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The Lions squad for 2021 prediction

TRF_heineken

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Based on Georgia's performance in the autumn you'd be better off playing the springboks u20s, or even u18s

I don't think the Boks being undercooked has any relevance to the tour - their players have been playing club rugby, they've got the two warmups, and the players at least (largely) have played together before

The Lions is a brand new side cobbled together from 4 nations

I don't really care if we smash Georgia by 100-0 or by 1 point, for me its about getting the guys together, and getting in tune again as a springbok team.

We need to be cohesive prior to that first Lions test.
 

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Based on Georgia's performance in the autumn you'd be better off playing the springboks u20s, or even u18s

I don't think the Boks being undercooked has any relevance to the tour - their players have been playing club rugby, they've got the two warmups, and the players at least (largely) have played together before

The Lions is a brand new side cobbled together from 4 nations

Usually this is the biggest advantage for the Southern Hemisphere, its monumentally hard to implement attacking structures & defensive structures in just a few weeks, especially with minimal time in between games due to midweeks to continue developing them

Obviously SA structures wont have changed much and should find their groove much quicker, but certainly a slightly lesser advantage than before. However there is still the altitude question, a historically strong weapon on tours to SA
 

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Yeah there were 9 in 89 and 6 in 97 both winning tours
Only 4 Irish though who were the weakest nation at the time like Scotland now.

The video did what it set out to do and was provocative and insulting to a degree but to be honest I'd be looking at the squad the same way as a SA fan. It's not a squad established to exploit their weaknesses and they know it.
 

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Only 4 Irish though who were the weakest nation at the time like Scotland now.

The video did what it set out to do and was provocative and insulting to a degree but to be honest I'd be looking at the squad the same way as a SA fan. It's not a squad established to exploit their weaknesses and they know it.

Isnt it though? I mean its a fairly pacy mobile back 5 of the pack, pacy wingers, and potential (i say potential meaning a dual playmaker or russell at 10 system) from a very expansive gameplan
I'm not saying this will happen, because Gats, but there is a chance... realistically, the best way to beat any team with a huge pack is getting them on the backfoot, and this is where Sinckler will be missed (particularly as at the weekend he showed he's a different animal when emotional), and why Mako may play... variety of attack when playing flat to the line is crucial for soft shoulders, as well as the speed and quick feet to hit the gaps. then its about can the players get any sort of offloading game going. If they can, then you can really work around a slight pack disadvantage, but they will need line breaks and I'd say its relatively clear they wont be looking at getting them from bosh ball. The big players they have are more defensively minded to prevent being run over in return, Aki v De Allende perhaps if they need to tighten things up
The again, no one really bulldozes SA barr in their poor period under Coetzee where England did a few times to come away with some narrow wins
 

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Only 4 Irish though who were the weakest nation at the time like Scotland now.

The video did what it set out to do and was provocative and insulting to a degree but to be honest I'd be looking at the squad the same way as a SA fan. It's not a squad established to exploit their weaknesses and they know it.
If you read the comment section on that video though all the South Africans are cringing hard at some of the stuff.

I think they made a couple of good points but throw enough **** against the wall and some of it will stick. I’m not really sure, deep down, they really believed half the stuff they were saying, tbh.

He would say one thing and then contradict himself 5 mins later by saying something different which led me to believe it was 70% a wind up job and 30% semi serious analysis.

The hobbit stuff did make me chuckle, though, and really enjoyed watching it. Sent it to my brother and he loved it called me straight away to discuss it and he lives out in the States. They did their job and no doubt this video will find its way to the Lions camp. I’d change Hamish Watsons nickname from Pinball to Hobbit straight away. I’d call him that every day in training.
 

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I know weight isn’t the be all and end all when it comes to power and physical dominance but I wonder what the differences in pack weight will be. My guess not much.
 

