Summer tour to Australia

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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby CiaranIrl » March 21st, 2018, 11:38 pm

blockhead wrote:
dropkick wrote:I can't see Moore making the squad. He has to prove himself again next season in Ulster.
Beirne is being talked about as a second row but theres also the possibility that he could be used as a 6 and rotate with POM.


I've changed my mind about the tour. I think they should bring a strong squad and target the win. Continue the winning run and a win would also build the players' confidence and belief even more.


Well Farrell was brought straight up to Carton House when he returned from France. Joe is rewarding returnee's just as much as he is punishing deserters. Or in Zebo's case, desserter.


Moore shouldn't not make the squad because he's abroad, he should not make the squad because he's shite at the moment. He comes on in matches at 70 minutes and he's out of breath by the 74th minute. He's so far off the required fitness level that he wouldn't be within an arses roar of being able to deal with our game plan.

If he manages to get a good preseason at Ulster, then manages to play at the level he's capable of, then bring him in for the November internationals and have a look.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby RAILWAY1 » March 22nd, 2018, 1:05 am

Joe Schmidt should bring all of his front line players to Australia this Summer but he should get the IRFU to loosen the purse strings to bring an extended squad in order to field strong enough teams to do the job of winning the series while at the same time not flogging his top men to death. The more the "fringe " players are involved with the senior squad the better in the run in to the world cup
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby olaf the fat » March 22nd, 2018, 2:07 am

You'd have to think we have a chance at winning a sh tour - against a good team, that is really something worthwhile for us to achieve. Worry about the next great step of getting past the RWC qf's after that.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby Fan with smartphone » March 22nd, 2018, 11:24 am

This tour depends on what your aims are. I think Joe has all about building depth for the World Cup for some time now so I don’t see why that would change. As such, I don’t see him taking all the headline acts, but on a case by case basis he will take some. I know that’s politically a bit tricky with the ARU, but they don’t pick our team for us. I also think that chasing 18 wins shouldn’t be a target in itself. Getting to that point should be more of an outcome of continuing to develop and if you manage to keep winning : great. Yes, I do think winning a touring series is a more worthwhile thing to target, but it should not be at the expense of weakening your hand for the next 18 months. You pick a squad which suits your needs and then you go about trying to win the test matches with it. Everybody wants to win every single test match, but don’t become a hostage to having to win.

To that end:
1. We need to look at back-up loose heads. I’d also take McGrath and show him a lot of love out there. It will have been tough for him to not be the starter that he would be for probably any other country. Even a great player like him will need a bit of encouragement every now and again. Being a vice captain, or a major leader on the tour would be good for him, same as Japan apparently was for Healy. McGrath, Kilcoyne, Cronin.

2. As team captain, I think there is a little bit of pressure or prestige that Best should go. Joe is a little bit old school like that I think, so I think he probably takes Best and leaves Cronin for this tour, but spreading captaincy might be a good thing too so it’s hard to know. We do need to look at next in line behind the 2 incumbents, and we will need an alternative to Best should he be in trouble with age, injury or form. Best, Scannell, A. N. Other

3. Rest Furlong. It’s been a monumental season and he has a good bit more to come. Porter I think should go, Ryan too. I’d take Bealham. I’ve always liked him, he has never let us down and he has played a lot better for Connacht than people realise. He deserves it and it’s against the country of his birth. Porter, Ryan, Bealham.

4/5. Beirne has to go. I’m inclined to not take Henderson or Ryan. They are explosive-type players and are already operating at a high level. Here is a chance to bring more to that level. Toner could go as an old head and to help with lineout teaching. They may go Henderson or Ryan instead for the same reason, but Toner is an old reliable for Joe. Beirne, Toner, Dillane, Roux.

