AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?



  • @junior said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    @Bones said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    @junior the resurgence of ALB last year seemed to coincide with him getting a lot of the pace back that he used to have - when he used to be capable of playing wing.

    I see where you're coming from though...Josh Ioane at 12? Or just Mounga shuffles out to make room for Mitch Hunt.

    I think either of those options would work quite well. It may even turn out better for everyone to have Hunt at 10 and Ioane at 12 with either Goodhue or ALB at 13.

    You'd probably want a bit of a smasher that can run good lines I reckon. Anyone heard Matchbox 20's greatest hits?



  • @nzzp said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    @Victor-Meldrew said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    @nzzp said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    My addled memory is that he was one of our best at the RWC.

    Like his commitment as well. A lot of other players would have taken the big spondoolies in Japan or France if they'd been mucked about like he seems to have been.

    Love it, I'm learning new words most days:D

    I prefer the traditional spondoolicks, rather than the crass modern shortened version

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spondulix



  • @mariner4life said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    My take, for what it's worth, is that ALB and Goodhue is a good but not great midfield. The kind that will look a million bucks when we are on top and beating a team, but when shit gets really tough, won't create much by themselves.

    There isn't much point having the next Conrad Smith if he's not playing outside the next Nonu.

    Ioane's extra pace could be the key weapon we are looking for to unlock top level test defenses. In which case I would look at someone smart and robust at 12, which could be Goodhue.

    We need to find the right mix with a good combination of attributes. It'll take a bit of juggling to find it though unfortunately.

    Interesting post, but I'm not convinced that it should be Goodhue ahead of ALB.

    Having said that, ALB has been brilliant coming off the bench, so testing both combinations sounds worthwhile.

    I do like the idea of seeing whether Ioane is international class in the midfield, but if he isn't, he should be at 11 or 14.



  • @mariner4life said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    My take, for what it's worth, is that ALB and Goodhue is a good but not great midfield. The kind that will look a million bucks when we are on top and beating a team, but when shit gets really tough, won't create much by themselves.

    I'd argue we don't know how good the ALB/Goodhue combo is going to be until we've actually used it in more than a handful of test matches. Neither of them exhibit the regular brain-farts we saw from SBW when things got tough.

    Ioane's extra pace could be the key weapon we are looking for to unlock top level test defenses. In which case I would look at someone smart and robust at 12, which could be Goodhue

    Fair point. So let's try him out once we have a fairly settled 12/13 combo to compare him to.

    We need to find the right mix with a good combination of attributes. It'll take a bit of juggling to find it though unfortunately.

    Haven't we been doing that for the last four years?



  • @gt12 said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    I do like the idea of seeing whether Ioane is international class in the midfield, but if he isn't, he should be at 11 or 14.

    Nonu failed his first test in the midfield early doors - had a massive miss on BOD in Hamilton I believe, and let them in for a try. Center is a tough position, and I think you can't rush it. He could be superb of course - Tana made that transition and was dynamite in both places



  • @nzzp

    Long term, assuming he stays, I assume that’s where he will end up. However, whether he is ready now or not (at that level)I don’t know buts worth finding out.



  • @nzzp said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    @gt12 said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    I do like the idea of seeing whether Ioane is international class in the midfield, but if he isn't, he should be at 11 or 14.

    Nonu failed his first test in the midfield early doors - had a massive miss on BOD in Hamilton I believe, and let them in for a try. Center is a tough position, and I think you can't rush it. He could be superb of course - Tana made that transition and was dynamite in both places

    That was actually a few years after he first made the ABs, which I think makes your point stronger as it takes time to develop a quality test midfielder.

    Nonu’s first test was that England loss at home in 2003. He partnered with Tana in the midfield. We really couldn’t get much going that day - across the board.



  • Nonu didn't always play in the midfield for Wellington. In the 2006 NPC final, for example, he was on the left wing. He was used as a sub as often as a 12/13 in the next 4 years after his AB debut.



  • @Bovidae said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    Nonu didn't always play in the midfield for Wellington. In the 2006 NPC final, for example, he was on the left wing. He was used as a sub as often as a 12/13 in the next 4 years after his AB debut.

    All his early matches were at wing for the Canes



  • @canefan said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    @Bovidae said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    Nonu didn't always play in the midfield for Wellington. In the 2006 NPC final, for example, he was on the left wing. He was used as a sub as often as a 12/13 in the next 4 years after his AB debut.

