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World Cup - The Lessons Learnt

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    World Cup - The Lessons Learnt

    I think what is hurting me the most is that it really feels like we came away from this World Cup without firing a decent shot. The euphoria (by supporters) after comprehensively beating an awful French side was over the top.
    If you asked anyone before the tournament how we would go with losing O’Connell, Sexton, O’Mahony, Payne and Bowe to injury and O’Brien to suspension for the World Cup quarter-final then they would have said it was going to be tough. Very tough. I’d say most people wanted a semi-final but knew that for this to happen we’d have to retain the bulk of those players and crucially not lose Sexton or Murray. Losing the players we did brought us back to the pack. It turned the quarter final into a lottery against Argentina rather than something we could control.
    We need to be very careful not to ‘throw the baby out with the bath water’. If Sexton had been fully fit and we’d only lost one of the back rowers to injury and one of Bowe/Payne (as you would expect by the law of averages) then I firmly believe we would have beaten Argentina.

    We are a very good side. We were however robbed of most of our key players. The IRFU have done an excellent job since professionalism to improve the number of players feeding into the provinces and hence the national team. They’ve appointed the best coaches they can. We currently have the best coach we can.

    The All Blacks exited the World Cup in 2007 at the same stage as we just have and did not sack their coaching team. They decided to harness the lessons learnt. Trust that they had the right people in place and build for 2011. I firmly believe we should do the same. Schmidt is without a doubt the right man…however we need him to feel the same way about us.

    Personally I think it’s about refining and tweaking some of the existing structures which I believe are very good (and are actually very close to the Kiwi model which we all know works very well);

    - Better distribution of playing resources throughout provinces. This might not be popular, but clearing out backlogs of players in certain positions will help the national team. The counter-argument has been that why should a province suffer for developing their own talent however if a third choice young loosehead prop moves, it opens up an opportunity for the younger props stuck in the backlog to get experience earlier…something that seems to happen more in Super Rugby.

    - Continue to limit the number of foreign imports. Keep them to the high quality only. Journeymen should not be encouraged and I think the reduction in numbers has been beneficial. Ian Madigan is a perfect example of why we need to limit the numbers. Leinster’s season would not have been significantly worse without Gopperth, however Madigan would almost certainly have played a lot more in the big games at 10.

    - Somehow get more game time away to the Southern Hemisphere teams. Take our beatings. Learn our lessons.

    Thoughts?

    #2
    We are going to get game time against the SH. In June we play three tests against SA. The problem is that the players will be at the end of playing two years without a break whereas the SA players will have a four month close season after the RWC finishes. The best thing that could be done is rest the entire first team and send a skeleton team including as many foreign based players as possible, but there will be a right old tantrum if that happens, even though the SH nations bring weakened squads up to the NH every year.

    Comment


      #3
      Something that has puzzled me for a long time needs to be addressed.
      The thought that the flyhalf MUST be our kicker. It's holding us back. I've seen Conor Murray kick for Garryowen many a time and he was pretty damn good. He practices place kicking before most Munster matches as far as I know, yet he's never used.
      If he (or anybody else that's capable)was allowed to kick regularly, and had good stats, then our options at fly half become even stronger. Jackson is better than Madigan in most aspects of flyhalf play, yet he was left on the bench because he can't kick.
      Kearney has shown previously that he can kick at goal (of course, he also showed that he could scuff them, with that famous long distance attempt in Thomond Park). Why hasn't he been encouraged to keep up the practice and to improve to international kicking standard?
      Having multiple kickers in a team can only strengthen it, yet we continue to be obsessed with only our flyhalf kicking at goal. This attitude needs to change if we're to progress.

