Irish Depth Chart - 1st February 2019

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Re: Irish Depth Chart - 1st December 2018

Postby brenno » January 10th, 2019, 6:17 pm

Ruckedtobits wrote:Ireland XV Depth Chart - 1 December 2018
[b]First XV           2nd XV          3rd XV          4th XV [/b]

15. R. Kearney W Addison T O'Halloran M Lowry*
14. K Earls J Larmour D Sweetnam A Byrne
13. G Ringrose C Farrell S Arnold R O'Loughlin
12. R Henshaw B Aki R Scannell S McCloskey
11. J Stockdale A Conway F McFadden C Kelleher*
10. J Sexton J Carbery R Byrne T Bleyendahl*
9. C Murray K Marmion L McGrath J Cooney
8. CJ Stander J Conan N Timoney* P Boyle*
7. D Leavy JVd Flyer Jor Murphy T O'Donnell
6. P O'Mahony R Ruddock S O'Brien S O'Brien II*
5. Jas Ryan I Henderson Q Roux A O'Connor*
4. D. Toner T Beirne U Dillane G Thornbury*

I know this table was done up on the basis of performances up to Nov 30, but if you factored in performances since then Jack Carty is way higher up than 8th. Arguably he is 3rd best 10 in the country now after Sexton and Carbery, neck and neck with R Byrne and miles ahead of Bleyendahl (ffs), Frawley, Hanrahan and Burns.
3. T Furlong A Porter J Ryan F Bealham
2. R Best S Cronin R Herring N Scannell
1. C Healy J McGrath D Kilcoyne Ed Byrne*


(*) Uncapped player

Ireland XV Depth Chart - 1 December 2018
[b]Fifth XV           6th XV          7th XV          8th XV [/b]

15. D Leader* L Ludik* D Johnson* M Haley*
14. C Gilroy N Adelolokun C Nash* H Keenan*
13. L Marshall Tom O'Brien* C Ronaldson* D Goggin*
12. T Farrell* A Curtis* D Cave Con O'Brien*
11. A Woottam M Healy R O'Mahony* R Lyttle*
10. C Frawley* JJ Hanrahan* B Burns* J Carty*
9. C Blade* N McCarthy* D Williams* D Shanahan*
8. C Doris* M Deegan* R Copeland E McKeon*
7. J O'Donoghue C Oliver* S Reidy S Penny*
6. Da O'Callaghan* M Rea* Josh Murphy* E Masterson*
5. K Treadwell* R Molony* M Kearney R Baird*
4. D O'Shea* J Cannon* B Holland F Wyncherley*
3. M Moore M Bent S Archer T O'Toole*
2. J Treacy D Heffernan S Delahunt* D Casey*
1. P Dooley* J Cronin D Buckley* E O'Sullivan*


(*) Uncapped player

Well, a lot of the contenders put up their hands in the first round of Interpros.

As mentioned somewhere on this thread I do intend to update all eight teams after the Interpros and final EPCR Pool games.
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Re: Irish Depth Chart - 1st December 2018

Postby brenno » January 10th, 2019, 6:25 pm

Made a balls of my last post. Accept that list is based on performances up to Nov 30, but if you factor in performances since then Carty is way higher than 8th in the pecking order and is arguably 3rd best 10 in the country right now after Sexton and Carbery, maybe neck-and-neck with Byrne but he's miles ahead of Bleyendahl, Frawley, Hanrahan and Burns.

Likewise McCloskey and Scannell ahead of Tom Farrell at 12 - no way.
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Re: Irish Depth Chart - 1st December 2018

Postby sunshiner1 » January 11th, 2019, 6:36 am

Not to sound to Pedantic but Treadwell has being capped.
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Re: Irish Depth Chart - 1st February 2019

Postby Ruckedtobits » February 14th, 2019, 10:23 pm

At last I get around to the pre Six-Nations update and with apologies for the delay.

This assessment takes the Irish Depth Chart up to 1st February 2019 and takes into account performances from 1st Dec 2018 through to 31st January 2019. No player has been excluded through injury but Ian Keatley's move to London Irish, en route to his three-year contract with Treviso, bids farewell to a player who we ranked second at out-half 18 months ago.

