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Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test 
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Post Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/44349024
Thank goodness for Tomas Francis. We looked woefully weak up front in the second half against the Boks.

Wales squad

Forwards: Rob Evans (Scarlets) (25 Caps), Wyn Jones (Scarlets) (9 Caps), Nicky Smith (Ospreys) (19 Caps), Elliot Dee (Dragons) (8 Caps), Ryan Elias (Scarlets) (3 Caps), Rhodri Jones (Ospreys) (17 Caps), Samson Lee (Scarlets) (38 Caps), Dillon Lewis (Cardiff Blues) (3 Caps), Tomos Francis (Exeter) (31 caps), Adam Beard (Ospreys) (2 Caps), Bradley Davies (Ospreys) (63 Caps), Seb Davies (Cardiff Blues) (5 Caps), Aaron Wainwright (Dragons) (*uncapped), Cory Hill (Dragons) (16 Caps) (Co-Captain), James Davies (Scarlets) (1 Cap), Ellis Jenkins (Cardiff Blues) (7 Caps) (Co-Captain), Ross Moriarty (Gloucester) (21 Caps).

Backs: Aled Davies (Scarlets) (9 Caps), Gareth Davies (Scarlets) (32 Caps), Tomos Williams (Cardiff Blues) (1 cap), Gareth Anscombe (Cardiff Blues) (16 Caps), Rhys Patchell (Scarlets) (8 Caps), Hadleigh Parkes (Scarlets) (7 Caps), Owen Watkin (Ospreys) (5 Caps), Scott Williams (Scarlets) (55 Caps), Josh Adams (Worcester) (2 caps), Hallam Amos (Dragons) (16 Caps), Steff Evans (Scarlets) (10 Caps), George North (Ospreys) (74 Caps), Tom Prydie (Scarlets) (6 Caps).


Sun Jun 03, 2018 8:19 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
BigRed wrote:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/44349024
Thank goodness for Tomas Francis. We looked woefully weak up front in the second half against the Boks.

Wales squad

Forwards: Rob Evans (Scarlets) (25 Caps), Wyn Jones (Scarlets) (9 Caps), Nicky Smith (Ospreys) (19 Caps), Elliot Dee (Dragons) (8 Caps), Ryan Elias (Scarlets) (3 Caps), Rhodri Jones (Ospreys) (17 Caps), Samson Lee (Scarlets) (38 Caps), Dillon Lewis (Cardiff Blues) (3 Caps), Tomos Francis (Exeter) (31 caps), Adam Beard (Ospreys) (2 Caps), Bradley Davies (Ospreys) (63 Caps), Seb Davies (Cardiff Blues) (5 Caps), Aaron Wainwright (Dragons) (*uncapped), Cory Hill (Dragons) (16 Caps) (Co-Captain), James Davies (Scarlets) (1 Cap), Ellis Jenkins (Cardiff Blues) (7 Caps) (Co-Captain), Ross Moriarty (Gloucester) (21 Caps).

Backs: Aled Davies (Scarlets) (9 Caps), Gareth Davies (Scarlets) (32 Caps), Tomos Williams (Cardiff Blues) (1 cap), Gareth Anscombe (Cardiff Blues) (16 Caps), Rhys Patchell (Scarlets) (8 Caps), Hadleigh Parkes (Scarlets) (7 Caps), Owen Watkin (Ospreys) (5 Caps), Scott Williams (Scarlets) (55 Caps), Josh Adams (Worcester) (2 caps), Hallam Amos (Dragons) (16 Caps), Steff Evans (Scarlets) (10 Caps), George North (Ospreys) (74 Caps), Tom Prydie (Scarlets) (6 Caps).


What Saturday taught us (amongst other things) is that we have just 4 genuine international quality props - Rob Evans, Wyn Jones, Lee & Francis.

Dillon Lewis and Leon Brown are both young and could I think eventually make the grade but both look to be at least a year or two off that standard right now.
Gats continuing to use Rhodri Jones on the TH now looks to be purely an ego thing as it's clear to everyone else that he'll never make it on that side of the scrum, with Saturday just serviing to confirm that. The lad needs to be given a run at LH at regional level and who knows, he might then one day come in for consideration at that position at int level.
Nicky Smith could maybe be a bench option for RWC but if he wants to be more than that then he needs to significantly improve his scrumaging.

