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Paul

Roar Guru

Joined October 2017

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“Our problem is more that our 5 to 8 are in transition at the moment”.

Australia’s batting issues are, in part due to your comment above TG, but also due to us getting little or nothing from the tail as well. This makes us vulnerable to underscore, as we did in the 2 losses in India, because of the top 4 don’t get 80 plus per cent of the runs, it’s not likely the rest of the current order will get us through to a decent total.

This creates a dilemma, not so much for Warner & Finch, but certainly for Smith & Labuschagne. If they bat with a strike rate in the low to mid 80’s, what guarantee will they have anyone after them will pick up the pace? More to the point, what guarantee do they have anyone will stay there and make runs at anything approaching a run a ball?

Clearly the batting is a work in progress, but we need to consider all of the 11 guys batting & their ability to make runs, not just 5 – 8, IMO.

If we don’t want to end up like India, who rarely win if the top 4 don’t score the huge majority of runs, we a) need more out of the entire order and b) need 3, 4 & 5 to bat long when needed, but also score at a s/r close to 100 or better.

Three players Australia must select to tour South Africa

When I read the headline, I assume this piece was going to explain whether he thought Jack Wighton would become a star and if so, why. Instead I read a very pleasant history lesson on the career of Laurie Daley and the obvious comparison with Wighton.

I’m none the wiser having read this in deciding whether Wighton can become a star. He’s good defensively, can kick and has determination, all admirable qualities for an NRL spine player, but nothing suggesting stardom. Perhaps I’ll need to wait a few more seasons to see if he can become as good a player as Daley, Lockyer, etc.

Like Laurie Daley before him, will Jack Wighton now become a star?

I still think the jury’s out on Labuschagne, despite the glowing words from Kohli. He’s made an okay start to his ODI career, but numbers 3 & 4 are positions where the score really needs to accelerate and scoring at under 100 is not a long term option.

By all means let him play out the rest of the ODI summer, but I hope selectors don’t get fixated by having a stable batting lineup, if it’s not winning us games.

The rest of the squad Ronan’s named would be a no-brainer, I’d have thought, but who plays in the best XI would surely depend on ground & pitch conditions.

Three players Australia must select to tour South Africa

It’s certainly hard to disagree with Maloney’s impact on the teams he’s played for, including NSW. I hadn’t considered him HoF material but when you look at what he’s achieved, he should certainly rate a mention. Good article, Jaydem, thanks for writing it

Where does James Maloney rate among the NRL's greats?

you may well be right but surely more recent form should have been considered as well? Apart from that innings he’s done little since.

What are the reasons behind Australia's loss against India?

Spiro has created a paradox with this article. On the one hand, he suggests we should be using homegrown talent, not only in Australia but across the rugby world, but then rightly points out we have no pathways for coaches in this country to come through in order to be considered capable of doing the top jobs.

In other words, we would struggle to find top Australian coaches, but we apparently won’t win any major tournament unless we do???

Rennie and Penney should be the last of the NZ coaches in Australian rugby

I’m more than a tad dubious about the UK and how our coaches go over there Greg. Nathan Brown’s a great example where he did super well in England and only moderately so at Newcastle.

“a truly good coach should be able to create a game plan to suit the cattle he has, rather than need to completely rebuild his roster”.

Completely agree, but I also question how far coaches/Clubs need to go based on expectations? IMO Michael Maguire has done a super job at the Tigers with the cattle he has, but they’re still not making the finals. Robinson however is making finals, but they’ve had to bring in a fair bit of fresh talent to do so.

I suspect Holbrook will need, not a complete rebuild, but at least one real impact forward and maybe an organiser to be finals competitive.

Why your team will do better in 2020: Gold Coast Titans

They’re back at it in South Africa in February, then have a series against the Black Caps in Oz then presumably into the IPL. They might get a spell, but it won’t be for long.

Five things we learnt from India vs Australia

I wrote a piece suggesting we should think about selecting 11 bowlers. Obviously a tad OTT but who’s to say either option might not work, if we have a great XI of bowlers and don’t have enough quality bats?

Turner and Agar leave the Aussie middle order weak

good call about Finch defending his players, TG. That said, he can’t truly believe Maxwell does not deserve a place in the top 7 batting order in this format? IMO he’s miles ahead of Agar

Turner and Agar leave the Aussie middle order weak

This is a great first piece Greg and I look forward to reading the next 7 articles you mentioned.

I know you’ve focused on the players in this piece, but these days in the NRL it’s also about how the Club;s tracking, how the coach is going, etc which in turn provides confidence to the players and ultimately their fans.

Right now, the Titans management needs to show it is settled and has short & long term plans for both the team and the Club as a whole. The coach is clearly an unknown and as we know from experience, plenty can talk a good game but few can deliver when asked.

If I was a Titans fan, I’d expect nothing for a year or two while Holbrook sorts out the roster he wants and the guys get used to his coaching style. I’d suggest bottom 3 this year, just outside the top 8 in 2021 and if they continue to improve, the finals in 2022. That is, if Holbrook can really coach, if they can recruit smart and the Club doesn’t implode.

Why your team will do better in 2020: Gold Coast Titans

I don’t disagree with the point Ronan’s making but surely how we structure the team comes down to what tactics we want to employ to win games.

England, for example, don’t have great ODI bowlers ( Archer excepted), but can bat to at least 10, so their tactic is simple – post a big score and try & contain or allow the opposition to make what ever then run it down.

We have a team that can bowl sides out ( as we saw in the first ODI), but not one that can “do an England”. If that’s what we want, do we sacrifice a quality bowler for more hitting power, so we look to have 3 quality bowlers and three or 4 guys to bowl another 20 between them, but choose guys who can hit?