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Isnt it though? I mean its a fairly pacy mobile back 5 of the pack, pacy wingers, and potential (i say potential meaning a dual playmaker or russell at 10 system) from a very expansive gameplan
I'm not saying this will happen, because Gats, but there is a chance... realistically, the best way to beat any team with a huge pack is getting them on the backfoot, and this is where Sinckler will be missed (particularly as at the weekend he showed he's a different animal when emotional), and why Mako may play... variety of attack when playing flat to the line is crucial for soft shoulders, as well as the speed and quick feet to hit the gaps. then its about can the players get any sort of offloading game going. If they can, then you can really work around a slight pack disadvantage, but they will need line breaks and I'd say its relatively clear they wont be looking at getting them from bosh ball. The big players they have are more defensively minded to prevent being run over in return, Aki v De Allende perhaps if they need to tighten things up
The again, no one really bulldozes SA barr in their poor period under Coetzee where England did a few times to come away with some narrow wins
When has an NH side ever beaten a good SA side playing like that though?

I think the points made re selection were dead on, the rest being pantomime level stuff, the hosts interjections were often good too.

NH sides generally beat SA and NZ in largely the same way with a bit more focus on blitz D and possession v NZ. They do it by having a more mobile second row and a back row usually in the traditional mould who'll cover more ground too, the Lions will have parity at best if they plan on sticking a lock at 6 and playing AWJ for more than 40 mins.

In addition to that they have halfbacks and a midfield capable of controlling territory, Murray is the only option at 9 and he's on the plane to give Gatland his dues, Henshaw is also decent with the boot and a great kick chaser but beyond that it looks totally reliant on Farrell finding form and even then it could be improved upon. Leaving Slade at home is absolutely bonkers and the worst selection by far imo, he might think Daly can control territory from 13 but he's never been good at kicking when coming into the line from 15 which affords him more time. And then leaving arguably the two best 10s in international rugby at controlling where the game is played in Sexton and Ford (also the two who'll play flat to the line) at home too looks like he's handicapped the side pretty badly.

The back three and front row is admittedly ideal bar Duhan, who won't play tests, and Sinckler not being there. I think May or even Keenan would be better suited. I think he's going to get it wrong like he did last time but won't have the replacements to bail him out for the 2nd and 3rd tests.

I think there is method to it like you're saying, I'm just not sure the effect will be massively positive at all with a few key components missing.

If you read the comment section on that video though all the South Africans are cringing hard at some of the stuff.

I think they made a couple of good points but throw enough **** against the wall and some of it will stick. I’m not really sure, deep down, they really believed half the stuff they were saying, tbh.

He would say one thing and then contradict himself 5 mins later by saying something different which led me to believe it was 70% a wind up job and 30% semi serious analysis.

The hobbit stuff did make me chuckle, though, and really enjoyed watching it. Sent it to my brother and he loved it called me straight away to discuss it and he lives out in the States. They did their job and no doubt this video will find its way to the Lions camp. I’d change Hamish Watsons nickname from Pinball to Hobbit straight away. I’d call him that every day in training.
Yeah look, I'm never going to say it's quality stuff and I was half listening while working so paid more attention to what I agreed with. Definitely entertaining and purposefully OTT but I can see why they're thinking that way.
 

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I don't have audio here at the office, so will have a listen when I'm at home tonight.

I don't think we must take everything Mark Keohane says to heart. Many of us saffas hate the guy, and he has been ousted several times in the past. He has a tendency to rub people the wrong way, and make assertions that are most times not factual or even of substance.

What I do want to mention here, is the fact that Gatland has been coaching the past year in New Zealand, and has been working with NZ based coaches and players, there will in all likelihood be some application by him to help the Lions play more like NZ with the option of making the game a bit more loose, which NZ thrives on.
 

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What I do want to mention here, is the fact that Gatland has been coaching the past year in New Zealand, and has been working with NZ based coaches and players, there will in all likelihood be some application by him to help the Lions play more like NZ with the option of making the game a bit more loose, which NZ thrives on.
Hasn't he been playing utter dross in NZ, though?
There was a Chiefs fan on here a few days (sorry, can't remember the username!) saying how he's not well liked round those parts because he was losing every game and ruined some great players by forcing them to play Warrenball


Edit: Forgot what side he coached lol
 
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Hasn't he been playing utter dross in NZ, though?
There was a Canes fan on here a few days (sorry, can't remember the username!) saying how he's not well liked round those parts because he was losing every game and ruined some great players by forcing them to play Warrenball
Ah I hope one day we stop our love affair with him the ABs completely lose their mind and put him in charge of national team.
 

