By RinTin
#66051
Forwards: Ollie Chessum, Dan Cole, Alex Coles, Luke Cowan-Dickie, Chandler Cunningham-South, Ben Curry Theo Dan, Alex Dombrandt, Ben Earl, Ellis Genge, Jamie George (capt), Joe Heyes, Nick Isiekwe, Maro Itoje, Joe Marler, Beno Obano, Tom Pearson, Ethan Roots, Will Stuart, Sam Underhill.

Backs: Oscar Beard, Danny Care, Elliot Daly, Fraser Dingwall, Immanuel Feyi-Waboso, George Ford, Tommy Freeman, George Furbank, Ollie Lawrence, Alex Mitchell, Tom Roebuck, Henry Slade, Fin Smith, Marcus Smith, Ben Spencer, Freddie Steward.

Sale with very low representation. Cannot believe Cokanasiga and Martin have been left out.

Thought Ross would be there.
Last edited by RinTin on Wed Jan 17, 2024 10:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
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By Olyy
#66054
Pleased for JG being captain, he was always my first choice from those available - hopefully doesn't limit the gametime for Theo Dan, though

Don't think LCD has earned his callup, especially as he's likely to go to France at the end of the season - Langdon arguably the form hooker in the league atm

Really pleased to see Ben Spencer there, and obviously Roebuck and Ben too - well deserved

Beard a surprise for me, been playing well but never would've thought an international call up was on the cards

Barbeary deserves to be there over Roots or Chandler Cunningham-South - maybe they've left him out so that his ban runs out and then they'll call him up first week of the tournament? England players miss the next round of the prem so if he's unavailable for that the ban would run into the 6N
By Bucks1861
#66055
Well one reason I suspect we are lower is the injuries to our England qualified players:- Tom Curry, Bevan Ross, Manu. Plus Hill being out of favour.

Cokanasiga - I’m not surprised. Watching the Bath game at the weekend Austin Healey outlined some of his deficiencies.

He can attack, his defensive positioning was in need of improvement.

To the Sale lads selected - congratulations!!!
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By Olyy
#66056
Yeah, Cokanasiga has a very limited skillset - he's great at what he does, when on form, but don't think that's enough at international level, especially with how poor he is in decision making and under the high ball
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By Olyy
#66057
Very interested in the makeup of the A game team now - will it be partly EPS players and then others from outside the group to fill in the gaps?

Furbank has definitely earned his spot in the EPS but I hope that Carps gets a shot at the A game, and they don't just put Furbank in it for game time if Steward is starting in the 6N side
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By Olyy
#66058
Raffi and Manu included in the squad as walking wounded (alongside George Martin, Anthony Watson and JvP)

Wild that Raffi still in consideration considering his form over the last two seasons

Barbeary not included as they're waiting on the result of his disciplinary hearing, so think my guess above was right
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By RinTin
#66059
I of course see the point re Cokanasiga - he previously has not performed for England (same can be said of Dombrandt). But this season he has been an altogether better player, especially under the high ball. Bath vs Quins in December really showed how far he had come.

Blooding of Roebuck and Feyi-Waboso means some established players go so I suppose they are being given a chance at his expense.

I'm excited for this, good mix of youth and experience. I hope SB lets them play their natural games as our back selections include some very exciting players.
By Olyy
#66062
chris1850 wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2024 11:56 am
Quirke and Tuilagi specifically mentioned as not considered due to injury. What about Bevan.....?
Probably due to it being a longer term issue - Manu and Raffi due back within the next few weeks, Axe said Rodd isn't due back until after the 6N
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By Olyy
#66458
ENGLAND TEAM TO PLAY ITALY
Starting
15. Freddie Steward (Leicester Tigers, 31 caps)
14. Tommy Freeman (Northampton Saints, 3 caps)
13. Henry Slade (Exeter Chiefs, 57 caps)
12. Fraser Dingwall (Northampton Saints, uncapped)
11. Elliot Daly (Saracens, 64 caps)
10. George Ford (Sale Sharks, 91 caps) – vice captain
9. Alex Mitchell (Northampton Saints, 11 caps)
1. Joe Marler (Harlequins, 88 caps)
2. Jamie George (Saracens, 85 caps) – captain
3. Will Stuart (Bath Rugby, 33 caps)
4. Maro Itoje (Saracens, 76 caps) – vice captain
5. Ollie Chessum (Leicester Tigers, 18 caps)
6. Ethan Roots (Exeter Chiefs, uncapped)
7. Sam Underhill (Bath Rugby, 30 caps)
8. Ben Earl (Saracens, 25 caps)