In making these assessments and discussing the underlying rationale with various rugby nerds, we're agreed that I tend to promote and demote players based on their performances in high calibre games e.g. European and Inter-provincial games. Broadly speaking, players tend not to get demoted for under-performance in low profile Pro14 games. However, a player can jump a couple of rungs with an excellent display in an important game.

Once again, there are 8 "Teams" ranked, but the Depth Chart does not name any player more than once. Hence selections do not reflect the reality that all Coaches may prefer to move players positionally, rather than select the next player by ranking.

For the Provincially curious, the 120 players listed are distributed as follows:

Leinster: 38 Players; 31.6% of total
Munster: 32 Players; 26.6% of total
Ulster: 27 Players; 22.5% of total
Connacht: 23 Players. 19.2% of total

The distribution is a lot more even than many would anticipate, but reflective of the general improvement in Ulster and Connacht in particular. When one considers that all four Provinces continue their involvement in European competition, the overall standard continues to rise and there are players outside this 120 who may figure on an Irish World Cup Squad in 2023.

It is estimated that there are approximately 240 professional players in Ireland, when one takes account of National, Provincial, Development and Academy contracts. It is further estimated that approximately 210 of these players are qualified to play for Ireland at present. Thus the 120 players listed here represent more than 50% of all the Irish-qualified, professional players in the country.

Finally, although it was tempting, no analysis was undertaken as to the Provincial origins of the players.

Ireland XV Depth Chart - 1 February 2019
[b]First XV           2nd XV          3rd XV          4th XV [/b]

15. R. Kearney W Addison L Ludik* D Leader*
14. K Earls J Larmour A Byrne R Baloucoune*
13. G Ringrose C Farrell R O'Loughlin S Arnold
12. B Aki R Henshaw T Farrell* S McCloskey
11. J Stockdale A Conway C Kelleher* D Sweetnam
10. J Sexton J Carbery R Byrne J Carty*
9. C Murray K Marmion J Cooney L McGrath
8. CJ Stander J Conan P Boyle* C Doris*
7. JVd Flyer D Leavy S O'Brien T O'Donnell
6. P O'Mahony Jor Murphy R Ruddock S O'Brien II*
5. Jas Ryan I Henderson Q Roux B Holland
4. D. Toner T Beirne U Dillane K Treadwell
3. T Furlong A Porter J Ryan M Moore
2. R Best S Cronin N Scannell R Herring
1. C Healy J McGrath D Kilcoyne Ed Byrne*


(*) Uncapped player

Ireland XV Depth Chart - 1 February 2019
[b]Fifth XV           6th XV          7th XV          8th XV [/b]

15. T O'Halloran M Haley* D Kearney H Keenan*
14. B Daly* N Adelolokun R Lyttle* C Nash*
13. L Marshall A Curtis* D Goggin* D Cave
12. R Scannell Con O'Brien* T Bleyendahl* C Ronaldson*
11. M Healy A Woottam* F McFadden R O'Mahony*
10. C Frawley* B Burns* JJ Hanrahan* M Lowry*
9. C Blade* D Shanahan* N McCarthy* D Williams*
8. M Deegan* N Timoney* R Copeland E Masterson*
7. S Reidy S Penny* C Oliver* J O'Donoghue
6. C Gallacher* Josh Murphy* M Dalton* Da O'Callaghan*
5. G Thornbury* J Cannon* D O'Shea* F Wycherley*
4. M Kearney* A O'Connor* R Molony* I Nagle*
3. F Bealham M Bent S Archer T O'Toole*
2. S Delahunt* J Treacy D Heffernan K O'Byrne*
1. E O'Sullivan* D Buckley* P Dooley* J Cronin


(*) Uncapped Players

68 Internationals Listed
52 Provincial players listed

No 15
Kearney remains at the top of the rankings with no proven successor. Addison remains the most promising contender and it will be no surprise if he gets a selection in this position before the RWC. Louis Ludik gave a couple of displays for Ulster which suggests he is a natural in the position and Leader has proven he has real potential in the role. Dave Kearney may well inherit the position as place-holder for his brother in Leinster whilst Keenan assists the 7's Squad.

No 14
Adam Byrne, Robbie Baloucoune and Barry Daly each demonstrated the benefits of pace and physique, combined with improving defensive skills, during the past three months. None are likely to break into the National Squad at this juncture although Byrne continues to be included by Schmidt for Carton House training. Definitely an improvement in our supply of try scorers.

