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Rob Baxter
VR1997 (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 08:49
R.B must be a happy man knowing the two Premiership fixtures against Sarries will be during the Autumn Internationals and Six nations .
With as many as 9 to 12 of our players on International duty during these period Chiefs have a massive advantage as they will be losing very few. We will also be playing Gloucester and Newcastle who will also be at full strength.

I also thought the idea of the Anglo Welsh Cup was to play these games during the Internationals to 'help' clubs yet the first game at the start of tournament during November and February doesn't coincide with Internationals but are used for Eddies get togethers therefore adding 2 more Premiership games during Internationals unnecessarily.

Why do Owners, C E O's, Directors of rugby put up with the amateurs who run this sport?

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Dolph42 (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 10:02
VR the simple answer is money. The RFU pay them for access to the players, Premiership rugby doesn't have to agree to it.

I'd suggest it's better for England and the clubs that Eddie uses one of the LV weekends when he trains with 33 players rather than the 23 or 26 he can retain before a match (he typically retains only the 23 from Tuesday evening onwards unless there is an injury concern for an away match)

Exeter have been smart in creating a squad with few current internationals but still able to be competitive in April/May - the same can't be said for Glaws and Newcastle. However, we're still the best team in England and Europe and that's largely because of our Test match players.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Brighty_Fez (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 12:51
i think the argument is that there are 8 international weekends and only 6 rounds in the Anglo Welsh leaving 2 weeks where we have to play prem rugby with a huge amount of the team missing.

maybe to support the players these could be recognised weeks off during the season to allow players to recover

 
Re: Rob Baxter
BarnetSarrie (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 13:17
We may not even have Loz back if you read the papers this morning. Didnt the organisers do exactly the same to us last year and put the most testing games in the international window?

With the injury crisis in the back row as well, seriously how are we actually going to field a team?

Do you know - I used to look forward to the internationals and get really excited about supporting England. Now I am hard pressed not to look on them as parasites. I know its never going to happen, but the selectors shouldnt be allowed to take two people in the same position from the same team. Then again - if Loz didnt get the chance to be picked, he would probably have left instead of renewing his contract. So by winning, we just cant win.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
VR1997 (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 13:55
Agree Barnet Sarrie I love watching England but I love my team more and through having an
outstanding academy we are and will be penalised year on year. No other club comes anywhere near us when it comes to producing England International players. Lets hope Eddie rests some of our players this coming fortnight. I understand he is taking up to 75 players on tour to South Africa in June for International and Saxons matches.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Wayoutwest (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 14:46
Oh course if we manage to win against chiefs then imagine how that will feel come the end of the season when our big guns are back...

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Innings (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 14:52
Don't confuse PRL with anything involving a business brain. They take the money but cannot see the consequences.



Innings

Points win matches: tries win hearts and minds.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Dolph42 (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 15:01
Quote:
Brighty_Fez
i think the argument is that there are 8 international weekends and only 6 rounds in the Anglo Welsh leaving 2 weeks where we have to play prem rugby with a huge amount of the team missing.
maybe to support the players these could be recognised weeks off during the season to allow players to recover

There may only be 8 international weekends, but they are also allowed 4 rest weekends before/during the AIs and 6Ns. The Anglo Welsh is already 6 weeks off for players - assuming clubs operate that way, Saracens method is to rest the established players and give match time to the fringe and Academy, seems fairly sensible to me.

We are then provided with an enhanced salary cap to account for additional squad members - the extra money isn't nearly enough and one of Nigel Wray's frustrations. The playoffs, as well as adding extra revenue, then add an element of fairness by allowing a club who have dropped points due to International call ups to win the AP (see 2014/15 season).

It's not a perfect system, but it's also not harmed our trophy cabinet to much recently.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
F-F-F-FEZ (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 15:06
At least we have Nick Isiekwe back (Sm128)

 
Re: Rob Baxter
ninjafez (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 15:09
would like to see a bit of a Isiekwe/Cuttmore pairing on friday, then brining on bil will for 20 minute recking session..



Ninjafez - supporting Sarries and cleaning their signs since 2006!

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Dolph42 (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 15:11
Quote:
F-F-F-FEZ
At least we have Nick Isiekwe back (Sm128)

As a Saracens fan shouldn't you be disappointed that Nick won't run out at a packed Twickenham to presumably fulfill a life long dream (and £22k isn't to be sniffed at), especially on an AW Cup weekend when he wouldn't play anyway.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
TonyTaff (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 16:06
Quote:
F-F-F-FEZ
At least we have Nick Isiekwe back (Sm128)

Can he play fly-half?



£630.67 (*) donated to the Saracens Foundation due to visits to the Sarries frontpage [www.rugbynetwork.net]

Please read and submit articles for publication. (*) As at October 31, 2016.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
The Bard (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 17:29
The fixture list is already contrived to give us the London double header and the Quins home match. So making sure you don't play the same team twice during international breaks is surely not beyond the wit of man?