Replacements
16. Theo Dan (Saracens, 7 caps)
17. Ellis Genge (Bristol Bears, 58 caps) – vice captain
18. Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers, 107 caps)
19. Alex Coles (Northampton Saints, 3 caps)
20. Chandler Cunningham-South (Harlequins, uncapped)
21. Danny Care (Harlequins, 96 caps)
22. Fin Smith (Northampton Saints, uncapped)
23. Immanuel Feyi-Waboso (Exeter Chiefs, uncapped)


Congrats to George for the start and vice captaincy

Not over the moon with the side but SBs never been one to push the boat out
By Beardedshark
#66461
Got to say, not the side I would have gone with. Parson and curry in the back row. I believe Dickson is injured and care in. Think I would have gone Finn Smith, Dingwall Freeman , Roebuck , Feye-waboso and steward in the backs. That looks exciting to me.
Fast back row, quick ball creativity in the midfield and pace out wide to finish things off. Or maybe I’m just a dreamer
User avatar
By Yareet
#66462
Beardedshark wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 2:42 pm
Got to say, not the side I would have gone with. Parson and curry in the back row. I believe Dickson is injured and care in. Think I would have gone Finn Smith, Dingwall Freeman , Roebuck , Feye-waboso and steward in the backs. That looks exciting to me.
Fast back row, quick ball creativity in the midfield and pace out wide to finish things off. Or maybe I’m just a dreamer
Exciting maybe but also only 34 caps - of which 31 are Steward's. That's something of a risk - great if it pays off but imagine the headlines if that backline were the first English loss to Italy.

I can see the sense in dropping in newbies with experience around them

And with the exception of Tom, all of the backline you mention are likely to get on the park - just no necessarily at the same time.
By ale shark
#66463
Some bold and brave selections against a talented Italian team that ran both France and NZ so close in the recent World Cup.

Hardly surprising people are losing interest in the game.
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By RinTin
#66464
I don't like particularly like this team, but as mentioned already SB was never going to re invent the wheel.

The annoying thing is that this is, realistically, the best game to blood new players and just try something new. Instead we 1 new cap in the backs (won't play again when Lawrence and Manu are back) and a new cap at 6. No Pearson, no Curry, no chance for Finn Smith to start a game, no Roebuck anywhere. Again a man who plays as a centre has been put on the wing ahead of a player who only plays wing. How demoralising is that!

I like the guys on the bench. CCS, Dann, Smith and Feyi-Waboso will bring some spark and energy (assuming we have Italy on the canvass). If we are struggling though I doubt the new guys will get on.

Pretty uninspired by this but lets see how we play.

@ale shark enjoyed that.
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By RinTin
#66465
Yareet wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 2:56 pm
Beardedshark wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 2:42 pm
Got to say, not the side I would have gone with. Parson and curry in the back row. I believe Dickson is injured and care in. Think I would have gone Finn Smith, Dingwall Freeman , Roebuck , Feye-waboso and steward in the backs. That looks exciting to me.
Fast back row, quick ball creativity in the midfield and pace out wide to finish things off. Or maybe I’m just a dreamer
Exciting maybe but also only 34 caps - of which 31 are Steward's. That's something of a risk - great if it pays off but imagine the headlines if that backline were the first English loss to Italy.

I can see the sense in dropping in newbies with experience around them

And with the exception of Tom, all of the backline you mention are likely to get on the park - just no necessarily at the same time.
So play Mitchell with Finn, Slade with Freeman in the centres, then Steward with new wingers. Spine of experience in Mitchell, Slade and Steward, with new guys around. If it doesn't work you then have time to get Care, Ford and Daly on from the bench to bring level heads if needed.
By Olyy
#66466
I'm not so hot on CCS this season - he wasn't very good over the summer with the u20s (one or two highlights but generally not great, especially considering how good he was at Irish last season) and hasn't found his feet massively at Quins yet (though is improving)

He's definitely got bags of potential, but he's only had 4 starts this season - think he'd be better off starting for the u20s and maybe playing in the A game vs Portugal tbh
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User avatar
By Yareet
#66467
RinTin wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 3:31 pm
Yareet wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 2:56 pm
Beardedshark wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 2:42 pm
Got to say, not the side I would have gone with. Parson and curry in the back row. I believe Dickson is injured and care in. Think I would have gone Finn Smith, Dingwall Freeman , Roebuck , Feye-waboso and steward in the backs. That looks exciting to me.
Fast back row, quick ball creativity in the midfield and pace out wide to finish things off. Or maybe I’m just a dreamer
Exciting maybe but also only 34 caps - of which 31 are Steward's. That's something of a risk - great if it pays off but imagine the headlines if that backline were the first English loss to Italy.

