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Match Thread: England v Ireland, Twickenham, Sat 17 March 14:45, ITV, TV3

  • 16-03-2018 1:46pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 24,364 ✭✭✭✭ molloyjh


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    REVENGE OR REALISATION

    This is it. Grand Slam Super Saturday. With 19 from a possible 20 points, Ireland are already deserved winners of this years 6 Nations Championship. But can they go one further and make it a Slam? Eddie Jones' wounded England lays in wait in Twickenham. Two losses on the bounce and serious question marks around their ability to adapt to what's going on in front of them have left them with nothing but pride to play for. Pride and revenge, after Ireland derailed their Grand Slam hopes last season. So will Ireland realise their potential, or will England exact their revenge?
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    Joe Schmidt has made just 1 change to the Irish squad travelling to London. Iain Henderson is promoted to the bench with Devin Toner dropping down in his place. This is as settled an Irish side as we've seen this tournament, with confidence and belief both high. There is experience and there is youth. There is strength and speed. There is a clarity within this side that allows them to go over 40 phases in tough conditions and wrestle a victory from almost certain defeat.
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    This is in stark contrast to England, who have made several changes to their squad for Saturday. Gone are the playmakers at 10 and 12 most importantly, which will change how they approach the game quite significantly. Issues at the breakdown have plagued this team for the last 2 rounds based on tactical naivety and poor selection. A first loss to Scotland in 10 years was followed by a loss to what is a poor French side, who looked as much in the opening exchanges last week. The confidence, belief and clarity that Ireland have seem sorely lacking from the English players right now.
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    There is vulnerability too in this Irish side too though. Defensive issues have been prevalent in all 4 games, particularly in terms of numbering up properly and making good decisions in the wider channels. Some of this can be put down to inexperience and a lack of familiarity among certain players. However it is still a concern. Improvements were made ahead of the Scotland game, but still the Scots managed to get in behind us on a number of occasions and really should have scored at least 1 more try. With a back 3 of Daly, May and Watson, England certainly have the ablilty to exploit any issues in those wider channels if they can get the ball out to those areas quickly and accurately.
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    This would have been easier to do had they gone with Ford-Farrell at 10 and 12. The distribution options that axis offers could do similar damage to us as Scotland and Wales both did. However, with England simply not coming close to winning the battle at the ruck, Ford wasn't able to get the kind of service he could thrive on. And in the absence of that his performances suffered badly. Clearly Jones doesn't feel that they can guarantee good, clean ruck ball for his back line. And that probably makes sense as Ireland have been the side that have controlled the ball better than any other team in the tournament so far. The Irish pack are all strong at the breakdown, but our backs too have been more than able to contribute to that cause. Bundee Aki has been a workhorse in that regard, but we even saw Jordan Larmour getting stuck in during his brief appearances. And so England have opted for a single playmaker inside a hard running inside centre. Could they be looking to play a territorial game?

    Englands line out has been very effective this season with only 3 lost line outs over all 4 games and they have been able to put real pressure on opposition throws too. They've been able to do this, though, in no small part down to the fact that they've had 3 locks on the pitch at the one time. With Lawes injured this is no longer the case. Ireland, for their part, have taken out arguably the safest line out option in the northern hemisphere in Devin Toner. This is potentially an area that England can target and I'd expect Farrell to be doing a good deal of kicking.
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    The battle up front will be an interesting one. Ireland have a pack that can go toe to toe, and possibly further, with the home side. Irelands bench as well has serious impact on that front. At half back Ireland are surely the better side too with Murray-Sexton being a better combination than Wigglesworth-Farrell. The 2 centre pairings probably match up reasonably well, but Ringrose I think has an edge on Joseph. Aki too would have more to his game than Te'o. And while the back 3 for England is very strong, Irelands are pretty good too. The only area where England have a clear advantage is from 21-23, where their options are more experienced at this level.

    For me, Ireland have to be going into this as favourites by a score. We're the better team, playing better rugby. But that will count for nothing once the teams take the field. England will be highly motivated for this one and that may give them an edge in contact. But this Irish side is going in well prepped. If we get stuck in early and get an early score or two on the board I'd back us to go all the way. Failing some sort of injury crisis or a complete reversal of form for both sides I just can't see how or where England are going to get the win.

    Ireland for the Slam!

