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The next 4 games
Crutch (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 10:28
The next batch of games are interesting in that we have a decent chance of winning or losing any of them (I know in this tightest of seasons that probably applies to most games). However, usually there are some home bankers you’re pretty confident about, and some away games that you only hope for a losing bonus.

Saints have been very patchy and we won there last year, but at times have looked much better than last season. Wasps away you normally wouldn’t be confident about, but they’re on a poor run of form. Exeter are clearly class but we’re at home and last year only went down to the late penalty call. Leicester at home should be winnable but last year was probably our poorest home performance. However they’ve improved lately.

We only got one win from these fixtures last year so hoping for improvement year on year, but what do we think would realistically be the points target from these games?

 
Re: The next 4 games
thekeg (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 11:14
Completely agree, very much a season defining set of games. Our run in after that is pretty favourable.

One other factor here is that a few of them are during 6N which makes them even less predictable.

I think we need to be aiming for 10 - 14 points from the 4 games. If we do that then top 6 looks very achievable, perhaps sneak into 4th.

 
Re: The next 4 games
Olyy (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 11:30
What's the USA eagles schedule like during the 6N?

Having AJ back would definitely improve our chances, especially as I imagine Sam James will be filling in at 15 for Ashton so couldn't cover 10 (though my personal preference would be a Rohan/James midfield and JOC moving back to 15)

 
Re: The next 4 games
MikeGC (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 11:44
Eagles schedule

[www.usarugby.org]

 
Re: The next 4 games
Crutch (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 11:49
Dimes has said that they’ve agreed with the US that AJ returns after this weekend, so he’ll have had 2 games with them to help with match fitness, and then he’s available for us for all 4 league fixtures.

 
Re: The next 4 games
Olyy (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 12:04
Quote:
Crutch
Dimes has said that they’ve agreed with the US that AJ returns after this weekend, so he’ll have had 2 games with them to help with match fitness, and then he’s available for us for all 4 league fixtures.

Excellent news

 
Re: The next 4 games
StalyShark (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 12:31
9. Faf
10. AJ
11. Byron
12. RJVR
13. S James
14. Solomona
15. JOC

21. Cliff
22. L James
23. Odogwu

Pack picks itself with Ben playing 7, Evans to 4 and Beaumont at 8.

 
Re: The next 4 games
thekeg (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 14:53
Is O’Connor fit? Strong back line if he is.....

Who will be bench back rower if we are lining up with curry Ross Beaumont? Nield seems most obvious option, thought he did well last week

 
Re: The next 4 games
clutch (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 17:40
Makes the most sense I guess. Back row will be playing long minutes.

 
Re: The next 4 games
Crutch (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 17:54
Agreed was thinking with Strauss and Curry away most likely see Josh at 8.

Are any internationals able to return next week or through the 6 nations at all?

If not, Laws and Biggar are big misses for Saints. We always struggle with Robson so good he’s with England, along with Hughes and Daly. Exeter missing Moon, LC-D, Slade, and Leicester Cole, Youngs, Ford and Tuilagi, so overall I think we’re at advantage.

 
Re: The next 4 games
Olyy (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 18:35
Lawes won't be released by England after playing the last two weekends,
Unsure on Biggar, not sure whether it's Wales' call whether he goes back to his club or not. I imagine they'd keep him in training if they can.

 
Re: The next 4 games
Barend (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 18:49
Sam Moore?

 
Re: The next 4 games
Crutch (IP Logged)
10 February, 2019 19:37
On the bench perhaps, but too important a game for him to start IMO.

Bryn and Phillips in 2nd row with Josh B to 8. Not ideal but I think it’s the best combination with Tom and Strauss missing.

I think 2 wins from the 4 would be enough to keep our momentum going, so about the 10 Pts mark - but have no idea which games! Ideally Leicester I suppose to then follow on the the remaining games that are all more winnable.

 
Re: The next 4 games
Yareet (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 07:27
Wouldn’t Prem Rugby fine any club who agreed to rest their non-English 6N players? Thought they fined Saints for North.

On that basis, next weekend we should have Strauss but Saints will have Biggar.

