Do Not Sell My Personal Information
RugbyDump RugbyDump
Friday Apr 3, 2015

How Valuable is Manu Tuilagi To England's World Cup Ambitions?

How Valuable is Manu Tuilagi To England's World Cup Ambitions?
29
Comments

Having been ruled out of the rest of the Aviva Premiership season for Leicester Tigers due to an ongoing groin injury, the powerful centre hasn’t played a competitive game of rugby since October 2014 and hasn’t played for England since June. Although expected to be fit for England’s world cup warm-ups, with the international centre position’s so hotly contested, will Stuart Lancaster still want Tuilagi?

The Samoan-born battering ram joined Leicester Tigers in 2010, and since then has played 77 matches amassing 24 tries.

He duly received his England call up during the warm-up matches for the last Rugby World Cup back in 2011, where he scored tries in victories over Wales and Ireland, going on to be recognised as one of the standout players for his country in a largely underwhelming trophy campaign. 

Now with 11 tries in 25 caps, Tuilagi will meet with stiff competition as he fights for his place in Lancaster’s team.

Traditionally an outside centre for club and country, the 6″1′ and 112kg colossus will have to prove he is more of an asset than the in-form Bath midfielder Jonathan Joseph, if he wants the white 13 shirt come September. 

Joseph played every match for England through their impressive Six Nations efforts this year, ending the tournament as top try scorer and presenting no clear reason for omission this summer, therefore Tuilagi will have to do something special to oust Joseph from the team. 

Luther Burrell was Lancaster’s favoured inside centre through the competition, and although a solid player, perhaps this is where Tuilagi should aim his sights. 

South African star Bryan Habana believes that would be the right move, saying, The combination of Ford, Joseph and Tuilagi would be impressive.” 

He went on to say that, “Jonathan Joseph has shown that his game has improved immensely. He has really grown into that position at Bath and the presence that Luther Burrell brings is good, and Manu Tuilagi is hard to leave out.”

That last point is really the crux of the issue – despite Burrell and Joseph both being world class players, and with Brad Barritt, Kyle Eastmond and Billy Twelvetrees in the wings the competition is truly elite, but can Lancaster really afford to leave Tuilagi out? 

After all, the presence of the Tigers’ centre was a huge factor in England’s record 38-21 win over New Zealand at Twickenham in 2012. Scoring a try himself and setting up two others, his performance in the match catapulted his profile within world rugby. 

The video below (apologies for some of the bad language) shows some of Manu Tuilagi’s best moments. What do you think: should Tuilagi be in the England squad? And if so, which position?

Check the Related Posts for some more of Tuilagi’s powerful play

credit: buttontheplay
Note: swearing in video. no offence intended

29 Comments

  • eddie-g
    8:31 PM 06/04/2015

    So long as he's fit, I'd have Tuilagi in the squad. But unless he proves himself in partnership with one of the other centres, he's an impact sub. Joseph and Burrell clear front-runners now to be the WC starters.

    Reply
  • jimmy23
    12:29 PM 06/04/2015

    Classic RD banter

    Reply
  • bunn
    12:19 AM 06/04/2015

    Getting caught by Smith only proved that he's not a winger cos he's not quick enough. There are thousands of club wingers all over the world who would have had the gas to finish that!

    Reply
  • drg
    9:55 PM 05/04/2015

    Fortunately I have an Italian grandma, so perhaps I have a way in to International rugby..

    Reply
  • danknapp
    8:52 PM 05/04/2015

    There would have to be a lot of migration away from the UK before I was first in line for Manu's job.

    Reply
  • stroudos
    5:52 PM 05/04/2015

    A quick read of Viz comic's Profanisaurus will quickly disprove the suggestion that there could ever be any perceptible limit to number or indeed quality of swear words.

    Reply
  • 45678
    2:05 PM 05/04/2015

    One of the major mistakes at the last rwc was trying to fudge Tuilagi into a settled backline. The 6n pairing at the time of hape and tindall whilst not at all flash, were settled, defended and linked well and England were scoring tries. Ashton was never the same player again for England after this partnership was broken up Why force tuilagi in again? He is an impact player. Bring him on when players are tired

    Reply
  • drg
    9:23 AM 05/04/2015

    They took errr jerrrbs!

    Reply
  • drg
    9:22 AM 05/04/2015

    I wasn't saying it betrays a limited vocabulary... I was just saying it's always useful to learn a few extra words, whether they be swear words or otherwise.... ..unfortunately I may have already reached the limit on swear words seeing as I can swear in a few other languages as well... - all the same meanings though :(

    Reply
  • stroudos
    8:16 AM 05/04/2015

    The self-righteous argument that swearing betrays a limited vocabulary is eminently specious. It's a great way to add a bit of colour to a subject or to emphasise a point. In this case, the swearing in the song adds a raw edge and a sense of gritty attitude that is not achieved in its absence. This then translates perfectly into portraying Manu Tuilagi's abraasive and confrontational style of rugby.

