Do Not Sell My Personal Information
ADVERTISEMENT
RugbyDump RugbyDump
Thursday Jul 23, 2020

England's Ford-Farrell example could be a lesson for the Barrett position debate

England's Ford-Farrell example could be a lesson for the Barrett position debate

Ask anyone in New Zealand what position they think Beauden Barrett should play and you will surely get a mix of replies. Whether it’s fly-half or full-back, it’s something that divides opinion.

ADVERTISEMENT

Former Springbok Butch James knows this all too well. The 42-time capped out-half admitted he found the decision to play Barrett at 15 at both Super Rugby and international level “very strange”.

Barrett is eyeing a return to his customary position of fly-half for the Blues following an injury to incumbent Otere Black.

Speaking as part of theĀ Use it or Lose it show, hosted by fellow ex-team-mates Schalk Burger and Jean de Villiers, James feels like the All Blacks should be allowing their “best player” to get his hands on the ball as often as possible.

“I know Richie Mo’unga has also been brilliant and been playing good rugby but you would want your test player, not to be playing fly-half but to be getting his hands on the ball as much as he can,” James said.

“For me, at full-back, he probably gets some good opportunities to counter-attack but he’ll never get as many opportunities as he would as a fly-half.”

The competition for the 10 jersey in New Zealand is perhaps at its highest now with Barrett and Mo’unga both playing at a world class class. It’s not the first time the All Blacks have had a conundrum in this position either, having had to find a way to fit in the likes of Luke McAlister and Dan Carter moving between fly-half and centre.

ADVERTISEMENT

Currently, the All Blacks situation is a little more complex due to the fact that Barrett and Mo’unga are both exceptional out-halves, leading to the almost necessary inclusion of each in the match day 23. Damian McKenzie is another who can possibly sympathise with Barrett, having alternated between 15 and 10 in his career so far.

THE ENGLAND DEBATE

If there is one key comparison, it’s with England’s choice to play Owen Farrell and George Ford in the same starting line-up, with one at fly-half (generally Ford) and the other (Farrell) at inside centre. As Burger says, when things go your way, the problems of players not accustomed to playing in their preferred position are not as clearly demonstrated as when they’re under pressure.

James concurred: “I think England is the prime example, they missed a little beat there with playing Farrell at 12, I would have moved him into 10,” said James.

ADVERTISEMENT

“Especially against us [South Africa], move him into 10, [Manu] Tuilagi at 12 and [Henry] Slade at 13. I think that’s their best 10, 12, 13 combination.”

It’s a debate which will undoubtedly carry out in New Zealand, but there may be some inspiration from the good and bad of England’s own situation.

Related Articles

  • 33 WEEKS AGO

    'You're going to get backlash either way'...

  • 39 WEEKS AGO

    Prospect of new Pacific Islander franchise...

  • 46 WEEKS AGO

    Jim Hamilton chats to rugby's biggest YouTuber...



ADVERTISEMENT

Great Tries

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: Beauden Barrett scores 25 points in 20 minutes for Suntory in Japan Top League

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: The Victor Vito offload fans have been raving about in Champions Cup quarter-final

  • 4 DAYS AGO

    MUST WATCH: Awesome compilation of the best tries ever scored at the Millennium Stadium

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: Awesome compilation showcases the GREATEST tries ever scored at Twickenham

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: 135kg prop lines up swan dive from 20 metres out... then re-thinks

View All

Big Hits & Dirty Play

  • 1 DAY AGO

    WATCH: 19-year-old is barely a speed bump for fearsome Fijian number eight

  • 1 DAY AGO

    WATCH: South African sevens icon Afrika done for clear cheating on Robshaw MLR debut

  • 3 DAYS AGO

    Powerhouse Tongan Thor leaves opposition on his arse with HUGE handoff

  • 4 DAYS AGO

    Amazing highlights reel demonstrates why Tadhg Furlong MUST go on the British & Irish Lions tour this Summer

  • 6 DAYS AGO

    Tackle deemed to be at the top end of the scale as winger receives heavy ban

View All

See It To Believe It

  • 21 HOURS AGO

    Over $450 million loss for South Africa's economy if the Lions tour happens without fans

  • 1 DAY AGO

    WATCH: South African sevens icon Afrika done for clear cheating on Robshaw MLR debut

  • 1 DAY AGO

    Rob Kearney's legendary performance vs Springboks on 2009 Lions tour

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: Beauden Barrett scores 25 points in 20 minutes for Suntory in Japan Top League

  • 4 DAYS AGO

    Amazing highlights reel demonstrates why Tadhg Furlong MUST go on the British & Irish Lions tour this Summer

View All

Funnies

  • 13 HOURS AGO

    Lions coaching staff announcement elicits some amused responses from fans

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    Comedy gold as Toronto lock attempts clearance kick in MLR match featuring Matt Giteau and Adam Ashley-Cooper

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: 135kg prop lines up swan dive from 20 metres out... then re-thinks

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: Bizarre standoff in Super Rugby tests players on their rulebook knowledge

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Flanker has HOWLER in Super Rugby Aotearoa after butchering awesome solo try

View All

Amateur

  • 23 WEEKS AGO

    Viral video of Scottish club brawl goes down a storm with rugby community

  • 60 WEEKS AGO

    RUGBYDUMP BLITZ: This Best of the Week round up is sure to entertain you

  • 61 WEEKS AGO

    RD BLITZ - Disaster, just when it looked so promising...

  • 61 WEEKS AGO

    That glorious moment that will live on forever, like it or not

  • 61 WEEKS AGO

    RD Blitz - PROP'S Lionel Messi wizardy creates incredible try

View All

Player Features

  • 7 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Bumping off tacklers and taking high balls, Rob Kearney had an impressive Super Rugby debut

  • 13 WEEKS AGO

    Brian Moore on money in modern rugby and how it should never be compared to 'outlier' football

  • 14 WEEKS AGO

    Tuisova's wrecking ball montage will make you grateful you never made it as a pro

  • 20 WEEKS AGO

    New Zealand rugby pod admit Owen Farrell is world class

  • 20 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Bath prop launches Amazon documentary focused on those from non-traditional backgrounds

View All
England's Ford-Farrell example could be a lesson for the Barrett position debate | RugbyDump - Rugby News & Videos