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Eddie Butler on Jonny Wilkinson career

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Plays of the Week - The Lions Series Awards

The latest Plays of the Week aired on Rugby HQ in Australia a few hours ago, no doubt featuring some introspective analysis of what could have been with the Wallabies, who now have a new coach in the form of Ewen McKenzie.

In amongst all that, Sean Maloney and the Plays team put together another great segment, this time focussing on awards from the series, including Best Dressed, Best Try and a few others.

Plays of the Week archive | Lions 2013 archive | RD Lions 2013 T-Shirts

Posted at 6:08 pm | 28 comments

Posted in Plays of the Week

Viewing 28 comments

Murina July 11, 2013 7:12 pm

Great video, great sportsmanship by Rugby HQ. I wouldn't have minded seeing the Genia/Folau try in the mix along with North's, but nice to see a batch of strong Northern Hemisphere (non-French) back line tries.

Great tour. The Lions brand still alive and kicking. Many thanks for the coverage RD.

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Rugbydump July 12, 2013 10:35 am

You're welcome, Murina. Glad you enjoyed the tour and RD helped towards that in a small way. Looking forward to 2017 in NZ!

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bbrannigan July 11, 2013 10:07 pm

Amazing statistic now that the dust has settled. in test 3, here was not a single pass between the Lions center pair. That center pair was non existent in game terms and its ineffectiveness was masked by the excellent play of the back 3 coming into the line constantly, particularly North and Bowe. Davies in fact had a poor game, and Gatland made a poor decision with O'Driscoll, a decision again masked by the excellence of the back 3 and the forwards. This video is a reminder of what great hands Brian O'Driscoll has and how much he adds to a game. It could easily have been a 50+ score if he had been rightly selected.

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joeythelemur July 12, 2013 6:08 am

Please let it go. The Lions put 41 pts on the board, and there's simply no way to know what the result would have been with BOD (better? worse?). Your "amazing statistic" is in fact nothing more than a trivial artifact that by all evidence had zero impact on the result or final scoreline.

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bbrannigan July 12, 2013 11:16 am

Here are Davies stats: 1st 20 mins, 1 tackle, I carry of 1m, 1 missed kick to touch. 2nd 20, 1 tackle, 2 missed, no carries, 1 good kick to touch. 3rd 20, 1 tackle, 2 carries. 4th 20, 2 tackles, 1 missed, 1 carry, 1 kick. Clashed twice with own players because of wrong line (13 mins and 34 mins). I kid you not.
So 5 tackles, and 2 missed. O'D made 23 tackles in 2nd test, none missed. Need any more info?

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joeythelemur July 12, 2013 9:40 pm

Your amazing statistic was that there wasn't a pass between the center pairing. You're suggesting that had there been better backline cohesion that the Lions would have scored more.

So now you want to focus on tackles. Fair enough. I never said Davies played a perfect game. I'm just saying that you're trying to prove a negative. There's no way to know and it's just ridiculous to keep bleating on about it. We all know plenty of players that have had a cracker in one test, then go totally off the rails in the next. BOD could have been great and could have been average or poor, who knows? Tired of talking about it.

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lee July 12, 2013 1:24 am

Oh for goodness sake, stop your whining. Im Scottish, first of all so don't accuse me of being biased. Davies had a great game, everyone I've talked to says the same, and the player ratings on newspapers such as the independent,guardian etc all give him either a 7 or 8. That's a good game, considering odriscoll received 5/6 for his effort in Melbourne. taking nothing away from BOD, what a player, but Davies hardly put a foot wrong in the last test, helped set up tries, so just get over yourself, stop jumping on the bandwagon, you probably don't know much about rugby anyway. Ps. BOD is a hero, but dropping him seemed to pay off. It would be a lot like dropping Tommy Bowe and playing Cuthbert instead, it still works, different type of players, but one is vastly experienced. No harm done though.

