Rate the Match: England v Japan

Mark Wilson

What did you think of today’s game at Twickenham?

Share your thoughts on the Match and on the player performances in Eddie Jones’ revised lineup.

Give the match a rating out of ten and leave a comment below.

Rate the Match: England v Japan

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40 thoughts on “Rate the Match: England v Japan

  1. My prediction of England by 48 was way off the mark! Never seemed to get going, but Japan looked decent to be fair. Lots of highly-skilled players and we’ll-coached, will be tough to beat next year.




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  2. That was very disappointing.Jones asked the players to smash’em.Looked like they were treating it as an ordinary game as opposed to showing desire and energy to get on the plane to Japan.At least Ford was honest enough to admit it.Too much like England in 6N and unlike the group that gave NZ a real battle




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  3. Japan overpowered in the end. Hard work though. Good(ish) big’un beats a good(ish) little’un? Workman like. Some times disjointed. 1step forward, 2 steps back? What did EJ learn from this? Are the fly 1/2, midfield, back row, full back positions cemented yet? Any combinations locked in? Who really stood out? E.g., George can pass a ball. Is he worth dumping captain Hartley for? More ?’s than answers?




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  4. Totally agree Don P, more questions than answers. Midfield pairing proved a mistake, Wilson not a 7 and Lawes still not a 6! Daley can’t Compete under high ball and Hepburn not good enough at this level. A disappointing result that leaves some players as far from squad as ever, exposed EJ plan and selections again but left a couple positives like Cockanasiga




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  5. Therefore EJ probably did learn something from this weekend. Who not to take to Japan.

    He also might learn something if he watches the club games from this weekend, like Danny Cipriani and Ben Morgan might be worth a further look!




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    1. Staggy, well you never know with the enigmatic EJ. It’s not just whom to leave out, or include, but why he persists with some selections & omissions @ all. You’re spot on re Cipriani though. Played a blinder I though on Fri night. Pity he’ll never play again for England again.. probably. Ditto Morgan?




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    2. Come on Staggy
      The rest of the country learnt something, future opponents learnt something but did Eddie really learn something?
      Time will tell but i bet come the six nations we will still see Lawes featuring at and Daly at 15 and Hepburn under consideration




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  6. Pretty slack first half. Early try may have led to a bit of complacency, though you have to credit Japan who played a smart, fast, agile game that was very good to watch.
    Better 2nd half when we upped the defensive intensity and played with far greater drive.
    Overall a bit unsatisfactory with a few too many players not at their sharpest. The centre experiment really fell flat and Daly still not looking solid at FB.
    Cokanasiga really good on debut with solid contributions from Itoje, Lawes and Ewels. and




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  7. I can’t really add to what’s been said. Eddie, look and learn mate. Square pegs/round holes, never a good idea.
    Well played Japan, lovely handling skills and a real desire to win the game.
    Will the real England ever stand up?




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    1. i don’t how many caps Slade has accumulated but for me he’s under performed in the white shirt.
      he’s a massively talented player but seems to struggle to find consistency. The odd flash of inspiration isn’t enough. Having said all that, EJ doesn’t help matters with his somewhat “interesting” selections!




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      1. But Joseph’s been pretty anonymous both for club and country for a while now, Slade is more of a prospect and if England play a bosher type 12 I feel his flair brings balance to the midfield.




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        1. Alex i completely agree with you about Joseph. I find it baffling that so many people here keep eulogising him when he has been a mixture of anonymous/mediocre/downright poor for so long now. Apart from the Scotland game ages ago he has offered zilch in attack and even his defence this last year has been dodgy at times. But I really want to see our best players played in the correct positions..and that means Daly should be given a real run at 13. We have to play a full back who is used to playing there and can catch the high ball and that means Brown. Just force him to pass for heavens sake! We will be slaughtered against Ireland in the Aviva if we don’t fix our aerial game….hell we will probably be slaughtered anyway but a reliable full back is a must.




