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Wales v Australia

Welsh Exile

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Shame Pivac is still in the job. People says it makes no sense to sack him now but I say it makes perfect sense. If you identify rot you need to cut it out before it spreads any further. Sack the lot and let AWJ be player/coach for a game.

A couple of months ago, Nigel Walker ex Winger and more importantly current WRU performance Director said:

"I would say we are in a good position. Nobody is complacent and nobody is saying we are going to win the World Cup or anything stupid like that, but we are in a good place.

"There has been a little bit of experimenting and the trialling of players. Wayne has been open about that. He has also said that period now is over, that experimenting will not take place over the autumn and Six Nations and I would expect our results to be good results over the course of the next six or eight months, in the build-up to the World Cup."

This review should be open and shut, so open and shut you’d question the need to even have a review. We expected to be in a different place to where we are (I don’t know why as the Italy result should’ve been the final straw) and we have regressed in every facet of our play and he is setting us back years the longer he stays in charge

I couldn’t really give 2 shits the team he plays or even if we scrape some BS win. We’re playing a Australia C team who we know are light years ahead of us in an attacking sense. We have no chance of beating their first team at present and we’ll probably lose to their C team on Saturday.

No LRZ, Tompkins, Tshiunza, Reffell or Daf Jenkins but like I say don’t really care. Hope we get smashed so the WRU have no choice. At the moment I get the impression they would love a win so they can justify keeping him in til the WC.
 

HamJan

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I’ve been very critical of the WRU, Gatland, the Welsh team and supporters over the years and I’ve enjoyed the ‘banter’ between both sets of fans, but this post leaves me feeling very sad. I think Pivac rode his luck during his first 6N and promised to develop a new side capable of challenging at the highest level, but this really hasn’t happened and many fans are feeling the same as you do.

Part of the problem is the lack of player development under Gatland, especially during the cycle leading to RWC 2019, which left the ‘promising player cupboard’ empty when Pivac took over. How can any coach restock that cupboard in three years before the next RWC? This is why he’s persisted with AWJ, Halfpenny, Owens, Lydiate etc, players who are programmed for eight man rugby and none of whom would provide a backbone for any attack minded side.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying Pivac should keep his job, especially in such a results focussed industry, but I do think that any review should be balanced and with responsibilities apportioned in a fair manner. An area that the WRU should look inward (but probably won’t) is appointing a foreign coach and forming a back up team of recently retired, but Welsh, coaches with little experience. What have Howley and Jones contributed as attack coaches? What coaching experience does Gethin provide to a national side? Has Bomb been approached? Neil Jenkins is listed as skills coach!! Really? It’s mind blowing that the most one dimensional, skill free player in rugby history is your national team skills coach.

Sorry that this has ended as a bit of a rant, but I hope that the optimism returns to Welsh supporters.
 

Saintjay

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I was under the belief the WRU will review Pivac and Wales after the AI's. I've no idea what contract he is on but will the WRU be able to afford the cost of getting rid. Equally can they afford a decent replacement? Buying people out of contracts etc
I think availability could be an issue with most coaches looking at what jobs come up after the RWC. England, possibly the AB's looking for new coaches. Who other than Gatland, which would be a massive step back for the WRU, and also show they got the Pivac call wrong. Who would take the job now.
Wales rugby is a sadly mess. Especially the regions and WRU. No matter how good a coach you might be. It's hard to soar like an eagle surrounded by turkeys.
 

Welsh Exile

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I’ve been very critical of the WRU, Gatland, the Welsh team and supporters over the years and I’ve enjoyed the ‘banter’ between both sets of fans, but this post leaves me feeling very sad. I think Pivac rode his luck during his first 6N and promised to develop a new side capable of challenging at the highest level, but this really hasn’t happened and many fans are feeling the same as you do.

Part of the problem is the lack of player development under Gatland, especially during the cycle leading to RWC 2019, which left the ‘promising player cupboard’ empty when Pivac took over. How can any coach restock that cupboard in three years before the next RWC? This is why he’s persisted with AWJ, Halfpenny, Owens, Lydiate etc, players who are programmed for eight man rugby and none of whom would provide a backbone for any attack minded side.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying Pivac should keep his job, especially in such a results focussed industry, but I do think that any review should be balanced and with responsibilities apportioned in a fair manner. An area that the WRU should look inward (but probably won’t) is appointing a foreign coach and forming a back up team of recently retired, but Welsh, coaches with little experience. What have Howley and Jones contributed as attack coaches? What coaching experience does Gethin provide to a national side? Has Bomb been approached? Neil Jenkins is listed as skills coach!! Really? It’s mind blowing that the most one dimensional, skill free player in rugby history is your national team skills coach.

Sorry that this has ended as a bit of a rant, but I hope that the optimism returns to Welsh supporters.
I agree and disagree re Gatland. There were plenty of young players that Gatland brought through and some older players he persisted with. Some of it is just down to a lack of players coming through in certain positions but Gatland played players like Carre, Lewis, Beard, Watkin etc etc. In turn Pivac has brought in other players like Tompkins, Reffell, Basham, Tshiunza etc etc.

