Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

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Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby ROYSH D4 » May 31st, 2009, 1:37 pm

Title says it all, from yesterdays performance all that can be gleamed is the team is not gelling, no patterns are working and it looks like being a veritable free for all for personal glory. The worse team of the lot and we should have been put to the sword. A dreadfull performance and in my opinion just the tip of the ice berg.... i can see the test matches being uncomfortable viewing for all us fans... with the boks out muscling and out playing us on all fronts.


Negative i know but i believe that to be to be the truth right now.... could end up like another sham tour... :cry:
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby kermischocolate » May 31st, 2009, 2:41 pm

Surely they can't play that badly again!!

But whitewash or no whitewash doesn't really bother me. As long as the Ireland players come back unbroken I'll be happy, which at the minute is looking less and less likely. :cry:
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby Dave Cahill » May 31st, 2009, 3:35 pm

People are completely over-reacting. The Lions played poorly, but won, against a side that would have died for a win yesterday. There was nothing in this game for the Lions, just a fixture that had to be fulfilled. Neither the Boks nor the Lions will pay any attention to the game when the big games roll 'round.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby ceemec » May 31st, 2009, 3:39 pm

I agree, they're finished. They looked like a team that were only playing together for the first time. They should all go home.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby suisse » May 31st, 2009, 4:05 pm

Dave Cahill wrote:People are completely over-reacting. The Lions played poorly, but won, against a side that would have died for a win yesterday. There was nothing in this game for the Lions, just a fixture that had to be fulfilled. Neither the Boks nor the Lions will pay any attention to the game when the big games roll 'round.


I disagree. What was in it for the Lions was to stake a place for the first test. Make someone else work harder then you. Put yourself in a position for the selectors to have a selection headache. If there are 15 new starters on Wednesday, they know even a capable performance will push them ahead of their rvials for that jersey. Also, the Lions have 20 days to prepare for a side that demolished the Cheifs in the S14 Final, and will provide the bulk of the Springboks XV. Throw in a few Sharkes, then Burger and Smit. Scrum half looks problem, going up against FdP. A competitive defensive line out looks a proble, going up against VM and BB. And a genuine rival to JH for the 8 jersey, looks a problem.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby Danthefan » May 31st, 2009, 4:45 pm

Dave Cahill wrote:People are completely over-reacting. The Lions played poorly, but won, against a side that would have died for a win yesterday. There was nothing in this game for the Lions, just a fixture that had to be fulfilled. Neither the Boks nor the Lions will pay any attention to the game when the big games roll 'round.


I found it quite worrying that nobody except Byrne put in a big performance or made an attempt to claim a test spot. As for "nothing in it for the Lions", the Lions tours are not just about the tests.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby Dave Cahill » May 31st, 2009, 5:36 pm

Danthefan wrote:
Dave Cahill wrote:People are completely over-reacting. The Lions played poorly, but won, against a side that would have died for a win yesterday. There was nothing in this game for the Lions, just a fixture that had to be fulfilled. Neither the Boks nor the Lions will pay any attention to the game when the big games roll 'round.


I found it quite worrying that nobody except Byrne put in a big performance or made an attempt to claim a test spot. As for "nothing in it for the Lions", the Lions tours are not just about the tests.


No, but they aren't about makey-uppy teams either. Some of the players know that they are stuck on for the tests and some know that they'll not be near them. What McGeechan has to do is frighten a few of the guy who are in the comfort zone and boost the confidence of a few of the dirt trackers by making some hard calls against the S14 sides
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby Paudy » June 4th, 2009, 9:48 am

Lads this is what people were sayin about Leinster before the Munster match. Ironic considering what the Lions turned up with against Golden Lions, probably draws a few parallels.... I couldn't believe this shite in New Zealand, even though they were right, there was no gaurantee there'd be a whitewash until the first game.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby Comer Toes » June 4th, 2009, 11:57 am

Paudy wrote:Lads this is what people were sayin about Leinster before the Munster match. Ironic considering what the Lions turned up with against Golden Lions, probably draws a few parallels.... I couldn't believe this shite in New Zealand, even though they were right, there was no gaurantee there'd be a whitewash until the first game.


:) Sorry dude, but that is funny.