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Mon Jun 04, 2018 1:32 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
Agreed and I would add that whilst Rob Evans and Wyn Jones are excellent, neither Lee nor Francis are as good as the first choice tightheads of almost any other Tier 1 international side. Lewis and Brown are probably the future but props often don't come good till their mid twenties, so I'd like to see some alternatives looked at who can be a better 3rd choice than Rhodri Jones or Scott Andrews. Lloyd Fairbrother at the dragons looked rubbish before this season but has had a really good year (in a dragons side that was getting pasted); he is only 26 so should still improve further (and better coaching at the Dragons than in the past won't do any harm). Also I think Ma'afu Fia at the Ospreys will become Welsh qualified some time this season, though I can see the principled case for not picking such players unless they're really outstanding (re: Parkes) and Fia is only average.


Mon Jun 04, 2018 2:33 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
I honestly don’t think fairbrother had a good year

The third best welsh tight head is Scott Andrews which says it all really


Mon Jun 04, 2018 4:46 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
Prop is a real area of concern. Loose head is probably ok as Rob is decent, Wyn a decent bench option (but not a suitable starter). Gethin is still plying his trade and wouldn't let anyone down and Nicky Smith is ok. The trouble is that one of those props but scrummaging fear into opposition tight heads.

Tight head is a real problem position. Samson edges out Francis for me who still has mobility issues around the park. After that the cupboard is bare. Leon Brown and Dillion Lewis are not ready and should be considered for the next WC cycle. If you think back to the 2015 WC and the mess we got into with rushing Samson back from his injury (i think he is still suffering from that) and pulling in Francis from nowhere then in a 4 year cycle we haven't come close to solving that position.

I really think the WRU need to be exploring all possible options of Welsh qualified props who could quickly join our ranks and make a difference as it is a huge problem position. The other thing they should look to do is hire a top class scrum coach and send him round the regions on consultancy as we have seen with Shaun Edwards getting him to work with the props we have available to sort out their scrum. If Gats didn't have personal issues with Adam Jones then he may have been a good option


Tue Jun 05, 2018 11:16 am
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
Part of the problem was the regions all relying on NWQ tightheads in recent years. Lee is the only Welsh Qualified TH prop who has been indisputed first choice for his region since Adam Jones left Welsh Rugby, and his deputy at the Scarlets is Krueger. At the Ospreys you've had Arhip and Fia (and they've now recruited another Saffer in Tom Botha), whilst the Blues had Filise and the Dragons favoured Brok Harris (though I think the latter is now actually eligible for Wales too). This is chicken-and-egg though to an extent as the players haven't been there to be picked ahead.

I agree that Lewis and Brown are not ready, though hope they will continue to be picked by their regions as they won't ever be ready if they don't get game time. This is why I think that we should look at Fairbrother and Fia as, whilst accepting they are probably not really international quality prop they do at least know how to scrummage better than the likes of Rhodri Jones, Aaron Jarvis or Scott Andrews. There are plenty of examples of players who have improved simply from being picked in international squads and stepping up to the better environment and god knows Jarvis, Jones and Andrews have had more than enough opportunity.


Tue Jun 05, 2018 12:39 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
Nicholas Smith should convert to Tight Head.
He is built like a TH and is not that great in the loose.
He could very well become the second Lee.
As a loosehead, he is way down the pecking order although much improved this year.


Tue Jun 05, 2018 2:01 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
BigRed wrote:
Nicholas Smith should convert to Tight Head.
He is built like a TH and is not that great in the loose.
He could very well become the second Lee.
As a loosehead, he is way down the pecking order although much improved this year.




Disagree with every point. Hes about 25 can you point to any other successful conversions from TH to LH at the top level ?

I think he is built like a mobile prop and he is, he is not a potent force at LH in international rugby but he is comfortable at that level in my view and although he career has stuttered, he could still push for the starting LH spot, Rob Evans has pushed ahead but doubts exist about certain aspects of Evans's game he as the enthusiasm but still lacks a bit of quality.

No he won't become the second Lee, Lee is a top class scrummaging TH, highly specialized scrummager, who lacks a little around the field. He could never reach Lee standard of scrummaging converting this late and he is far more mobile.

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Tue Jun 05, 2018 4:17 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
BigRed wrote:
Nicholas Smith should convert to Tight Head.
He is built like a TH and is not that great in the loose.
He could very well become the second Lee.
As a loosehead, he is way down the pecking order although much improved this year.



but then we risk another Rhodri Jones situation. He was a very talented loosehead who has had years of his career ruined by an attempted conversion to tighthead, he will never get back his young 20's when he should have been learning his trade as a loosehead.

