The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

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The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby offshorerules » September 7th, 2016, 12:26 pm

For those of us who don't want to see the tour scrapped.

Starting this thread off with; So now that Gatland has been formally confirmed, who do you think he will select?

In particular what Irish players are in with a shout?
"POC will not be going to Toulon" - All Blacks nil » May 27th, 2015, 12:18 am
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby LeRouxIsPHat » September 7th, 2016, 12:32 pm

15. Williams
14. Halfpenny
13. Davies
12. Roberts
11. North
10. Biggar
9. Davis/Webb
8. Faletau
7. Warburton (C)
6. Lydiate
5. AWJ
4. Charteris
3. Lee
2. Evans
1. Baldwin
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby offshorerules » September 7th, 2016, 12:33 pm

Don't know about that. Would have thought there'll be at least one English player in there.
"POC will not be going to Toulon" - All Blacks nil » May 27th, 2015, 12:18 am
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby LeRouxIsPHat » September 7th, 2016, 12:38 pm

offshorerules wrote:Don't know about that. Would have thought there'll be at least one English player in there.


Ross Moriarty?

Sorry, don't mean to derail your thread but I can genuinely see more than half the team being Welsh whether they deserve to picked or not.

Don't see many Irish candidates actually. Murray is the only one I'd be certain of being in the 23 (I'd start him). I'd pick Jack too but he has a lot of competition.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby simonokeeffe » September 7th, 2016, 12:41 pm

Of the Irish

McGrath, Sexton, Henshaw will start tests
Henderson, SOB will travel and maybe bench for tests
Murray will travel
POM, Healy might travel

Best, Toner, Heaslip, Earls will be let down
When he spreads his legs like that youd need dynamite or the Highland Light Infantry to shift him.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby offshorerules » September 7th, 2016, 12:42 pm

Agree with you about Jack. I think players like POM and SOB could also be included but everything will be determined by the 6 nations next year and whoever is in form during that will go. Personally I have England as favourites for the 6N's so I see a lot of the team coming from them.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby Flash Gordon » September 7th, 2016, 1:41 pm

simonokeeffe wrote:Of the Irish

McGrath, Sexton, Henshaw will start tests
Henderson, SOB will travel and maybe bench for tests
Murray will travel
POM, Healy might travel

Best, Toner, Heaslip, Earls will be let down


It had to be Gatland after the Australia series. I would have loved to see Joe in the team as backs/attack coach though.

Murray has a great chance to start for me, there may be players getting close to him but his experience edges it. Where SOB fits depends on fitness, if he gets a clean run through to the series I could see him starting too but unfortunately, that would surprise me. Think Heaslip and Toner are bankers to travel. Don't see too many Welsh absolutely guaranteed to start at this point. I also can't say I disagreed with many of his selections vs Australia with the notable exception of Phillips at Scrum Half.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby FLIP » September 7th, 2016, 1:44 pm

Flash Gordon wrote:It had to be Gatland after the Australia series/


Someone who for the sake of a slip would have lost a Lions tour to possibly the worst Australian side in decades, who would have lost to any of the home nations, had to be a shoe-in for the job, despite not doing well since then?

Sounds very evidence based that.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby Logorrhea » September 7th, 2016, 2:12 pm

FLIP wrote:Someone who for the sake of a slip would have lost a Lions tour to possibly the worst Australian side in decades.


Agreed.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby simonokeeffe » September 7th, 2016, 2:58 pm

Flash Gordon wrote:
simonokeeffe wrote:Of the Irish

McGrath, Sexton, Henshaw will start tests
Henderson, SOB will travel and maybe bench for tests
Murray will travel
POM, Healy might travel

Best, Toner, Heaslip, Earls will be let down


It had to be Gatland after the Australia series. I would have loved to see Joe in the team as backs/attack coach though.

Murray has a great chance to start for me, there may be players getting close to him but his experience edges it. Where SOB fits depends on fitness, if he gets a clean run through to the series I could see him starting too but unfortunately, that would surprise me. Think Heaslip and Toner are bankers to travel. Don't see too many Welsh absolutely guaranteed to start at this point. I also can't say I disagreed with many of his selections vs Australia with the notable exception of Phillips at Scrum Half.


Is Toner better than either of the English locks or AWJ? To me its a no, Hendo offers bench warfare, J Gray is excellent and offers token Scot value
When he spreads his legs like that youd need dynamite or the Highland Light Infantry to shift him.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby simonokeeffe » September 7th, 2016, 3:00 pm

Heaslip is behind Vunipola IMO and loses out to Faletau on Welshness
When he spreads his legs like that youd need dynamite or the Highland Light Infantry to shift him.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby offshorerules » September 7th, 2016, 3:52 pm

But Heaslip has the wolverine blood and could play all the midweek matches as well as the tests.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby Flash Gordon » September 7th, 2016, 4:05 pm

FLIP wrote:
Flash Gordon wrote:It had to be Gatland after the Australia series/


Someone who for the sake of a slip would have lost a Lions tour to possibly the worst Australian side in decades, who would have lost to any of the home nations, had to be a shoe-in for the job, despite not doing well since then?

