Squad Prediction v Argentina
OK, now that Super rugby is pretty much done, it's time to think about the squad for the first AB team, and here I've put down my guesses for the 23 for Argentina 1st up. Apart from first five and fullback, we have plenty of riches.
Questions for me are whether they'll use Squire as the second 8. If not, then Akira or L. Whitelock will likely have a chance. Alternatively, they could start Ardie, but since he's had such a big workload, I think they'll put him on the bench. Also, if Squire doesn't play 8, I assume he'll then play at 6, so they'll have to make some decisions about Fifita and Frizzel. Frizzel definitely started Super rugby playing well, but then stopped getting picked - he needs to move to establish himself. Although, I personally think he suits our play better, I think they'll pick Fifita.
The midfield is the one I think they'll select, not what I'd select. However, SBW will need time out there starting to see whether he is worth persevering with.
I assume that Jordie will be given a chance to play himself into the team, either at FB or wing. If not, then Naholo may get one last chance ( I can't see it though, he's been terrible all year) or they could have another look at Nanai as a right winger (or even Alaimalo). Alternatively, I just wonder whether a player like Goosen could get a call up, he's been a bit Cory Jane like at times and looks a better bet for the ABs than Lam. Nevertheless, I haven't picked any of them as I assume it'll be an Ioane, BFA, Barrett back three.
The reserve lock is an interesting pick - I assume it will be Hemopo, but I wonder whether they'll look at one of the two very good young locks running around. Too soon for both IMO, but I think they both look like they'll wear black at some point.
I've put A smith on the bench to give J. Ioane a helping hand when he gets a run, and I did the same with the Chiefs front row (I'd choose Laulala, but they may think that Ta'avao has been playing better). Lomax is a dark horse to get a run here too, as he had some very good games.
- Fifita (Frizzel)
- B. Barrett
- R. Ioane
- J. Barrett
- Harris (Coltman?)
- Laulala / Ta’avao (Lomax?)
- Hemopo (IWL? Parkinson? )
- A. Smith
- J. Ioane