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Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Tue Nov 21, 2017 3:51 pm
Posted by Ashton Bears on Tue Nov 21, 2017 3:51 pm
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England: G Widdop (St George Illawarra); J McGillvary (Huddersfield), K Watkins (Leeds), J Bateman (Wigan), R Hall (Leeds); K Brown (Warrington), L Gale (Castleford); C Hill (Warrington), J Hodgson (Canberra), J Graham (St George Illawarra), S Burgess (South Sydney), E Whitehead (Canberra), S O'Loughlin (Wigan, capt).

Interchange: A Walmsley (St Helens), T Burgess (South Sydney), B Currie (Warrington), J Roby (St Helens).

Tonga: W Hopoate (Canterbury Bulldogs); D Tupou (Sydney Roosters), M Jennings (Parramatta), K Hurrell (Gold Coast), D Fusitua (NZ Warriors); T Lolohea (Wests Tigers), M Hingano (NZ Warriors); A Fifita (Cronulla), S Havili (St George Illawarra 5/8), S Siua Taukeiaho (Sydney Roosters), M Ma'u (Parramatta), S Manu (Hull, capt), J Taumalolo (North Queensland).

Interchange: S Katoa (Penrith), P Terepo (Parramatta), T Pangai jnr (Brisbane), B Murdoch-Masila (Salford).

Though they might have thrown Williams in as a back up can not see Lomax playing.
Re: Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:15 pm
Posted by Grimmy on Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:15 pm
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Clearly Bennett would rather play Lomax at FB and Widdop at SO if either Brown or Gale get injured. I'm inclined to agree with him on form to be honest. Can't argue too much with that side bar Percival in for Bateman, which has been done to death. Tonga should be a good test, but I think we will get through. As always, the aussies are the major concern.
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Re: Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Tue Nov 21, 2017 5:24 pm
Posted by NickyKiss on Tue Nov 21, 2017 5:24 pm
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It was good to at least get some explanation from Bennett as to why he's not given Currie a run at centre. His lateral movement is still a concern due to his injury and they feel Bateman is more mobile at the minute.

He clearly doesn't trust Percival and I can't really disagree. He rushes out of the line too often for me and his error count is a concern.
Re: Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:31 pm
Posted by MadDogg on Tue Nov 21, 2017 7:31 pm
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NickyKiss wrote:
It was good to at least get some explanation from Bennett as to why he's not given Currie a run at centre. His lateral movement is still a concern due to his injury and they feel Bateman is more mobile at the minute.

He clearly doesn't trust Percival and I can't really disagree. He rushes out of the line too often for me and his error count is a concern.


The Australians trampled all over Percival at the Olympic Stadium last year- pretty convinced that's why he's not getting a look in.
Re: Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:19 pm
Posted by Last Son of Wigan on Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:19 pm
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Whitehead also played a number of games for the Raiders in the centres. I'm surprised Bennett never switched them around against weaker opposition, even for a 20 min spell or so.

FWIW I see Tonga in the final, their 17 is very strong.
Re: Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:47 pm
Posted by Dezzies_right_hook on Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:47 pm
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Whitehead also played a number of games for the Raiders in the centres. I'm surprised Bennett never switched them around against weaker opposition, even for a 20 min spell or so.

FWIW I see Tonga in the final, their 17 is very strong.



Or brought Shenton.

Tonga could make the final but I think we would only have ourselves to blame as we're more thean capable of beating Tonga
Re: Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:39 pm
Posted by NickyKiss on Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:39 pm
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MadDogg wrote:
The Australians trampled all over Percival at the Olympic Stadium last year- pretty convinced that's why he's not getting a look in.


Yeah, I went to the game and he was physically dominated. Some if Batemans decisions if when to get out and when to back off in the centre have been hesitant but nobody is going over the top of him. I personally wouldn't have taken Shenton but if he's basically going to try and fill a gap by playing a second rower there to keep the opposition out then you may as well have taken a good defensive centre in Shenton.
Re: Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Wed Nov 22, 2017 8:27 am
Posted by jonh on Wed Nov 22, 2017 8:27 am
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Very dangerous side from Tonga. Size and bags of skill in the pack and back line.

If we continue to keep coughing up cheap ball then we will struggle to hold them.

Key for this is discipline both ball in hand, ie not coughing up cheap ball, and also on the penalty count.

They are very raw despite the talent and the halves/hookers are weak links in the context of that team.

We contain them early and frustrate them and play with discipline we will be fine.
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Re: Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Wed Nov 22, 2017 9:18 am
Posted by MadDogg on Wed Nov 22, 2017 9:18 am
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Remember also that England were pretty average in the 2013 WC prior to the semi final. Despite defeat I couldnt believe how well England played that day, particularly considering the performances that had preceded it.
Re: Team to play Tonga Saturday
Post Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:21 pm
Posted by Itchy Arsenal on Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:21 pm
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I think we will win with something in hand.
I can't believe that our completion rate will be as bad as against PNG where with low completion we still won comfortably.

Its time for Burgess, Hill and Whitehead to step up and match the remainder of the forwards efforts.

Looking forward to it.
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