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    |
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    15: Anthony Watson|15: Rob Kearney
    14: Johny May|14: Keith Earls
    13: Jonathan Joeseph|13: Garry Ringrose
    12: Ben Te'o|12: Bundee Aki
    11: Elliot Daly|11: Jacob Stockdale
    10: Owen Farrell|10: Jonathan Sexton
    09: Richard Wigglesworth|09: Conor Murray
    |
    01: Mako Vunipola|01: Cian Healy
    02: Dylan Hartley|02: Rory Best
    03: Kyle Sinckler|03: Tadgh Furlong
    04: Maro Itoje|04: James Ryan
    05: George Kruis|05: Iain Henderson
    06: Chris Robshaw|06: Peter O'Mahony
    07: James Haskell|07: Dan Leavy
    08: Sam Simmonds|08: CJ Stander
    |
    16: Jamie George|16: Sean Cronin
    17: Joe Marler|17: Jack McGrath
    18: Dan Cole|18: Andrew Porter
    19: Joe Launchbury|19: Devin Toner
    20: Don Armand|20: Jordi Murphy
    21: Danny Care|21: Kieran Marmion
    22: George Ford|22: Joey Carbery
    23: Mike Brown|23: Jordan Larmour


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,150 ✭✭✭ how.gareth


    Come on Ireland!!!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,930 jr86


    Bookies have both teams evens about right - tough to call

    We still haven't gotten a big away 6n win under schmidt (against France ok, but they're a shadow of their former selves) and before the campaign I think most expected us to be in this position and that this would be the real tough game

    What most didn't expect though is this England slump. They probably have a better 15 selected but subconsciously I feel they've written off this campaign and I just can't see them matching Ireland's hunger and intensity.

    In saying that they certainly won't be gifting scores or butchering tries so we'll certainly have to earn it.

    Golden opportunity of a slam though, they don't come around often for ireland and id be bitterly disappointed to lose this given the circumstances


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,254 ✭✭✭ Dubinusa


    Good job sir, I tip my hat. Let's go Ireland.


  • Subscribers Posts: 36,214 ✭✭✭✭ sydthebeat


    Venue: Twickenham Date: 17 March 2018 Kick-off: 14:45 GMT Coverage: Watch live on ITV and TV3.
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    England
    |
    Ireland

    01: Mako Vunipola|01: Cian Healy
    02: Dylan Hartley (c)|02: Rory Best (c)
    03: Kyle Sinckler|03: Tadhg Furlong
    04: Maro Itoje |04: James Ryan
    05: George Kruis|05: Iain Henderson
    06: Chris Robshaw|06: Peter O'Mahony
    07: James Haskell|07: Dan Leavy
    08: Sam Simmonds |08: CJ Stander
    |
    09: Richard Wigglesworth|09: Conor Murray
    10: Owen Farrell|10: Jonathan Sexton
    11: Elliot Daly|11: Jacob Stockdale
    12: Ben Te'o |12: Bundee Aki
    13: Jonathan Joseph|13: Garry Ringrose
    14: Jonny May|14: Keith Earls
    15: Anthony Watson|15: Rob Kearney
    |
    16: Jamie George|16: Sean Cronin
    17: Joe Marler|17: Jack McGrath
    18: Dan Cole|18: Andrew Porter
    19: Joe Launchbury|19: Devin Toner
    20: Don Armand|20: Jordi Murphy
    21: Danny Care|21: Kieran Marmion
    22: George Ford|22: Joey Carbery
    23: Mike Brown|23: Jordan Larmour

    I was searching earlier for some clever inspirational quote, some “do the impossible” quip as the thread opener, something to grip the attention. But the more I looked the more I realised that, in sport, its the moment that counts. Sometimes no words are required, sometimes it’s the look, it’s the back slap, it’s picking your mate up off the ground. Sometimes its as easy as just being there, relentlessly, filling your team mates with the knowledge that no matter how hard he’s hit, no matter how tired he gets, no matter how bloodied and bruised, no one is going to drive that player backwards, even when he falls, he falls forward. When immortality is on the line words are not needed. And what’s on the line for this Irish team is immortality.
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    There’s a type of bamboo that grows in northern china called Phyllostachys Glauca (Yunzhu). It’s a green stemmed plant with black irregular spots, often considered ornamental and unique, commonly called the leopard bamboo. Why am I mentioning this youre probably asking… have I been overcome by Lostys metaphysical Wales v France thread? The reason I mention this is because this plant flowers on average once every 60 years. Many local people go through their lives having never seen its flower. The years pass, the disappointment continues.

