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The Myth of Conservative Kidney

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    The Myth of Conservative Kidney

    We often hear about Kidney's innate conservatism compared to Warren Gatland so I thought it might interesting to have a look at their records when it comes to capping players.

    Let's have a look at the number of players capped by Gatland since 2007. I've bolded the players that remain in live contention for Test places today.

    WELSH PLAYERS CAPPED UNDER GATLAND
    1056 Morgan Stoddart South Africa 24 November 2007
    1057 Jamie Roberts Scotland 9 February 2008
    1058 Warren Fury South Africa 7 June 2008
    1059 Andrew Bishop South Africa 14 June 2008 6 0 0 0 0
    1060 Leigh Halfpenny South Africa 8 November 2008
    1061 Andy Powell South Africa 8 November 2008
    1062 Martin Roberts Canada 14 November 2008
    1063 Dan Biggar Canada 14 November 2008 3 0 7 7 0
    1064 Eifion Lewis-Roberts Canada 14 November 2008
    1065 Bradley Davies Scotland 8 February 2009 3 0 0 0 0
    1066 Jonathan Davies Canada 30 May 2009 2 2 0 0 0
    1067 Daniel Evans Canada 30 May 2009 2 0 0 0 0
    1068 Craig Mitchell Canada 30 May 2009 2 0 0 0 0
    1069 Jonathan Spratt Canada 30 May 2009 2 0 0 0 0
    1070 Sam Warburton United States 6 June 2009 1 0 0 0 0
    1071 Dan Lydiate Argentina 21 November 2009 2 0 0 0 0
    1072 Richie Rees England 6 February 2010 2 0 0 0 0
    1073 Rhys Gill Ireland 13 February 2010 1 0 0 0 0
    1074 Tom Prydie Italy 20 March 2010 4 0 0 0 0
    1075 Rob McCusker South Africa 5 June 2010 3 0 0 0 0
    1076 Tavis Knoyle New Zealand 19 June 2010 1 0 0 0 0
    1077 Will Harries New Zealand 26 June 2010 2 0 0 0 0
    1078 George North South Africa 12 November 2010 1 2 0 0 0
    1079 Rhys Priestland
    Scotland 12 February 2010 10 1 12 7 0
    1080 Josh Turnbull Scotland 12 February 2010 3 0 0 0 0
    1081 Ryan Bevington Barbarians 4 June 2011 7 0 0 0 0
    1082 Toby Faletau Barbarians 4 June 2011 11 2 0 0 0
    1083 Scott Andrews Barbarians 4 June 2011 2 0 0 0 0
    1084 Lloyd Burns
    Barbarians 4 June 2011 7 1 0 0 0
    1085 Scott Williams Barbarians 4 June 2011 8 4 0 0 0
    1086 Justin Tipuric
    Argentina 20 August 2011 2 0 0 0 0
    1087 Lloyd Williams
    Argentina 20 August 2011
    1088 Ken Owens
    Namibia 26 September 2011 1 0 0 0 0
    1089 Alex Cuthbert
    Australia 3 December 2011 1 0 0 0 0
    1090 Aaron Shingler
    Scotland 12 February 2012 1 0 0 0 0
    1091 Lou Reed
    Scotland 12 February 2012 1 0 0 0 0
    1092 Rhys Webb Italy 10 March 2012

    In total, that's 36 players in total capped by Gatland since he's been hired. 20 of those would still be considered part of the wider Welsh squad.

    Now, for Ireland players capped under Kidney since he's been hired. Again, I've highlighted players that are still in and around the squad.

    PLAYERS CAPPED BY KIDNEY SINCE 2009

    Keith Earls
    Donnacha Ryan
    Tom Court
    Ryan Caldwell
    Darren Cave
    Ian Dowling
    Ian Keatley
    John Muldoon
    Niall Ronan
    Mike Ross
    Ian Whitten
    Denis Hurley
    Cian Healy
    Jonathan Sexton
    Sean Cronin

    Sean O'Brien
    Kevin McLaughlin
    John Fogarty
    Dan Tuohy
    Chris Henry
    Rhys Ruddock
    Damien Varley
    Devin Toner
    Fergus McFadden
    Mike McCarthy
    Felix Jones
    Conor Murray
    Peter O'Mahony

    Declan Fitzpatrick
    Simon Zebo

    Ronan Loughney
    Michael Bent
    Iain Henderson
    Dave Kilcoyne
    Richardt Strauss
    Craig Gilroy


    Players capped by Kidney since he's been hired - 36. The number who could still be considered as being in and around the squad today? 19.

