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Wales v Australia, Sunday 21st 4.30 am ADST.

Derpus

John Eales (66)
Since when did we turn into Wales anyway? we've never been dependent on a heavyset 12 to get us over the gainline before....
 

KOB1987

Michael Lynagh (62)
Since when did we turn into Wales anyway? we've never been dependent on a heavyset 12 to get us over the gainline before....
I think because Kerevi is both big and effective size is seen as the key to our issues at 12. But you're right, it's difficult to pinpoint a heavyset 12 who was a regular Wallaby starter before him.

Not to forget we beat every top tier nation on the planet only 6 years ago with a 10 Foley 12 Giteau combination. Size wise that's no different to Harrison/Lolesio and you'd argue not a lot of difference skill wise (at least on potential).
 
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Hawko

Geoff Shaw (53)
Tim Horan, our greatest ever 12, (and worst commentator ever), was not big or heavy. But I'd take him in a heartbeat in front of any of those listed above at 12. He was a very mediocre 10 though. The two roles were very different and still are.
 

Seb V

Mark Loane (55)
Your all listing 12's in a different era where the game was less psychical. The most successful 12's of recent times would be players like SBW, Nonu, Kerevi. I note that Gits and Foley were short-lived, and Gits body barely made it through the tournament.

Its also most important to mention both Gits and Horan were superb defenders. The same can not be said of Lolesio. Rennie wants him to gain strength for the 10 position, let along the extra defending and strength which would be beneficial at 12.

Sure he could play 12, but would be it optimal?
 

KOB1987

Michael Lynagh (62)
Tim Horan, our greatest ever 12, (and worst commentator ever), was not big or heavy. But I'd take him in a heartbeat in front of any of those listed above at 12. He was a very mediocre 10 though. The two roles were very different and still are.
He was, I can't remember the circumstances of that selection but there was a reason for it and from memory he just played an offload game and left the kicking and distributing to Burke (I think it was?). Which would have made him look even more average as a 10!

There are plenty of blokes who can play both though, and I'm not referring only to Australians.
 

Seb V

Mark Loane (55)
Not to forget we beat every top tier nation on the planet only 6 years ago with a 10 Foley 12 Giteau combination. Size wise that's no different to Harrison/Lolesio and you'd argue not a lot of difference skill wise (at least on potential).

Who did we beat with Gits and Foley?

An underwhelming England team, Scotland, and Argentina?

Lost verse NZ.

Can't recall playing SA, France, Wales, Ireland.

EDIT: Actually I think we did play Wales.
 

KOB1987

Michael Lynagh (62)
Who did we beat with Gits and Foley?

An underwhelming England team, Scotland, and Argentina?

Lost verse NZ.

Can't recall playing SA, France, Wales, Ireland.
Well we beat NZ in Sydney and Wales in the pool game before England (with 13 players and a huge defensive effort remember?), Scotland in the QF, and we won the tri nations that year so I'm assuming we beat both SAF and Arg. I could be wrong about that and I'll give you France & Ireland, but they didn't really figure in my thought process of that year.
 

KOB1987

Michael Lynagh (62)
Did Gits play in the tri-nations though?
Yeah his debut was in the Sydney game. Cheika changed it up for the return Bledisloe next game (mostly in the forwards though), but the SAF & ARG games were after that so I'm just guessing/assuming he played.
 

Seb V

Mark Loane (55)
I think the small 12 certainly can work, the key there is they have to be strong defenders.

Ford and Farrell were a pretty damn small international 10 and 12 and they went alright. Beat us numerous times.
 

KOB1987

Michael Lynagh (62)
I think the key message is that size isn't everything, and not a lot of successful selections have ever been purely because of size. SBW and Kerevi are both big but they have significant other positive attributes, and Nonu was a long term development project, it took them almost a decade before the All Blacks were confident enough to run him at 12.

Harrison is a good defender. Most test teams get away with one weaker defender in close and one out wide because they are primarily there for attack, defense wins games but you also need to be able to score points, so there has to be a balance.
 