    All his early matches were at wing for the Canes

    Against Ireland in Ireland early on in his career I remember him coming on as a sub, running 50m, being people with power and pace, chipping, regathering and then knocking on in goal. Would have been one of the all time great tries.



  • @nzzp said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    @canefan said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    @Bovidae said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    Nonu didn't always play in the midfield for Wellington. In the 2006 NPC final, for example, he was on the left wing. He was used as a sub as often as a 12/13 in the next 4 years after his AB debut.

    All his early matches were at wing for the Canes

    Against Ireland in Ireland early on in his career I remember him coming on as a sub, running 50m, being people with power and pace, chipping, regathering and then knocking on in goal. Would have been one of the all time great tries.

    Was that the same Ireland match he got carded?



  • @mariner4life said in AB squad for the Bledisloe Cup?:

    My take, for what it's worth, is that ALB and Goodhue is a good but not great midfield. The kind that will look a million bucks when we are on top and beating a team, but when shit gets really tough, won't create much by themselves.

    I think you can extend that across much of the team that lost to England. We had lots of good solid international players - but, not enough who were capable of the extraordinary. I think that's why we had to go with the Mo'unga-Barrett two playmakers thing - because , they were two of the very few we had capable of busting open the most meticulous defences.

    Beyond them, I'd say Ardie Savea meets that standard. Big Brodie usually does, but he was a shadow of his best self. And maybe Sevu Reece. Everyone else was more a role player - solid, but not demanding of extra-special attention.

    Compare that to 2015 when we had major threats across the park - maybe eight or nine guys who needed special attention.



  • Bearing in mind the results of that player poll about the best wing in NZ, and that most of the people being touted as the potential AB wings were playing in this game - you'd have to say that the somewhat-maligned George Bridge answered his critics.

    If this was an old-school AB trial, I'd pick Bridge and Ioane as the two wings (ignoring considerations of who plays left and right).



  • @Chris-B said in Crusaders v Blues:

    Bearing in mind the results of that player poll about the best wing in NZ, and that most of the people being touted as the potential AB wings were playing in this game - you'd have to say that the somewhat-maligned George Bridge answered his critics.

    If this was an old-school AB trial, I'd pick Bridge and Ioane as the two wings (ignoring considerations of who plays left and right).

    I will agree that Bridge showed some classy touches but he has to maintain that level if he isnt to be surpassed by others that offer more.



  • @Crucial Basically, the contenders for the wing spots are Bridge, Telea, Clarke, and Reece. Then there are wing/midfielders in R Ioane and Ennor, and a wing/fullback in Jordan

    It will depend on the number of players they want to select from this group, but I think Bridge, Rieko and Reece are near certainties to be picked. I don't think they'll drop Bridge for either Telea or Clarke.



  • @Crucial offer more what? More dropping off the ball, more poor decision making, more poor work rate, more poor defence????



  • @Stargazer said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Crucial Basically, the contenders for the wing spots are Bridge, Telea, Clarke, and Reece. Then there are wing/midfielders in R Ioane and Ennor, and a wing/fullback in Jordan

    It will depend on the number of players they want to select from this group, but I think Bridge, Rieko and Reece are near certainties to be picked. I don't think they'll drop Bridge for either Telea or Clarke.

    I think Bridge needs to prove he’s up to test rugby In tests. He’s always been class at Super level, but after a decent start to his test career he was pretty average as the season went on. I’d rather he be kept than Reece, but, if we want an awesome attacking wing who has some defensive frailties I’d rather Telea than Reece. Despite his parentage at least Telea is committed to NZ.



  • @Stargazer said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Crucial Basically, the contenders for the wing spots are Bridge, Telea, Clarke, and Reece. Then there are wing/midfielders in R Ioane and Ennor, and a wing/fullback in Jordan

    It will depend on the number of players they want to select from this group, but I think Bridge, Rieko and Reece are near certainties to be picked. I don't think they'll drop Bridge for either Telea or Clarke.

    I think you're right.

    Depending on numbers, I'm doubtful that they will replace anyone in the backs from last year's RWC squad - apart from those no longer available. If the same squad size (31) I would pick:

    Laumape to replace SBW.
    Rieko as a midfielder (though he'd probably still be played on the wing) to replace Crotty.
    That opens up a wing/utility spot for Will Jordan.
    DMac or Havili to replace Ben Smith, but Fozzie will pick DMac.

    Beauden will probably still be the starting fullback.