I think the Lions have a great chance to sneak the first test against what might be a slightly rusty Saffa side but can see the Boks winning the series 2-1. Hooker, 2nd Row and back row just don’t look strong enough versus their opposite numbers to prevail.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby icebaby » June 4th, 2009, 3:59 pm

I'm just going to enjoy the journey without worrying about the outcome which won't happen for another few weeks.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby AidanSloan » June 4th, 2009, 4:48 pm

Comer Toes wrote:
Paudy wrote:
I think the Lions have a great chance to sneak the first test against what might be a slightly rusty Saffa side but can see the Boks winning the series 2-1. Hooker, 2nd Row and back row just don’t look strong enough versus their opposite numbers to prevail.

My head agrees, on paper the Lions look weaker. But on paper Mal and Leo would not be given a chance against O'Connell and O'Callaghan, but we know they both pulled out a monster performance.......so who knows?
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby tones » June 4th, 2009, 5:02 pm

AidanSloan wrote:
Comer Toes wrote:
Paudy wrote:
I think the Lions have a great chance to sneak the first test against what might be a slightly rusty Saffa side but can see the Boks winning the series 2-1. Hooker, 2nd Row and back row just don’t look strong enough versus their opposite numbers to prevail.

My head agrees, on paper the Lions look weaker. But on paper Mal and Leo would not be given a chance against O'Connell and O'Callaghan, but we know they both pulled out a monster performance.......so who knows?


And McGeechan has done it before. Its only 2 games gone so far, plenty have put their hands up. Also something that wasn't mentioned about the 1st match - altitude. Could explain alot about the first performance.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby tackle-bag » June 4th, 2009, 6:31 pm

Comer Toes wrote:
Paudy wrote:Lads this is what people were sayin about Leinster before the Munster match. Ironic considering what the Lions turned up with against Golden Lions, probably draws a few parallels.... I couldn't believe this shite in New Zealand, even though they were right, there was no gaurantee there'd be a whitewash until the first game.


:) Sorry dude, but that is funny.

I think the Lions have a great chance to sneak the first test against what might be a slightly rusty Saffa side but can see the Boks winning the series 2-1. Hooker, 2nd Row and back row just don’t look strong enough versus their opposite numbers to prevail.


At scrum-time, a back-row is only as good as the environment in which its front 5 allows it to play. There is a serious chance that the Lions scrum will have the 'Boks on the back foot every time. Pierre Spies can run 100m in 3.4 seconds all day if he likes but if he's not able to pick the ball up properly en route, there will be little he can do.

Don't get me wrong, I expect the 'Bok back row to be very difficult to contain in open play but let's not forget that a couple of the Lions are fairly useful in that department also. Overall, I would assess the situation as follows:

15 - Massive advantage Lions, Byrne and Kearney are proven at test level while the 'Boks don't have any genuine full-back in their squad apart from Steyn who will probably spend his time trying DGs from his own 22.
14 (versus 11) - slight advantage 'Boks. We all know what Habana can do but if the exponentially improved Tommy Bowe sticks him on his arse a few times and keeps picking good lines, this battle could well swing the other way.
12/13 - Sizeable advantage Lions. Olivier is the only one of their centres who I really rate, but I'd have BOD ahead of him every time. Jacobs is just a big lump and there's a reason why his caps for the Springboks have been so sparse. Fourie's solid but I don't think he's world class. This could be one of the areas that the Lions really target.
11 (versus 14) - This one is still up for grabs. I presume Pietersen will line up for them and he's a very good finisher. However, we've seen time and again that a good fly-half can turn him inside out and really test him under the high ball. It's not clear who'll be playing for us yet but I'd fancy an improving Williams or Luke to hold their own at their very least.
10 - Slight advantage 'Boks. Based on Super 14 form, they'll probably go with Morné Steyn who effectively guarantees points on every visit to the opposition 22 with his ridiculous ability to score DGs. Apart from this, goal-kicking and distribution will be pretty evenly matched as against Jones, the likely starter.
9 - Slight advantage 'Boks. Du Preez is one of the stand-out players in world rugby at the moment but not flawless. He definitely goes in as the favourite to win this tussle but Phillips' physicality may yet bridge the gap.
8 - Sizeable advantage 'Boks. Spies' ball-carrying is pretty much second to none at the moment. Jamie is no slouch in that department either but the raw pace of the South African will be tough to handle. Honours are pretty much even apart from that.
7 - Again, this is undecided. It depends on who we go with. I would be confident that Wallace on top form is capable of matching Smith in the loose, while Williams is pretty much the ideal groundhog.
6 - I'm going to stick my neck out here and say slight advantage Lions. Burger is world class on his day, we all know that. However, his form of late has been patchy and he's also liable to spend 10 minutes of every game he plays watching from the stands. Ferris is coming off the back of a great season and I would be hopeful that he could match the South African in contact, while possibly having an edge in the loose. Croft is undoubtedly a superior line-out operator to Burger and his rangy running will cause defences all sorts of problems.
4/5 - Sizeable advantage 'Boks. The South African pair are the best partnership in the world at the moment and it will be difficult to limit their influence. POC and AN Other just need to work their socks off to secure our line-out ball, before even thinking about pilfering theirs. Around the park, there's no doubting POC's ability as a ball-carrier, but none of our other locks have really stood out in that department of late. Don't rule out the possibility of Croft starting in the second row.
2 - Up for grabs I reckon. Du Plessis is a solid player, especially in the scrum, but I don't think he presents any sort of earth-shattering challenge. Mears' throwing looked pretty healthy there last night, hopefully he can keep that up and improve his contribution in the loose. If Fla were still in the squad, I'd be leaning towards the Lions in this battle.
1/3 - Sizeable advantage Lions. For all the Beast's ball-carrying ability, he doesn't actually create a huge amount of opportunities for those around him. I would also fancy Murray/Vickery to take him apart in the scrum. On the other side, John Smit is not a prop. You can't just wake up one day late in your career, decide to have a couple of extra helpings of desert and expect to go up as tight-head against the world's best. I reckon the Lions should start by sending out a fired up Sheridan, who will demolish him in the scrums and soften him up generally, before bringing on the more dynamic Jenkins from 50 minutes.