Sounds very evidence based that.


And but for a last gasp try in the second test the series would have been won 3-0. I don't think people understand how difficult it is to pull a scratch team together to play test rugby - if you want to build a tactical approach it takes a while (as we saw when Joe came in). I also think dismissing the Australians as useless is a bit harsh given that they were ranked 3rd in the world, 5 places above Ireland - and were playing at home.

Gatland's game plan was to target the Australian scrum and play off go forward ball/penalties. When that came together in the 3rd test the Lions (who again, were a scratch team) absolutely hammered Australia.

In terms of other things Gatland has done - he's won 3 English premierships, a Heineken Cup, a European Challenge Cup, an NPC, three 6 Nations and 2 Grand Slams - plus of course he won the first Lions series victory since 1997.

Hard to argue with his selection in my opinion. Again, I'd like to have seen Joe there to work with the backs and partner Gatland on culture but I'm happy enough with his selection.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby FLIP » September 7th, 2016, 4:18 pm

Flash Gordon wrote:And but for a last gasp try in the second test the series would have been won 3-0.


Last gasp tries are fairly common in rugby - someone slipping over while taking a shot at the posts really isn't. But for the fickleness of fate it would have been 2-1 against. And Australia were pure awful at the time, having lost to a Scotland side veering between 9th-11th in the world the summer before. The series should never have been in doubt.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby Flash Gordon » September 7th, 2016, 4:47 pm

FLIP wrote:
Flash Gordon wrote:And but for a last gasp try in the second test the series would have been won 3-0.


Last gasp tries are fairly common in rugby - someone slipping over while taking a shot at the posts really isn't. But for the fickleness of fate it would have been 2-1 against. And Australia were pure awful at the time, having lost to a Scotland side veering between 9th-11th in the world the summer before. The series should never have been in doubt.


Jonathan Davies slipped off a tackle for the late Australian try and Halfpenny missed a penalty to win the second test. How is it valid to dismiss a narrow win for the Lions because somebody slipped and then say "that's just rugby" when Australia win due to Davies slipping off a tackle and Halfpenny missing a penalty?!

Additionally, Australia post the Lions toured in the Autumn beating 2013 Champions Wales in Cardiff and 2014 Champions Ireland in Dublin (comfortably). They may not have been the greatest Australian team of all time but they were no mugs - again, they were ranked 3rd in the world. And again, pulling together a scratch team of players operating in disparate is systems and cultures is massively hard given the level of preparation required in the professional era.

Just out of interest, who do you think is a better available candidate.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby FLIP » September 7th, 2016, 5:17 pm

Flash Gordon wrote:
FLIP wrote:
Flash Gordon wrote:And but for a last gasp try in the second test the series would have been won 3-0.


Last gasp tries are fairly common in rugby - someone slipping over while taking a shot at the posts really isn't. But for the fickleness of fate it would have been 2-1 against. And Australia were pure awful at the time, having lost to a Scotland side veering between 9th-11th in the world the summer before. The series should never have been in doubt.


Jonathan Davies slipped off a tackle for the late Australian try and Halfpenny missed a penalty to win the second test. How is it valid to dismiss a narrow win for the Lions because somebody slipped and then say "that's just rugby" when Australia win due to Davies slipping off a tackle and Halfpenny missing a penalty?!


Name another incident of a player slipping like Beale did taking a match winning, easy shot at goal in international rugby. It's very easy to name missed tackles, missed shots at goal, and last minute tries.

Flash Gordon wrote:Just out of interest, who do you think is a better available candidate.


Virtually any of the other contenders based on the "Lions spirit" argument alone. JS, VC, SL and EJ based on that and skill combined. JS and EJ based on skill alone.

Hell I'd have preferred Dai Young!
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby simonokeeffe » September 7th, 2016, 7:28 pm

offshorerules wrote:But Heaslip has the wolverine blood and could play all the midweek matches as well as the tests.


not with his track record of red cards in New Zealand
When he spreads his legs like that youd need dynamite or the Highland Light Infantry to shift him.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby erskinechilders » September 7th, 2016, 7:46 pm

15. Hogg
14. Watson
13. Joseph
12. Henshaw
11. North
10. Sexton
9. Murray
8. Vunipola
7. Warburton
6. Faletau
5. AW Jones
4. Itoje
3. WP Nel
2. Hartley
1. McGrath

16. George
17. Vunipola
18. Cole
19. Kruis / J. Gray
20. O'Brien ( if he gets a full season )
21. Webb
22. Farrell
23. Williams
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby simonokeeffe » September 7th, 2016, 8:07 pm

speaking of if they get a full season/are fit: Manu Tuilagi
When he spreads his legs like that youd need dynamite or the Highland Light Infantry to shift him.
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Re: The looking forward to the Lions Tour thread

Postby Oldschool » September 7th, 2016, 10:43 pm

simonokeeffe wrote:Heaslip is behind Vunipola IMO and loses out to Faletau on Welshness

Far prefer if Jamie pulled a Gordon D'Arcy and pulled a sickie.
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