Mourad Boudjellal on building Toulon


Massive try saving hit by Israel No.8


Henry Tuilagi swats Zee Ngwenya away


Sam Tuitupou's big tackle on Sherridan


Visser penalised for preventing lineout


Seru Rabeni crunching tackle on McFadden


Carlos Spencer & Stephen Larkham fight


Schalk Brits runs into Wayne Barness


Matt Toomua Falcon vs the All Blacks

Monday, April 20, 2009

Lions Memories - The Changing Room

Lions Memories - The Changing Room

Tomorrow the British & Irish Lions squad for the tour of South Africa will be announced amid much speculation and hype. As is to be expected, all discussions in rugby circles currently are about which individuals will be chosen, and which countries represented.

In another of the Lions Memories videos this week, we get to see past Lions players from different eras and countries, speak about what it can be like in the change room prematch.

When you have a mix of cultures coming together as one, there's bound to be a few different ways to approach the psych up before taking to the field.

Emotion in many forms takes place as the players prepare to take on the might of the opposition, and get themselves in the correct state of mind to do so.

It's a case of each to their own as every player readies himself differently. It's the same for all rugby players everywhere, but with the Lions, it was a case of teary eyes, aggressive behaviour, and on one occasion even, smoking a cigar.

How do YOU prepare prematch?Are you laid back and relaxed with a smile on your face, listening to music, or smashing your head into your mates chest? We're interested to hear it.

It's also your last chance to name your Lions tour squad before it's announced tomorrow.



Time: 02:12

Posted at 12:59 pm | 52 comments

Viewing 52 comments

Yaoi April 20, 2009 12:57 pm

If they pick Cipriani to go i'll be disgusted. Simple as that.

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samitarugby April 20, 2009 12:59 pm

O'connell to captain. I would say O'driscoll but they messed in up 2005.

As for the changing room, agression always works!

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Kerivoula April 20, 2009 1:21 pm

The thing I think many miss about Lions selection is that it's not just about the three Tests but about a squad who can chew through the incredibly tough regional games as well. The best Lions squads have been those which have selected for the tour, not just for the Tests. It relieves a huge amount from the starting 15 if they don't have to play every game in the veld AND they see the Lions winning these games.

I say pick a few mean, gnarly bastards who should/will never be in the Tests but who give as good they (will undoubtedly) get.

O'Connell a good pick for captain.

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 1:52 pm

What do you mean O'driscoll messed up?

He was injured in the first test which ruled him out for the rest of the tour, thats hardly his fault.

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Abs7 April 20, 2009 2:14 pm

i whole heartedly agree with Kerivoula we need to match thier agression.
and thank you RD for such an inspirational video.
Perhaps if you have it you could find out what stories old players have from the day of selection. i only ask because i read gerald davies saying he found out about the 68 tour, whilst he was teaching in cardiff!!

Much love people, lets get ready for a massive, inspiring tour!!

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 2:27 pm

in high school i would go into a frenzy but now 5th year of university i find i fight to stay calm and relaxed listening to soothing music, then ten minutes before kickoff a switch is triggered i puke my guts out, and have a sense of calm before the storm anxious ready, like a dog on a leash ready to attack let go at the kick of the ball. younger it being fired up got the best of me, now i have learned to channel it and use it.

Feetham

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 2:33 pm

yo, you puke before a match? thats nasty bro and i dont think thats healthy at all.
do what i do, blast some heavy-ass music. always does the trick

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 3:03 pm

I agree with the 1st guy, if cipriani goes its blatant favouritism. I mean the guy is an average, over-hyped, spoilt brat.

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Joshua April 20, 2009 3:05 pm

I like to stay relaxed. I like to listen to some regular music, no metal or something like that, talk to team mates and visualize my obligations on the pitch. I find that the crazy hyped guys often play an extra half by exerted so much emotional energy before the match.

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no9 April 20, 2009 3:07 pm

cippriani is useless for england and would disgrace the lions shirt.

also a medical point..
puking before a game is just a sign of nerves and is perfectly healthy.

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 3:14 pm

Regarding the provincial games played on Lions tours....no country has fielded full strength provincial teams against the Lions since the 1993 Lions tour.

Since then, SA AUs and NZ have elected to keep their test squad players out of these games.

So provincial games are not as tough as they were.

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Sea-Bass April 20, 2009 3:20 pm

Im curious about a few positions such as the third row, the stand off and of course who will be leading the team.

