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Old 10-17-2019, 01:43 PM
Cumbrian is offline
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 1,459
Originally Posted by glee View Post
Australia have picked two large centres, so England have gone for three good tacklers at 10,12 + 13.
I agree Slade is a risk with limited playing time.
Mako is a world-class player (and inspires his brother!)
I thought Billy had fully recovered from his injury.
Finally winning 6 straight times does not mean you are due a loss (ask the All-Blacks!)
On the areas where I have something to say, which is not on all of these:

I think Ford's weakness as a tackler is over-stated. When he's played how many times have we been blown up? He didn't start in the pivotal matches in the 2015 group stage and we lost those anyway. I get the logic - and I am not saying you're an adherent to it - but I'm not sure the evidence is conclusive. I'd rather we focused on what Ford can do, which is fire the back line. Not that England are playing NZ, but history shows that you need to crack 25-30 points to beat NZ. You're not going to do it by scoring in increments of 3.

Billy Vunipola looked pretty crocked to my eyes when he came off v Argentina. I guess we're going to find out.

Final comment - yes, was somewhat flippant. Nevertheless, my natural pessimism strikes again (I can even show you a message I sent to my mates on WhatsApp before England played the Czech Republic in a recent Euro 2020 qualifier; some journo had remarked that England hadn't lost a qualifier in over a decade - to which I said, well, aren't we due? We lost 2-1).