    So both Kidney and Gatland have capped 36 players in their reigns to date (Gatland not being in charge of Wales since the end of 6N 2012).
    Last edited by joeriddick; 13th-February-2013, 21:34. Reason: Munsterfans ate my table.
    To The Brave and the Faithful, Nothing is Unpublishable.

    #2
    No Irish table, presume you don't mean no new caps

    (there we go)
    Last edited by Hugged Rugger; 13th-February-2013, 21:37.
    "Some people don't know their easy lives... I wouldn't be so ungrateful" - Fiacre Ryan - #AutismAndMe

    Comment


      #3
      Continued:

      So, of the players given their debuts by each coach, how many remain a fixture today? My basic point - what is the success rate of new players capped?

      Let's take a look at general player retention first. How many players have generally been picked and then stayed in and around the squad up until today?

      Gatlands Debut/Retention Rate since 2007: 55%
      Kidney's Debut Retention Rate since 2009: 53%

      So, pretty even there and that's with Gatland having two seasons head start on Kidney.

      Now, how about front line players? Of the players given their debut, and retained under each head coach, how many have become first choice players? I'll be generous and allow for two players where it might be considered a toss up in either side. I haven't included definite bench players.

      Gatlands Debut/FL Player Rate since 2007: 52%
      Kidney's Debut/ FL Player Rate since 2009: 57%

      So, of players given their debut and retained by Kidney, he has made first choice players out of 57% of them. Gatland's is lower, even though he's been in charge two years longer.

      I'm not sure if comparing "conservative" Kidney to "have a go" Gatland is correct considering they've both capped the same number of players.
      To The Brave and the Faithful, Nothing is Unpublishable.

      Comment


        #4
        Fair play joe. Interesting read
        "Some people don't know their easy lives... I wouldn't be so ungrateful" - Fiacre Ryan - #AutismAndMe

        Comment


          #5
          Well said . . .All of it . .

          Comment


            #6
            Groundbreaking thread.
            Yorn desh born, der ritt de gitt der gue,
            Orn desh, dee born desh, de umn bork! bork! bork!

            Comment


              #7
              I don't think that Kidney is conservative to a fault. The way he brought on O'Leary and Hurley for a massive HEC match was certainly not conservative. There is a very rigid notion of a 'queue' in Irish rugby, however, which precedes Kidney and was worse under O'Sullivan. Ryan was playing much better than O'Callaghan last year but O'Callaghan was getting the nod. O'Callaghan is in much better form this year but his position in the queue has changed and so he gets the bench. The delayed manner in which Ross was introduced has been discussed numerous times here. Worst of all was the Paddy Wallace call up for NZ. That was definitely a clear example of a the 'queue' mentality. Wallace was next in the queue for the centre position and form or circumstance was ignored and they pulled the poor fecker off the beach and made him look like a fool.

              There's a delayed reaction to form............it all seems reactive rather than proactive. Players are brought through and sometimes the management do well to introduce young players (eg Conor Murray) but on too many occasions we find ourselves in a situation where if player A gets injured there is panic about who steps up. The current outhalf situation is a good example.

              That's my criticism of Kidney. On the plus side I really get the feeling that there is a core group of players in this squad that are starting to gell together and Deccie is behind all that. Murray and Sexton are developing a good relationship and the pack is starting to look meaner all the time. We've tended to have a good game-bad game pattern over the past while but I think things are starting to change but I think Deccie will be let go and I'm afraid the O'Gara decision could be the rope that hangs him, I just hope I'm wrong. If he is replaced I hope the new guy builds on what Deccie has done and doesn't throw out the baby with the bath water.

              Comment


                #8
                Yep that's it, it's more that he keeps sticking with tried and tested even if there's a glaringly better player available eg Ross / Hayes / Buckley or Ryan Last year for Doc.
                The system is dead! Long live the process!