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          1. Joseph is an athlete, but all round skill set offers very little third choice 13 for me. Will be most frustrated if he’s fast tracked back in the fir xv when fit.




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        2. JJ has been injured since the 6N so not surprised you think he’s been anonymous.
          In the chances Slade has been given he simply hasn’t shown enough to cement his place in the squad. His tackling and work in defence generally is very poor, and this really counts against him. He has shown glimpses of attacking play but no where near enough.
          I would also point out that whilst JJ has been anonymous at times, so has Slade. There is a bit of hypocrisy with your comments on JJ because Slade hasnt really done anything of merit so far this Autumn.




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          1. Come on Jake JJ was very mediocre to say the least in the 6 nations and downright dire against Ireland with Jones taking him off early. He has had way more chances than Slade so if Jones doesn’t play Daly there then Slade should get more chances imo.
            Both Slade and Daly have a far wider skillset as others have mentioned.
            Maybe there is a reason JJ was nearly left out of the lions squad and wasn’t anywhere near the test team!




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            1. I’m not denying JJ’s form has been sub-par in his last few England outings, but I we need a bit more objectivity. Considering JJ hasn’t played since the last 6N I’m not sure it’s that relevant to judge his form. Also continuing to praise Slade, who has been just as anonymous, whilst being poor in defence, is a bit of a strange one.
              I do agree with you when it comes to Daly, he should be given a chance at 13; he has proven he has the quality for the international stage, though not so much as a 15. If not Daly then I dont know; JJ has been out for a while, and still is, so don’t think we will/should see him anytime soon. Equally Slade has been underwhelming and certainly hasn’t taken the chances he has been given. Manu prefers 13 so this could see the Ford-Farrell axis return.
              Also not sure what relevance the Lions has, JJ was taken and Slade wasn’t.




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    2. There’s not many players who come good and nail down a position after only a handful of caps. EJ needs to pursue with Slade. It’s possible that we won’t see Jospeh in a white shirt again.




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  8. Here’s a controversial idea for EJ. Why not play Daly at… 13. He’s an outside centre not a FB. If you want a FB why not play the best inthe prem i.e. Goode. If Farrell is at 10 then he can have a playmaker at 15. Whilst he’s at it, he could pkay Morgan at 8 and Attwood at 4. Playing players in position is always worth a go!




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    1. Agree with much of that!Watching the Ireland ABs game we look a long way from Ireland and have been badly beaten in our last 2 matches with the score line not really reflecting how poorly we played. Still don’t understand why we aren’t looking at players like Morgan and our scrum half situation is pretty horrible. Both Care and Wiggles are in their 30s so we could easily lose several to injury with no back up having any experience. Wiggles is all wrong for England anyway.




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      1. Well Amy, England did beat SA & Japan & only lost by a point to the AB’s. However, what you state about Morgan & the 1/2back situation makes sense.




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      1. It’s also baffling as to why Wilson had to wait a year after being outstanding in Argentina to get back into the squad! (Talking of someone who’s excellent at 6!) I was whingeing about this during the 6 nations and saying that Eddie ‘s rationale which was that he wasn’t playing as well in the premiership completely contradicted his mantra presented simultaneously that Robson and Armand couldn’t cut it at international level however well they were playing for their clubs! This incoherence is typical of Jones and is one of the reasons why we are so far away from Ireland where Schmidt is absolutely clear about what he wants and how he wants people to play. Eddie is all over the place by comparison. Also Schmidt would never disparage good hard working players like Robson and Armand in the way Eddie has done.




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        1. Some good points in there Bolter. It’s the same with Ewers. Is Lawes really a better bet than him? With Ewers you get a 6/8 who knows the positions and is a bloody good player.
          The same thing is happening with Daly. He’s NOT a 15 and his performances have really dipped. it feels like Jones is saying ” I will make you a full back if it’s the last thing I do” .




