2003 vs 2019 – What’s you combined “best” team?

Put aside the “it’s a different game these days” thoughts. Head to Head, who would you pick?

15. Lewsey vs Daly – Lewsey, the fella was hard running with a ferocious tackle and ko’d Cipriani.
14. Robinson vs Watson – really tough, would’ve gone for Robinson but Watson’s defence wins it for me.
13. Greenwood v Tuilagi – Tuilagi, just and only just
12. Tindall v Fazza – Fazza, man’s a monster!
11. Cohen v May – easy one, May. Always thought Cohen was over-rated
10. Wilko v Ford – easy, Wilko. Hard on Ford but Wilko was England’s best ever
9. Dawson v BKB – Dawson but only just
8. Dayglo v Billy – Dayglo for me, Billy still owes a big game
7. Back v Undercurry – bottle out, can’t call this one
6. Hill v Undecurry – bottle out 2.0 – the Undercurry combo has been sensational, Hilly was epic
5. Kay v Lawes – Lawes, Kay nearly cost us the final
4. Johnno v Maro – want to say Johnno but bottle out 3.0, Maro’s that good!
3. Vickery v Sinckler – Sinckler offers more than even the Raging Bull
2. Thompson v George – close but George edges it
1. Woodman v Mako – Mako can’t be dropped from any England team, hard on Woodman but is what it is

Your thoughts???

RWC Final Week – Monday

Still cannot quite believe what happened on Saturday morning.
The reaction since from the ABs has been classy and full respect to them for that.
The only salty Kiwi is Gatland, it would appear. Whilst I understand his frustration, he has had an injury dogged run up and tournament, I still think it’s petty and he filled deserved Eddie’s retort, ‘Give my regards to Warren, tell him to enjoy the 3rd/4th play off”.

Ben Spencer has arrived, about 4 weeks too late for some of us, but what a whirlwind experience this will be for him!

He knows the systems, lineout calls etc and he’s been around in enough camps to be able to slot in. He has 5 days to get over the jet lag, not long but adrenaline will see him right.

It would appear Heinz is the only concern, if Eddie is to be believed. He says May is in better shape than before the last game and they’ve had to slow him down in the walk throughs. A couple have knocks but nothing serious so looks like we’ll have a full deck for the starting XV, with only Spencer being injury cover.

Thursday chat, mostly about selection….

So rumours suggest Kruis and Ford to return for England at the expense of Lawes and Slade. NZ to start Barrett at 6, move Savea to 7 and Cane to the bench in order to attempt to repeat the second half line-out carnage they inflicted on England in the Autumn. We shall find out soon enough…

In time honoured fashion it seems that the knives are already out for St Joe of Ireland with articles from Necewa and Trimble criticising the rigidity and conservativeness of his coaching.

Adam Beard still nowhere to be seen and Lane has been called up not because he covers wing and centre but apparently  because he’s a bit of a laugh.

confirmed teams

England: Daly; Watson, Tuilagi, Farrell (capt), May; Ford, Youngs; M Vunipola, George, Sinckler, Itoje, Lawes, Curry, Underhill, B Vunipola.

Replacements: Cowan-Dickie, Marler, Cole, Kruis, Wilson, Heinz, Slade, Joseph

New Zealand: Beauden Barrett; Sevu Reece, Jack Goodhue, Anton Lienert-Brown, George Bridge; Richie Mo’unga, Aaron Smith; Joe Moody, Codie Taylor, Nepo Laulala, Brodie Retallick, Sam Whitelock, Scott Barrett, Ardie Savea, Kieran Read (capt).

Replacements: Dane Coles, Ofa Tuungafasi, Angus Ta’avao, Patrick Tuipulotu, Sam Cane, TJ Perenara, Sonny Bill Williams, Jordie Barrett.