    Reply
  • danknapp
    6:54 PM 04/04/2015

    Bloody immigrants, coming over here, bulking up our backline.

    Reply
  • danknapp
    6:53 PM 04/04/2015

    Assuming it's going to be Cameron in Number 10 come the Autumn...

    Reply
  • danknapp
    6:49 PM 04/04/2015

    Willybumcockweasel. Hur hur hur.

    Reply
  • drg
    3:11 PM 04/04/2015

    I'm sctually with Stroudos... it's importenter to widener yor vokabularilaly.

    Reply
  • stroudos
    2:12 PM 04/04/2015

    I'd just like to say that I thoroughly enjoyed the swearing, which goes very well with the video.

    Reply
  • rugbydump
    9:51 AM 04/04/2015

    Thanks for the feedback, Adam. Point taken and we'll add a little note there and probably try to avoid it in future.

    Reply
  • drg
    9:08 AM 04/04/2015

    Scored a fair few tries in this little montage though no?

    Reply
  • drg
    9:03 AM 04/04/2015

    Just write *Swearing in music, if you're offended please mute the video and put on your own music*...

    Reply
  • 3:46 AM 04/04/2015

    He's not a finisher, he's a creator. Should have never been tackled by smith in the test series last year. Great tackle by smith but a first class wing has to either finish that or create a try for someone else a la a lomuesqe offload, not get tackled and turned over. Play at 12. Besides once the set piece is over, he can move around, even crash off the 9, which he can do at 12. Barritt has had his day, 12trees too, Burrell most missed tackles 6 nations, ford/eastmond/Joseph just too small, teams will run at all day.

    Reply
  • marleyd123
    12:15 AM 04/04/2015

    Okay I'm gonna start by saying I'm a massive Tuilagi fan. Anyway he is just one man you cannot leave out or play from the bench he's a 17 stone centre he's basically a human tank. I know all this talk about playing him at 12 but he can easily play on the wings as well. He's just someone teams dream to have. And if the article I read is right then he should be fully fit for the world cup. So in my eyes he is extremely valuable to England if they wanna win the world cup.

    Reply
  • bonrad
    12:00 AM 04/04/2015

    I'm with Adam...

    Reply
  • finedisregard
    10:47 PM 03/04/2015

    He is a good defender and ball carrier but I don't think he is a good distributor. If they do select him just keep him off the ferry and away from David Cameron!

    Reply
  • mattmon10
    10:33 PM 03/04/2015

    Apologies Adam. The song choice wasn't ours, we researched some videos and despite others having different songs the clip qualities weren't as good. Sorry for any offence caused.

    Reply
  • mattmon10
    9:00 PM 03/04/2015

    He has to be eased back in gradually, you're right. If it goes well then by all means start him come the RWC, if not then I'd have him on the bench as a battering ram substitute.

    Reply
  • mullet7182
    8:46 PM 03/04/2015

    3 games in the Autumn before the RWC starts. Give him 20, 40 and then 60? Ease him back into it. Although there's no guarantee that he's even going to be fit enough to play come the Autumn.

    Reply
  • mattmon10
    5:27 PM 03/04/2015

    I like the idea of Tuilagi as an impact player, could be devastating off the bench. However, he does have the ability to put in an incredible full 80 minutes, so why not start him and get a full brutal 80, rather than just 20 minutes or so - tough call. It's the first time in a while that England have had real selection headaches in the centre.

    Reply
  • mullet7182
    5:19 PM 03/04/2015

    Considering the time restraints, could England utilise Manu as an impact player rather than a starter? Or do they throw all caution to the wind in the warm up games and play him from the start?

    Reply
  • mattmon10
    4:30 PM 03/04/2015

    Totally. They are very limited timewise with what they can do. Only a few warm-up matches before the RWC starts, but Tuilagi & Joseph in the centres could be so good it needs to be tried I suppose. Can't wait to see what happens.

    Reply
  • bunn
    4:27 PM 03/04/2015

    If they can get the 12 thing working it would be great. Don't have much opportunity to do it though....

    Reply


Great Tries

View All

Big Hits & Dirty Play

View All

See It To Believe It

View All

Funnies

View All

Amateur

View All

Player Features

View All
How Valuable is Manu Tuilagi To England's World Cup Ambitions? | RugbyDump - Rugby News & Videos