6. Again, it’s a long emotional year for O’Mahony. He could go, but if Ruddock is back fit, there’s more to gain with him. I think it’d also be handy to take Leavy as a 6. Remember Pocock-Hooper likely to be the opposition here. They may still want O’Mahony for continuity - a lot of the backrows who started the season pencilled in are now unavailable, or spent a large part of the season unavailable - but the game time might be better used seeing how Beirne and Leavy manage at 6. Ruddock, Leavy.

7. O’Brien, if fit, I think you take him. He has some catching up to do. If there’s any question of carrying any knocks, leave him to next season. Murphy should go. Tommy O’Donnell probably after that, although Conor Oliver, or even Will Connors are slightly left field picks if looking beyond the World Cup and thinking of bringing a young apprentice, as Schmidt has done before. Murphy, O’Donnell

8. Stander is in the midst of an outrageously punishing season. Mostly for his opponents, but still. Rest him and let’s look at the post Jamie era. I’m a fan of O’Donoghue, but his form is a long way off his best.Conan, Deegan.

9/10. As SOK has mentioned above, I think you take Murray to help integrate Carbery, and you take Sexton to help integrate Marmion. McGrath goes for me and his battle with Marmion isn’t over, though Marmion is out in front. Cooney unlucky to miss out. Murray, Marmion, McGrath, Sexton, Carbery.

11. Stockdale. Working closely with Andy Farrell. Barry Daly could squeeze in. I don’t think Healy or Gilroy will and I’m not sure on Wooton. Stockdale, Daly.

12/13. Aki and Ringrose have looked excellent together. Let’s develop that partnership. Scannell and Arnold go as thé apprentices. Scannell also possibly an option to cover 10 from the bench. Tom Farrell could be an outside chance for similar reasoning. McCloskey looks out of the picture and Marshall possibly behind Arnold now too. I’d be looking at O’Loughlin as 13/14, but the mood music suggests Arnold. Aki, Ringrose, Scannell, Arnold.

14. Lots of moving pieces here. I’m presuming earls is out. O’Loughlin a big possibility in my book. Conway will go if fit. If not, they may try to work in Adam Byrne. 14 might also be a good place for Larmour to start and learn from Kearney. Larmour, Conway or O’Loughlin

15. Kearney. Larmour will get some time here too.

Injuries between now and then will make a lot of the decisions anyway. Maybe leaving some at home is setting this team up to fail, but Joe needs to see who can manage at this level. He’s always been one for gradual exposure and i think that’ll continue in the backs with Carbery and Larmour. But for the forwards, it’s more a case of: let’s find out can you cut it?
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby Fireworks » March 22nd, 2018, 5:55 pm

Isn't it fun trying to second guess what Joe is thinking of doing with the squad for this tour.

I am happy with whatever he decides as I am sure he will have given it more thought than I have time to, with more info than I have access to, with reference to a longer term WC plan I could not conceive and with a rugby brain I can only admire.

My guess is that everyone above is a little right. I hope the plan is to go to Aus with a squad that he feels is strong enough to win 3 from 3. I have not the time to calculate right now to calculate what that might do for our world ranking points but I would guess it would bring us close enough to make things very interesting.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby johng » March 22nd, 2018, 6:43 pm

Fireworks wrote:I am happy with whatever he decides as I am sure he will have given it more thought than I have time to, with more info than I have access to, with reference to a longer term WC plan I could not conceive and with a rugby brain I can only admire.

Everyone criticising Joe Schmidt should be forced to add that at the bottom of their post/article/speech.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby Experimental » March 23rd, 2018, 12:09 am

I would bring Deegan, Adam McBurney and McPhilips/R Byrne on the tour, even if they don't play. Carbery has to start at least one game (personally Id start him in the first test) and see how it goes.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby Ruckedtobits » March 23rd, 2018, 11:03 am

johng wrote:
Fireworks wrote:I am happy with whatever he decides as I am sure he will have given it more thought than I have time to, with more info than I have access to, with reference to a longer term WC plan I could not conceive and with a rugby brain I can only admire.

Everyone criticising Joe Schmidt should be forced to add that at the bottom of their post/article/speech.


