Toulouse v Ulster Heineken QF

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Re: Toulouse v Ulster Heineken QF

Post by Dharper » Mon Sep 21, 2020 8:26 am

The season was a success. Euro QF backed up from last yr, & league final appearance achieved - improvement from last yr. Form has been pretty poor admittedly - however an away semi win against Edinburgh will hopefully be good for squad development.

The last 2 weeks have been a reality check, however it’s hardly a shock. Away fixtures against 2 of the best teams in Europe.

We lack the ability to win the gainline, operating with 2 consistent carriers in MC & SMcC against good sides is seriously limiting. The pack need reinforcements come end of next season when Faddes/Carter contracts run out. Overall the pair have been disappointing, hopefully injury free will improve their contributions. Our backline without the added linebreak ability of WA is nowhere near as effective.

As topposter has said we need a lump in the 2nd row (Brad Thorne type), and another backrow to take the pressure off MC. Financially will it happen? There may well be a new reality re level of contracts. Will there be greater movement between provinces?

A few holes have been plugged. TOT is now developing into a viable set piece TH, AM adds an option at 9. Some however are still there and glaringly obvious 6, and Lock.

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Re: Toulouse v Ulster Heineken QF

Post by Marco » Mon Sep 21, 2020 9:33 am

Ironically enough, mid way through the first half I was feeling ok about this game, scrum holding, Toulouse rusty and missing penalties, a flash of inspiration (like the ball sticking to Lyttle's hands) and a halftime lead was very achievable, and then game on. You don't get many chances away against good opposition like that. Watching the social media last night, the pundits highlighted a wasted overlap, four on two, and the breakdown not what it needed to be. Stockdale had a shocker, forget Colby, he dropped a ball with no pressure (which gave away 50 meters and led, two phases later, to a Toulouse try), his kicks to the right hand touchline, which made sense with his huge left boot, all made poor yardage. I can sound harsh but I'll say it again, this presumably is what they train on all week, hard to see why 5,000 people on a lovely day in the south of France seemed to unravel everything they learnt, and no doubt practiced, the previous week.

Picked up a huge interest in American football over the lockdown and watching documentaries, quarterbacks at 6'6", good big guys will always trump good wee guys, and that is where the game is at, my namesake Lowry will always struggle in this company. Back in the 70's he could/woould have been a real star but the physicality has moved up a few notches. They have maybe even more injuries in gridiron, but they have the back up of more big men. Ulster would have been discombobulated by Exeter and Saracens, we are on the edge of the top eight in Europe, and that's ok in one sense, but, like Ireland, without the big men, and a second 15 of big men, we'll get beat when it matters. Unless there area few Pacific islanders out there with roots in Fermanagh, I fear it will not change!

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Re: Toulouse v Ulster Heineken QF

Post by Setanta » Mon Sep 21, 2020 9:57 am

Good post Marco. Now Pacific Islanders in Fermanagh - there's a thought! :lol:
From the rolling glens of Antrim through the hills of Donegal we will stand and shout for Ulster as we win both scrum and maul from the lovely lakes of Fermanagh tae the shores of ould Lough Gall we will scream and shout for Ulster as we beat them one and all!

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Re: Toulouse v Ulster Heineken QF

Post by launish116 » Mon Sep 21, 2020 10:23 am

Dharper wrote:
Mon Sep 21, 2020 8:26 am

A few holes have been plugged. TOT is now developing into a viable set piece TH, AM adds an option at 9. Some however are still there and glaringly obvious 6, and Lock.
Blindside - O’Connor Jnr given a shot? Would also like to see McCann/Allison start to get slowly get integrated into the backrow. Along side Coetzee/Murphy/Reidy rather than a 2nd string back row.

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Re: Toulouse v Ulster Heineken QF

Post by Loki » Mon Sep 21, 2020 10:35 am

kingofthehill wrote:
Sun Sep 20, 2020 4:06 pm
With regards to NIQs I don’t think we should waste our money and instead offer the likes of Deegan, Penny etc more money (I know that provinces aren’t allowed to offer more money to homegrown players but I feel it’s the only way you will get these guys from wasting their career). To think Deegan hasn’t been in a squad in the last 3 matches,that’s just crazy!
Maybe one for a wider discussion but the NIQs we have bar Marcell are fairly pointless. Both have had their injury struggles but as TopPoster says we do alright in the production of backs so let's get some Saffas in to tighten up the pack. Snyman pre injury would have been a good signing.

Perhaps the oncoming belt-tightening might encourage more inter-provincial loans...I'm not sure I see it but on a development basis it's daft for some of the options at Leinster to be non-playing options. that said I'd love to see McCann and Allison coming in; Rea seems a trier but I was stunned to hear yesterday that he's already 28(?) - had him in the young'n'learning category, which he's apparently not quite made it out of yet.

on a wider note I wasn't that disappointed yesterday as the previous weeks have shown we're not at it since the restart. Still see us as in transition/development and overall the season has to be seen as a success in relative terms when you look at the blooding of Hume, development of TOT (though EOS can feel a little hard done by) and some great moments. We're broadly where I'd hope for us to be when you look at the squad and given what's likely coming in the near future I'm not sure there's scope for us to improve on that.

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Re: Toulouse v Ulster Heineken QF

Post by Silverstu » Mon Sep 21, 2020 12:36 pm

I'd agree with the above- bring through McCann/Alison/ReaJr rather than go for NIQ, lock is trickier- McMenemin [sp?] was training with the seniors -he's a big man but no idea about ability.
McCann looks the most promising [I haven't seen as much of Alison as he was injured/returning from injury for the U20s]- McCann has the size, skills and looks to be smart too. We still never replaced Chris Henry either - possibly Crothers coming through?

I thought we've done well overall blooding Hume/Lowry/ToT/EoS at that level. The break has evidently left the squad not match sharp for that kind of level and having to play a pro 14 semi-final, final and then the European quarter was a lot- they looked gassed towards the end hence the extra errors.We can play better than that.

I hope Lowry gets a crack at 10, yeah he's small and light but let him and the team adapt - its not like we have a midget at 12..

We also need touring through Sexton and McIlroy in the back three this season to replace Ludik and Faddes, plus Stewart Moore at centre.

McFarland is 2 years in and overall we are heading in the right direction, but definitely more progress is needed .

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