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Ireland Summer Tour? Maybe

big ginger 8

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Believe we're scheduled to tour the PI's. Probably very little chance of that happening as much as I would like it to. However, I do believe the IRFU will organise something whether it be games against other European teams or a bunch of trial matches. Obviously there is also still the Heineken Cup and at least the Inter-pro part of the Rainbow Cup so injuries etc will happen. I'm a firm believer that summer tours during Lions seasons should be developmentally focused although I expect guys who are on stand-by for the Lions to be involved for match fitness.

That said I am not selecting a number of players due to a mixture of potential Lions, age and injury. It's also a weird mix between what I think coaches will do and what I would do

Not considered: Cian Healy, Furlong, Porter, James Ryan, Henderson, Beirne, Leavy, Doris, Deegan, Murray, Sexton, Henshaw, Ringrose, Earls

Loosehead: Kilcoyne, Byrne, O’Sullivan - We've known about the weakness here for a good while but there's no young lad demanding inclusion unless JWhych comes back from whatever his injury is and gers a good run

Hooker: Kelleher, Herring, Delahunt/O’Byrne - Sheehan - obviously Heffernan is probably most likely the third choice but I'd rather Delahunt or KOB. Don't think any of them will be starters but think Delahunt and KOB are more comfortable on the ball. Would bring Sheehan along as an apprentice player.

Tighthead: O’Toole, Bealham, ? - Semi to good chance that Porter won't be with the Lions even if he absolutely should be. If he is Ryan is probably the next cab off the rank but isn't playing great and subbing at Munster. The third spot probably doesn't matter and will be meh unless they go curveball with someone young or just curves and bring back Marty Moore. Pity it probably won't be against the Islanders as that's a pretty ideal environment to give TOT his first run.

Lock: Baird, Dillane, Thornbury, Treadwell/Roux - Our depth here is a lot better than it used to be. Would hope Baird gets a lot of time, the Connacht locks have been good and Treadwell is somehow still only 25. A bit underpowered but very good for an expansive game. Niall Murray could be a curveball. Kleyn would be one of a different variety.

Backrow: Conan, Coombes, Connors, VDF, Ruddock, Boyle - believe Connors should be back. Would have Penny if he isn't. Could be some fun combos here. Coombes to make a deserved debut and Boyle has put in some great shifts.

Scrumhalf: Casey, JGP, Blade - would imagine Casey and JGP are nailed on for the coaches. Cooney probably the next one up. Wouldn't be upset by him going but at 30 I'd prefer a look at someone else. McGrath and Marmion also options and honestly McGrath might be Leinster's player of the year. Pity about his pass.

Outhalf: Carbery, Ross and Harry - Coaches might favour Burns over Ross. As long as Carbery and Harry go I'll be happy. Too much to ask for Healy to go as well.

Centre: Aki, Farrell, Hume, Moore/Tom Daly - The coaches are definitely taking Aki and Farrell. Wouldn't be surprised just to see three centres and Hume would be the deserved third. He's still a bit raw but Moore is definitely full of potential and I'd love him to go even as another apprentice. The coaches seem to like big centres and Daly has had a good season with Connacht.

Backthree: Stockdale, Larmour, Balocounne, Keenan, Lowe - Balocounne has to be brought in.
 

The Alpha Bro

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Hope we get something organised, it's desperately needed.

Hooker and 10 are the biggest problem areas that can be proactively attacked right now, LH is just far too weak unfortunately.

I don't think Carbery has earned himself the heir apparent position back but we know Ross and Burns just aren't there and I see a lot of them in Ben Healy too at the moment. Carbery, HB and Crowley would be my picks, absolutely throwing Crowley in at the deep end but you have to learn how to play 10 on the job and he has as high a ceiling as the rest.

At hooker we have to bring Sheehan, he looks like he has what it takes to be an international and definitely has the physical attributes. Capping O'Byrne would just be a waste however good his season was, he's not a long term option.
 

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Disappointing but not hugely surprising. Hopefully they can get something together, the tour 4 years ago helped that squad hugely.
 