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Hasn't he been playing utter dross in NZ, though?
There was a Canes fan on here a few days (sorry, can't remember the username!) saying how he's not well liked round those parts because he was losing every game and ruined some great players by forcing them to play Warrenball

Perhaps, but the Chiefs was in the Super Rugby Aetoaroa final this past weekend (even though Gats wasn't there).

Last year they were horrendous yes, but there has been some sort of upward curve, but I can't say whether it's because of Gats, or his absence while concentrating on the Lions...
 

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When has an NH side ever beaten a good SA side playing like that though?

I think the points made re selection were dead on, the rest being pantomime level stuff, the hosts interjections were often good too.

NH sides generally beat SA and NZ in largely the same way with a bit more focus on blitz D and possession v NZ. They do it by having a more mobile second row and a back row usually in the traditional mould who'll cover more ground too, the Lions will have parity at best if they plan on sticking a lock at 6 and playing AWJ for more than 40 mins.

In addition to that they have halfbacks and a midfield capable of controlling territory, Murray is the only option at 9 and he's on the plane to give Gatland his dues, Henshaw is also decent with the boot and a great kick chaser but beyond that it looks totally reliant on Farrell finding form and even then it could be improved upon. Leaving Slade at home is absolutely bonkers and the worst selection by far imo, he might think Daly can control territory from 13 but he's never been good at kicking when coming into the line from 15 which affords him more time. And then leaving arguably the two best 10s in international rugby at controlling where the game is played in Sexton and Ford (also the two who'll play flat to the line) at home too looks like he's handicapped the side pretty badly.

The back three and front row is admittedly ideal bar Duhan, who won't play tests, and Sinckler not being there. I think May or even Keenan would be better suited. I think he's going to get it wrong like he did last time but won't have the replacements to bail him out for the 2nd and 3rd tests.

I think there is method to it like you're saying, I'm just not sure the effect will be massively positive at all with a few key components missing.


Yeah look, I'm never going to say it's quality stuff and I was half listening while working so paid more attention to what I agreed with. Definitely entertaining and purposefully OTT but I can see why they're thinking that way.
I thought you summed it up well when you first posted the link. I’d maybe say there was slightly less valuable stuff in there than you but that’s by the by.

The Ryan stuff made me scratch my head, though, as he was going on about size and power but then saying leaving Ryan out was a terrible decision on that basis. Now, don’t get me wrong, it is a bad decision by Gats, but isn’t he the lightest lock out of all our options? so if you are banging the “you need big strong monsters to play the Boks”’drum then you could argue Ryan isn’t the best fit for that. I mean, I’d disagree with that analysis but it would make sense. It doesn’t make sense to keep going on about hobbits and stuff but then say why didn’t they pick the lightest 2nd row in contention. Mind you he is a tall fucker isn’t he, Ryan.

I think this obsession about having massive players in every position is false, though. I know it’s not going to happen but I’d love to see Beirne in the 2nd row.
 

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Perhaps, but the Chiefs was in the Super Rugby Aetoaroa final this past weekend (even though Gats wasn't there).

Last year they were horrendous yes, but there has been some sort of upward curve, but I can't say whether it's because of Gats, or his absence while concentrating on the Lions...
I thought the upwards curve was from when he stopped coaching?
 

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I thought you summed it up well when you first posted the link. I’d maybe say there was slightly less valuable stuff in there than you but that’s by the by.

The Ryan stuff made me scratch my head, though, as he was going on about size and power but then saying leaving Ryan out was a terrible decision on that basis. Now, don’t get me wrong, it is a bad decision by Gats, but isn’t he the lightest lock out of all our options? so if you are banging the “you need big strong monsters to play the Boks”’drum then you could argue Ryan isn’t the best fit for that. I mean, I’d disagree with that analysis but it would make sense. It doesn’t make sense to keep going on about hobbits and stuff but then say why didn’t they pick the lightest 2nd row in contention. Mind you he is a tall fucker isn’t he, Ryan.