Seb V

Mark Loane (55)
I think the key message is that size isn't everything, and not a lot of successful selections have ever been purely because of size. SBW and Kerevi are both big but they have significant other positive attributes, and Nonu was a long term development project, it took them almost a decade before the All Blacks were confident enough to run him at 12.

Harrison is a good defender. Most test teams get away with one weaker defender in close and one out wide because they are primarily there for attack, defense wins games but you also need to be able to score points, so there has to be a balance.

Absolutely, it's all about balance. And I just don't see any balance with a combo of Harrison and Lolesio. Might work for U20's and even super XV, but I prefer other options at test level.
 

Lightblue

Charlie Fox (21)
I think the key message is that size isn't everything, and not a lot of successful selections have ever been purely because of size. SBW and Kerevi are both big but they have significant other positive attributes, and Nonu was a long term development project, it took them almost a decade before the All Blacks were confident enough to run him at 12.

Harrison is a good defender. Most test teams get away with one weaker defender in close and one out wide because they are primarily there for attack, defense wins games but you also need to be able to score points, so there has to be a balance.
Harrison may be a good defender and goal kicker however his first option is usually to go himself .. not a great distributor... he may find himself at fullback for the Waratahs.
 

Up the Guts

Steve Williams (59)
Size matters more with modern defensive systems, you need a big body to get over the advantage line early or the rush defence will eat you up. If you don’t have absolute size then you at least need dynamic runners like Perese or Koroibete who manage to get over the gain line more often than not.

Kerevi’s a freak in that he can beat the first tackler from a standing start because his footwork is amazing for his size. His presence helped mask a lot of clunkiness in attack as guys have been over running lines or receiving the ball too deep and static. It was evident in the Japan game when Quade had to take the ball into contact a number of times because his runners weren’t in the right place.

In Kerevi’s absence we actually have players who, while not enormous size wise, run great lines and can get us over the gain line. I don’t think we’ve used them well in this capacity though. Hunter, for instance, is a great hole runner and he makes a lot of metres running back against the grain (e.g. that try he scored off the lineout in Auckland). He came on leaps and bounds last year with the development of his kicking and passing game but I think they’ve got him trying to do too much at the moment. I’d like to see them strip it back this game and have Hunter running hard and flat off JOC (James O'Connor) early in the phase count to punch over the gain line. We can then get a role on with the likes of Valetini and Tupou running around the corner, which is when we look our best.
 

KOB1987

Michael Lynagh (62)
Harrison may be a good defender and goal kicker however his first option is usually to go himself .. not a great distributor... he may find himself at fullback for the Waratahs.
That's something that can be coached out of /into him though, and TBH a stint at full back would probably do him good. That's the same path Foley took (sans the 7's halfback bit), and Larkham actually. I should point out I'm not saying this should be the combination for next season, or even RWC2023. It's something that certainly could happen given some time though.
 

Lightblue

Charlie Fox (21)
That's something that can be coached out of /into him though, and TBH a stint at full back would probably do him good. That's the same path Foley took (sans the 7's halfback bit), and Larkham actually. I should point out I'm not saying this should be the combination for next season, or even RWC2023. It's something that certainly could happen given some time though.
Fair enough.... a good fly half though should have great vision, have a great pass to right and left, take it to the line and not hang back, run straight, have a big boot and know when to have a run yourself... plus defend.... not that hard! Not many can do this ... Larkham our last great 10 imo.... a more mature Quade Cooper is miles ahead of our other candidates .... but of those, I like what I see of Donaldson and Gordon.
 
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Pfitzy

David Wilson (68)
Players with size have usually used it to their advantage throughout their school and representative rugby. They are more confident in tackling and breaking through the line. What I have found is many with size get to a professional outfit and don’t have great ball skills because they have relied on their size to run the ball themselves. Re-coaching this type of player for their first two years of a professional gig is crucial.

Big Kid Syndrome (TM) - the player who matures physically a lot faster than their peers can fall into the trap of not maturing mentally, and developing the appropriate work ethic.
 
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