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This is almost entirely unrelated but I can't think of a better place to ask it; when do you guys in the south enter level 4 restrictions from level 5? Is there a date set?
 

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This is almost entirely unrelated but I can't think of a better place to ask it; when do you guys in the south enter level 4 restrictions from level 5? Is there a date set?
They've abandoned the levels as they have pretty much every other attempt at putting structure in this. They're just opening bit by bit. Non contact training, hairdressers etc open on the 10th and I think they're getting rid of the trave restrictions then too. Rest of retail ten days later. Pubs and cinemas outdoor dining in early June as well as gyms and pools which is sloooow. Can't wait to get back training though.
I'd say the Northern outlets etc will be seeing quite a few Irish car regs
 

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This is almost entirely unrelated but I can't think of a better place to ask it; when do you guys in the south enter level 4 restrictions from level 5? Is there a date set?
As groundhog said levels have basically been ditched.

Schools are fully open and organised activities for kids like training etc are allowed in groups of 15 as of this week. Big step forward on May 10th and then again in June all being well.
 

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Believe we're scheduled to tour the PI's. Probably very little chance of that happening as much as I would like it to. However, I do believe the IRFU will organise something whether it be games against other European teams or a bunch of trial matches. Obviously there is also still the Heineken Cup and at least the Inter-pro part of the Rainbow Cup so injuries etc will happen. I'm a firm believer that summer tours during Lions seasons should be developmentally focused although I expect guys who are on stand-by for the Lions to be involved for match fitness.

That said I am not selecting a number of players due to a mixture of potential Lions, age and injury. It's also a weird mix between what I think coaches will do and what I would do

Not considered: Cian Healy, Furlong, Porter, James Ryan, Henderson, Beirne, Leavy, Doris, Deegan, Murray, Sexton, Henshaw, Ringrose, Earls

Loosehead: Kilcoyne, Byrne, O’Sullivan - We've known about the weakness here for a good while but there's no young lad demanding inclusion unless JWhych comes back from whatever his injury is and gers a good run

Hooker: Kelleher, Herring, Delahunt/O’Byrne - Sheehan - obviously Heffernan is probably most likely the third choice but I'd rather Delahunt or KOB. Don't think any of them will be starters but think Delahunt and KOB are more comfortable on the ball. Would bring Sheehan along as an apprentice player.

Tighthead: O’Toole, Bealham, ? - Semi to good chance that Porter won't be with the Lions even if he absolutely should be. If he is Ryan is probably the next cab off the rank but isn't playing great and subbing at Munster. The third spot probably doesn't matter and will be meh unless they go curveball with someone young or just curves and bring back Marty Moore. Pity it probably won't be against the Islanders as that's a pretty ideal environment to give TOT his first run.

Lock: Baird, Dillane, Thornbury, Treadwell/Roux - Our depth here is a lot better than it used to be. Would hope Baird gets a lot of time, the Connacht locks have been good and Treadwell is somehow still only 25. A bit underpowered but very good for an expansive game. Niall Murray could be a curveball. Kleyn would be one of a different variety.

Backrow: Conan, Coombes, Connors, VDF, Ruddock, Boyle - believe Connors should be back. Would have Penny if he isn't. Could be some fun combos here. Coombes to make a deserved debut and Boyle has put in some great shifts.

Scrumhalf: Casey, JGP, Blade - would imagine Casey and JGP are nailed on for the coaches. Cooney probably the next one up. Wouldn't be upset by him going but at 30 I'd prefer a look at someone else. McGrath and Marmion also options and honestly McGrath might be Leinster's player of the year. Pity about his pass.

Outhalf: Carbery, Ross and Harry - Coaches might favour Burns over Ross. As long as Carbery and Harry go I'll be happy. Too much to ask for Healy to go as well.

Centre: Aki, Farrell, Hume, Moore/Tom Daly - The coaches are definitely taking Aki and Farrell. Wouldn't be surprised just to see three centres and Hume would be the deserved third. He's still a bit raw but Moore is definitely full of potential and I'd love him to go even as another apprentice. The coaches seem to like big centres and Daly has had a good season with Connacht.