As for preparation on the pitch, I like to pass a ball, hit a shield, making some kicks, all on a easy tempo. Just getting through the routine and focussing by playing around. The final five minutes are for getting fired up.

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 3:52 pm

throwing up before a match is a bit wet, innit? what level do you play? can understand nerves at international level and pro clubs, but other than that... except in our team's case if the evening before was a bit out of hand :D

as a flanker I have to get as focused and agressive as possible - PRODIGY smack my bitch up, firestarter... think about putting fear into the other guy, the first tackle... invision turnovers, line-out steals...

can wait til tomorrow to see who's going on tour!

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jej April 20, 2009 4:13 pm

hayes, jenkins, murray, sheridan, AR jones, Vickery.
Flannery, Ford, Mears.
O'Connel (capt), O'Callaghan, Gough, AW jones, white, hines.
Ferris, Heaslip, Wallace, Croft, R Jones, M Williams.
O'Gara, Hook, jones, peel, O'leary, phillips, blair.
O'driscoll, Shanklin, Tindall, J Roberts.
T evans, Kearney S williams Byrne Armitgae

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caucau's no.1 fan April 20, 2009 4:36 pm

if cipriani goes it will be a joke as he cant even make a struggling england team, but i think lewsey should go. hes the type of player who wont back down in the regional games and will give it his all as it will be his last time on the professional stage. he can play pretty much anywhere in the backs and if anyone deserves a cap, he does

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jej April 20, 2009 5:19 pm

sackey fitzgerald bowe as well.

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Kyle Harris April 20, 2009 5:36 pm

Here our starting XV does a special chant that gets everyone in a frenzy and then its game on.

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 6:06 pm

15. Kearney
14. Bowe
13. O'Driscoll captain (although "manic agression" always works)
12. Flutey
11. Fitzgerald, but I like Halfpenny
10. Jones or O'Gara, really close one
9. O'Leary
8. R. Jones
7. Worsley
6. Haskell/Wallace
5. A-W. Jones (fight penalties with more penalties)
4. Paul O'Connell
3. A. Jones
2. Flannery
1. Sheridan

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 6:52 pm

if cipriani goes it will be a joke as he hasnt deserved it on performance this year. but to say hes overhyped is abit much as hes come back from an incredible serious injury and was thrown straight into international rugby, not the way to get back into things.

last season he was phenomenal and if the tour was last summer hed definately gone. that said ryan jones would have been the only option for captain and now hes not even certain of a starting place. what a difference a year makes

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welshno7 April 20, 2009 7:17 pm

gethin jenkins , jerry flannerey , euan murray , adam jones , andrew sheridan , huw bennett , a-w jones , paul o'connell , donnacha o'callaghan , ian gough , joe worsley , martyn williams , jamie healsip , ryan jones , stephen ferris , nick easter , ryan jones , andy powell, dwayne peel , danny care , stephen jones , ronan o'gara , james hook , shane williams , tommy bowe , leigh halfpenny , ugo monye , gavin henson , brian o'driscoll , jamie roberts , tom shanklin , lee byrne , rob kearney,delon armitage ,

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cheyanqui April 20, 2009 7:32 pm

anyone ever see those YouTube videos of the "F-ing short verison" of Scarface or Glengarry GlenRoss?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KANukZsWD9Q

Would be funny if someone could make one using the old Lions DVDs.. Between Eddie O'Sullivan alone, you'd probably get about 5 minutes. Plus that "fuu**K" from Martin Johnson when he's lying on the training table.

Really looking forward to the tour. I hope all the Saffa hard men (esp. Bakkies Botha) are healthy and not in the disciplinary dock. With guys like O'Connell against them, it should make for a wonderful, physical confrontation.

View Video

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 7:36 pm

gethin jenkins,
lee mears/jerry flannery,
adam jones,
paul o'connell,
alyn wyn jones,
joe worsley,
martyn williams,
jamie heaslip,
mike phillips,
ronan o'gara/steven jones,
shane williams,
riki flutey/jamie roberts/tom shanklin,
Brian o'driscoll,
tommy bowe/matthew tait,
lee byrne, rob kearney.

think theres much more comptetion for back places

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cheyanqui April 20, 2009 7:39 pm

Cipriani has no business on the tour.
O'Gara clearly earned the spot, S. Jones had it until ROG stepped up.

Generally speaking England should have a #10 on tour, as they can produce great ones. However they've had such a revolving door there during the 6N, it's hard to make an argument of anyone over the consistent appearances that WAL/IRE had in Jones/ROG.