    This plant flowers more often that Ireland win grand slams.



    Let me take you back a while…….

    77 minutes on the clock, England on the Irish 22 when the ball squirms out of a ruck and, under pressure from the Irish 8, an English hand knocks on. Irish scrum, 140 seconds left, 3 points down.
    Steady scrum, ball spun right to the out half, a long clearance kick would seem sensible, play the game in their half, force pressure, maybe even a penalty. But no, bravery is the order of the day as the out half cheekily chips over the top of the English defending line for the outside centre to chase. Two fortuitous, or some say divine-driven, bounces of the ball later, the ball sits up perfectly for the centre to take without breaking a stride. Drawing the defending winger, the centre off loads just before the tackle to the rangy flying Irish 14 who sprints all out and get to the English 5 m line before being brought down.
    First Irishman to clear out is the out half, keeping three English players off the ball. As an indication of the determination, the first player available to receive the pass from the base of the ensuing ruck is our outside centre again, who takes a high arm to the head, refs arm goes out. Do you take the penalty? Do you? Nope. Determination is coursing through these players at this late stage in the game, and our diminutive scrum half snipes to the right, planting defenders, before flinging the ball high and wide to our flying winger, skipping three defenders in the process. The English flanker last gasp tackle is low around the winger’s ankles and he attempts to pull his feet over the line. The winger uses all of his 6’ 4” frame and reaches long, right hand grasping that ball for dear life. Ball touched down, where were his feet? Celebrations muted, is he in or out? The young linesman says it looks good, but hes not gonna guess, and the ref should go upstairs. What follows is 120 agonising seconds where a glorious moment in time is created. “You may award the try”

    Ireland have beaten England. 18 March 2006

    What we need tomorrow is a similar single-mindedness.
    A victory built on irrefutable character, a refusal to lose and an acceptance of the bravery needed to win away in England. History tells us this game will be incredibly tough. Thanks errloyd for a stat during the week, Ireland have won in Twickenham 13 times, 6 of those by 1 point. Apart from a 13 point outlier in 1964, we’ve never beaten them there by more than 6 points.

    Teams

    Eddie Jones has hit the nuclear button for this one. Seven changes from the defeat to France is an indication of either blind panic or blind faith. Most noteworthy is the change to both half backs, with Care and Ford dropping out for Wigglesworth and Farrell. It’s been plainly obvious that George Ford has had a poor championship, but how much of that is based upon him having the crutch of Farrell outside him, and Farrell being in imperious form? Undoubtedly that’s how England have been training leading into, and during, this competition and is it a bridge too far to change their whole systems and patterns at this late stage, against their hardest opposition?
    Jones has reverted back to club partnerships for this test in selecting Sarries collegues in Kruis and Itoje in the second row and Farrell and Wigglesworth at half back. Its worth noting that Wigglewsworth and Farrell have never started an international test together. Other changes that were warranted is Sinckler coming in for Cole and Haskell coming in at 7 with Robshaw moving over, though this change probably wouldn’t have occurred by for an injury to Lawes. This English back row is more balanced than any in their previous guises so far this season, but will they suffer the same issue around the fear of resourcing their own rucks that they have found so much difficulty with? They run the risk of over committing now and blunting their ability to go wide, where Ireland have shown they are weakest. They needed to choose a mobile back row though to get to these rucks and protect their own ball, and while not exactly a free flowing outfit, they have a good mix of mobility and physicality. Simmonds may be 2 stone lighter than the main man hes replacing, but hes quicker around the park and lighter on his feet with ball in hand. Can he reproduce his debut performance?

    Joe Schmidt has kept faith with the 23 who played so clinically against Scotland last weekend, with the only change being the swap of ever present Devin Toner to the bench for lion Ian Henderson. Its arguable that Irelands performances have just gotten better and better as this competition has gone on. Starting with THAT ending in the game to France, where, lets face it, we were dead and buried, to a comprehensive win over the hapless Italians, a hard fought 10 point win over wales and then that win over the scots. Ireland play a strangling, clinical and frustrating game. We have the half backs however to open up the best defences and wingers who can rip any line to shreds. With Aki and Ringrose starting together for consecutive games, we have arguably our most creative midfield. A lot of responsibility is landed onto the young shoulders of Gary Ringrose to marshal that 13 channel but he stood up to the task manfully against a very threatening Scottish backline. In Jacob Stockdale we have a try scoring machine, whos uncanny ability to snip long passes will put untold pressure on Owen Farrells decision making. Upfront though is where we really have been impressive. When we get a head of steam up in phased play we hum like a bugatti engine, every player unconsciously aware of his role and responsibility…. carry, clean, protect, inspect all drilled into muscle memory. As a unit they have been mightily impressive so it would be unfair to single out individuals, but it must be stated that the emergence of the younger lads has been the most impressive factor so far in the competition. James Ryan is 21 years of age and yet has out shone international veterans on the biggest stage. Andrew Porter, 22, has only begun to play tighthead this season and has only 5 senior professional starts to his name in this position. More than holds his own against an experienced welsh front row. Crazy stuff.


