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New Zealand Rugby Team Watch

Dan54

Rod McCall (65)
Am finally coming around to him. Still dont see him as a game breaker but around the rucks he is kind of fantastic.

Also, reports of the demise of Lurch AKA Guzzler AKA BBBR AKA Armageddon On Stilts may have been greatly exaggerated.
Agree on QT, he looks a good solid 12 rather than match winner at this stage.
And Lurch seems to be timing his form until right time of sesaon, as is Sam W who I was pleased to see picking off Reds lineouts etc and been back to former self last few weeks, doing some good carries in around rucks etc.
 

waiopehu oldboy

Nathan Sharpe (72)
With the possibility that both Cane & Papali'i will miss the Ireland series I wonder if Big Red might get a look in as the 5/6 we've dabbled with occasionally but without any great success.
 

Jeffrey

Chris McKivat (8)
On locks:

1) Sam Whitelock looks to have done enough to retain a starting lock position.
2) he will almost certainly be partnered by Brodie.

all kiwi fans have a lot of respect for these 2. They have given a lot for the ABs over the years, some stunning performances from the very top drawer.

but I must stress that beating the Aussies at super rugby and looking the part is not really going to be enough. The likes of Darcy Swain will not make the squad of top international teams. In fact, winning against Australia and looking good might be the cloak of delusion that glosses over cracks that have widened into gaps.

beyond these 2, we know Scott Barrett and Tupou Vai’i will definitely be involved. Scott is a walking card at the moment, and I do not think Tupou is robust enough physically or mentally to be an international lock. Hey life isn’t about just shuffle passes and galloping runs. Are you ready to put your head on the line half a foot from the ground to repel tagh furlong launching himself at the try line? I don’t see this with Tupou. This Irish series, the saffas to come, and the tour up north will be a runway for his maturation.

In a squad of 36, there might be a 5th lock. I don’t see Patrick making the team from Japan. I don’t think foster is the type who will pick Josh Dickson or (sadly) James Tucker (who I do like as a bit of a bull in the tight). Quentin strange and Mitchell Dunshea haven’t justified much to be back in the squad. So this increasingly points to Josh Lord, whose volleyball frame worries me.

If I had a choice, I do not mind going with Zach Gallagher for the 5th and probably understudy lock.
 

Jeffrey

Chris McKivat (8)
Another position for debateFullback.

there are realistically 3 contenders.
1) will jordan, who continues to exhibit cutting edge on attack, but just doesn’t seem to be able to defend. Also, hasnt really been fully tested under the high ball, because super teams don’t kick much. In recent years, Ireland also has reduced its kicking; but in the club competitions, kicking is still a major contest. the Irish FB, Hugo Keenan, is very fucking good under the high ball.

2) jordie Barrett - of course, he has spent a fair bit of time at 12. But super rugby has almost been too easy for him; test rugby is a different kettle of fish. Since he debuted in 2017, he’s accumulated quite a fair bit of experience by now, but the pressure is really on, still looks wobbly. The big boot might also be useful.

3) beauden Barrett. To cut a long story short, BB is probably going to start at 10. While BB is just a terrific player, he isn’t, and has never quite convinced as a natural 10.

it might be too soon for moorby. Perofeta has looked good in bouts but his cognitive processing is a bit suspect. Havili has almost become exclusively a 12. Neither Sullivan has quite convinced enough; ditto for josh ioane.
 

waiopehu oldboy

Nathan Sharpe (72)
Blackadder confirmed as having dislocated his left shoulder so that's him gone for SF & GF if they make it. Having more scans to determine if surgery is needed in which case he obviously misses Ireland, probably TRC & possibly EOYT.
 

Dan54

Rod McCall (65)
Another position for debateFullback.

there are realistically 3 contenders.
1) will jordan, who continues to exhibit cutting edge on attack, but just doesn’t seem to be able to defend. Also, hasnt really been fully tested under the high ball, because super teams don’t kick much. In recent years, Ireland also has reduced its kicking; but in the club competitions, kicking is still a major contest. the Irish FB, Hugo Keenan, is very fucking good under the high ball.

2) jordie Barrett - of course, he has spent a fair bit of time at 12. But super rugby has almost been too easy for him; test rugby is a different kettle of fish. Since he debuted in 2017, he’s accumulated quite a fair bit of experience by now, but the pressure is really on, still looks wobbly. The big boot might also be useful.