If anyone deserves a shot, it's Jonno, just from an honor to him and the game. But he has to be 100%. That might indeed a bit political of a selection, but it's one that in the context of the rugby community makes loads more sense than picking Cipriani.

Heck James Hook deserves a nod before any ENG selection. Not by any means is he the 3rd best #10, but that also he give cover elsewhere. While I think he's generally physical enough to cover the centres against say an Australia, I think centre play in RSA is a much bigger ask, especially with a Schalk Burger type running at you.

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Humper April 20, 2009 8:18 pm

O'connell for captain, definetly.
Pre-match is usually checkin out vids on here, before falling asleep to the sound of very loud death music :)

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humper April 20, 2009 8:20 pm

another thing, does anyone know if the lions is televised? thanks

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Madflyhalf April 20, 2009 8:22 pm

Kearney, Byrne, Halfpenny;
Bowe, Cueto, Fitzgerald;
D'Arcy/Flutey, O'Driscoll, Shanklin, Roberts;
O'Gara, S. Jones, Flood;
Phillips, Blair, Ellis/O'Leary;
Heaslip, R. Jones;
Wallace, Williams;
Ferris, Croft, Haskell;
O'Connell, O'Callaghan, Hamilton, A-W. Jones;
Murray, Hayes, Vickery;
Flannery, Mears, Ford.
Jenkins, Sheridan.

I'm not sure if choose O'Leary or Ellis, and D'Arcy or Flutey...
But the 36th man would be Marcus Horan.
Long Tour for front-rows.

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 9:44 pm

This will probably sound really stupid but when does the line tour start??

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Jon April 20, 2009 9:52 pm

I agree with Kerivoula,

take players for the state games who will get in some faces.

Julian White, Nathan Hines, Jason White, Dylan Hartley,

people who will take on the non-test teams and beat them at the spoiling game they will undoubtedly play

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 10:05 pm

My Lions

Team:

1 Jenkins
2 Ford
3 Vickery
4 O'Callaghan
5 O'Connell
6 Croft
7 Williams
8 Jones
9 Peel
10 Jones
11 Williams
12 Flutey
13 O'Driscoll [c]
14 Bowe
15 Bryne

Subs -

16 Flannery
17 Horan
18 Shaw
19 Wallace
20 Phillips
21 Cipriani
22 Armitage

Squad:

Front Row -
Murray
Sheridan
Mears

Second Row -
Wyn Jones
Hines

Back Row -
Worsley
Heaslip

Outside-halves -
Ellis
O'Gara

Backs -
Kearney
Shanklin
Roberts
Halfpenny
Cueto

I am English but have tried to be as unbiased as i could be... thoughts?

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Canadian Content April 20, 2009 10:19 pm

Find it funny how some of you are telling others how your preparation is better than there's. Didn't you watch the same video as the rest of us which displayed how each player is an individual who must prepare in his own fashion? For me visualising worked best, along with some music with good rythm, might not work for everyone though.

Good point about the Lions being picked as a touring side as well. That's why Jason White offers so much, proved he can cover the 2nd row and is a more than capable back row. Shanklin's ability to cover both centre spots is a plus as well. As is Jones at 8 or 6.

Then there are the pure one position players who could be considered to be on the fringe but who must go, such as Martyn Williams. Tough to leave out Shane WILLIAMS as well, his form as dropped, but he has showen what he can do against the world's best and deserves another go.

Hate to be a hater, but Cipriani should not see the plane, and I believe his team mate Haskell is an over hyped goon as well.

all this aside, some great players will not be getting on the plane

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 10:31 pm

im a back so i dunno forwards that well:

reddan(outside chance),danny care,o gara,flood,roberts,evans(scotland),o driscoll(capt),s williams,bowe,earls,fitzgerald,kearney,byrne

irish dominated but im irish so there ya go.

as for psyche up i kick a ball,get totally focussed and visualize.
simple as and works every time,see gaps MILES away.

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Brennie April 20, 2009 10:34 pm

I still say Flutey shouldn't go...it's like John Hayes playing for the maoris.
Fingers crossed for Ferris to get in there ..his hits were the highlights of Irelands 6N for me!!

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Anonymous April 20, 2009 11:16 pm

Great video - (as if there was any doubt) Finlay Calder was/is a complete nutter.