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bbrannigan July 12, 2013 11:16 am

Here are Davies stats: 1st 20 mins, 1 tackle, I carry of 1m, 1 missed kick to touch. 2nd 20, 1 tackle, 2 missed, no carries, 1 good kick to touch. 3rd 20, 1 tackle, 2 carries. 4th 20, 2 tackles, 1 missed, 1 carry, 1 kick. Clashed twice with own players because of wrong line (13 mins and 34 mins). I kid you not.
So 5 tackles, and 2 missed. O'D made 23 tackles in 2nd test, none missed. Need any more info?

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ranga July 12, 2013 1:27 pm

You cant just make stats up off the top of your head!!10 tackles made, 0 missed ( official lions website statistics).

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bbrannigan July 12, 2013 3:08 pm

I don't make stats up, I'm an RFU trained coach. I watched the game a 2nd time to assess, and then a 3rd time because I could not believe the results I was getting. I've now watched the 2nd quarter again: Davies misses a tackle at 21.15 on O'Connor, who is taken down by O'Brien. At 39.23 Davies dives over a ruck and completely misses his man.
On Lions stats, I match them if you count tackle assists, meaning that he was 2nd man into a tackle 5 times, making it 10 in total - but only if you are counting assists. Ans at 10, it is still less than half O'Driscoll's tackle count in test 2.
And, of course, there is the stat that not a single pass was made between the 2 lions centers Davies and Roberts. After Roberts was taken off, there was not a single pass between Davies and replacement center Tualangi.

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ranga July 12, 2013 3:46 pm

The RFU need to look at there Training of coaches, your delusional son! You can't compare different tests! Aus had to chase the 2nd test so there attacking was completely different to this game! Davies made the sexton try, beating 2 defenders. Nobody knows if O'driscoll would have done better but who cares, they won!! As for his 'kicks', he placed a perfect kick down the middle (63.59), putting the Aus defence under pressure where they kicked straight to halfpenny who went on to score!! Slating a player for no reason is pathetic pal...

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bbrannigan July 12, 2013 5:50 pm

Maybe the RFU should look at their training of coaches, because they say performance in different tests, different games and in training is the essence of selection practice. But you're obviously the expert, maybe you should write to them and tell them where theya re going wrong.
That perfect kick down the middle was actually straight into an AUS basket; only the brilliance of Halfpenny turned that into attack. One good pass does not make a good game performance, and I am not slating Davies, I am reporting his stats. the game is on YouTube in full, by all means watch and counter my analysis.
I refer you again to the following stats: not a single pass was made between the 2 lions centers Davies and Roberts. After Roberts was taken off, there was not a single pass between Davies and replacement center Tualangi.
Even being charitable with assists and giving Davies 10 tackles, it is still less than half O'Driscoll's tackle count in test 2. So Gatland's decision to drop O'Driscoll was wrong, notwithstanding the excellent series win.
By all means get personal again, but that will not change the stats.

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ranga July 12, 2013 9:35 pm

How was it into an AUS basket?! It bounced into the 22 and then to about 10m from the try line, putting arguably the best scrum half in the world under pressure, who missed touch! Your full of s**t! He didnt miss a tackle! He set up a try, you could easily say 2 if you have any sort of brain, what O'driscoll didn't do in the 2nd test! clearly it doesn't matter if they didn't make a pass einstein 16-41.

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bbrannigan July 12, 2013 11:32 pm

We obviously have different standards (and different debate styles - you do good soccer yobo). In training and practice a pressure kick is one that either hangs in the air long enough, or lands in clear space, so that by the time the opponent gets the ball the kicker (hopefully with support) is on top of the defender, forcing an error. In this instance, Genia had lots of time and ran 10 - 15 metres across field, with Davies not getting near enough to really threaten. Easy for Genia, and he had so much time that his return was actually overambitious, creating the opportunity for Halfpenny.
Davies missed tackles at 21.15 and 39.23.
To say as you do that it doesn't matter if the center pair do not pass between each other is evidence enough of your grasp of the game. I'll make it easy for you (as I'm a bit worried that if you get any more hysterical you'll have an aneurysm): tell me of another test game, say in the last 5 years, Northern or Southern hemisphere, where there was no passing between the centers.