 
Re: The next 4 games
Grumpy Old Shark (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 09:35
Quote:
StalyShark
9. Faf
10. AJ
11. Byron
12. RJVR
13. S James
14. Solomona
15. JOC

21. Cliff
22. L James
23. Odogwu

Pack picks itself with Ben playing 7, Evans to 4 and Beaumont at 8.

Not sure that McGuigan is fit??

also, I suspect that Ashton might be released back for some game time

 
Re: The next 4 games
StalyShark (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 09:57
According to his twitter he says he is.

Quote:
Grumpy Old Shark
Quote:
StalyShark
9. Faf
10. AJ
11. Byron
12. RJVR
13. S James
14. Solomona
15. JOC

21. Cliff
22. L James
23. Odogwu

Pack picks itself with Ben playing 7, Evans to 4 and Beaumont at 8.

Not sure that McGuigan is fit??

also, I suspect that Ashton might be released back for some game time

 
Re: The next 4 games
45jumper (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 10:26
IMO, I'd pick...

JOC, Solomona, James, Rohan, McGuigan, AJ, Faf
Harrison, Webber, John, Evans, Phillips, Ross, Curry, Beaumont

Reps - Langdon, Bristow, Jones, Ostrikov, Neild/Moore, Cliff, Wilkinson/L James, Reed/Odogwu

Tough call on whether to start Rohan or Luke James, there's certainly an argument that Rohan would be a beast of an impact player to bring on. I'd also play JOC at 15, James has been brilliant at 13 and needs to stay there.

 
Re: The next 4 games
Olyy (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 11:16
Quote:
Yareet
Wouldn’t Prem Rugby fine any club who agreed to rest their non-English 6N players? Thought they fined Saints for North.
On that basis, next weekend we should have Strauss but Saints will have Biggar.

It was an out of window November international that saints got the fine for
I have a feeling it's on the discretion of the club with regards to rest weekends during the six nations.
They're technically within the window so the international sides don't have to release the players back to their clubs - however I think the club's will probably expect them. When I googled the North situation I came across an article about Saints disciplining North for him not turning up to training during a Six nations rest week, but the PRL weren't involved, it was an internal thing.

I imagine it might come down to whether Garland wants Biggar to start vs England, if he's benching or not involved at all then I suspect he'll be sent back to Saints

 
Re: The next 4 games
Surbiton Shark (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 11:41
Was discussing the 15 option with my lad. I would also stick JOC at 15, seems to be the best there. McGuigan seemed to struggle changing to 15 at the start of the season and Sam James although great under the high ball and kicks well can get exposed on those one on one tackles that the 15 normally has to deal with.

Other option at 15.............Look at playing Wilkinson there? - lots of other clubs with young 10 tend to start them at 15 initially so just a thought.

 
Re: The next 4 games
Pappje Shark (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 12:49
If he’s fit, I can’t see JOC playing 15 personally. He had such a good rapport with Rohan in the centres and with Sam J coming into the line that I’d expect us to revert to that. I’d see us lining up:

Harrison
Webber
WillGriff John
Ostrikov
Phillips
Ross
B Curry
Beaumont

Faf
AJ
Byron
Rohan
JOC
Solomona
Sam J

Assuming Andrei is around, I think he’ll start over Bryn. Benching I’d see:

Bristow
Langdon
Jones
Evans
Neild
Cliff
Luke J
Odogwu

However, it’s not beyond the realms that either Reed or Redpath might be recalled from U20 duty to sit on the bench.

I’ve no idea how these games will go. Our losing Ashton and Tom C can’t be understated, especially since our hot streak came with the du Preez brothers around for most of it and it’s been ages since AJ played for us and might have some ring rust relating to actual pitch time with our play book. Whilst we have Ben C, we don’t have the double impact of sending the second one on just when the opposition is getting knackered. I could see us winning all of them and losing all of them! (I don’t think we’ll do either of those, but I don’t feel confident enough to say that we *should* win any of them).

Question - given EJ is rotating his bench places, would we rather face Genge or Cole? I might say the latter personally. Either way, one of them absent plus Ford, May, Youngs and Tuilagi is no bad thing. Jonah Holmes too?