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Simo April 21, 2009 12:11 am

Kearney, Byrne, Paterson
Bowe, S. Williams, Evans, Lewsey
O'Driscoll, Roberts, Shanklin
S. Jones, O'Gara, Hook
Phillips, Blair, Peel
R. Jones, Heaslip
M. Williams, Wallace
Ferris, Croft, Strokosch
O'Connell, O'Callaghan, Hines, A-W. Jones
Murray, Hayes, Vickery
Ford, Flannery, Mears
Sheridan, Jenkins, Horan

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louie sed April 21, 2009 12:23 am

My own pre-game ritual has always been fairly straightforward, a thick porterhouse steak with mushrooms, peas and gravy and a glass or two of Shiraz, then a long relaxing bath with my girlfriend followed by a nice game of Twister and bit of a chat (at this point I used to have a ciggie but gave them up when I got serious about the footy) then on with the gear and I'm outta there and ready to go game on!

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Anonymous April 21, 2009 1:43 am

I'd pick a 2009 Findlay Calder over Martin Williams at No. 7!

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Chris April 21, 2009 3:47 am

louie sed, absolute pisser mate! exactly what I would do, I would say plow the girlfriend, but gotta keep the testosterone levels high until after the game ; )

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Joe April 21, 2009 5:00 am

i will cry is cipriani goes. but damn i need to get Inside the Lions Den.

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tenmansam April 21, 2009 8:09 am

john bentley. what a lion. what a legend.
leeds back in the prem.
marchin on together.

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Madflyhalf April 21, 2009 10:24 am

In the changing room I only try to repeat every single dressing action in "my order" (it's a little supertition).
Then we start to talk with coaches and captian, so though I'm a music addict, it's not time for music.

The music came just before changing clothes... in the bus or car, and in the first minutes in the changing room.

I must listen to any Doors song, first of all (preparation to "rock and roll" -> phisic job!!); then Won't get fooled again, the Who or something from the Clash, cause... well, the only band that matters! :D

Finally, will be Mozart. Mozart always relaxing me, especially my mind (but when I play it @ the piano, it also relaxes my muscles :D).
I use to listen to the Concerto per pianoforte e orchestra n. 23 in La maggiore, at least the I movement.
Maurizio Pollini plays piano.

After all this thing, I'm mentally relaxed and phisically electrified.

I play fly half ;)

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Anonymous April 21, 2009 10:43 am

Peter Stringer as scrumhalf !!!

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jm April 21, 2009 11:08 am

Please someone agree with me that o gara had a shit six nations???? someone, anyone? how has nobody seen this? one drop goal, thats it! I feel like I'm taking crazy pills!

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Anonymous April 21, 2009 11:23 am

anybody else be disappointed if flutey goes? i accept him playing for england on residency, other countries do it, but the lions is something special and abit different and the fact that hes played against the lions in new zealand would take the piss abit

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stoojay April 21, 2009 11:56 am

Right Folks, a wee game: If You could pick up to five non-home nation non-tri-nation players to go instead, who would you pick and who would miss out?

Mine are:

1. Swarzevski for ford
2. Leguzimon for ferris
3. Hernandez for Armitage
4. Parisse for R jones
5. That-Figian-who-plays-in france-and-scores-loads for Halfpenny.

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Eoghan April 21, 2009 1:09 pm

British and Irish Lions squad for tour of South Africa, departing 24 May:

Backs: Lee Byrne (Wales), Rob Kearney (Ireland), Shane Williams (Wales), Leigh Halfpenny (Wales), Ugo Monye (England), Luke Fitzgerald (Ireland), Tommy Bowe (Ireland), Tom Shanklin (Wales), Jamie Roberts (Wales), Brian O'Driscoll (Ireland), Keith Earls (Ireland), Riki Flutey (England), Ronan O'Gara (Ireland), Stephen Jones (Wales), Mike Phillips (Wales), Harry Ellis (England), Tomas O'Leary (Ireland).

Forwards: Jamie Heaslip (Ireland), Andy Powell (Wales), David Wallace (Ireland), Stephen Ferris (Ireland), Alan Quinlan (Ireland), Joe Worsley (England), Martyn Williams (Wales), Alun Wyn Jones (Wales), Paul O'Connell (Ireland) (captain), Donncha O'Callaghan (Ireland), Simon Shaw (England), Nathan Hines (Scotland), Gethin Jenkins (Wales), Adam Jones (Wales), Andrew Sheridan (England), Phil Vickery (England), Euan Murray (Scotland), Jerry Flannery (Ireland), Lee Mears (England), Matthew Rees (Wales).




