Pick Ford for Six Nations Rome raid: Moody



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    Former international flanker Lewis Moody has urged England to adopt an all-out attack against Italy, with George Ford the fly-half who should conduct the points grab in Rome.

    The climactic round of the Six Nations unfolds on Saturday with England, Ireland and France locked in a three-way shoot-out for the title.

    Armed with a seemingly insurmountable points difference, the Irish are in the driving seat knowing victory at the Stade de France would all-but assure Brian O’Driscoll’s final Test ends in fairytale fashion.

    Italy must be overwhelmed at the Stadio Olimpico as Ireland’s points superiority is 49 greater than England’s, but Moody insists it can be done.

    And the former England captain believes 20-year-old Bath fly-half Ford, who made his debut as a late replacement in Sunday’s 29-18 victory over Wales, should be asked to pull the strings.

    “England can allow George a start,” Moody said.

    “I don’t think changing one player in the starting XV will have a great impact on the outcome of the match.

    “George needs game time because England need to see what other options they have at fly-half, so hopefully he’ll start against Italy.

    “England have their hands on a piece of silverware in the Triple Crown, which is reward for their endeavour so far.

    “OK it’s not what they want, they want the title and to do that they have to score as many points as possible against Italy.”

    England were kept in title contention with a surprisingly comfortable victory over Wales at Twickenham that avenged their 30-3 rout in Cardiff last year.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (4)

    • March 11th 2014 @ 11:38am
      DB said | March 11th 2014 @ 11:38am | ! Report

      Ford will lead England to dominate the game for a long time if given a chance. The bloke is the northern equivalent of DC – can run, pass and kick, control the game brilliantly and can defend. More importantly, he has a very attacking mindset and with Tuilagi, Burrell, Brown, Wade, Yarde and possibly Burgess outside of him, they will be very hard to overcome.

      Combine his skills with the sound all round english game and we could be (unfortunately) looking at the Red Rose dominating the game once more.

      • March 11th 2014 @ 10:17pm
        Colin N said | March 11th 2014 @ 10:17pm | ! Report

        Well, defensively we’re not so sure about him yet. He’s slight and he’s missed a few tackles but he’s pretty tough and he has the commitment to make tackles.

        • March 11th 2014 @ 11:03pm
          Tane Mahuta said | March 11th 2014 @ 11:03pm | ! Report

          According to ESPN hes missed about 1 of his last 35 tackle attempts in the Aviva.

          I think he needs a run at international level but Farrell is pretty good at the moment.

          • March 12th 2014 @ 10:02pm
            Colin N said | March 12th 2014 @ 10:02pm | ! Report

            If you look at Saracens’ first try in their game a couple of weeks ago he eventually completed the tackle against Tomkins, but missed the initial hit and allowed the centre to get his hands through the tackle, which led to the try.

            Against Exeter, although the defensive line in general was a shambles at the time, he flapped at Whitten (I think it was) which saw the centre going over.

            Personally, if someone has the attacking potential of Ford, they should be backed (a bit like McKenzie has done with Cooper) and not criticised for their apparent weaknesses.

            I would like to see him start against Italy but, with the title still on the line and Farrell playing very well, I can’t see it happening. He’s an excellent option to have off the bench with 30 minutes to go if England need to score a few tries.

            What it does mean, though, is that Ford’s first start could come against New Zealand in June if Saracens get to the final of the Premiership. Good luck.

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