  • @Chris-B said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Stargazer said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Crucial Basically, the contenders for the wing spots are Bridge, Telea, Clarke, and Reece. Then there are wing/midfielders in R Ioane and Ennor, and a wing/fullback in Jordan

    It will depend on the number of players they want to select from this group, but I think Bridge, Rieko and Reece are near certainties to be picked. I don't think they'll drop Bridge for either Telea or Clarke.

    I think you're right.

    Depending on numbers, I'm doubtful that they will replace anyone in the backs from last year's RWC squad - apart from those no longer available. If the same squad size (31) I would pick:

    Laumape to replace SBW.
    Rieko as a midfielder (though he'd probably still be played on the wing) to replace Crotty.
    That opens up a wing/utility spot for Will Jordan.
    DMac or Havili to replace Ben Smith, but Fozzie will pick DMac.

    Beauden will probably still be the starting fullback.

    From what I've seen these last few weeks, Otere Black is doing his cause no harm at all. Really matured as a player.



  • @Victor-Meldrew helps not to be bothered by long term nasty injuries.



  • @nzzp said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Victor-Meldrew helps not to be bothered by long term nasty injuries.

    Yeah. And his decision-making has gone up another notch as well.



  • @Chris-B there's talk it will be a squad of 35. Could open up an extra spot or two for a Clarke/Havili/Ennor.



  • @KiwiMurph Any of those would be good. Josh Ioane or Otere Black also being added in the backs would be my highest priority.

    Fullback is an area where somebody is going to be very unlucky - Beauden, Jordie, DMac, Havili, Jordan - a lot of potential depth there and lots of different attributes/utility options.



  • @Chris-B said in Crusaders v Blues:

    Fullback is an area where somebody is going to be very unlucky - Beauden, Jordie, DMac, Havili, Jordan - a lot of potential depth there and lots of different attributes/utility options.

    Forget about the ABs for a minute, who is starting the NI vs SI game at fullback? That should tell us about the AB coaches preferences. I would think JB and DMac would be the favourites. BB needs to play 1st 5 in that game so he has the responsibility of driving the team.



  • @Stargazer said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Crucial Basically, the contenders for the wing spots are Bridge, Telea, Clarke, and Reece. Then there are wing/midfielders in R Ioane and Ennor, and a wing/fullback in Jordan

    It will depend on the number of players they want to select from this group, but I think Bridge, Rieko and Reece are near certainties to be picked. I don't think they'll drop Bridge for either Telea or Clarke.

    Telea is no where near an all Blacks spot, he's a highlight reel, sure, but nowhere near mature enough as as player and in his positioning, esp on defence.

    But there are going to be a lot of good backs out of the ABs, but that's the norm for NZ.

    Locks, props, not so much



  • Telea is no where near an all Blacks spot, he's a highlight reel, sure, but nowhere near mature enough as as player and in his positioning, esp on defence.

    @Machpants sounds like the same things Reece is guilty of.



  • @Yeetyaah I'm not disagreeing with that either! But he's already in, and further down the experience track than T



  • @Nepia said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Stargazer said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Crucial Basically, the contenders for the wing spots are Bridge, Telea, Clarke, and Reece. Then there are wing/midfielders in R Ioane and Ennor, and a wing/fullback in Jordan

    It will depend on the number of players they want to select from this group, but I think Bridge, Rieko and Reece are near certainties to be picked. I don't think they'll drop Bridge for either Telea or Clarke.

    I think Bridge needs to prove he’s up to test rugby In tests. He’s always been class at Super level, but after a decent start to his test career he was pretty average as the season went on. I’d rather he be kept than Reece, but, if we want an awesome attacking wing who has some defensive frailties I’d rather Telea than Reece. Despite his parentage at least Telea is committed to NZ.

    Bridge's problem is that his key selling points are being "solid" and capable of running reasonably fast in a straight line. Now, I'm not saying that these aren't valuable attributes, but they just don't cut it at test level. There generally has to be something more on offer.

    Now, I would actually be content enough to have him in the team, based upon available options, if he played right wing. Unfortunately, he plays on the left, where two of NZ rugby's more exciting ball-runners in Clarke and Ioane also play. Picking Bridge ahead of those two is almost as bad as picking Ralph ahead of Lomu.



  • @Snowy said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @booboo said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Bones @Chris @Siam
    I've not mentioned versing or apostrophes for months

    Everybody knows that you are watching.

    Would never have guessed



  • @Chris-B said in Crusaders v Blues:

    Bearing in mind the results of that player poll about the best wing in NZ, and that most of the people being touted as the potential AB wings were playing in this game - you'd have to say that the somewhat-maligned George Bridge answered his critics.