Phew...anyone actually see Quinlan on that plane ? I thought shoulda but never thought he woulda. Great individual selection.

Thought Tom Croft hard done by to miss out...otherwise you could make a case for individuals here or there but pretty good job and picked on form...e.g. Quinlan.

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Eoghan April 21, 2009 1:17 pm

lol eh that's the squad as announced of course...not my prediction

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Anonymous April 21, 2009 8:43 pm

if your looking for physical confrontation, julian white and Paul o'connell will do, but if your looking for a team that wont get anyone sent off, julian white will not do!

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louie sed April 22, 2009 2:28 am

@Madflyhalf - I put on Mozart for the nude Twister, relaxes me too.

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Anonymous April 23, 2009 1:16 am

First of all to Jim: I'm an Irishman and I must agree with you ROG 's performance in the 6 nations was very shoddy to say the least.

Second of all: I play open side so there is a lot to ask of us #7's each game. I spend my match day visualizing how I'm going to play on the day, when at the field in warm ups I begin to get very aggressive and irritating most of my team mates with how much physicality I put into the warm up.

Then last of all just before the game I slam my head against the wall a couple of times and thats me done and ready

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Anonymous April 26, 2009 8:18 pm

One of the Weirdest selections ever, but obviously Geech has a plan.........

Pre-match lately has taken the form of a Qiunell-esque Crossbar challenge.

Good laugh, especially cos were Sh*te, and it suits me (being a tighthead) that there is a minimum of running involved!

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flank May 10, 2009 1:02 pm

Before going to the match i always try and watch a few of rugbydump's TSRB.
Relly gets you fired up!

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Paul Gormley May 28, 2009 12:49 pm

Ok my predictions! bare with me!
Im a limerick man and a diehard munster supporter. While obviously Paulie was the man to captin the team, he IS the best second row in europe, handsdown. what makes him this? his determination to be the best he can be. anyone who knows about forward play in the game must surely admire him.
The key to beating the springboks is in the front 5. they have the best secondrow partnership in the world and surely paulie must be on top of his game along with jones(i reckon) to get the better of them. to do this, they need a) a good lineout thrower, and b) good lifters. this is where the lions are lacking. the injury to fla is a disaster, no point beating around the bush he was going to start at hooker. his lineouts were like BULLETS. the pace, the precision gave o connel and donnacha for munster and indeed ireland that extra protection. if you look at props, murray and jenkins are the two form props and are odds on to start, while i agree with this, i cannot believe that john hayes hasn been picked to tour. like all props the mature with old age. im not sayin hayes is a good scrummager-far from it- but they are playin a south africa team that reportedly want to recall both van der lind and botha from leinster and ulster. this means their scrum is worrying for them. i do not think hayes would have hindered the scrum. the reason i suggest hayes and he is widely regarded as the BEST one man lifter in europe. at 6"4 and 20 odd stone, being able to FLING o connell into the air would make it easier to disrupt lineout ball.
now onto the backs, the injury to tomas was a disaster, no more for o gara. the feeling around some parts of limerick for last 7/8 months or so, is that o gara hasnt been putting in the same type of performances he has done and i cannot see him being partnered by philips. also is tackling is more than suspect and surely will be targeted.
I am sure people do not agree with the above but its my opinion, but this is where it gets more creative. Hands up who knows keith Earls? people in munster and ireland surely do. but who else? this BOY has been ripping up the heineken cup and magners league all season. now people point out the leinster game in the semi which was terribly disappointing for a munster supporter. what back do you know at 20 years of age can perform well when he doesnt have the ball? he touched the ball less than 5 times such was the measure of performance of the leinster players and he made a few good breaks. you can be rest assured the people of south africa dont know the man from young munster. I would put him up against habana, it wont faze him one bit and i think he could do more damage than bowe or halfpenney.
As you know the second and third tests are being played at altitude and the legend that is rocky elsom says that the altitude does NOT affect your rugby. he says people who are not used to it, will come down with flu like syndroms. it does affext your fitness an hour into the game. this is something the lions should be wary of.
here is my team:
1.Euan murray
2.lee mears
3.gethin jenkins
4.alun-wyn jones
5.paul o Connell
6.Tom Croft
7.David Wallace
8.Jamie Heaslip
9.Mike Philips
10.Stephen Jones
11.Shane Williams
12.Jamie Roberts
13.Brian o Driscoll
14.Keith Earls
15.Lee Byrne

What do you think, i know the majority are irish and welsh but what can i say scotland and england havent done anything in years?

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