+1, +1. And then some.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby Ruckedtobits » March 23rd, 2018, 11:24 am

By the time we're coming back from Australia, Joe needs to know:

1. Who would he start against Scotland if Murray was injured / unavailable?

2. Who would he start against Scotland in RWC19 if Sexton was missing?

3. Who would he start in RWC if both Murray & Sexton were missing?

4. Who will be his No 8 for RWC / or if Stander was missing?

5. Who might replace Best as starting hooker if Rory gets injured?

6. If Sexton was missing, can Ireland play the same game for 80 mins?

7. If Kearney is missing, who plays full-back and how?

8. Is Tadgh Beirne big enough to play 2nd Row in a World Cup?

9. Could Beirne replace / cover for PO'M or CJ?

10. Have we enough real pace to win a World Cup or must he plan to get Larmour & JdVF / Conan into starting positions?

If Joe has answers to all these questions by the end of July, the following 8 or 9 games will tell us whether we have a realistic chance or having something to trump even a Grand Slam in Twickenham. Hope springs eternal.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby Mickado » March 23rd, 2018, 11:58 am

Don't see how someone can say in one breath that we need to leave players at home who have a lot of miles on the clock, and in an other breath say that Tadhg Beirne needs to tour. Surely he's played more minutes than any IQ player this year. The best players who are available should and will tour. Winning in Aus is a massive milestone that this team will be targetting.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby rooster » March 23rd, 2018, 12:29 pm

Building realistic options is more important than a win in Australia, long term gain more important than a pretty meaningless series in the summer.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby nelly the elephant » March 24th, 2018, 12:45 am

Fan with smartphone wrote:This tour depends on what your aims are. I think Joe has all about building depth for the World Cup for some time now so I don’t see why that would change. As such, I don’t see him taking all the headline acts, but on a case by case basis he will take some. I know that’s politically a bit tricky with the ARU, but they don’t pick our team for us. I also think that chasing 18 wins shouldn’t be a target in itself. Getting to that point should be more of an outcome of continuing to develop and if you manage to keep winning : great. Yes, I do think winning a touring series is a more worthwhile thing to target, but it should not be at the expense of weakening your hand for the next 18 months. You pick a squad which suits your needs and then you go about trying to win the test matches with it. Everybody wants to win every single test match, but don’t become a hostage to having to win.

To that end:
1. We need to look at back-up loose heads. I’d also take McGrath and show him a lot of love out there. It will have been tough for him to not be the starter that he would be for probably any other country. Even a great player like him will need a bit of encouragement every now and again. Being a vice captain, or a major leader on the tour would be good for him, same as Japan apparently was for Healy. McGrath, Kilcoyne, Cronin.

2. As team captain, I think there is a little bit of pressure or prestige that Best should go. Joe is a little bit old school like that I think, so I think he probably takes Best and leaves Cronin for this tour, but spreading captaincy might be a good thing too so it’s hard to know. We do need to look at next in line behind the 2 incumbents, and we will need an alternative to Best should he be in trouble with age, injury or form. Best, Scannell, A. N. Other

Easy.......Young James Ryan...to the manor born....

3. Rest Furlong. It’s been a monumental season and he has a good bit more to come. Porter I think should go, Ryan too. I’d take Bealham. I’ve always liked him, he has never let us down and he has played a lot better for Connacht than people realise. He deserves it and it’s against the country of his birth. Porter, Ryan, Bealham.

4/5. Beirne has to go. I’m inclined to not take Henderson or Ryan. They are explosive-type players and are already operating at a high level. Here is a chance to bring more to that level. Toner could go as an old head and to help with lineout teaching. They may go Henderson or Ryan instead for the same reason, but Toner is an old reliable for Joe. Beirne, Toner, Dillane, Roux.