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          1. I am getting pretty worried about the Daly situation Acee. He is one of our very best players, Lynagh called him our best, and I worry that his confidence is going to go downhill playing at fullback. I can remember Brian Moore and Rob Andrew talking about the pace of the international game and how if players were played out of position it was almost impossible for them to react and adjust under pressure. If Jones wants to experiment at fullback he needs to use someone who plays there regularly!
            Agree with what you say about Ewers and Armand played fine in his brief cameo against Irekand, in fact far better than Simmonds who was being chucked around like a rag doll.




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            1. I totally agree with your concerns about Daly and his confidence not helped by the downhill slide at his club.I can’t stand Goode as a person (irrational prejudice)but he is a first class full back and infinitely superior to Daly.Also your backrow comment about the Chiefs lads is spot on.
              Jones has tried over 100 players in 3 years.Is that sensible or indicative of poor selection?




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  9. Youngs and Care should watch an hour of video of the Japanese 9 in how to clear the ball fast and not ponce about as our 2 do.They also need to look at the same opponent on how far to box kick + the players need to learn on following up with the aim of recovering the ball.It seems this is not understood




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    1. Harsh on Care I think Harlequin. Pack was getting knocked back on contact throughout the first half, but as soon as we began to get front foot ball he was giving rapid service. He scored a decent try and was instrumental in the last one, just before he was pulled. Elsewhere, Hepburn and Ewells were anonymous, Wilson showed he is more of a six than a seven (lacks half a yard of pace) and Mercer proved that at this level he is not yet quite powerful enough. Daly is not a full back, Slade has not gone close to nailing down a place. The crucial change was bringing on Farrell who organises a back line in a way that is beyond Ford. I still think he is a better 10 than 12, but would like to see a back line of Care, Cips,Farrell, Daly, with May and Cockonasinga on the wings and Goode at full back. No chance it will happen, but it would at least put the wind up the opposition in a way that the current selection doesn’t. With the present under strength pack that would still not be enough to win much (32 per cent possession against Japan)?
      but at least you could guarantee excitement with ball in hand. Finally, when was the last time we were on the right side of a penalty count? Post colonial revenge? Go on Don, you have to bite on that one !
      .




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        1. Wouldn´t argue with that too much Don, but I think some of that came from a turn-around in attitude and focus that Farrell brought onto the pitch. We still won nothing like enough ball against a pack that we should have been knocking backwards and ripping the ball from. Disappointed to see that Care has paid the price for having to play behind them in the first half. He looked a different player as soon as we won some quicker ball, but very few scrum halves look good with our space in front of them and a bit of time. Mercer, Hepburn and Ewells were all disappointing and I am surprised that two of them have been retained.




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  10. The game needs to be taken in context I think – which was a colossal come down from the high of a hugely anticipated clash with NZ and a narrow defeat. Not to mention a totally experimental XV and the 1st half performance makes a bit more sense. Woodward alluded to the difficulty in coaching those weeks on Sky and I personally buy into it.

    Positives – how we turned the game around in the second half, Fords goal-kicking in what turned out to be quite pressurized circumstances (but I am clutching a but here), the impact of the bench and Courtney Lawes looks hungry (but he is a second row please EJ).

    Negatives – Danny Care’s first half performance – he tries to show maturity in his game but it comes out badly, I’d like him back to his impish best. Lozowski. Daly not a 15 and Hepburn not adequate loosehead cover, please come back Jor Marler!




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  11. Whilst I find myself agreeing with a lot of people about playing Daly at 13, who do you play at 10/12. If you play Ford/Farrell you have ao have a good option to come on and cover the 12 shirt and, I don’t think we know who that is yet? T’eo? Don’t think he’s the answer. Lozowski? I think he’s a better 13, like Slade (but better defensively). Maybe EJ needs to look outside of the squad he already has. Personally I think guys like Marchant or Tomkins would be a good bench option for the 22 shirt?
    On another note I think Wilson is the new Robshaw and Cockanasiga is a good prospect.




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