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Rebels 2015

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Peter Sullivan (51)
so with the signing of "aussie" mike and the capitulation of last night NOW is the the time for 2015 thread.

mike harris is a solid performer, but one would think that he will be a back up to hegarty at 10, inman at 12 and woodward at 15, on the assumption the last two hang around.

what else is on the shopping list ?

what we need is a hooker who can throw straight 80+% of the time not just now and again. so that means keeping horie somehow. the Fainga'a brother is as unreliable at line out as leafa, who does a great job around the ground but is poor at one of his core skills. sexton will hopefully be back, so we may have it covered.

we need an abrasive, already developed second rower, so that jones can finally play 6. colby Fainga'a has played really well the last couple of weeks but is simply not big enough to move bodies, neither is mcmahon. we have 3 very good open sides with those two and fuglistaller, but i think and unbalanced pack with jones at 5.

big max has frankly been a disappointment, missed a couple of tackles last night and didn't impress at scrum time, admittedly on his wrong side, so i think another tight head to back up weeks and PAE.

meehan showed once again we have great depth at half back.

what do other gaggers think


Greg Davis (50)
I reckon Mike's signing indicates a firming of O'Connor to the Reds and an increased likelihood of Woodward heading home.

I hope Inman stays. He's become a real rock for us, almost like mortlock later in his career.


Nicholas Shehadie (39)
Tex when Inman re-signed last year he signed until the end of 2015.

I like the signing of Harris. He adds experience to a relatively inexperienced backline. He is a consistent solid performer and is versatile. Plus his kicking is good.

When the Harris signing was confirmed I thought that this meant that at least one or both of Ellison and Woodward are leaving.


Peter Sullivan (51)
What I am hoping is that they keep most of the squad so that at last there is some continuity. Turning over 1/3 to 1/4 of the team every year is no way to build a franchise. Weeks, Mitchell and Jones are the only originals left after only 4 seasons


Andrew Slack (58)
20-25% is about right for mine. In a squad of 35/36 its not unreasonable to have a turnover of 6-9 players a season.


Thomson and Pyle are already gone.

Aholelei and Rokobaro can't have their contracts renewed due to nationality.

I think Shota can't stay any longer unless we apply for special permission.

Thats 5 already. If you add on Gus, maybe Tamati and Woodward as well, you've hit 8 with little effort.

I'd like to retain the majority of the squad, and simply boost a few key areas, then top up with a few younger players, preferably Victorians.

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Sir Arthur Higgins

Alan Cameron (40)
I don't think Woodward is leaving. The grumbles comments
To me are more likely about Toby Smith.
Woodward has come out numerous times saying he loves it here.


Peter Fenwicke (45)
I don't think Woodward is leaving. The grumbles comments
To me are more likely about Toby Smith.
Woodward has come out numerous times saying he loves it here.
Fairly certain it's Woodward.
Toby Smith is contracted until 2016 at the Rebels; Woodward is off contract this year.

The Hurricanes lose Andre Taylor, Alapati Leiua and Tim Bateman at the end of the season, so you can bet he's been approached by the Canes for a possible return home.


Stirling Mortlock (74)
Plus why would Tony Smith return home when he's just been selected (sort of) in a Wallaby squad? He wouldn't make the ABs squad.


Stirling Mortlock (74)
Extended squad, the point is why would he move back? The only reason is AB selection correct? Well he's much closer to the Wallabies than the All Blacks. With Woodward he's outplayed many of his countrymen and isn't even eligible for the Wallabies until 2016? He could definitely make the ABs next year if he keeps up his form.

The signing of Harris too.. I wouldn't be playing him at 10.

Sir Arthur Higgins

Alan Cameron (40)
Toby smith isn't in the extended squad either.
From growden all that was reported is that the player wasn't happy in Aus and from all reports Woodward and his young wife are very happy. That led me to suggest smith.
He, whoever he may be, could also leave for non international reasons. Homesickness etc.
I'm holding out hope. Tamati is probably gone so Harris is a 12 option and were still going after Barnes.

Train Without a Station

I'm starting to think that it's Lahiff.

Smith is apparently happy, and currently available anyway. Plus if he left, he'd only be in eligable whilst away and he qualifies already.

Woodward isn't eligible for a while so I can't imagine link placing too much importance on him as a lot can change in a couple of years. I'm sure they're watching.

Lahiff was considerably hyped, hasn't reached what had hoped and has struggled to get game time. There's a chance it may be him, but Growden is clearly overhyping it if it's him. Australian rugby isn't going to dwell on losing a player who struggles to crack the bench of a lower placed franchise.


Peter Sullivan (51)
i thinks its Lahiff also. he hasn't looked happy since getting hooked at the 20 minute mark of the first Force game. he has struggled with the pace of the game and is now the third preferred loosehead. when he came "home" to oz, playing club rugby in Melbourne was not what he had in mind i belive


Arch Winning (36)
On Ellison, he has been huge for us this year, his read of play, speed and aggression have so often meant he was the first man there, more often than not turning the tide. Inman has benefited from playing aside him.

On possibly losing a key kiwi player, I can see Woodward being tempted. The rhetoric from Hansen et al about losing access to kiwis playing in Aussie leads me to think conversations have happened and while I'd think he is 4th or 5th fullback in AB terms a quiet whisper from AB management is a loud call to men who have dreamt of donning the black since they were 5. And surely a number of the kiwi super teams are sniffing around.

To be fair Woodward would still be 4th in Australia, though that could change fast with Mogg seeming to struggle in defense so often and Beale playing 10/12. Another good year is likely to see him in the squad once he qualifies.

I am concerned about our recruitment for next year. A lot of hard work building a good team this year is threatened.
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