6. Again, it’s a long emotional year for O’Mahony. He could go, but if Ruddock is back fit, there’s more to gain with him. I think it’d also be handy to take Leavy as a 6. Remember Pocock-Hooper likely to be the opposition here. They may still want O’Mahony for continuity - a lot of the backrows who started the season pencilled in are now unavailable, or spent a large part of the season unavailable - but the game time might be better used seeing how Beirne and Leavy manage at 6. Ruddock, Leavy.

7. O’Brien, if fit, I think you take him. He has some catching up to do. If there’s any question of carrying any knocks, leave him to next season. Murphy should go. Tommy O’Donnell probably after that, although Conor Oliver, or even Will Connors are slightly left field picks if looking beyond the World Cup and thinking of bringing a young apprentice, as Schmidt has done before. Murphy, O’Donnell

8. Stander is in the midst of an outrageously punishing season. Mostly for his opponents, but still. Rest him and let’s look at the post Jamie era. I’m a fan of O’Donoghue, but his form is a long way off his best.Conan, Deegan.

9/10. As SOK has mentioned above, I think you take Murray to help integrate Carbery, and you take Sexton to help integrate Marmion. McGrath goes for me and his battle with Marmion isn’t over, though Marmion is out in front. Cooney unlucky to miss out. Murray, Marmion, McGrath, Sexton, Carbery.

11. Stockdale. Working closely with Andy Farrell. Barry Daly could squeeze in. I don’t think Healy or Gilroy will and I’m not sure on Wooton. Stockdale, Daly.

12/13. Aki and Ringrose have looked excellent together. Let’s develop that partnership. Scannell and Arnold go as thé apprentices. Scannell also possibly an option to cover 10 from the bench. Tom Farrell could be an outside chance for similar reasoning. McCloskey looks out of the picture and Marshall possibly behind Arnold now too. I’d be looking at O’Loughlin as 13/14, but the mood music suggests Arnold. Aki, Ringrose, Scannell, Arnold.

14. Lots of moving pieces here. I’m presuming earls is out. O’Loughlin a big possibility in my book. Conway will go if fit. If not, they may try to work in Adam Byrne. 14 might also be a good place for Larmour to start and learn from Kearney. Larmour, Conway or O’Loughlin

15. Kearney. Larmour will get some time here too.

Injuries between now and then will make a lot of the decisions anyway. Maybe leaving some at home is setting this team up to fail, but Joe needs to see who can manage at this level. He’s always been one for gradual exposure and i think that’ll continue in the backs with Carbery and Larmour. But for the forwards, it’s more a case of: let’s find out can you cut it?
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby Ruckedtobits » March 24th, 2018, 11:58 am

At this point, Ireland are focussed on JWC19 - not to the exclusion of 6N 2019 but certainly as the ultimate priority. The key aspect of the RWC competition is playing three or four top quality games in successive weeks. Because of our Draw, with Scotland up first in our Pool, the requirement is three games in three weeks.

The Australian Tour and the final three weeks of 6N 2019 are the last two opportunities that Ireland has to rehearse the RWC challenge and Joe will take it on with a full hand.

The players are aware of that outlook but in any event, not one of them is prepared at this stage to give up his jersey with the prospect of somebody playing so well in it, that it's no longer yours.

This is one of the key features of the "Kilkenny Effect" - internal competition becomes the key selector.

IMO, this is clearly evident in the Irish Squad at present. Players outside the 25 / 28 Squad are looking for big games in a Provincial jersey to break into the Squad. The guys in the Squad are looking to defend their position and look to Provincial performances to maintain their slot. Overall, a super effect and an ideal position for the National coaches.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby LeRouxIsPHat » March 24th, 2018, 3:14 pm

I was listening to some podcast during the week that was talking about what makes us so good and how we play, and it got me thinking about how teams should play against us. One of the things they said was how we've a great variety to our play, and that our breakdown is almost perfect and that we're extremely hard to get the ball back from, and how teams can try and out muscle us but can never really manage it.

So I was thinking that you might give up on taking us on physically, and go for a more mobile back row with two opensides, powerful centres who can stop the drift, and then a couple of ball players to try and expose our weaknesses that have appeared out wide.