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by joconnell View Post
                  Yep that's it, it's more that he keeps sticking with tried and tested even if there's a glaringly better player available eg Ross / Hayes / Buckley or Ryan Last year for Doc.
                  I think the problem with Ross was his fitness - he was going to have to last for 80 minutes - whereas for Leinster props were generally changed at 60 mins. We all saw what happened when Court came on for Ross against England when he got injured.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    People on this forum have it in their head that Gatland is some sort of managerial wizard and Kidney is Eddie v2.0, I've always thought it very strange and it doesn't stand to scrutiny as you've shown.

                    It would be more accurate to describe kidney as a manager who is adventurous when things are going well and he's feeling confident and stubborn when things aren't and theres pressure on.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Kidney was forced into those changes though and you could argue he has more options than Gatland. Wales also look like more of a cohesive team under Gatland and play above the sum of their parts, unlike Ireland. Since the elvs came in 2009 Irelands style of play has been confusing with Bod admitting that last year.

                      The speed of the changes is where people have the biggest problem with Kidney. He is slow to make changes and that includes tactical changes.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by dropkick View Post
                        Kidney was forced into those changes though and you could argue he has more options than Gatland. Wales also look like more of a cohesive team under Gatland and play above the sum of their parts, unlike Ireland. Since the elvs came in 2009 Irelands style of play has been confusing with Bod admitting that last year.

                        The speed of the changes is where people have the biggest problem with Kidney. He is slow to make changes and that includes tactical changes.
                        If there were any more changes there would be no experience or continuity in the team. I'd imagine most coaches would want to retain a core of experience in their team and anyway expect to have 20% of their team injured at any one time (thats why they bring 30 players to the world cup and not just 22).

                        How successful has the Welsh style of play been? Most think its gone away from their traditional style and is downright boring with no room for a Shane Williams type player anymore.

                        BOD (who missed the 6Ns and where there had been quite a few changes in the team in particular no backs coach as Gaffney was gone) said he didn't know who to ask about attack when they were on the summer tour of New Zealand. There is every chance that that was down to him not being around for the 6 weeks of the 6Ns and feeling a bit out of it.

                        PS - I think a lot of the young Welsh players were discovered just before the world cup because of injuries.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Joeriddick. Interesting read even if I don't agree with the interpretation. Wales /IRL is an interesting comparison and what it does show i think is we've a similar player base - unsurprising since we have both 4 pro sides and also have a fairly similar attrition rate i.e. Losing players to injury.

                          The analysis is missing 2 things however i.e. 1. How many of the new caps were a player replacing an incumbent when it was not injury enforced? 2. How many changes overall within group of already capped players were made based on form? i.e. Not injury provocked.

                          I don't have any statistics for that but i suppose how many teams has Gatland picked with at least 1 unforced change versus kidney? This would be more revealing but difficult to get this data.

                          It's not often i agree with Dowlinz but i think he has a point about kidney tending to make proactive changes when things are going well and tending to not to change when under pressure. E.g. He made 0 unforced changes during last 6n's. That was extremely frustrating considering the form of the team and certain players. It's the exact opposite of what most other INTL coaches would do. This is why i would still label him a conservative - my opinion,perfectly willing to accept others might have a differn't one.
                          Last edited by Mcork; 14th-February-2013, 06:44.
                          Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again (like picking Gordon D'Arcy) and expecting different results.
                          Albert Einstein

                          Comment


                            #14
                            With the current rate of attrition in rugby, i'd say about 20% of the team will change every season season naturally so you'd expect significant changes to every team over a 4-5 year cycle. It's frightening to list the players Ireland have lost to injury enforced retirement or long term and repetitive injury. Pretty much over 1/2 a team of British lions since the 09 slam. PO'C, Ferris, Wallace, BOD, Leamy,'Fla, Bowe, Kearney etc all lost either indefinitely or for a full season at least.

                            Sexton for ROG, Murray for O'leary/reddan maybe Healy for horan? I'm missing some but not too many i guess where kidney made a selection call for a big test against the incumbent.. I think Gatland would come out well on top in relation to this. He rarely if ever picks the same team win or lose.
                            Last edited by Mcork; 14th-February-2013, 06:52.
                            Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again (like picking Gordon D'Arcy) and expecting different results.
                            Albert Einstein

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Mcork View Post
                              With the current rate of attrition in rugby, i'd say about 20% of the team will change every season season naturally so you'd expect significant changes to every team over a 4-5 year cycle. It's frightening to list the players Ireland have lost to injury enforced retirement or long term and repetitive injury. Pretty much over 1/2 a team of British lions since the 09 slam. PO'C, Ferris, Wallace, BOD, Leamy,'Fla, Bowe, Kearney etc all lost either indefinitely or for a full season at least.