No 13
Rory O'Loughlin was the outside centre who made the most of his opportunities over the European and Interprovincial games. He was never overawed in the games he played. Sammy Arnold and Dan Goggin both lost ground as the Munster back-line failed to ignite on various occasions.

No 12
Tom Farrell and Conor O'Brien were the two star turns at No 12 during the period. Farrell earned inclusion in the Irish Squad and certainly was worthy of this elevation. O'Brien looked comfortable in a Leinster back-line that was much disturbed during the period but appears to be benefiting from the presence of Conteponi and Lancaster. At the top of the tree, Bundee Aki swopped places with Robbie Henshaw and this alternation could continue as there is little between them.

No 11
Cian Kelleher's try-scoring form ensured his promotion to third in our Chart. His impending move back to Leinster surprised many of the home fans who will keep a closer eye of his exploits between now and the end of the season.

No 10
Undoubtedly one of the greatest improvers this Season has been Jack Carty. His displays in both Interprovincials and European competitions were instrumental in his Provinces' excellent run of victories and he now looks a very assured out-half, who may earn an Irish cap before the World Cup.

No 9
Conor Murray's form, and injuries to both McGrath and Marmion, have re-introduced significant debate about the rankings in this position. Some knowledgable commentators have gone as far as saying that some of Murray's performances might have seen others lose their National place. Marmion is retained as the immediate back-up with Cooney, still only getting the absolute minimum exposure off the bench, creeping ahead of McGrath. A lot to play for in this position that will surely have three places on the plane to Tokyo.

No 8
Boyle, Doris and Deegan are all young contenders in the longer-term succession stakes at No 8. Boyle has had a great Season in a rampant Connacht pack with plenty of opportunities to make a case for him self. Doris and Deegan are two talents that Leinster will hope to hold onto as they dispute the race for this jersey in their Province.

No 7
Josh, Dan or Seanie? What a wealth of talent for one position. Against different opponents, each would be the automatic first choice. But none of the three has really thrown off the pursuit. At least one could lose out in the race for an RWC Squad place and that would be a very bitter pill to swallow. Scott Penny is a fast-emerging talent at U.20 level and if his current form continues, his name will be on many supporters lips by the end of this season.

No 6
Once again a wealth of talent in this position with Peter O'Mahony contributing superbly for Munster since the Autumn internationals. Cillian Gallagher, the Connacht Academy back-row caught the eye repeatedly over the period and jumped ahead of more experienced competition.

Nos 4 & 5
The previous rankings of the front-line second-rows proved on the money with both Roux and Dillane, originally the third-ranked pairing, both getting opportunities with the National Squad. Down the line, Billy Holland's tour de force in European competition served to remind everybody that he still has a lot to give. Thornbury and Treadwell both had excellent Interprovincial performances which demonstrated that neither has peaked as yet.

No 3
Marty Moore's return to Ireland, coupled with the excellence of Ulster's coaching ticket showed that his soujourn in Wasps may not have dissipated either his talent or appetite for the game at the top level. Another three months of hard work could prove enough to put him in the frame for the RWC Squad.

No 2
Despite his wondrous display against NZ in the Autumn and his continued leadership of Ulster's return to European knock-out competition, there are many still concerned that Ireland's 36 year-old Captain may not last the pace until the World Cup. Cronin is clearly the front-line replacement but he needs more international exposure to guarantee he is comfortable as a starting option. Behind him, Scannell and Herring continue to battle with Delahunt and Heffernan perhaps the pick of the younger crop.

No 1
Perhaps one of the least talked about demotions at National level has been the replacement of Lions Tourist Jack McGrath by Dave Kilcoyne, in the selections at National level. Our rankings still have the Leinster man as the direct back-up to his club mate Cian Healy but KIlcoyne is certainly gettig more game time to press his case. Down the line Eric O'Sullivan continues to progress in the Ulster front-row and the presence of Best and Moore, coupled with McFarland as his experienced Coach should ensure that this progress continues.

Overall Summary
Not a lot of movement in the top two ranks but thereafter, all the way down to the eight-ranked players, younger players have been giving displays that demand attention. Internal National competition, coupled with high quality Provincial coaching, is certainly driving standards in the right direction and players in each Provincial Academy now see that performance rather than experience is the ticket to future success. Long may it continue.
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