It’s the 2 year break clause in his contract. I was actually happy with what I was seeing in that first season, we were losing most of our games but a lot were close and, most importantly, you could seen how he was trying to evolve our play, we were taking risks, but after that 5th place finish he knew that another one the following year would see him possibly get sacked so he went back on everything, brought back players like Lydiate, Priestland and Cuthbert who Gatland discarded years ago and revered back to what he thought would win us games. And hey, look, he was right, we won the following 6N and were seconds away from a GS. His mind was made up by that point though and was never going to evolve our play.

The extent of the mess we find ourselves in now has next to nothing to do with Gatland and has everything to do with Pivac and the WRU.

We’re not going to fix the plethora of problems in Welsh rugby overnight but one we can fix easily and straight away is sacking Pivac and Co and getting in Robertson or even me, I’ll do a good job.
 

Welsh Exile

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I was under the belief the WRU will review Pivac and Wales after the AI's. I've no idea what contract he is on but will the WRU be able to afford the cost of getting rid. Equally can they afford a decent replacement? Buying people out of contracts etc
I think availability could be an issue with most coaches looking at what jobs come up after the RWC. England, possibly the AB's looking for new coaches. Who other than Gatland, which would be a massive step back for the WRU, and also show they got the Pivac call wrong. Who would take the job now.
Wales rugby is a sadly mess. Especially the regions and WRU. No matter how good a coach you might be. It's hard to soar like an eagle surrounded by turkeys.
Yeah the talk is of the classic “WRU review” post Autumn. I wonder if the board has the power to liquidate itself. That’d be nice.
 

Welsh Exile

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******* coward doesn’t even have the balls to face the press today. Sent out Neil Jenkins who just gave 1 sentence reposes thst included phrases like “fronting up” and “turning up” about 50 times.

Pivac is obviously a “do as I say not as I do” kind of coach seeing as he didn’t “turn up” to face the press.
 

dullonien

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I do think a coach might look at some of the talent coming through and see some real potential to build something decent for the 2027 WC, with the likes of Tshiunza, Jenkins, Hawkins, Llewelly, Grady, Carre, Reffell etc. all very promising young players. It's sadly too late to do that in time for the wc in France next year (although Gats parachuted a number of youngsters into his squad very close to the 2011 WC (North, Halfpenny, Warbs, Lydiate, Faletau, Priestland) and Wales proceeded to play some of their best rugby of the professional era, so it can be done. Also is there anywhere near enough, it's fine to name a handfull of talented youngsters, but ia the quantity there?

The big issues that hinder our ability to lure a quality coach like Robertson is the in-fighting and complete mediocrity of the regions. There's always been in-fighting, but when Gatland agreed to coach us after the capitulation under Gareth Jenkins there was at least evidence of quality in the regions. Ospreys were a quality outfit, even if they never achived their potential, but they were genuinely competing with the best in europe, winning cltic league ***les etc. Cardiff and Scarlets were competative on the whole too. The same cannot be said now, with all the regions stumbling from season to season barely makig a mark in the Pro12 or Europe.

From a foreign coach looking at us, are they able to come to the conclusion that they can turn us around and thus improve rheir standing as a coach in order to secure the higher profile jobs they actually want. Realistically that's our position as it stands, a stepping stone for a coach like Robertson who needs international experience on his CV to land rhe big (NZ) job, like it was for Henry, Hansen and Gatland. For a brief moment mid Gatland reign our standing may have been elevated, but we're squarely back to that lower level now.

Pivac has brought us down to such a low standing though that many coaches might fancy their chances of making a positive impact. That doesn't mean taking us to WC champions, but making us competative again will be enough to show their worth. Thoae success story's of Henry and Hansen going on to winning the WC with NZ after cutting their teeth with Wales might encourage some too. Gatland's standing for a long time in the game would also be encouraging, even if it went a little wrong for him towards the end/post coaching Wales.

Esit. Apologies Aus fans, very little of this has anything to do with the game on the weekend. Unfortunately I have very little care for this game, it may be the first game where I actively want Wales to lose, be battered by 70 so that change cannot be ignored. You'd hope the players themselves have too much pride to allow that to happen, we'll see...
 
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g6mcg

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What kind of team are Australia going to be able to put out? Intrigued to see how 15 assorted players fare against an autumnal Wales.
 

TRF_Olyy

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Hooper ruled out with concussion,
Aussie side is going to be pretty threadbare
 

g6mcg

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Famous last words, but hard to see how he doesn't!

Though must admit that I still have my doubts that Wales will actually be poor when it counts. Even with weak performances I'd expect 3rd in 6N and RWC draw is pretty favourable.
 