Backthree: Stockdale, Larmour, Balocounne, Keenan, Lowe - Balocounne has to be brought in.
No love for Lowry as an option at 15? Probably too small to be a test fullback, but not that different to Larmour and has been in good form.
 

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Just thinking out loud ... England are unable to tour North America, Ireland are unable to tour Fiji ... might as well play each other if there’s nothing better on offer?

Arguably, we’d both get more benefit from playing experimental sides against each other than we might have done on the tours. Not sure what team Fiji would have been able to put out, but from England’s POV, playing USA and Canada wouldn’t really have given us much of an indication of whether the fringe players are ready for test rugby or not.
 

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Just thinking out loud ... England are unable to tour North America, Ireland are unable to tour Fiji ... might as well play each other if there’s nothing better on offer?
My idea for the summer:

Really should just go ahead and create a summer nations cup

Even makes it a bit more manageable as Italy and France (in theory) will be in Aus/NZ

Two groups from:

England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland, Argentina

America, Canada, Japan, Georgia, Romania

England already have games vs Scotland, America and Canada lined up, and Wales have Argentina so make the groups


England, Scotland, America, Canada, Georgia

Wales, Ireland, Argentina, Japan, Romania
 

big ginger 8

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No love for Lowry as an option at 15? Probably too small to be a test fullback, but not that different to Larmour and has been in good form.

I mean Larmour isn't really a 15 at test level either it seems. Their clubs say there's three inches and 10kg between them as well which is substantial. In terms of play style I'd also argue they are quite different and Larmour has the benefit of 29 caps as opposed to zero.

I like Lowry well enough but his size will always be a limiting factor and it's telling how he was used by Ulster last night. He might see more international success by making a more permanent positional change.

Just thinking out loud ... England are unable to tour North America, Ireland are unable to tour Fiji ... might as well play each other if there’s nothing better on offer?

Arguably, we’d both get more benefit from playing experimental sides against each other than we might have done on the tours. Not sure what team Fiji would have been able to put out, but from England’s POV, playing USA and Canada wouldn’t really have given us much of an indication of whether the fringe players are ready for test rugby or not.

That appears to be the route they're exploring, probably just waiting for certainty around Wales and Scotland's statuses.
 

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I mean Larmour isn't really a 15 at test level either it seems. Their clubs say there's three inches and 10kg between them as well which is substantial. In terms of play style I'd also argue they are quite different and Larmour has the benefit of 29 caps as opposed to zero.

I like Lowry well enough but his size will always be a limiting factor and it's telling how he was used by Ulster last night. He might see more international success by making a more permanent positional change.



That appears to be the route they're exploring, probably just waiting for certainty around Wales and Scotland's statuses.

Lowry reminds me of Kolbe. He has got pace, good balance and excellent feet.

It all depends how the team utilises him and protects him.
 

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I like Lowry, valid concerns about him at International level but you don't know until you try.

A more permanent switch to 10 is worth looking at, he's got more upside for Ulster than Burns if nothing else. With Addison back and a ridiculous amount of talent out wide the Ulster back three is likely to be a very unforgiving place soon.
 

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Not playing England on July 4th
Mad Tommy Wiseau GIF by The Room
 

big ginger 8

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Since Connacht don't have their own thread it's worth pointing out here that Boyle is out for 5 weeks which probably hurts his chances of being involved this summer. Though you'd imagine a lot of our players will be quite rusty by July with only two further games confirmed at the moment. I think there's a very good chance we at least play England in addition to the US and hopefully there would be at least one other game put in there.

Also as I said in the Leinster thread we may not be able to rest some guys who are on standby for the Lions (though who knows how that works this year) the IRFU benefit financially from everyone who tours and of course the players want to be in that window as well. So you'd imagine that includes some of the guys I wouldn't consider for the squad although from the squad I did pick two of them are obviously not available now.
 

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Would have been very cool to tour Fiji but glad they got something in place. Wouldn't mind a third game on top of the one's announced.
 

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