I really think we need to be scowering the world for a Welsh Qualified tighthead


Tue Jun 05, 2018 4:55 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
Haruki wrote:
BigRed wrote:
Nicholas Smith should convert to Tight Head.
He is built like a TH and is not that great in the loose.
He could very well become the second Lee.
As a loosehead, he is way down the pecking order although much improved this year.



but then we risk another Rhodri Jones situation. He was a very talented loosehead who has had years of his career ruined by an attempted conversion to tighthead, he will never get back his young 20's when he should have been learning his trade as a loosehead.

I really think we need to be scowering the world for a Welsh Qualified tighthead


Do you think we are not scouring the world? I would assume that any t8ght head better than the ones we have will likely either be playing international rugby or be close to it.


Tue Jun 05, 2018 5:25 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
Wales best chance is that Evans and Lee find another gear. At the moment they are close but not quite... can they lay a foundation against top sides like England, Ireland or domestically Leinster

Samson Lee is unbelievably only still 25, And Evans 26... they have good experience at this stage but can they take that front five battle by the scruff of it’s neck

I’m not convinced by many of the other names mentioned. Smith has some quality but sadly he may just be a bit small. As for him playing TH... farcical idea


Tue Jun 05, 2018 5:52 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
AverageBBCjournalist wrote:
Wales best chance is that Evans and Lee find another gear. At the moment they are close but not quite... can they lay a foundation against top sides like England, Ireland or domestically Leinster

Samson Lee is unbelievably only still 25, And Evans 26... they have good experience at this stage but can they take that front five battle by the scruff of it’s neck

I’m not convinced by many of the other names mentioned. Smith has some quality but sadly he may just be a bit small. As for him playing TH... farcical idea



I'd say Lee is a top quality scrummaging international TH and a decent "player. Adam Jones could have been classed similarly but probably played in a better team.

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“None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free.”
"The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for


Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:47 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
Blindside wrote:
AverageBBCjournalist wrote:
Wales best chance is that Evans and Lee find another gear. At the moment they are close but not quite... can they lay a foundation against top sides like England, Ireland or domestically Leinster

Samson Lee is unbelievably only still 25, And Evans 26... they have good experience at this stage but can they take that front five battle by the scruff of it’s neck

I’m not convinced by many of the other names mentioned. Smith has some quality but sadly he may just be a bit small. As for him playing TH... farcical idea



I'd say Lee is a top quality scrummaging international TH and a decent "player. Adam Jones could have been classed similarly but probably played in a better team.


Do you think he could win a few more pens in the scrum at international level - or game changed now?

I just wondered as Jones for all his faults did draw a lot of pens which halfpenny booted over... which allowed wales to build into some games


Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:09 am
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
We did scour the world for a Welsh qualified TH and found Tomas Francis, who only qualifies via his grandmother. I doubt he gave any thought to playing for Wales before the selectors came knocking, and we're lucky in a way that England have much better TH options as I doubt Francis would have wanted to play for us if he'd had any real chance of playing for England. I'm sure that if there were any others out there already qualified we'd have capped them already, so the only other option is to try and naturalise a NWQ player (which means either Fia, or waiting at least three years, by which time you would hope Brown and/or Lewis and/or someone else would have developed).

Nicky Smith isn't a great scrummager on the loosehead so would hardly be likely to be better out of position.


Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:16 pm
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Post Re: Wales recall Josh Adams and Tomas Francis for Argentina Test
AverageBBCjournalist wrote:
Blindside wrote:
AverageBBCjournalist wrote:
Wales best chance is that Evans and Lee find another gear. At the moment they are close but not quite... can they lay a foundation against top sides like England, Ireland or domestically Leinster

Samson Lee is unbelievably only still 25, And Evans 26... they have good experience at this stage but can they take that front five battle by the scruff of it’s neck

I’m not convinced by many of the other names mentioned. Smith has some quality but sadly he may just be a bit small. As for him playing TH... farcical idea



I'd say Lee is a top quality scrummaging international TH and a decent "player. Adam Jones could have been classed similarly but probably played in a better team.


Do you think he could win a few more pens in the scrum at international level - or game changed now?

I just wondered as Jones for all his faults did draw a lot of pens which halfpenny booted over... which allowed wales to build into some games



Difficult to say, he always seems to be at an optimum angle to anchor the Welsh scrum,its textbook from what i understand of it. Even when the Welsh scrum goes back he always seems the last to lose form. Perhaps i could get more penalties but the unit as a whole needs to scrummage well. Francis is also a decent scrummager but doesn't have the technique of Lee IMO and is a less "classic" more a brute strength guy.

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“None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free.”
"The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for


Wed Jun 06, 2018 1:55 pm
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