    Head to Head
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    The obvious first comparison is at half back, where England have arguably the best player in the northern hemisphere right now in Owen Farrell. However Richard Wigglesworth is probably England’s 4th choice scrum half right now with Care, Youngs and Dixon arguably ahead but not available for various reasons. His inclusion speaks to a particular game plan. A more forward orientated, stressing on box kicking and territory. England will kick the leather off the ball. They will target our wingers, especially Earls, dropping bombs for Daly to chase. However I would not be overly worried about this tactic. Ireland on the other hand have the best half back pairing in the world right now. (Yes swiwi, even better than A Smith and B Barrett). Our biggest worry though is keeping them on the field. Both are irreplaceable, but one big positive is Marmions experience in already having beaten the English as the starting 9 last year. Joey Carberys minutes at 10 have been extremely reduced this season, but a fun stat is, if he comes on and we win, he will have already beaten New Zealand, South Africa, Australia and England by the time hes 23.
    In the front row we have 4 lions starting with 3 on the bench. Cian Healy is enjoying a real renaissance to his career during the last 12 months, looking trimmer and fitter and less broken. Kyle Sinckler is definitely a step up on the flagging Cole. It will be a competition between these two to see who doesnt give away the more stupid penalty, though im sure our good friend Mr Hartley will like to get a piece of that action. Irelands scrum has been imperious so far, though his game will be its biggest test. England pretty much demolished the French scrum last week, though couldn’t make profit on the scoreboard.
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    Perhaps though the biggest head to head competition is actually off the pitch. The coaches. Diametrically opposed in character, similar in their single-mindedness. Eddie Jones has had to squirm a bit this week due to a silly comment he made months ago. You’d never find Joe Schmidt caught in a similar storm. We know how Ireland will play. As for England, well they will have to make not insignificant change their style from how they have been laying so far in the tournament. It would be hard not to expect a more Saracens kind of game based on power runners in midfield, more pick and jam up front and power plays from set pieces, followed by territorial kicking.

    This Irish team is at a zenith, 2nd ranked in the world. The English, well they could quite possibly end this competition in 5th place, which would be an unmitigated disaster. They are backed in a corner, their own home corner, and they will be terrified of losing. Will this fear of losing be enough to get them over the line? Will Ireland reaching for immortality be too far to grasp?


    My prediction: Ireland to win. It doesn’t whether by 1 or 100.



    As for those inspirational quotes, well ill just leave you with this.


  • Subscribers Posts: 36,214 ✭✭✭✭ sydthebeat


    aaarrrgghhhhggh

    sorry for my tardiness molloy


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  • Registered Users Posts: 20,282 ✭✭✭✭ Podge_irl


    TOOOOO SLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,254 ✭✭✭ Dubinusa


    Good job sir. How was Sandymount?


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,525 kilns


    Considering the weather and the likelihood it will be wet and slippery could we see a change of plan from Ireland with a lot more kicking and putting pressure on their back 3 especially Watson at Full Back, for that reason I am surprised they havent brought Brown back in


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,308 ✭✭✭✭ prawnsambo


    Molloy gazumped you :eek:

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  • Registered Users Posts: 19,224 ✭✭✭✭ Venjur


    Sure the match is practically over at this stage.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 12,308 ✭✭✭✭ prawnsambo


    That description of the 2006 match should be put to music. :cool:


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,577 ✭✭✭ Awesomeness


    Starting 4 lions in the front row we are bound to have the upper hand there


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,573 ✭✭✭✭ stephen_n


    Worth waiting all that time for.