So essentially...exactly the way Australia play. Hooper and Pocock to attack the breakdown, Kerevi and Kurindrani to hold the drift, and then Foley and Beale to move the ball quickly to the wide channels. They might not have the front five to give Pocock and Hooper enough of a chance, but it's pretty much the perfect test for us right now.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby neiliog93 » March 24th, 2018, 9:18 pm

Yeah, I can see the likes of Kerevi, Kuridrani, Speight, Nabuli and especially Folau getting a lot of change out of our wide defence. I think if a team like Australia with two of the best opensides in the world start to get the better of us at the breakdown (and we can't effectively use our phase play game), we would have no option but to become much more kick-chase/territory orientated, and then revert to an even tighter game based on maul and set-pieces when we did have the ball.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby simonokeeffe » March 24th, 2018, 10:00 pm

LeRouxIsPHat wrote:I was listening to some podcast during the week that was talking about what makes us so good and how we play, and it got me thinking about how teams should play against us. One of the things they said was how we've a great variety to our play, and that our breakdown is almost perfect and that we're extremely hard to get the ball back from, and how teams can try and out muscle us but can never really manage it.

So I was thinking that you might give up on taking us on physically, and go for a more mobile back row with two opensides, powerful centres who can stop the drift, and then a couple of ball players to try and expose our weaknesses that have appeared out wide.

So essentially...exactly the way Australia play. Hooper and Pocock to attack the breakdown, Kerevi and Kurindrani to hold the drift, and then Foley and Beale to move the ball quickly to the wide channels. They might not have the front five to give Pocock and Hooper enough of a chance, but it's pretty much the perfect test for us right now.


On plus side those two centres are one dimensional in attack and Kerevi is an awful defender at this level. They cant hide Foley in defence from us either.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby bamboozle » March 26th, 2018, 7:37 am

Inner-circle players that need exposure starting games - Carbery, L McGrath, Marmion.

Recent debutants requiring more test experience - Ryan, Leavy, Porter, Stockdale, Larmour, Conan,

Positions where we are exposed (in severity) 10, 9,.....2, 15

Players I'd consider bringing - Ross Byrne, Cooney, Niall Scanell, Tiernan O'Halloran

repatriated players to consider - Beirne and maybe also Mike Haley
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby simonokeeffe » March 26th, 2018, 10:09 pm

Agree with you on 90% of the non Haley stuff
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby dropkick » March 27th, 2018, 2:49 pm

What might hold Ross Byrne back is his lack of speed. He is one of the slowest players I've seen and he looks a bit casual too although that might just be his demeanor. Leo Cullen seems to be stubborn in selecting him ahead of Carbery.

I don't think Schmidt is a TOH fan so I'd be surprised to see him tour.


simonokeeffe wrote:Agree with you on 90% of the non Haley stuff



He made the AP team of the week. Scored a try, made a few more but Worcesters defence was Zebre-like. We'll see what he is like next season. He looks a good player technically and is big but you need a bit more to be an international. He looks a good signing for Munster.
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Re: Summer tour to Australia

Postby simonokeeffe » March 27th, 2018, 3:53 pm

dropkick wrote:What might hold Ross Byrne back is his lack of speed. He is one of the slowest players I've seen and he looks a bit casual too although that might just be his demeanor. Leo Cullen seems to be stubborn in selecting him ahead of Carbery.

I don't think Schmidt is a TOH fan so I'd be surprised to see him tour.

simonokeeffe wrote:Agree with you on 90% of the non Haley stuff


He made the AP team of the week. Scored a try, made a few more but Worcesters defence was Zebre-like. We'll see what he is like next season. He looks a good player technically and is big but you need a bit more to be an international. He looks a good signing for Munster.


The provinces are in too good health for someone to be parachuted in again. Doubt we would see Bentgate repeated for PR reasons but also not like we are THAT stuck on options at 15
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