Monday, March 16, 2009

Lion hunt

It's a perennial source of debate among rugby fans after each round of Six Nations matches as to where they leave us in terms of potential selection for the next Lions' tour. I blogged on this a few weeks' back when it looked like every place in the starting XV would be taken by an Irishman or a Welshman. Since then England have enjoyed a bit of a resurgence and even one or two Scots have made the case for inclusion, so here's my current line-up (with last month's selections in brackets).

15 Lee Byrne (Wales)
14 Mark Cueto (England) (Leigh Halfpenny, Wales))
13 Brian O'Driscoll (Ireland) (Jamie Roberts, Wales)
12 Riki Flutey (England) (Brian O'Driscoll, Ireland)
11 Shane Williams (Wales)
10 Stephen Jones(Wales)
9 Mike Phillips (Wales)
8 Jamie Heaslip (Ireland)
7 Joe Worsley (England) (David Wallace, Ireland)
6 Tom Croft (England) (Ryan Jones, Wales)
5 Alun Wyn Jones (Wales)
4 Paul O'Connell (Ireland, Captain)
3 John Hayes (Ireland)
2 Ross Ford (Scotland) (Jerry Flannery, Ireland)
1 Garin Jenkins (Wales)

In addition to these names I would say that Martyn Williams (Wales), Donncha O'Callagahn (Ireland), Andrew Sheridan (England) and James Hook (Wales) can probably be fairly certain of a place in the squad.

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stephen rouse said...

Not sure Flutey is the answer either, last Sunday notwithstanding. Inside Centre is starting to look like a problem with Darcy strangely muted, England strangely reluctant to start with Tait and Wales strangely reluctant to pass to Henson.
I would also worry about Hayes' age and whether Cueto is a genuine world-class finisher - he's not renowned for taking chances against South Africa.
As for Wales, we need some big performances against Ireland or quite a few pre-6 Nations Lions "certainties" will be spending the summer on the beach.

rigger said...

worsley-open side?
cueto?no chance.