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Seany_Boy0511 (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 17:50
Well, let's just go and beat them both times... I'm sure Leicester back in the day dealt with this when half their team was away with England, at the end of the day, we have players good enough to compete and win at any level, I for one am looking forward to it it's a true test of our strength in depth, so we have to prove we can get through it

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Highbury Saracen (IP Logged)
08 November, 2017 20:28
We always play Chiefs during 6N or AIís or sometimes both.......big advantage for them!
EJ please select more Exeter players! smiling smiley



Double Champions of Europe,we know who we are!! smiling smiley

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Poking With Sticks (IP Logged)
09 November, 2017 11:02
Quote:
Dolph42
Exeter have been smart in creating a squad with few current internationals but still able to be competitive in April/May

I don't think that's intentional. Simmonds and Armand are unlucky to miss out as is one of Maunder and Townsend at SH. LCD and Nowell are both injured and would probably have been in with a good shout. Other long-term injuries who might have played themselves into the squad had they not been out for months are Devoto, Hepburn and Ewers. Kvesic hasn't really had a chance to shine yet but may well feature for England in the coming years.

Baxter's on record as saying he wants more players in the England squad so I don't think he's targeting players on the basis they won't feature.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
BarnetSarrie (IP Logged)
10 November, 2017 12:40
Quote:
Dolph42
Quote:
Brighty_Fez
i think the argument is that there are 8 international weekends and only 6 rounds in the Anglo Welsh leaving 2 weeks where we have to play prem rugby with a huge amount of the team missing.
maybe to support the players these could be recognised weeks off during the season to allow players to recover

There may only be 8 international weekends, but they are also allowed 4 rest weekends before/during the AIs and 6Ns. The Anglo Welsh is already 6 weeks off for players - assuming clubs operate that way, Saracens method is to rest the established players and give match time to the fringe and Academy, seems fairly sensible to me.

We are then provided with an enhanced salary cap to account for additional squad members - the extra money isn't nearly enough and one of Nigel Wray's frustrations. The playoffs, as well as adding extra revenue, then add an element of fairness by allowing a club who have dropped points due to International call ups to win the AP (see 2014/15 season).

It's not a perfect system, but it's also not harmed our trophy cabinet to much recently.

I just can't agree with that last point in particular. IF (that dangerous word) we hadnt been so stripped during the internationals compared to everyone else, you have to ask whether we would have lost the games we did whilst they were all away and finished 5 points adrift. Even our 'reserve players' if we have such a thing were overplayed and tired as a result. We managed to win more games than Chiefs, but still lost 5 and just couldnt get those vital BPs. So we ended up qualifying for the play offs, yes, but with an away semi - unbelievably tight at a passionate Sandy Park, as we know, and with utterly exhausted players who somehow managed to get themselves onto the pitch after the EC Final - to face a well prepared and rested Exeter at their gaffe - but I absolutely believe that the pressure giving up SO many players to Eddie, to beast and beat up in training, then send home broken or at the very least, totally knackered, definitely has a massive impact on club performance. It isnt just losing those talented players - its the extra pressure on the ones having to fill in. And it absolutely definitely costs us silverware last year.

No I really cannot bring myself to wholeheartedly cheer England on any more. And I won't be able to until they stop winning at our expense. Do the boys come back to us better players? No they dont. Our training, preparation, care, systems are better than Englands. Our fitness is at least as good. We teach our boys to think for themselves and take the initiative. Witness Maro screaming exacytly what to do when the Italians decided not to compete - compared to Dylan and Haskell and most of the rest of them looking like numpties. England/Eddie doesnt particularly like brains -we found that out whilst he was coaching us - He prefers brawn and bravery. Of course I want the national side to do well and I want Saracens players to be included and recognised for the hard work and skill they have. It was infuriating that the club was ignored during the Lancaster era - remember Mark saying there hadnt been ANY contact from England one year? But I DONT want that to happen to the detriment of the club who developed them into those players. It isn't right - it isn't fair and it is spoiling my enjoyment of international rugby and leaving a very bitter taste.

There must be a fairer solution to this and I wish they would bloody find it.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Sara'sman (IP Logged)
10 November, 2017 13:24
An interesting post Barnet and I find myself agreeing with most of what you have written, as I do usually with Dolph's. The brutality of rugby makes me believe that the limit of games in which players can truly "give 100%" is far below the 32 limit. The more international games that players play, the fewer "maximum effect" club games they'll have left and the greater the cumulative impact on their bodies and mind.