3) beauden Barrett. To cut a long story short, BB is probably going to start at 10. While BB is just a terrific player, he isn’t, and has never quite convinced as a natural 10.

it might be too soon for moorby. Perofeta has looked good in bouts but his cognitive processing is a bit suspect. Havili has almost become exclusively a 12. Neither Sullivan has quite convinced enough; ditto for josh ioane.
Reckon it has to be Jordie at 15, especially if Havili doesn't get 12 spot, Jordan can't really take 2nd playmker role that is needed at times. Even as a Canes'man I don't see Moorby near being an AB, strikes me as a good super player. Perofeta may just get the 10/15 spot just as insurance for injury, but strongly suggest he will be in Maori team and they will get a lot more value in development terms of him actually getting playing time there. I know MacMillan and Foster are talking a bit on Maori team make up and how it will work with ABs,
 

waiopehu oldboy

Nathan Sharpe (72)
Dalton Papalii got pulled over on the Southern Motorway on 1 June after being clocked at 150+ kmh. Charge withdrawn over an issue with the accuracy of the speed detection equipment but he's now under investigation by NZR's integrity unit.

 

Dismal Pillock

Andrew Slack (58)
Dalton Papalii got pulled over on the Southern Motorway on 1 June after being clocked at 150+ kmh. Charge withdrawn over an issue with the accuracy of the speed detection equipment but he's now under investigation by NZR's integrity unit.

"Officer, I'm in a race against time to be fit for the Ireland series".
 

Derpus

Tim Horan (67)
Dalton Papalii got pulled over on the Southern Motorway on 1 June after being clocked at 150+ kmh. Charge withdrawn over an issue with the accuracy of the speed detection equipment but he's now under investigation by NZR's integrity unit.

Hah, cops realised they'd fucked up pulling over the future AB captain so they obviously smashed the speedo on the curb.
 

Dismal Pillock

Andrew Slack (58)
Paps will have a certain anonymous unnamed Ex-Auckland Blues assistant coach on speed dial by now.

grahamhenry_zps521dab57.jpg

"Officer, let's think about this. Are you really sure you saw what you think you saw?




clint-eastwood-look.gif






grahamhenry_zps521dab57.jpg

".........."





clint-eastwood-look.gif






grahamhenry_zps521dab57.jpg

"..................................."




"...um, hello Mr anonymous unnamed Ex-Auckland Blues assistant coach, no, my recollection of this entire incident is growing fainter and fainter with each passing minute....."


<click>
 

Dan54

Rod McCall (65)
Had an interesting conversation at rugby today, wandered over to Kaponga watching club I support in 3rd div here inthe Naki.
Was having a discussion with a coach of team they w ere playing on sidelines and he was commenting how he thinks proper grassroots rugby is actually growing. In most little country towns ( as in rest of NZ and Aus etc) a lot of young people leave small towns and moving to cities etc, yet the clubs like Kaponga etc seem to be increasing numbers of players. He thinks it is players who don't want to get carried away with gyms etc all part of prem rugby etc, but just want to come and train a couple of times a week and play without all the bull****. The rugby is actually bloody good, and feels more like when I played, no ARs on sidelines looking for every little thing etc, just a couple of teams trying to win.
I will add Kaponga has a population of 310 , they also have a soccer team, but there was probably 120-150 people standing on sidelines (and it was f***en freezing and raining) watching the game, families, men , women etc etc.
Reminds me our game is still pretty good (now I have thawed out!
 

Dismal Pillock

Andrew Slack (58)
If Puddingpants Nepo can do that at scrumtime then woah he has to be back in the frame.

I would take Tom Robinson and his go-go engine at #6 over Crossword Frizzler flat track bully wifebeater every single day of the week.

Christie vs Weber vs TJP is getting..... messy. Bar-Kays Fakatava to usurp the lot.
 

Dan54

Rod McCall (65)
I still think the most interest on how many locks they carry (I reckon 4 and perhaps Lord to miss out). loosies will both Sotutu and Grace get in as both are playing pretty well. Still think they might be infuenced who can play for Maori, in that borderline players maybe better to play for them against Irish than hold tackle bags (Foster did say him and McMillan have been talking on who he wants etc) similar to what Rennie has done.
And remember this is only for 3 tests , new squad is picked for RC etc.
 

waiopehu oldboy

Nathan Sharpe (72)
ICYMI neither Patrick Tuipulotu nor DMac are eligible for this squad, they first have to play NPC. Foster will 100% pick DMac as soon as he becomes available so whoever gets that 10/15 spot (Perofeta IMO) may not be there when TRC squad is named.
 
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