 
Re: The next 4 games
Yareet (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 14:32
Quote:
StalyShark
According to his twitter he says he is.
Quote:
Grumpy Old Shark
Quote:
StalyShark
9. Faf
10. AJ
11. Byron
12. RJVR
13. S James
14. Solomona
15. JOC

21. Cliff
22. L James
23. Odogwu

Pack picks itself with Ben playing 7, Evans to 4 and Beaumont at 8.

Not sure that McGuigan is fit??

also, I suspect that Ashton might be released back for some game time

About to say the same

[twitter.com]

 
Re: The next 4 games
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 19:58
Will be a close and interesting game on Saturday.

The battle of the scrum halves could decide who goes to the world cup in Japan. Faf holds it at the moment but Corbus is on form?
Dont worry that Dan Biggar is not playing James Grayson has easily filled his boots. Saints have scored 39 tries? in their last 4 games.

I think you will find that we play a completely different game from the last couple of season. Of course as always that will depend on if the team turns up!

Dont forget it is a 2pm KO



http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
Re: The next 4 games
Olyy (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 20:58
You really think one of Faf and Corbus won't go to the world cup?!

 
Re: The next 4 games
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
11 February, 2019 21:07
Nic Groom left Saints last year to try and get back in the SA team. He was on the verge when he was injured. He may be in contention along with last summers back up. not sure they would take 4 scrum halves?



http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
Re: The next 4 games
PoyntonShark (IP Logged)
12 February, 2019 03:55
If you play like the first 20 against Newcastle, then we should be able to do enough damage to be out of sight. If you play 80 like the last 60 against Newcastle then we are in for a treat, though hopefully our defence won't be so amenable. Grayson looks a decent find, hasn't Alex King got a son to come along and usurp him?



Unhappiness, where's when I was young
And we didn't give a damn
'Cause we were raised
To see life as a fun and take it if we can

 
Re: The next 4 games
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
12 February, 2019 08:50
You will see how much James Grayson looks like his dad. I plays a little like Dan Biggar after being in the same team.
See you all Saturday, I shall be on the 9.15 train from Manchester.(Sm128)



http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
Re: The next 4 games
Timperley Shark (IP Logged)
12 February, 2019 10:10
10.15 train for us.
Should be in the Thomas Beckett for 12.20

 
Re: The next 4 games
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
12 February, 2019 10:29
Keep a look at on Saturday for the trains. Last sat that 10.15 was cancelled due to "Damaged overhead cables". However all the other trains to Euston had left on time! They usually make the 10.35 stop at MKC but then you would have to catch a later train to Northampton.
Enjoy the TAB it will be quite full!(Sm128)



http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
Re: The next 4 games
Chris Hoddle (IP Logged)
12 February, 2019 16:50
Looks like Saints will have Dan Biggar available. Also Piers Francis and Tei Harrison back from injury.



http://chrishoddle.smugmug.com/photos/i-TsCHdzK/0/M/i-TsCHdzK-M.gif

 
Re: The next 4 games
Chris1850 (IP Logged)
12 February, 2019 19:23
According to Dimes, we only have Sam Moore and George Nott unavailable due to injury. No mention of JOC so presumably he is fit. Byron recovered and available. Ash and Tom not available with England. No mention made of Josh not being available though?

These aside, we should be pretty well at full strength albeit with a couple still only just recovered from injury. It will be a good test of where we are against an in-form Saints team

 
Re: The next 4 games
thekeg (IP Logged)
12 February, 2019 23:18
Sam Moore is injured again??!!

 
Re: The next 4 games
Pappje Shark (IP Logged)
15 February, 2019 12:08
Quote:
Pappje Shark
If he’s fit, I can’t see JOC playing 15 personally. He had such a good rapport with Rohan in the centres and with Sam J coming into the line that I’d expect us to revert to that. I’d see us lining up:
Harrison
Webber
WillGriff John
Ostrikov
Phillips
Ross
B Curry
Beaumont

Faf
AJ
Byron
Rohan
JOC
Solomona
Sam J

Assuming Andrei is around, I think he’ll start over Bryn. Benching I’d see:

Bristow
Langdon
Jones
Evans
Neild
Cliff
Luke J
Odogwu

However, it’s not beyond the realms that either Reed or Redpath might be recalled from U20 duty to sit on the bench

14/15. Close, but no cigar.


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