Right now, IMO we have a Test side trying to play ODI cricket and it works occasionally but not all the time.

Turner and Agar leave the Aussie middle order weak

Well, lets hope Short & Handscomb a) get a game and b) make some runs, because if they don’t, it’d show up this comment from Finch to be poor judgement.

Turner and Agar leave the Aussie middle order weak

What was the Australian score in the first ODI, Kopa?

Turner and Agar leave the Aussie middle order weak

hi David, you’ve got a bit of a different take than I – as always!!

1. I don’t see Australia being below either England or India in this format. The most recent times we’ve played England, we split two games. Fair enough, they won the one that mattered in the World Cup but a draw is still acceptable. In the case of India, we’ve now split two series in their country over the past 12 months and our tally is 4 all. Again, that suggests to me we’re pretty evenly matched.

2. Finch needs to consider a) where he bats these two and b) if they even play in the same lineup. Both can hit out, but not as well as others, so can they bat 3 & 4 or maybe 3 & 5 with Maxwell at 4? Or does one simply miss out OR, does Labuschagne bat down the order and keep wicket, so the lineup could be Finch Warner Smith Maxwell Handscomb MM Labuschagne?

3. I thought the selectors chose the team too early and when they did, they rightly left Maxwell on the sidelines. In hindsight, there was no need to select the team until a week or two before the actual tour, in which case he and maybe MM might have got berths.

4. Agreed though the one qualifier that needs to be included is “in-form”. The Stoinis Maxwell failure in England arguably cost us a place in the final.

5. I understand your reasoning about resting guys, but Sunday was a funny game. The early overs from Bumrah for example, were some of the worst I’ve seen in a while and the two Aussies weren’t a lot better. No doubt your suggestion of a rest will fall on deaf ears, given the BBL finals and the tour to South Africa and more games against the Black Caps.

Five things we learnt from India vs Australia

I assumed the same Pickett, but I still don’t get why the second best team in world rugby needs an untested assistant coach to do that?

Bit sad when there’s apparently no better options to teach guys how to tackle in the home of rugby.

Eddie Jones recruits Storm assistant Jason Ryles for England rugby coaching set-up

forgive my ignorance, but what is a designated FTB or HTB?

Five things we learnt from India vs Australia

I don’t get Jones comments. How is Ryles going to help players “around the rucks” and what does he mean by “he will help us with the way the game’s going”?

Good on him for taking up this challenge but still don’t get what a 4 season assistant League coach brings to Rugby?

Eddie Jones recruits Storm assistant Jason Ryles for England rugby coaching set-up

Randy, a huge plus on favour of the Raiders are the other teams coming back to the pack. The Storm & Roosters are not as strong as they were last season IMO and your boys seem to have covered the one area of concern when you got Williams.

I agree it’s way too early to start the Premiership dance and certainly the tag of favorites might be premature, but again,the signs are promising.

The myth of the Parramatta Eels will be shot down in 2020

The reason why we didn’t win was because we didn’t select our best XI. We should have been 2upafter2 games, if guys had not made some fundamental errors and we had in-form guys to finish. That would have made the last game a dead rubber.

Selectors – take note.

What are the reasons behind Australia's loss against India?

I get where you’re coming form Micko, but am not sure you’re exactly on the money. Wagner would be very effective if there’s anything through the air or off the the pitch,similar in some ways to James Anderson. He was obviously not going to get much of either in Australia, so used another tactic, relatively successfully.

You’re right, this was largely a defensive approach, but took a lot of skill and an aggressive mindset to execute well, especially at the pace he was bowling.Anderson’s tactic, when he’s getting no movement, is to bowl 2 foot outside off stump with a 7/3 or 8/2 field and wait for a mistake. Now THAT’s defensive bowling.

I'd like to say sorry for the Black Caps' abysmal tour

The big concern for me is how Mary’s coaching record, which started so well, has gone down & down, now that he has a major say in what players he wants in his squad. A winning percentage of 47 just won’t get it done.

The myth of the Parramatta Eels will be shot down in 2020

You make some excellent points 40/20 though my issues with McGregor are not only about the players he has to work with.

McGregor’s entering his 6th season as Dragons coach and this is HIS roster. He can’t point fingers at previous coaches for leaving him dead wood, he’s got what he wanted and this side still nearly won a wooden spoon. I agree the backs are a concern and we’re going to struggle again this year, but a Bellamy or Robinson would either look for someone who they could develop to fill a hole or create a game plan that used the team’s strengths, ie the forwards.

My bigger issue though is his complete inability to coach this team for a full season. He can coach them, as he did in 2017 & 2018, so they look like world beaters till about round 14 or 15, then fall in a huge hole – not once, not twice, but three seasons in a row. Last year, they came out of the blocks fast, won 4 or 5 early games, he got a contract renewal and the side won only 3 or 4 games after that.

You’re not going to get the head coaches job in the NRL unless you have talent but in Mary’s case, his coaching skillset is not suiting the Red V. Maybe that might change with Flanagan there, but if he can’t get these guys to stay switched on for 25 rounds, he has to go.

The myth of the Parramatta Eels will be shot down in 2020

you were on a roll till that last phrase, Papi!! 😊

The myth of the Parramatta Eels will be shot down in 2020

“You couldn’t begrudge the Eels or Raiders fans a title each pretty soon.”

As the author stated though 40/20, with Arthur as coach I just don’t think they’ll get there. Now if Bellamy had the same roster, that might be a different matter entirely.

If I was a Raiders fan, I’d be getting ready for a huge season and maybe a premiership to cap it off. They certainly seem to have the firepower to be top dogs this year.

The myth of the Parramatta Eels will be shot down in 2020