  • Subscribers Posts: 36,214 ✭✭✭✭ sydthebeat


    Starting 4 lions in the front row we are bound to have the upper hand there

    the "we" here is all inclusive ;)


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,573 ✭✭✭✭ stephen_n


    You just couldn’t wait hey :pac:


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,364 ✭✭✭✭ molloyjh


    sydthebeat wrote: »
    aaarrrgghhhhggh

    sorry for my tardiness molloy
    stephen_n wrote: »
    You just couldn’t wait hey :pac:

    I wasn't sure if it was coming or not so I bit the bullet. Sorry syd!

    kristen-wiig.gif


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,308 ✭✭✭✭ prawnsambo


    I'm calling for a merger. It's only fair. :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,364 ✭✭✭✭ molloyjh


    prawnsambo wrote: »
    I'm calling for a merger. It's only fair. :)

    Yes!


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,038 ✭✭✭ arsebiscuits1


    MATCH THREAD: England vs Ireland; Twickenham Stadium, Sat 17th March 14:54; TV3,ITV

    What an oddly specific time for a kick off :pac::pac:

    Is that meant to read 14:45?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,103 misslt


    I’m so nervous and excited for this. I’ll be watching in a bar in London with 7 of my English friends. I hope we’re still friends after it!


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  • Registered Users Posts: 24,364 ✭✭✭✭ molloyjh


    I hadn't even finished reading the 2006 run down and I was already like...

    tenor.gif


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,364 ✭✭✭✭ molloyjh


    What an oddly specific time for a kick off :pac::pac:

    Is that meant to read 14:45?

    No, they announced today that it will be delayed by exactly 9 minutes. :o


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,364 ✭✭✭✭ molloyjh


    Also, let's just go with syds and pretend this thread never happened......


  • Registered Users Posts: 23,564 ✭✭✭✭ Buer


    Hey syd, what's that shiny thing in your back with "Property of Molloy" written on it?


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,567 ✭✭✭✭ partyjungle


    molloyjh wrote: »
    Also, let's just go with syds and pretend this thread never happened......

    Let's see which gets the most thanks and ban the user with the least


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,641 Dog Botherer


    Spotter's Guide:

    - Vunipola, Hartley, and Sinckler to get the first recorded triple red card for punching James Ryan, who is left unharmed but bemused
    - Stockdale scores 4 intercept tries, the last one running backwards
    - Te'o runs into Aki, falls over
    - Armand to come on with 3 minutes left and be England's best player
    - Larmour sidesteps 53 times in one second, accidentally opening a black hole which Haskell promptly runs into
    - Ryan and Henderson, in a moving tribute to Stephen Ferris, to pick up Wigglesworth and march 50 yards down the field
    - Cole and Brown to come on and immediately get yellow carded for fighting each other

    Ireland by 50


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,232 ✭✭✭ Yeah_Right


    Spotter's Guide:

    - Vunipola, Hartley, and Sinckler to get the first recorded triple red card for punching James Ryan, who is left unharmed but bemused
    - Stockdale scores 4 intercept tries, the last one running backwards
    - Te'o runs into Aki, falls over
    - Armand to come on with 3 minutes left and be England's best player
    - Larmour sidesteps 53 times in one second, accidentally opening a black hole which Haskell promptly runs into
    - Ryan and Henderson, in a moving tribute to Stephen Ferris, to pick up Wigglesworth and march 50 yards down the field
    - Cole and Brown to come on and immediately get yellow carded for fighting each other

    Ireland by 50

    Hartley and Haskell to go up to the ref on about the 60 minute mark, looking confused and asking "how are we meant to stop these guys?"
    The ref responds "Just because I'm Australian it doesn't make me your coach. Ask him. Now get back under the posts so Joey can take this conversion."


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,641 Dog Botherer


    Yeah_Right wrote: »
    Hartley and Haskell to go up to the ref on about the 60 minute mark, looking confused and asking "how are we meant to stop these guys?"
    The ref responds "Just because I'm Australian it doesn't make me your coach. Ask him. Now get back under the posts so Joey can take this conversion."

    Nah, Hartley will have been red carded by then, and by some massive communication error Haskell is now captain. Not to worry England, that Larmour black hole will fix that in about 5 minutes.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,577 ✭✭✭ Awesomeness


    Stockdale to surpass Zebo's try record for Ireland this weekend.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 11,569 ✭✭✭✭ ProudDUB


    Stockdale to surpass Zebo's try record for Ireland this weekend.

    In the first quarter ! :D


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