So, in all, there are a couple of key clashes that are yet for grabs but the Lions should by no means be written off on paper alone. I appreciate that many of the combinations selected above don't reflect the full picture of interaction between the players on the pitch. My purpose is simply to show that man for man, our guys are up to the task. C'MON THE LIONS!!!
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby Comer Toes » June 5th, 2009, 9:20 pm

Good post tackle-bag. Would agree with a lot of the head to heads, although Jacobs is more of a small lump than a big lump and he's got pace and a decent step, he had a few impressive outings in the tri-nations last year to be fair. Fourie is a class operator as well, superb all-round, heads-up centre. Du Plessis, imo, is well ahead of Mears but I probably wouldn't be as generous to Morne Steyn as you are - he's made to look a little better than he is playing behind that bulls pack. Very inexperienced at test level so I might back Jones on that one.

Collectively, as you allude to in fairness, is where the big advantage to the Boks exists. The ABs struggle to cope with the intensity that the Boks bring to a sold-out game on South African soil, the way they hit rucks is simply vicious.

By the way, Pietersen may well their full-back it would seem, which would be an even bigger advantage to the Lions. And to be ultra-pedantic, Burger plays on the open-side for them with Smith at blind-side but doesn't make much of a difference to the way they play. I would actually go with Wallace if he can hit top form over Williams for that extra bit of power and pace around the park.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby hugonaut » June 6th, 2009, 9:07 am

Very perceptive analysis from tackle bag and comer toes in the last two posts.

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I agree that the Lions have a definite advantage at 15, especially now that Lee Byrne has regained his best form. He had a pretty long lay-off between the Ireland vs Wales game and his first match, and funnily enough that seems to have done him good – he was one of the very few Lions players who looked sharp in the first game against the Royal XV [honourable mentions go to Tommy Bowe, O'Connell and, surprisingly in a position that is all about touch and gametime, Ronan O'Gara].

Habana is looking like he's on the way back to his razor-sharp 2007 peak, but he's not quite there yet. Thankfully Tommy Bowe is showing great form and, while he can't match the raw speed of the Blue Bulls ace, is a more physical player who has recently showing that he can put shape on the game coming off his wing. Don't want to overpraise him on the back of one performance against a p¡ss-poor Golden Lions, but there are very few wingers who can do that at international level: Shane Horgan did it for Ireland for a number of years [think of his play from 2005-2007 – when Shaggy was good, he was little short of brilliant]; Emile N'Tamack did it; Campese did it. There you go: Tommy Bowe is the Lions' Campese. :wink:

The Boks can't match O'Driscoll in the centre. They can limit him somewhat [Leicester did a pretty decent number in midfield in the HEC final], but he's never going to be outplayed, and he'll always have a bigger impact on the match than his opposite number. If the Boks put too much emphasis on shutting him down, he'll find a way to make space and opportunity for those around him. It may only be once or twice in the game, put it's test match rugby, and could be all that's needed. Also, best defensive centre in the history of the game. The Boks aren't slouches, and they can pick from Jacobs, Olivier and Fourie: I reckon it'll go to Fourie, who's got experience on his side. It'll be nothing less than a war between himself and Drico, but Drico has played 'em all and beaten 'em all in his career, and he's in phenomenal form at the moment.