    If this was an old-school AB trial, I'd pick Bridge and Ioane as the two wings (ignoring considerations of who plays left and right).

    I can’t see the AB selectors dropping Bridge even though i would like to see others selected before him.

    As a counter point to the broadly held view that he was “excellent” in this game. It is worth noting that he was the one who had a bad first up tackle miss on Telea which lead to him beating Havili and Bridge having to chase him back to make the tackle the commentators were raving about.

    His kick chasing efforts were also greatly aided by Telea shitting the bed in that regard.

    Nice pass back inside for the Drummond try though.
    But Ioane would have scored that himself...........



  • @pukunui you make him sound like Caleb Ralph....



  • @junior

    I think this is a good point, he doesn’t have or hasn’t shown a lot of versatility. As a fullback/wing, I think he should be able to go 11/14/15 and if he can’t he’s not quite good enough to hold 11.

    Personally, I’d pick Rieko and Clarke because Clarke is very very good under the high ball and has so much scope to be a real weapon. However, it’s probably a year too soon so the selectors will have some choices to make, and Reece is playing very well.

    I don’t like him in the team, but he’s been very good the couple of games so it’s hard to see him being dropped.

    There is also Jordan. Plus Jordie is playing well.

    On form, the player to leave out at 15 is Dmac; we’ll see whether Foster pulls the chain or not.

    For Havili, I think last week showed he’s much better defending in traffic. He’s a very good player who is clearly international standard, but I don’t see a place him.



  • @gt12 said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @junior

    I think this is a good point, he doesn’t have or hasn’t shown a lot of versatility. As a fullback/wing, I think he should be able to go 11/14/15 and if he can’t he’s not quite good enough to hold 11.

    Personally, I’d pick Rieko and Clarke because Clarke is very very good under the high ball and has so much scope to be a real weapon. However, it’s probably a year too soon so the selectors will have some choices to make, and Reece is playing very well.

    I don’t like him in the team, but he’s been very good the couple of games so it’s hard to see him being dropped.

    There is also Jordan. Plus Jordie is playing well.

    On form, the player to leave out at 15 is Dmac; we’ll see whether Foster pulls the chain or not.

    For Havili, I think last week showed he’s much better defending in traffic. He’s a very good player who is clearly international standard, but I don’t see a place him.

    If Bridge has plans on a serious long-term future in black, then he has to adapt and become more like Ben Smith - the wing / fullback - than Caleb Ralph - the carthorse. There are too many good back three players that offer more of an attacking threat and are more in-line with our recent selections in that part of the field. He therefore has to add that "second fullback" string to his bow.



  • @junior said in Crusaders v Blues:

    BridgeHowlett's problem is that his key selling points are being "solid" and capable of running reasonably fast in a straight line. Now, I'm not saying that these aren't valuable attributes, but they just don't cut it at test level. There generally has to be something more on offer.



  • @Bones said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @junior said in Crusaders v Blues:

    BridgeHowlett's problem is that his key selling points are being "solid" and capable of running reasonably fast in a straight line. Now, I'm not saying that these aren't valuable attributes, but they just don't cut it at test level. There generally has to be something more on offer.

    Bridge is nowhere near Howlett in terms of either ability or pace. Howlett also had the ability to play fullback, so thanks for proving my point.



  • @junior actually yeah something I didn't warm to seeing on Saturday....Telea didn't appear to have a great top end eh.



  • @junior said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @Bones said in Crusaders v Blues:

    @junior said in Crusaders v Blues:

    BridgeHowlett's problem is that his key selling points are being "solid" and capable of running reasonably fast in a straight line. Now, I'm not saying that these aren't valuable attributes, but they just don't cut it at test level. There generally has to be something more on offer.

    Bridge is nowhere near Howlett in terms of either ability or pace. Howlett also had the ability to play fullback, so thanks for proving my point.

    Bridge has played fullback so that’s covered.



  • I suspect and I might be wrong ,

    if they were picking a test side to play right now , they might revert back to Reiko at 11,

    Even though he is playing 13, he seems to be over whatever it was that was troubling him last year , and he was the best 11 in the world before that slump



  • @kiwiinmelb said in Crusaders v Blues:

    I suspect and I might be wrong ,

    if they were picking a test side to play right now , they might revert back to Reiko at 11,

    Even though he is playing 13, he seems to be over whatever it was that was troubling him last year , and he was the best 11 in the world before that slump

    Might?



  • @pukunui what a complete and utter load of crap🙄


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