                              Sexton for ROG, Murray for O'leary/reddan maybe Healy for horan? I'm missing some but not too many i guess where kidney made a selection call for a big test against the incumbent.. I think Gatland would come out well on top in relation to this. He rarely if ever picks the same team win or lose.

                              Welsh GS team in 2008 http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/rug...rand-Slam.html

                              Welsh Team in 2010

                              Lee Byrne (Ospreys); Tom Prydie (Ospreys); James Hook (Ospreys), Jamie Roberts (Cardiff Blues); Shane Williams (Ospreys); Stephen Jones (Llanelli Scarlets), Michael Phillips (Ospreys); Gethin Jenkins (Cardiff Blues), Matthew Rees (Llanelli Scarlets), Adam Jones (Ospreys), Bradley Davies (Cardiff Blues), Luke Charteris (Dragons), Jonathan Thomas (Ospreys), Sam Warburton (Cardiff Blues), Ryan Jones (capt, Ospreys).
                              Replacements: Huw Bennett, Paul James, Ian Gough, Gareth Delve, Dwayne Peel, Andrew Bishop, Tom Shanklin.

                              Welsh Team in 2012

                              FB 15 Leigh Halfpenny RW
                              14 Alex Cuthbert 41'
                              OC 13 Jonathan Davies
                              IC 12 Jamie Roberts
                              LW 11 George North
                              FH 10 Rhys Priestland
                              SH 9 Mike Phillips
                              N8 8 Toby Faletau
                              OF 7 Sam Warburton (c) 41'
                              BF 6 Ryan Jones
                              RL 5 Ian Evans
                              LL 4 Bradley Davies 64' to 74'
                              TP 3 Adam Jones 70'
                              HK 2 Huw Bennett
                              LP 1 Rhys Gill
                              Replacements:
                              HK 16 Ken Owens
                              PR 17 Paul James 70'
                              N8 18 Andy Powell
                              FL 19 Justin Tipuric 41'
                              SH 20 Lloyd Williams
                              FH 21 James Hook 41'
                              CE 22 Scott Williams

                              Irish Team in 2009

                              Rob Kearney (Leinster); Tommy Bowe (Ospreys), Brian O'Driscoll (Leinster, capt), Gordon D'Arcy (Leinster), Luke Fitzgerald (Leinster); Ronan O'Gara (Munster), Tomas O'Leary (Munster); Marcus Horan (Munster), Jerry Flannery (Munster), John Hayes (Munster), Donncha O'Callaghan (Munster), Paul O'Connell (Munster, capt), Stephen Ferris (Ulster), David Wallace (Munster), Jamie Heaslip (Leinster).
                              Replacements: Rory Best (Ulster), Tom Court (Ulster), M O'Driscoll (Munster), Denis Leamy (Munster), Peter Stringer (Munster), Paddy Wallace (Ulster), Geordan Murphy (Leicester).

                              Irish Team in 2012


                              FB 15 Rob Kearney
                              RW 14 Craig Gilroy
                              OC 13 Brian O'Driscoll
                              IC 12 Gordon D'Arcy
                              LW 11 Simon Zebo 10'
                              FH 10 Jonathan Sexton 31'
                              SH 9 Conor Murray
                              N8 8 Jamie Heaslip (c)
                              OF 7 Sean O'Brien 65'
                              BF 6 Peter O'Mahony
                              RL 5 Donnacha Ryan 65'
                              LL 4 Mike McCarthy
                              TP 3 Mike Ross 78'
                              HK 2 Rory Best 74'
                              LP 1 Cian Healy 74'
                              Replacements:
                              HK 16 Sean Cronin 74'
                              PR 17 David Kilcoyne 74'
                              PR 18 Declan Fitzpatrick 78'
                              LK 19 Donncha O'Callaghan 65'
                              FL 20 Chris Henry 65'
                              SH 21 Eoin Reddan
                              FH 22 Ronan O'Gara 31'
                              CE 23 Keith Earls
                              I always knew Madigan was a closet Scrum Half. Ignore All things that suggest Continuity.

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