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ranga July 13, 2013 8:42 am

Hahahahah you have never coached a good level, neither have you played a good level. Case closed thicko

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bbrannigan July 13, 2013 10:55 am

If we are talking thicko, it should be ".. coached to a good level, neither have you played to a good level."

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ranga July 13, 2013 11:13 am

If you only knew

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DrG July 13, 2013 10:42 pm

.......I think you're both a bunch of twits.

And neither of you can spell....

Ranga it's "you're" not "your"...

and bbrannigan, it's "Tuilagi" not "Tualangi"..

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bbrannigan July 14, 2013 10:10 am

I'm not going to google every name to spell check just to make a point about rugby. Stop talking like a cissy teacher's assistant and comment on rugby, if you can.

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centre January 16, 2014 3:32 pm

Australia had a lot less ball in the 3rd test than the 2nd so less tackles needed to be made.

If Davies is outside centre, it's not neccesarily his fault if 12 doesnt pass. When you pick a player like Roberts Tuilagi or Nonu at 12 you pick them as a crash ball option, to set up a platform with the back 3 coming into the line in their place while they're at the bottom of a ruck.

What are your stats on infringements, and did Davies miss any tackles in the 2nd test, which the decision was made on, or did Roberts miss any tackles in the last game he played?

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Colombes July 12, 2013 9:40 am

A great insight and summary of these lions series,
And also very fairplay as it comes from an australian tv program

Some British & Irish Lions fans should take some notes ;)

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Mastersa July 12, 2013 11:14 am

Love this those guys are legend. I didn't see Horwill in the highlights though. Would have though that should have got a mention even under title 'Lion helps Horwill keep his balance'

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blindsided July 13, 2013 4:50 pm

You're an RFU trained coach, im a former professional player mate. Stop making up stats, we all watch games and I do analyse as well. Odriscoll didn't make 23 tackles in the 2nd test alone, silly boy. Must be a dreadful coach

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bbrannigan July 14, 2013 10:39 am

Well, to be completely fair, the 23 tackle count was a stat someone else gave me for O'D, as I didn't go over the 2nd text again. Apologies if untrue. I can say his tackle count is most always comparable with the best, and he misses few. For the AUS try in the 2nd test, it was O'D who came round and countered the overlap by making his tackle on O'Connor, while Davies missed his tackle, essentially losing the game.
But since you do analysis and are a former professional, do me (and everyone) a favour and watch (even the first half) of the 3rd test again, available on Youtube. I am very happy to be challenged on stats.

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lee July 13, 2013 4:53 pm

brannigan, maybe you should've coached the lions..

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bbrannigan July 14, 2013 10:26 am

It would be an honour and obviously far above me. Don't mistake what I am saying .. this is a wonderful victory which Gatland delivered. But the attitude 'we won, so no criticism' would not pass muster e.g. with the best team in the world, the All Blacks. Notwithstanding that they win most games, they analyse each in great detail afterwards, from players to coaches, to seek improvements.
I've put forward the center pairs stats. Now I'll explain what happened. It was essentially down to the excellent G North, with T Bowe supporting. Both came off the wing and into the center more times than seen in any recent test, delivering serious power and penetration to the channels near the breakdown \ set piece. (This, incidentally, pushed Davies from his 13 position into unfamiliar positions most of the time). To deal with this, the AUS defence had to spread into these channels, thinning out around the breakdown, so allowing the serious forward penetration from the breakdown in evidence from the Lions.
Now, if this was Gatland's idea then it was excellent, although it could just be down to the players thirst for work (and has never been mentioned as a strategy). In any case, it meant that the center pair became irrelevant as an attacking unit. This leads to the question of O'Driscoll. One of the best in broken play, soft hands, always running the right support channel, defends like a flanker, ran excellent lines \ attacks with G. North in previous matches, a constant extra worry for the opposition etc. etc. Would he have made a difference? Yes, certainly.

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browner July 15, 2013 9:11 pm

Davies was at fault for allowing AACooper to score, JD was looking inward & allowed AAC to get outside him, clearly Man4Man defending needed.

Just saying !

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