If de Villiers is back at 12, he'll cause problems for the Lions. He's almost a carbon copy of Yannick Jauzion at his best: very tall, very strong, generally takes two men over the gain line with him through a mixture of strength, good lines and, while he's not a stepper in the D'Arcy or Mafi mould, he just has a way of avoiding serious shoulder contact in the first-up tacklers and forcing people to make arm tackles through his hip movement. A very good footballer who makes good decisions and can give all the passes. I'm obviously a big fan, and I think he'll have a little bit more than Roberts [who himself is in super form], D'Arce or Flutey can bring to the table.

I'd fancy that either Ndungane or Jorgi Nokwe will be other winger for the Boks rather than JP Pietersen. Ndungane is a big, physical and relatively uncomplicated player, whereas Nokwe is quick quick quick. If Shane Williams doesn't seriously perform today against the Cheetahs, I reckon Luke Fitz has a great chance to make the test team. Williams is actually a very good defender for his size, but he can be targeted through cross kicks for his lack of height, and both the Saffa wings mentioned are excellent in the air in terms of athleticism. Luke is a great defender and as good a footballer as there is on the Lions; he's got pace, a great step, and his history as a fullback will stand him in good stead. Don't think that Monye is a tidy enough footballer at this level to make the step up: one mistake and the match can slip from your grasp.

As you've said, Morné Steyn looks to be having a phenomenal late-season surge for the Bulls, but he hasn't played any tests [as far as I can tell], and he's used to playing behind a pack that literally tramples everything in its way. That said, he'll bring red-hot form to the tests. Stephen Jones doesn't get the same hype as previous Lions outhalves [Wilkinson, Campbell, Bennett, John, Kyle], but he's no dummy. He's been the lynch-pin of two Welsh Grand Slams, has about 70 caps, held off the strong challenge of James Hook [when Hook was in rare from], is already an experienced Test Lion, and with a likely 9,10,12 of Welsh players comprising the midfield, he'll have a unit that he's very familiar with around him. I think honours even on this one.

Fourie du Preez is the best scrum-half in the world bar none. He does everything brilliantly - decision-making, passing, kicking, breaking. One of the best I've ever seen. However, Phillips' physicality may give him trouble: Phillips is basically Joost van der Westhuizen in a Lions jersey in terms of how he plays and carries himself - huge, quick and arrogant! If he gets injured and the Lions are forced to start with Ellis or Blair, I think they're sunk.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby Paudy » June 6th, 2009, 6:37 pm

Interesting observations lads. The second row battle certainly looks like it could be the deciding factor if everything pans out roughly as has been said above. Obviously that's quite an assumption that the Lions scrum advantage and the significant 13 15 advantages are equally offset by the Boks advantages in the back row and at 9 11 12.

But if that's how it goes, it's orth a look to 2005 where a supposedly rock solid Lions second row had only Chris Jack and unknown Ali Williams to contend with, Ali fairly made a name for himself out of that! Croft could well be the man for it, the more I think about it the more it makes sense, extra back row forward on the field, already should have a considerable edge in the scrum which they shouldn't lose from that, athletic line out operator, somewhat unknown quantity for the Boks perhaps?
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby ROYSH D4 » June 22nd, 2009, 9:33 pm

One down and two to go!!
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby suisse » June 22nd, 2009, 10:16 pm

Only 5 players who started the first match on Tour against the King's XV started the first Test on Saturday, yet 6 of the 7 subs that day started the first Test.

Then, four days later at Ellis Park in Jo'burg, 13 of the starting XV that day started the first Test against the Springboks. Is that the advantage of getting off to a great start, and maybe the King's XV had a bigger impact than expected at the time? Only Rob Kearney and Nathan Hines began the 2nd match, and didn't start the Test. After one good performance, combinations found in the entire back row, front row, half backs, centres and on the wings. Yet on the bench, only Harry Ellis was on the bench in Durban.

Perhaps it was a better team in Ellis Park, but you can't help thinking that one poor game, individually and/or collectively, could be enough to see you really put on the back foot in terms of Test selections.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby BlueArmyOriginal » June 23rd, 2009, 1:45 am

The Lions have to win twice in a week on the high Veldt now to win the series, I think a 2-1 loss is the best that can realistically be hoped for unfortunately.
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Re: Lions Tour Going to Be A whitewash.....

Postby ROYSH D4 » June 29th, 2009, 12:10 pm

Two down and one to go.... beat that MYSTIC MEG!!!
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