I can see the sense in dropping in newbies with experience around them

And with the exception of Tom, all of the backline you mention are likely to get on the park - just no necessarily at the same time.
So play Mitchell with Finn, Slade with Freeman in the centres, then Steward with new wingers. Spine of experience in Mitchell, Slade and Steward, with new guys around. If it doesn't work you then have time to get Care, Ford and Daly on from the bench to bring level heads if needed.
That's a selection that makes a lot of sense. Also (FTR) I get that having Steward at 15 means we need another playmaker somewhere. Slade is on fire atm so I'm not sure we need Daly as well. He's not even in for his left boot (again, Slade covers that)
User avatar
By Flumpty
#66471
At least the weather forecast is looking good for me and Flumpty Jnr for the game :mrgreen:

This is a long delayed trip from 2019 when Covid bollixed everything up for everyone.
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User avatar
By Yareet
#66472
Flumpty wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 6:54 pm
At least the weather forecast is looking good for me and Flumpty Jnr for the game :mrgreen:

This is a long delayed trip from 2019 when Covid bollixed everything up for everyone.
Wow, Flumps. I know you’re a trendsetter but Covid a year before the rest of Europe :mrgreen:
User avatar
By Flumpty
#66474
Yareet wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 8:26 pm
Flumpty wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 6:54 pm
At least the weather forecast is looking good for me and Flumpty Jnr for the game :mrgreen:

This is a long delayed trip from 2019 when Covid bollixed everything up for everyone.
Wow, Flumps. I know you’re a trendsetter but Covid a year before the rest of Europe :mrgreen:
World renowned global trendsetter :caffine: - who unfortunately loses track of time :mrgreen:

I was sooooooo looking forward to going in 2019 (aka 2020) when it was all called off. In hindsight, it was a good thing, as I'd had a knee op not long before the game was due to be played and flying wouldn't have been the wisest thing post op.
By ledzepsfr
#66476
RinTin wrote:
Thu Feb 01, 2024 3:29 pm
I don't like particularly like this team, but as mentioned already SB was never going to re invent the wheel.

The annoying thing is that this is, realistically, the best game to blood new players and just try something new. Instead we 1 new cap in the backs (won't play again when Lawrence and Manu are back) and a new cap at 6. No Pearson, no Curry, no chance for Finn Smith to start a game, no Roebuck anywhere. Again a man who plays as a centre has been put on the wing ahead of a player who only plays wing. How demoralising is that!

I like the guys on the bench. CCS, Dann, Smith and Feyi-Waboso will bring some spark and energy (assuming we have Italy on the canvass). If we are struggling though I doubt the new guys will get on.

Pretty uninspired by this but lets see how we play.

@ale shark enjoyed that.
Disappointed Roebuck not starting this game. As you said, best game to blood uncapped players whilst keeping experience to get the result.
By RinTin
#66486
Marcus Smith out for a number of weeks, maybe the whole tournament.

Based on this Finn Smith needs minutes tomorrow. Error not starting him imo.
By Olyy
#66562
Pretty uninspiring game today,
Thought Ford kicked well and grew into it with his passing game, but still far off his best - as are England, really.
Just don't think SB is the guy to get this squad firing on all cylinders
User avatar
By poyntonshark
#66563
I agree it wasn't the greatest game, but I think England may have turned the proverbial corner. Overall they don't seem as confused, there is a far greater will to play at a higher pace and not just kick possession away. The kicking has a purpose, Ford in the second half was excellent, getting back to his best. Still too many penalties, still not much sign of any imagination in the backs attacking-wise. I think the centres are currently the chief problem, they just seem to be there to shift the ball on, and neither of them even straightened the line (I know they both can, I've seen it so assume this is by design). Of course , we are missing Lawrence and Manu but that shouldn't stop the backs in their tracks. Manu isn't going to be around for much longer anyway and Lawrence has so far shown a similar propensity for the treatment table.
England were never going to suddenly become the great entertainers and the next 3 games are likely to be significantly tougher than the last two, but I've seen enough to suggest that Borthwick can and is changing the mentality, but it takes time.
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By RinTin
#66565
The one disheartening thing from my point of view was Fords lack of ability to get our backline firing again. Yes he played tactically well in that second half, but our backline attacking threat was minimal.

