; they have more space to work with and more time on the ball, and so we immediately label them as being 13s. Andre Esterhuizen would look better in attack if he was at 13 with more space and more time on the ball, but that doesn’t make him a 13. Someone has to do the gritty, hard work at 12 and I think we’re far too fast at disregarding a player’s ability in that position just because they aren’t immediately as successful there as they are in what is an objectively easier position to attack from.
 
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I think we’re far too picky and impatient with developing 12s.

Most of this can be said of literally any centre on the planet. In offence, of course Slade and Lawrence both look better at 13 than at 12; they have more space to work with and more time on the ball, and so we immediately label them as being 13s. Andre Esterhuizen would look better in attack if he was at 13 with more space and more time on the ball, but that doesn’t make him a 13. But someone has to do the gritty, hard work at 12 and I think we’re far too fast at disregarding a player’s ability in that position just because they aren’t immediately as successful there as they are in what is an objectively easier position to attack from.
Thats a good point

If anyone's interested, Charlie Morgan did a goo darticle on why Smith kicked it out, middle of the pitch with how good AB's were over the ball on the day, a pingy ref and 3 backs out of the equation

Also interesting to note he definitely carries the ball less for England, and I wonder if, particularly off first phase, this can be to do with the lack of rucking capability of Farrell, whereas esterhuizen will be closer to him, due to running harder lines, and much better & faster to the clearout
Either way, I think he made a massive step forward in Saturdays game
 

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Yeah I watched some highlights of a Bath game recently and he played really well. Made breaks when there didn't look to be any gaps. Maybe England has become too obsessed with size. Sam Burgess and Barrie-Jon Mathers are two names that jump to mind. IMO a 12 needs to have the skills to play 10 and he needs pace. They come before size. Can you imagine Burgess playing 10... Does Lawrence play 12 or 13 or both?
Not always the ABs played with a big 12 and a playmaker at 13 in SBW or Nonu.
The key to those 2 was the handling and offloading skills.
Now they are putting Barrett at 12 who also has the handling skills bit also the kicking skills.
 

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Im not sure size is the "be all" at 12. Power and strength helps yes..but its about having an all round game...and the ability to be an extra flanker.
Its why ive always said if only Sam Simmonds had focused on 12. Imagine him with his power and speed, but with developed Hands and kicking ability.

Brad Barritt was a massively effective 12 for Saracens..not a monster.

Its all about how you want your backline set up. Where you want your creative pivots and where you want your power options...and of course whats available.
 

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I think we’re far too picky and impatient with developing 12s.

Most of this can be said of literally any centre on the planet. In offence, of course Slade and Lawrence both look better at 13 than at 12; they have more space to work with and more time on the ball, and so we immediately label them as being 13s. Andre Esterhuizen would look better in attack if he was at 13 with more space and more time on the ball, but that doesn’t make him a 13. But someone has to do the gritty, hard work at 12 and I think we’re far too fast at disregarding a player’s ability in that position just because they aren’t immediately as successful there as they are in what is an objectively easier position to attack from.
Yes giving any player more space and time is going to make them look better. But im saying Slade needs the time 13 gives him and that it brings out his skillset. But my main point was he doesnt work as a 12 and never has looked good there in attack. As a Chiefs fan im sure you agree

Yes 12 requires alot of hard work and im sure Lawrence would do well there, i dont doubt that, but his skillset lends more to 13 and thats where he could be world class.
 

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Pieter Steph du Teague

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Yes giving any player more space and time is going to make them look better. But im saying Slade needs the time 13 gives him and that it brings out his skillset. But my main point was he doesnt work as a 12 and never has looked good there in attack. As a Chiefs fan im sure you agree

Yes 12 requires alot of hard work and im sure Lawrence would do well there, i dont doubt that, but his skillset lends more to 13 and thats where he could be world class.
I agree that Slade has always looked better at 13 than at 12, but when has he ever been given a prolonged run of games at 12 to develop there?

I don’t really believe that in the modern game there are any singular attributes like ball-carrying, passing, kicking, size, etc. that are better suited to either 12 or 13. You get crash ball 12s (Kerevi, Danty) and crash ball 13s (North, Tuilagi). You get distributing centres at 12 (Farrell, Havili) and you get distributing centres at 13 (Ringrose, Slade).

For me, the only thing that sets apart a 12 from a 13 in attack is the quality and speed of their decision making and execution of skill while under pressure. All of which can only be developed by actually getting game time at 12. So yes, I think that right now both Slade and Lawrence are best suited to 13, but I also see no reason why either of them couldn’t become excellent 12s if given a run of games to properly become accustomed to that position.
 

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I feel slightly bad about this post because Nowell was a fantastic player in his heyday and I was a big fan.
Yeah and he was always underated too.
What's the deal with Watson at the moment? Injured?
 

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Thats a good point

If anyone's interested, Charlie Morgan did a goo darticle on why Smith kicked it out, middle of the pitch with how good AB's were over the ball on the day, a pingy ref and 3 backs out of the equation

Also interesting to note he definitely carries the ball less for England, and I wonder if, particularly off first phase, this can be to do with the lack of rucking capability of Farrell, whereas esterhuizen will be closer to him, due to running harder lines, and much better & faster to the clearout
Either way, I think he made a massive step forward in Saturdays game
Suspect there was a causal link between Farrell taking a reduced role due to his knock and Smith looking less inhibited.

Dombrandt would also help Smith’s cause a lot.
 

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Also an interesting stat.. Maro Itoje is heavier than Jonny Hill, who's a mere 113kg?
 

Pieter Steph du Teague

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I think those are old stats for Hill, he looks to have bulked up significantly over the summer/this season
Yeah, he’s been listed as 112/113 since he first arrived at Chiefs from Gloucester and he’s significantly larger now. I’d guess anywhere from 117-120. Not sure why his weight’s never been updated though.
 

Geordiefalcon

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Yeah, he’s been listed as 112/113 since he first arrived at Chiefs from Gloucester and he’s significantly larger now. I’d guess anywhere from 117-120. Not sure why his weight’s never been updated though.
Can he use that extra bulk though. Will Witty for us (Falcons) was a great example of a lock who really bulked up heavily...but just didnt know how to use it correctly in the tight exchanges etc.

Then look at someone like Kruis who genuinely could put that bulk to good use.
 

Pieter Steph du Teague

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Can he use that extra bulk though. Will Witty for us (Falcons) was a great example of a lock who really bulked up heavily...but just didnt know how to use it correctly in the tight exchanges etc.

Then look at someone like Kruis who genuinely could put that bulk to good use.
Yeah, I’d say so. He’s no Etzebeth but I’ve always thought of Hill as being a pretty good ball carrier as far as locks go; he certainly scores more tries than most. Think he’s also known as being a pretty good scrummager. He’s got his issues but I think he uses his weight alright.
 

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