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Team for first test vs New Zealand 
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Post Team for first test vs New Zealand
I am a bit surprised that the whole British press has seemed to pick the team for the first test based on the team that beat the Maoris today. Sure it was a convincing win but lets not kid ourselves - the Maori team were awful today, especially their pack. That Lions pack is not very mobile and how many teams have stupidly believed that they can simply try to overpower the All Blacks pack? At best you get an edge. Below I am looking at things from a purely Welsh perspective.

All of a sudden George is a shoe in over Owens? Give me a break. George has been solid/consistent but I don't see quite what he has supposed to have done to be a shoe in for the first test and I would assume experience counts for such a big game. A 50:50 decision in my opinion.

Kruis good but not the superman the press seem to be claiming him to be. On form he and his Saracens partner deserve to edge Wyn Jones (who has been no more than solid) but again lets reflect on how poor that Maoris pack was today!

Back row - this is what is concerning me. We need an out and out 7. O'Brien is a 6 and a half. You need someone quick to the breakdown to compete with New Zealand - you can't just pick a back row that just carries. O'Mahony and O'Brien were good but not incredible and were up against a non existent back row today. If Warburton is fit then he has to play for me. I don't understand why the entire press sees them both as shoe ins.

Watson and Daily shoe ins. Now I thought Watson would make the test team but he and Daily have not done much have they? North has been poor and Liam Williams has had his moments but has not set the world alight. Nowell has had a nightmare. Wing is a big concern for us but again what have Watson and Daily done and if they have not done a great deal in an offensive sense then defensively I assume the Welsh boys would have an edge. I am merely arguing none of them are clear picks for the first team and arguably none of them deserve a Lions shirt next week but we have no choice unfortunately.

The above is purely a Welsh perspective. The backrow concerns me the most - we need balance.


Sun Jun 18, 2017 12:41 am
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
Well done guys
It has become obvious that the starting team is very good, mid week games now not so much interest, as nz teams are beating the dirt trackers.
JD, Te'o and your forward pack have really impressed. Rush and pressure defense great. They will have some belief. Good luck for the weekend.

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Sun Jun 18, 2017 1:36 am
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
Forrealz wrote:
Well done guys
It has become obvious that the starting team is very good, mid week games now not so much interest, as nz teams are beating the dirt trackers.
JD, Te'o and your forward pack have really impressed. Rush and pressure defense great. They will have some belief. Good luck for the weekend.


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Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:24 am
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
I really enjoy seeing a contrast of styles. SA used to give us that challenge. This weekend should be very interesting.


Sun Jun 18, 2017 7:03 am
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
15. Halfpenny
14. Watson
13. Davies
12. Teo
11. North
10. Farell
09. Murray
08. Faletai
07. Warburton
06. O Mahony
05. Kruis
04. Imoje
03. Furlong
02. George
01. Vuinipla

This is my take, i think Owens makes such a dent on 60 mins it goes against him starting at times. Wyn Jones unlucky but Sarries pair different level, I think Gats will sticl with Warburton


Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:11 am
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
daidimview wrote:
15. Halfpenny
14. Watson
13. Davies
12. Teo
11. North
10. Farell
09. Murray
08. Faletai
07. Warburton
06. O Mahony
05. Kruis
04. Imoje
03. Furlong
02. George
01. Vuinipla

This is my take, i think Owens makes such a dent on 60 mins it goes against him starting at times. Wyn Jones unlucky but Sarries pair different level, I think Gats will sticl with Warburton


Oh, and Morth is shite but in by default as no one else stepped up


Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:13 am
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
What i believe woukd give us the best chance,

15: Watson
14: Williams
13: JJ
12: Te'o
11: Daly
10: Farrell
9: Murray
8: Falateau
7: SOB
6: O'Mahoney
5: Kruis
4: Itoje
3: Vunipola
2: George
1: Furlong.

16: Owens
17: McGrath
18: Sinclair
19: Lawes
20: Tuperic
21: Webb
22: Sexton
23: JD


Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:53 am
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
Can't see the team being that much different than against Maori.

Key decisions are:
Itoje or AWJ
Sexton or Farrell
SOB or warburton
A back three slot: if someone has an outstanding game could force their way in

So some interesting calls ahead


Sun Jun 18, 2017 9:57 am
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
AWJ selected for Chiefs game ...see thread 'teamfor chiefs' other selections there give a good clue too

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Sun Jun 18, 2017 10:04 am
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
Wyn Jones is a fair call. He arguably is not in the top 4/5 locks in Britain and Ireland right now so should be happy with bench duty on Saturday.

Its all down to O'Brien versus Warburton. O'Brien is a much better bench option as he can cover 6,7 or 8. As I said previously I do think we need an out and out #7 versus New Zealand though and if he is fit I would therefore start with Warburton.

Shame about Stander. I would like him to be on the bench on Saturday but looks like O'Mahony has timed things well. To be fair then while Stander and O'Brien can be solid at #6, O'Mahoney is the only genuine 6 in the party simply because he focuses on doing the basics well and the unseen, unglamuorous work of the #6, where as the other two have a natural tendency to look more for the open spaces / play looser I guess.

George North - please wake up and realise a Lions tour is a unique event to be grasped with both hands. We need a winger to grasp the opportunity and hopefully you can bring your power game and Watson can bring his speed and step forward to more devastating effect. If those two do not step up then there is only one outcome.


Sun Jun 18, 2017 12:25 pm
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
15. Halfers
14. Sanjay
13. Foxy
12. Te'o
11. North
10. Farrell (please god be fit)
9. Murray

1. Mako
2. George
3. Furlong
4. AWJ
5. Kruis
6. Warburton
7. So'B
8. Faletau

Bring Itoje on for Alun-Wyn between 50 and 60 mins and he will have a huge impact in the last 20/30 minutes.

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Sun Jun 18, 2017 12:34 pm
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
dhook wrote:
Wyn Jones is a fair call. He arguably is not in the top 4/5 locks in Britain and Ireland right now so should be happy with bench duty on Saturday.

Its all down to O'Brien versus Warburton. O'Brien is a much better bench option as he can cover 6,7 or 8. As I said previously I do think we need an out and out #7 versus New Zealand though and if he is fit I would therefore start with Warburton.

Shame about Stander. I would like him to be on the bench on Saturday but looks like O'Mahony has timed things well. To be fair then while Stander and O'Brien can be solid at #6, O'Mahoney is the only genuine 6 in the party simply because he focuses on doing the basics well and the unseen, unglamuorous work of the #6, where as the other two have a natural tendency to look more for the open spaces / play looser I guess.

George North - please wake up and realise a Lions tour is a unique event to be grasped with both hands. We need a winger to grasp the opportunity and hopefully you can bring your power game and Watson can bring his speed and step forward to more devastating effect. If those two do not step up then there is only one outcome.


His surname isn't Wyn Jones. His first name is Alun-Wyn, so his surname is therefore Jones.

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Sun Jun 18, 2017 12:35 pm
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
Itoje - the only argument for not selecting him to start is that he can be very indisciplined at times. Great to be enthusiastic but we do not want to give the All Blacks a head start as a result of some daft penalties. Other than that he is clearly the more effective player right now


Sun Jun 18, 2017 12:48 pm
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
I think daidimview has got it spot on.

It wouldn't be my team but it's what I think will be picked.
And will it be good enough?
No


Sun Jun 18, 2017 2:07 pm
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Post Re: Team for first test vs New Zealand
Tony Panties wrote:
AWJ selected for Chiefs game ...see thread 'teamfor chiefs' other selections there give a good clue too


Bench, not team, i think he will get splinters on the weekend to


Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:24 pm
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