The Wallabies coach will announce the squad for the game in England on Sunday and it will be interesting to see what kind of team the selection panel will select.
Will it be just for the England Test or are they waiting for the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France?
With only one year left from the World Cup and the more teams play together, understand each other, have combinations, the better we will be in 15 months.
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As a winger I am not good at picking forwards because I don’t know what a prop or a hooker does … that’s important as long as they keep the ball on their backs!
However, in the case of forwards, the combination is very important.
For me, what is important for a team to win the World Cup is the relationship between 8, 9 and 10, Flanker and No. 8 working together, and very important is a No. 8 that can catch and pass.
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Then you obviously need 9 and 10 to have a great relationship and if the rumors come true that Quad Cooper is coming back then it can be very difficult to have a relationship with someone he hasn’t played with for about 12 months – White and Tate McDermott with Nick.
I noticed this last year when Bouden Barrett came back from Japan to play Tests, taking 20 runs.
He lost because he had not played with those players for six months.
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So you see, if he’s the top 10 in the world who struggles, it just shows that we need to have those combinations and we need super rugby teams so that all of our players can play in next season’s World Cup.
I want to see what Dave Renny thinks his best rugby World Cup team will be against England and stay there – so if he’s thinking of the Bolters, pick them now.
Here are my thoughts on some key backline positions as we look forward to a big three Test home series.
Scrumhalf: Tate McDermott
It was worrying to see Tate McDermott chill out in Christchurch.
However, in the initial report, he will be fine for the Test season. I think we need him very much, he is a good player. He plays a style of rugby that people want to see, he always keeps the opposition busy so I want to go to No. 9 with McDermott.
Nick White will also be on the team and is a bloody good player. But I’m a little worried about his aggression. He is very depressed and has problems with the referees. Sometimes this is not necessary and puts a lot of pressure on the team. I hope he used that force to further harass his opponents.
It’s nice to have someone like that, but Tate is rude without being too aggressive. I want to see White Kick a little less, when he is at his best.
I want him to look back on his ongoing game a bit more but I’m not sure the coach wants him to play.
Fly Huff: James O’Connor
You have to go with O’Connor because he’s responsible – as long as he’s fit after the injury-plagued season.
Behind him, talking about Quad Cooper but I like NSW’s young Ben Donaldson because he is a traditional No. 10. He also has an injury problem this year but he is close to the top 10 youngsters. Unfortunately he has been playing at the age of 15 since returning to the Waratahs team.
It’s great to have a utility player but I think sometimes the coaches think too much of it. I think we’ve had problems here in the past, trying to get Australia’s best players on the field at once, instead of just picking the best players in that position.
A great example is Reese Hodge at Rebels, he can play five positions but in which one is he the best? I know our recent record against England is bad but let’s not forget that they came in fifth out of six nations. Why not put a young man like Donaldson there and see how he goes? He would like to be an unknown proposition for England.
My other question is why don’t we have 10 seconds in Australia that can kick their left foot? Is it too hard?
Aaron Smith is now kicking his left foot because those world class players always try to be good.
Center: Matt To’omua, Samu Kerevi
The center is a big problem in my opinion because most of the contestants seem to have punched the ball under the arm. No. 12 has now become a hit up, advantage line position but I think Australia will play well with the second playmaker.
So I will go with To’Muya who is a very good player and a good kicker. He has a lot of maturity, a lot of time and is a good leader. She can be a good role model for young boys.
At the age of 13 I would have had a crippling running game in Kerevi although I don’t like to pick players from abroad. They don’t have combinations, haven’t played together in six months. They go to camp which is great but it’s not like playing. I think we’ve fallen down the last few years, bringing the boys in and out.
So maybe for the first Test, pick a team that you think is going to play in the World Cup and let them know. Of course it depends on the win, loss or draw but they have to think about it now. And with only 15 months left but I think that’s where the All Blacks could get into trouble because they’re playing outside of people like Jordi Barrett.
Wings: Marika Koroibete, Tom Wright
He also plays in Japan but is close to an automatic pick in Koroibe.
Adjustments are not so important when you are a winger and I know Renee likes his work rate. But who will choose the other wing?
At this stage it must be right. You have to have a smart winger and Wright is one of the best right now. He’s actually ready to try something, like kicking the net and beating the defenders with good legs. I know the game has changed but we still need some players who are unexpected.
My only question mark is his rate of work like the ball.
I also like Filippo Daugunu’s speed but he doesn’t pass or kick particularly well.
Andrew Callaway made nine tries for the Wallachians last year but why did they play him in the Rebels ’13th? He doesn’t get the ball and when he does he tries to do something but he falls apart. I would not choose Jordan Petia or Mark Navakanitawase. I’m not selling them kick games or job rates.
Fullback: Jock Campbell
I’d like to go here with Campbell. He is an unexpected player with a vision and a lot of potential. He needs a little help around the field because he sometimes gets isolated.
He’s got confidence but I think he needs to know when to back himself up and when to pass. He still has a long way to go but he is one of the offensive runners you want to see. He needs players around him to support him.
Tom Banks is fast and responsible but I can’t pass as much as I want and is leaving for Japan soon. He has tried very hard to overplay his game this year.
So with just one year left in the World Cup, it’s time to see if Campbell can get into international rugby. He can kick and pass and is willing to go one. This puts pressure on the opponent to kick well because he can return the ball with interest.
I want to hear what people think about my choices so let me know on my Instagram and Facebook pages
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