      Roger Roger. What's our vector, Victor?
      --------------------------------------------------------------------
      RIP Anthony Foley - The greatest of great Munster men.
      --------------------------------------------------------------------

      Comment


        #4
        Your basic premise is undermined by the fact that there was almost no one in support of starting Jackson last weekend, I was laughed at for saying he should start both here and on PR. The evidence suggests Joe simply doesn't rate him
        My computer thinks I'm gay
        What's the difference anyway
        When all the people do all day
        Is stare into a phone

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by sewa View Post
          Your basic premise is undermined by the fact that there was almost no one in support of starting Jackson last weekend, I was laughed at for saying he should start both here and on PR. The evidence suggests Joe simply doesn't rate him
          When one considers the lack of top level playing time Madigan has had in recent years at Leinster compared with Jackson at an Ulster team that are doing well, we need some answers as to why Jackson is so underused at international level.. if he's not good enough fine, but if it is because Madigan "has a better understanding of Joe's systems" we have an issue.

          I think we should persevere with the current coaching set-up, but they need to be held to account and asked the hard questions.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by sewa View Post
            Your basic premise is undermined by the fact that there was almost no one in support of starting Jackson last weekend, I was laughed at for saying he should start both here and on PR. The evidence suggests Joe simply doesn't rate him
            People are always laughing at you though. Any good points you make get ignored due to the enormous amount of wumming you do.

            Roger Roger. What's our vector, Victor?
            --------------------------------------------------------------------
            RIP Anthony Foley - The greatest of great Munster men.
            --------------------------------------------------------------------

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Captain Average View Post
              People are always laughing at you though. Any good points you make get ignored due to the enormous amount of wumming you do.
              Well that's up to them, no one is forced to read my posts here or on PR
              My computer thinks I'm gay
              What's the difference anyway
              When all the people do all day
              Is stare into a phone

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Captain Average View Post
                Something that has puzzled me for a long time needs to be addressed.
                The thought that the flyhalf MUST be our kicker. It's holding us back. I've seen Conor Murray kick for Garryowen many a time and he was pretty damn good. He practices place kicking before most Munster matches as far as I know, yet he's never used.
                If he (or anybody else that's capable)was allowed to kick regularly, and had good stats, then our options at fly half become even stronger. Jackson is better than Madigan in most aspects of flyhalf play, yet he was left on the bench because he can't kick.
                Kearney has shown previously that he can kick at goal (of course, he also showed that he could scuff them, with that famous long distance attempt in Thomond Park). Why hasn't he been encouraged to keep up the practice and to improve to international kicking standard?
                Having multiple kickers in a team can only strengthen it, yet we continue to be obsessed with only our flyhalf kicking at goal. This attitude needs to change if we're to progress.
                Would that not be painting 2 bullseye targets on the likes of Murray?
                Tic-Toc. POC and DOC. Stop the clock.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I have learned that it's better to be delusional and happy most of the time rather than be...Outlaw. (Sorry Outlaw :D)
                  Tic-Toc. POC and DOC. Stop the clock.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    its because PJ never wore Blue.
                    Gavin Hastings was FB and he was Scotland's most prolific kicker, we are obsessed with the OH being the kicker.
                    As for other lessons, just because you can lift 220Kgs in the gym doesn't make you the best prop in the country, healy can barely get his arms above his head and on last weeks performance couldn't knock snow off a wet rope.
                    We need over all strength and stamina not just gym jockeys.
                    psychoanalysis is wasted on the Irish; Sigmund Freud

                    Comment


                      #11
                      A bit of pace in the back three always helps..

                      Comment


                        #12
                        We need to stop building gameplans around individuals who have no backup capable of sufficiently executing that gameplan.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by treatycity1 View Post
                          its because PJ never wore Blue.
                          Gavin Hastings was FB and he was Scotland's most prolific kicker, we are obsessed with the OH being the kicker.
                          As for other lessons, just because you can lift 220Kgs in the gym doesn't make you the best prop in the country, healy can barely get his arms above his head and on last weeks performance couldn't knock snow off a wet rope.
                          We need over all strength and stamina not just gym jockeys.
                          I think that's a little harsh on Healy, he has been a cracking player for Ireland but just wasn't quite fit. Joe shouldn't have picked him but players rarely turn down caps and the associated match bonusses
                          My computer thinks I'm gay
                          What's the difference anyway
                          When all the people do all day
                          Is stare into a phone