Dingwall took his try well, but again missed a lot of tackles and didn't do much else. Looking forward to Lawrence slotting back in.
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By Olyy
#66566
I was disappointed F.Smith and IFW didn't get on

I know it was a close game but Finn has shown enough for me to have trust in his ability to close a game - suggests to me that as soon as Marcus is back then his 6N is done. Hope I'm wrong as he looks the future at 10

The only times Daly looks decent is when he crops up in midfield - he should be in contention for the 13 or 23 shirts, he's not an international starting winger or fullback anymore, he used to have the pace to make up for his positioning issues but now it's not standout at international level anymore
User avatar
By Lord Elpus
#66568
Olyy wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2024 11:15 am
I was disappointed F.Smith and IFW didn't get on

I know it was a close game but Finn has shown enough for me to have trust in his ability to close a game - suggests to me that as soon as Marcus is back then his 6N is done. Hope I'm wrong as he looks the future at 10

The only times Daly looks decent is when he crops up in midfield - he should be in contention for the 13 or 23 shirts, he's not an international starting winger or fullback anymore, he used to have the pace to make up for his positioning issues but now it's not standout at international level anymore
wot 'e said

It would be good to see Mitchell and Fin Smith paired for England. Yep the centres are a problem - no line busting capability and poor passing/taking passes. Again and again promising positions are spoiled by handling errors - usually from passes fired like bullets at someone 1m. away.

Watching England is so like watching Sale. Promising start, failure to score, two penalties against and concede at the other end, get on the wrong side of the ref. Both sides struggle for turnovers without at least one Curry.

If we dropped the embargo on foreign-based players we might have the makings of a half decent side. I think the next three games are going to be embarrassing.

Re refs - I think the current policy of giving the whistle to any Tom, Dick, or Harry from the southern hemisphere is mistaken.
Last edited by Lord Elpus on Sun Feb 11, 2024 2:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
By Lord Elpus
#66571
dinogyro wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2024 1:25 pm
The conversion kick thing was mad.
I thought it showed wales had done their homework. Ford could have backheeled it over from there - I don't know why he mucked about.
By dinogyro
#66572
Lord Elpus wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2024 2:09 pm
dinogyro wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2024 1:25 pm
The conversion kick thing was mad.
I thought it showed wales had done their homework. Ford could have backheeled it over from there - I don't know why he mucked about.
Yep, good point.
By ageinghoody
#66577
At least one Welshman seemed dubious that Ford's shuffle constituted " beginning his approach" ; Dan Biggar!

Don't suppose he'd dare say otherwise in view of the lengthy Macarena like performance that preceded most of his own kicks.
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By SimonG
#66592
ageinghoody wrote:
Sun Feb 11, 2024 6:19 pm
At least one Welshman seemed dubious that Ford's shuffle constituted " beginning his approach" ; Dan Biggar!

Don't suppose he'd dare say otherwise in view of the lengthy Macarena like performance that preceded most of his own kicks.
To be fair those were about the only times during games when he wasn't moaning at the ref :)
By Surbiton_Shark
#66593
Few random observations

Scotland/France

Very impressed with the young lad who came in last minute and played 15
The Scottish try at the end looked pretty clear and obvious - bit of common sense wouldn't have gone amiss HOWEVER
The incident earlier in the first half when France was attacking, very close to the Scottish line....Akker's brother - never on-side.....how on earth that was never spotted by the ref's team and god knows who the TMO was doing was poor. So prob evened out the result
The majority of the second half doing kick tennis - just plain awful. We are killing this sport from a spectator point of view.

England/Wales

Being positive....we started to look better and better the more the match went on, a bit like Sale we seem to swing from kick everything to pass everything.
It seemed a bit more fluent towards the end albeit it (like Sale again) not much coming from the midfield.
Freeman looks nice, Steward solid as crazy under the high ball - doesn't offer a lot else.
Forward pack solid but that's about it.

Negatives

The scrums.......I do remember last season getting so bored with the scrum process I started working out how much I paid for my ticket to watch the forwards reset and get ready again.....needs sorting
As we are slowly getting our act together on the pitch it's largely more getting the basics in place rather than the cherry on the top plus it's not exactly a stellar Welsh side.

The game we play away at Scotland will be fascinating

Really hope Ben Curry gets some soild time - I'm amazed he's not featured
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