I'm a Yorkshire cricket fan. We were nearly relegated this year whilst Root, Balance, Bairstow, Rashid, Plunkett and Willey spent much of the year away. Those who champion the primacy of the international game should take a long look at the effect on the quality of county cricket. It is also salient to look at how the greed of the international game (ever more games in three formats leading to players having to be rested from internationals, world cups/champions trophy seemingly every year) is resulting in many grounds being far from full during tests and ODIs as saturation point is passed.

I always respected Leicester for the success they achieved when supplying so many to England, though I suspect that the ever increasing demands are harming us even more. I also believe that international callups weakening the top teams has a beneficial effect on the wider game, narrowing the gap, keeping the league more competitive; I am usually genuinely pleased for the fans of weaker clubs when they beat us in the international period - we had many years of little success or hope! Exeter last year was perhaps an unusual example of a genuine rival having a clear advantage with their lack of tired internationals. And whilst it hurts that we lost, it also shines light on just how special the double was. That we came so close to a repeat was remarkable.

Personally, I'd limit players to 8 internationals per season (start to start).

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Dolph42 (IP Logged)
10 November, 2017 14:05
Barnet - I'll reply only on this thread. With regards the Exeter playoff match, there were a host of reasons why we lost, but a large reason was the three extra matches we played after the 6Ns that Exeter didn't (two of which were more physically and emotionally demanding than an AP match).

If we had all our players available during the 6Ns, all other things being equal, we would have won more matches and come higher in the league, but we're talking about human beings and not having England players would actually come at a cost as going away with England improves both the player selected and the other Sarries players.

Firstly their skills and fitness are higher in comparison to a non international, and not because Eddie 'beasts' them (he doesn't), they 'beast' themselves. Every day at Saracens training Jamie George is trying to out train Hartley, LCD, Dunn etc. and not just Brits, Tolofua and Spurling. The England players motivate themselves because they want to succeed with England (sure they want to succeed with Sarries, but ask any of them if they'd prefer to win the RWC or the ECC/AP and you know the answer). That then rubs off on other players, particularly the younger ones and creates a more competitive and demanding environment throughout the club.

Personally I want us to have 5 or 6 of the best players in the British Isles and swapping them for a player who is available every weekend would diminish the club on and off the field, its arguable if it would improve our chances in the AP but it would definitely decrease our chances in Europe.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
BarnetSarrie (IP Logged)
10 November, 2017 16:04
Quote:
Dolph42
Barnet - I'll reply only on this thread. With regards the Exeter playoff match, there were a host of reasons why we lost, but a large reason was the three extra matches we played after the 6Ns that Exeter didn't (two of which were more physically and emotionally demanding than an AP match).
If we had all our players available during the 6Ns, all other things being equal, we would have won more matches and come higher in the league, but we're talking about human beings and not having England players would actually come at a cost as going away with England improves both the player selected and the other Sarries players.

Firstly their skills and fitness are higher in comparison to a non international, and not because Eddie 'beasts' them (he doesn't), they 'beast' themselves. Every day at Saracens training Jamie George is trying to out train Hartley, LCD, Dunn etc. and not just Brits, Tolofua and Spurling. The England players motivate themselves because they want to succeed with England (sure they want to succeed with Sarries, but ask any of them if they'd prefer to win the RWC or the ECC/AP and you know the answer). That then rubs off on other players, particularly the younger ones and creates a more competitive and demanding environment throughout the club.

Personally I want us to have 5 or 6 of the best players in the British Isles and swapping them for a player who is available every weekend would diminish the club on and off the field, its arguable if it would improve our chances in the AP but it would definitely decrease our chances in Europe.

You are right they want to succeed and they want selection. Thats what they play for - and playing for international honours is of course the holy grail. But do they want to face a crazy training session the day after playing a premiership match? No they absolutely don't. What for? In that situation it would be far more sensible to give them a rest! And actually if you ask them the question you pose about the value of differing honours, they would reply that it's different and that both are just as important. I know - because I actually have. Dont underestimate how important it is to play and win alongside your mates - the ones you have grown up with and train with every single week. Dont underestimate how important it is to win a premiership trophy or two or three - or a European cup that so few clubs have their name on. One is not more important than another - except MAYBE a Rugby world cup - but an international? A six nations game? Absolutely not.

And I also disagree about general skills and fitness levels when you compare Saracens with England generally. Why do you think Phil went off on the Lions tour? Because he is the best. Why do you think in most games against most teams we are the better side over the 80 minutes? Because our fitness regime is better than the other Premiership teams - ask players who have come from other clubs just what they go through to raise their fitness levels. Now, if you said to me that the SPEED and INTENSITY of an international game is higher than a premiership match, of course I would completely agree with you. Were you to compare it to the knockout stages of the European Cup I absolutely would not. The club teams at European knockout level know each other better than national teams and play at an equally intense and skillful level. But to say that the fitness coaching at England is better than ours, no absolutely I dont agree. It can't be - England simply dont have the time to be able to create that outcome, so Eddie beasts them. In my view that is just counterproductive.