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Some Lessons;:

                            - The systems in Ireland are good & produce good players, teams & squads, we just need to build on these further
                            - The coaching ticket is good & there was a need to refresh the defence coaching anyway (Les Kiss is going to Ulster)
                            - We need to improve players basic skills further (bonus point (i.e. running) rugby in place of knock out (minimise error) rugby at schools/youths level, 7s & tag at underage levels (summer camps of these), more national input to provincial skills development& coaching (David Nucifera)
                            - Proper standardised skills measurement metrics, (e.g. speed off the mark, speed of pass, accuracy of pass (throw), kicking (distance, accuracy, both feet), swerve, sidestep, catching, retention strength on ball, strength of ball rip ability, etc, etc, etc)
                            - Use these skills measurements to rate player's from schools/youths up e.g. height, weight, muscle mass, power/weight, acceleration, aerobic and skills (as above), Skills, SKILLS!!!
                            - Measuring how much a player can lift is only one indicator of power and does not show the applcability or useability of that power in game situationsI.e. no-one lifts a dumbbell in a match
                            - Send an A Level side on end of season tours (or other games) to improve squad depth & knowledge of systems used,etc,etc

                            - Try to develop a game plan for RWCups (& 6Ns) that specifically reduces overall attrition, risk of injury, & improves the potential durability & availability of players for more games (e.g. prioritising running at space more, & offloads, than 100s of attritional rucks, kicking for territory from areas of the pitch with low reward for risk, etc, etc) - measure this& rate it (I.e players lost, how long gone, at what stage of game, where o on the pitch, what phase of play, etc, etc, etc, then do specific preparation to mitigate these risks I.e. put an even higher priority on a kicker (e.g. Madigan) not to miss touch right before half time v France, etc, as this not just risks scores but also injury at that stage)
                            - Try to develop & improve S&C & Recovery programmes to improve the above e.g. Pool, Pilates & Yoga sessions, monitoring of hydration, lactic acid , flexibility & otter markers, etc, etc, etc
                            - Don't fatigue top players unnecessarily by playing too much or for too long v minnow sides in tournaments I.e. actively use squad rotation, player management, recovery weeks, etc, etc
                            - Pick players who have skills above certain minimum acceptable levels for their positions ( e.g. wingers who are fast enough, etc,etc,etc )
                            - Try to guard against selecting players due to either a provincial &/or familiarity bias - maybe measure this to assess it's risk
                            - Get RWC to change the way they schedule group matches so that 2 top seeds do not meet on the last weekend of the group, and if they have to meet( due to tv/entertainment requirements say), then this should be decided by a random draw by group and that the match should be first of the weekend and not the last as Ireland's & France's unfairly was this RWC.

                            Overall though, I wouldn't be too harsh on this Ireland coaching& management team. They've done well overall so far, with a slightly underwhelming world cup from an easy group draw but match scheduling was against them for a good quarter final performance, to be fair, and this has had a major impact imho. (Just ask JS, SOB, POC or the wonderful POM who all played just 1 week earlier)
                            Last edited by Daithi; 21-October-2015, 11:56.
                            ____________________________________________
                            Munster were great when they were Munster.

                            alas they are just north munster now.......
                            ____________________________________________

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by sewa View Post
                              I think that's a little harsh on Healy, he has been a cracking player for Ireland but just wasn't quite fit. Joe shouldn't have picked him but players rarely turn down caps and the associated match bonusses
                              Agree sewa. Healy, when fit, is the best loosehead we have in Ireland. But he clearly wasn't fit
                              "There are a lot of points that we’ve left behind and this is with a young group. That probably tells you what they’re capable of and that they’re a very good side.

                              Probably next year or the year after next they will take some stopping"

                              Anthony Foley, May 2016. Axel RIP

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