Welsh Exile

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Yeah, I called the Argentina victory and I’ve got a sneaking suspicion we’ll sneak a win on the weekend. The players aren’t playing for him but they won’t complete down tools they’ll be playing for a bit of pride. That, plus the fact the Aussies are ravaged with injury, we’re obviously not full strength either but not as bad as them.
 

Welsh Exile

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Famous last words, but hard to see how he doesn't!

Though must admit that I still have my doubts that Wales will actually be poor when it counts. Even with weak performances I'd expect 3rd in 6N and RWC draw is pretty favourable.
Third in the 6N? Thst is extremely generous. While I don’t see England or Scotland being anything to be too scared about I’ve seen no evidence we’ll get a victory in Murrayfield and we have Italy away this year. Ireland and England at home but not going to win those. It’s either going to be 5th or wooden spoon, sadly. Unless Pivac goes then there’s hope.
 

g6mcg

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Third in the 6N? Thst is extremely generous. While I don’t see England or Scotland being anything to be too scared about I’ve seen no evidence we’ll get a victory in Murrayfield and we have Italy away this year. Ireland and England at home but not going to win those. It’s either going to be 5th or wooden spoon, sadly. Unless Pivac goes then there’s hope.
I'd need several years of Wales being significantly worse before I expected Scotland to beat them! England also looking weak and haven't seen anything to suggest their discipline holds under pressure away from home.
 

Welsh Exile

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I'd need several years of Wales being significantly worse before I expected Scotland to beat them! England also looking weak and haven't seen anything to suggest their discipline holds under pressure away from home.
Agree on England that they look weak but Wales weak? Not sunk to that level yet. They’re not a million miles ahead of us though. Maybe a Scottish win in Cardiff I could understand being cautious about but beating you up in Scotland like it is next 6N? I wouldn’t be too worried if I’m being honest.

The way I see it at the moment, in terms of standards teams are setting, is you have Ireland and France on their own with NZ and SA not too far behind them then you have Aus, England, Argentina and Scotland in the 3rd group behind NZ and SA (Wales used to be in this group) and then you have Italy, Wales, Fiji, Japan and evidently, Georgia in that 4th group.

A year is a long time though which is why I don’t get this “It’s too late to sack Pivac” argument. It’s not ideal, we should’ve given the new coach the SA tour and this autumn series as well as next seasons 6N as prep for the WC but there will still be 7 games prep for new coach if we get rid of Pivac now.
 

Welsh Exile

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We should hear from Pivac today unless he decides to hide again. My prediction for the team is:

Thomas
Owens
Lewis
Beard
AWJ
Morgan
Tipuric
Faletau

Williams
Anscombe
Adams
Watkin
North
Dyer
LRZ

Bench: Elias, Smith, Francis, Carter, Macleod, Hardy, Priestland, Cuthbert.
 

dullonien

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Won't be LRZ at fullback, he'll be back with Gloucester. Halfpenny will likely return to the starting IV.
 

Welsh Exile

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Won't be LRZ at fullback, he'll be back with Gloucester. Halfpenny will likely return to the starting IV.
Oh yeah, doh.

Halfpenny at 15 it is then. To be fair, he was Pivac’s first choice 15 going into this series. Which is pretty crazy when you think about it.
 

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  1. Angus Bell (recovering from a toe injury)
  2. Dave Porecki (concussion during last week's defeat to Ireland)
  3. Taniela Tupou (suspected ruptured Achilles tendon).
  4. Matt Philip (ACL injury hours before the Wallabies headed overseas)
  5. Will Skelton (unavailable outside World Rugby's designated international period).
  6. Lachlan Swinton (nerve damage in shoulder).
  7. Michael Hooper (concussion)
  8. Rob Valetini (ankle injury)
  9. Nic White (passed HIA, before his symptoms were upgraded to 'criteria one' assessment, based on "balance disturbance and ataxia", meaning he must sit out for a minimum of 12 days).
  10. Quade Cooper (long-term Achilles injury)
  11. Andrew Kellaway (fracture to his fifth metatarsal during Ireland game).
  12. Samu Kerevi ( knee injury during the Commonwealth Games Sevens game)
  13. Hunter Paisami (medial collateral ligament ("MCL") injury in Ireland game).
  14. Marika Koroibete (back in Japan per club agreement)
  15. Tom Banks (ankle injury)
  16. Alex Mafi (neck)
  17. Harry Johnson-Holmes (ruptured Achilles tendon in Wallabies camp before England series)
  18. Pone Fa'amausili (hamstring)
  19. Izack Rodda (foot injury)
  20. Rob Leota (long-term Achilles injury)
  21. James O'Connor (ankle injury suffered with Brisbane club Brothers)
  22. Bernard Foley (back in Japan under World Rugby Reg 9)
  23. Lalakai Foketi (shin injury during France game)
An injured/unavailable 23. Rennie has 25 of the 36 man squad he brought to Europe left standing.

Sorta feel like this extra game isn't super necessary.
 

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