I think this obsession about having massive players in every position is false, though. I know it’s not going to happen but I’d love to see Beirne in the 2nd row.
The obsession of size should not be a point of consideration. Cheslin Kolbe and Faf de Klerk are prime examples of that. But if you have big guys, make sure they are fit, fit enough to go full blast the whole 80. That's what makes PSDT such an imposing force
 

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I thought you summed it up well when you first posted the link. I’d maybe say there was slightly less valuable stuff in there than you but that’s by the by.

The Ryan stuff made me scratch my head, though, as he was going on about size and power but then saying leaving Ryan out was a terrible decision on that basis. Now, don’t get me wrong, it is a bad decision by Gats, but isn’t he the lightest lock out of all our options? so if you are banging the “you need big strong monsters to play the Boks”’drum then you could argue Ryan isn’t the best fit for that. I mean, I’d disagree with that analysis but it would make sense. It doesn’t make sense to keep going on about hobbits and stuff but then say why didn’t they pick the lightest 2nd row in contention. Mind you he is a tall fucker isn’t he, Ryan.

I think this obsession about having massive players in every position is false, though. I know it’s not going to happen but I’d love to see Beirne in the 2nd row.
Possibly, I remember it as Ryan v AWJ and that selection makes sense to me, I think AWJ should be nailed on for the bench, seems like the perfect guy to get over the line in a tight game in what is probably the Lions strongest area and while it's unlikely that Ryan gets in the 23 on current form he's of the class of player that Gatland has otherwise picked to play their way into form, same for Gray who I would have thought made sense to get picked before Ryan. Lawes and Hill are some of the many dead picks imo.

Agree re Beirne in the row.

I think they were right to be perplexed by the omission of Stander too although not for the right reasons. There's really no one as good as him at tight carrying and turning slow ball into front foot ball in the squad, he would be the type of 6 I want v the Boks and unless he picks Faletau as a 6 I don't see any better options in there.

I'd have probably taken Gray and CJ instead of the aforementioned two, the bitterness re Ryan is more due to the bogus reasoning.
 

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The obsession of size should not be a point of consideration. Cheslin Kolbe and Faf de Klerk are prime examples of that. But if you have big guys, make sure they are fit, fit enough to go full blast the whole 80. That's what makes PSDT such an imposing force
I agree. To be fair to them I think they were more talking about the pack but yeah I agree. As I said earlier I’m not sure they’ll be much in it with regards to overall pack weight.
 

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Possibly, I remember it as Ryan v AWJ and that selection makes sense to me, I think AWJ should be nailed on for the bench, seems like the perfect guy to get over the line in a tight game in what is probably the Lions strongest area and while it's unlikely that Ryan gets in the 23 on current form he's of the class of player that Gatland has otherwise picked to play their way into form, same for Gray who I would have thought made sense to get picked before Ryan. Lawes and Hill are some of the many dead picks imo.

Agree re Beirne in the row.

I think they were right to be perplexed by the omission of Stander too although not for the right reasons. There's really no one as good as him at tight carrying and turning slow ball into front foot ball in the squad, he would be the type of 6 I want v the Boks and unless he picks Faletau as a 6 I don't see any better options in there.

I'd have probably taken Gray and CJ instead of the aforementioned two, the bitterness re Ryan is more due to the bogus reasoning.
I agree with every single word of that accept I’m not sure about AWJ as an impact player off the bench but in the scenario you describe I could see him adding value for sure. Not as convinced if we were say 12 plus points down with 20mins to go that he would be as effective. Think I’d rather have any of the other lads in that scenario. I think AWJ is more a 80min player though I’ll be surprised if he does last the full 80 if he does start.
 

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Only 4 Irish though who were the weakest nation at the time like Scotland now.
You mean the Scotland that beat England and France away and were only 4 points away from the Grand Slam?
 

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Lol

Not wanting to sound harsh.
But in terms of achievements that isn't a very high one.

Rankings wise you are lower.
People seem to think that recent rugby = Six nations....

Remember you got trashed v Ireland in only December.
 

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Lol

Not wanting to sound harsh.
But in terms of achievements that isn't a very high one.

Rankings wise you are lower.
People seem to think that recent rugby = Six nations....

Remember you got trashed v Ireland in only December.
3rd or 4th choice fly half that day
 

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