Of course our players being selected for England has some benefits, raising the hope of others to also be chosen - but there is the downside as well, for talented, hardworking players like Goodey or Jacko, ignored when their skills are there for all to see! Meanwhile the fact remains that we are shorn of so many players for almost half the season - when they come back there are usually injuries and the compensation we get for providing the national side with that talent is not rewarded and our club does suffer more than it benefits. The authorities need to look long and hard at what is going on. We should NOT be punished for doing a good job.
I WANT TO SUPPORT ENGLAND. I dont want to have to say BUT.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
Dolph42 (IP Logged)
10 November, 2017 18:11
Barnet - I shall try and keep this short.

International training has to be hard for a reason, does a club player want to hit 20 live scrums on a Tuesday when he doesn't feel normal until Thursday? No, but it happens every week. I think players understand that training will be hard but is necessary in order to achieve their goal. Honours are different and its hypothetical to ask a player to choose one over another, but if you want to win the RWC you have to do the hard matches and training.

International players have to be fitter than Club/European players, they run more metres per minute and have more ball in play time, their skills levels also have to be higher to operate at the higher pace. International fitness coaching is different as it prepares players for the demands of international rugby and England have less contact time with the players which is why the players motivate themselves to do extras at their clubs.

Goode and Wray aren't ignored, they're just not as good as the alternative, that doesn't mean they will never play for England. I hope you'll be able to support England AND Sarries in the future, though I suspect if you do it will be because England have no Sarries representation and we are therefore doing a Gloucester, so on second thoughts, hopefully not winking smiley

 
Re: Rob Baxter
EnfieldMal (IP Logged)
10 November, 2017 18:51
Quote:
Dolph42
Barnet - I shall try and keep this short.
International training has to be hard for a reason, does a club player want to hit 20 live scrums on a Tuesday when he doesn't feel normal until Thursday? No, but it happens every week. I think players understand that training will be hard but is necessary in order to achieve their goal. Honours are different and its hypothetical to ask a player to choose one over another, but if you want to win the RWC you have to do the hard matches and training.

International players have to be fitter than Club/European players, they run more metres per minute and have more ball in play time, their skills levels also have to be higher to operate at the higher pace. International fitness coaching is different as it prepares players for the demands of international rugby and England have less contact time with the players which is why the players motivate themselves to do extras at their clubs.

Goode and Wray aren't ignored, they're just not as good as the alternative, that doesn't mean they will never play for England. I hope you'll be able to support England AND Sarries in the future, though I suspect if you do it will be because England have no Sarries representation and we are therefore doing a Gloucester, so on second thoughts, hopefully not winking smiley

I wouldnít say Goode & Wray arenít as good as the alternative just they donít fit into the same plan that EJ has. He has said as much about Goode, he likes his playmakers at 10 & 12 & not at 15. He sees Goode as a playmaker. Wray I assume itís because he likes the bigger players at 8. Wray is Sarries gain whilst England loss. I will be cheering on England & Saracens.

 
Re: Rob Baxter
BarnetSarrie (IP Logged)
10 November, 2017 19:11
Quote:
Dolph42
Barnet - I shall try and keep this short.
International training has to be hard for a reason, does a club player want to hit 20 live scrums on a Tuesday when he doesn't feel normal until Thursday? No, but it happens every week. I think players understand that training will be hard but is necessary in order to achieve their goal. Honours are different and its hypothetical to ask a player to choose one over another, but if you want to win the RWC you have to do the hard matches and training.

International players have to be fitter than Club/European players, they run more metres per minute and have more ball in play time, their skills levels also have to be higher to operate at the higher pace. International fitness coaching is different as it prepares players for the demands of international rugby and England have less contact time with the players which is why the players motivate themselves to do extras at their clubs.

Goode and Wray aren't ignored, they're just not as good as the alternative, that doesn't mean they will never play for England. I hope you'll be able to support England AND Sarries in the future, though I suspect if you do it will be because England have no Sarries representation and we are therefore doing a Gloucester, so on second thoughts, hopefully not winking smiley

Your point about the intensity of international games over premiership games is absolutely valid. But how the England management treat training is debatable. They should be working more closely with the clubs to ensure an overall fitness level, surely? Talk to the boys, they may know they have to do it, but when they are sore having just played a tough match, the wisdom of full on training sessions, without a rest day, has to be eminently questionable.

I'm not so daft that I dont realise that last point was a joke - but it frankly isnt the point. The situation is untenable and something has to be done about it. I agree with Enfield Mal - I would prefer Goodey at full back to Mike Brown any day of the week, Jacko deserves a shot. Sadly, the 'Saracens first' side of me is just grateful that at least some players are out of favour. That's the fundamental issue here though. I shouldn't be in a situation where I have to feel like that!!


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