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5 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

Well, apart from anything else.  He has been playing mostly in the middle for Wigan which is not his best position.  He is far far better on the edge / second row.

Wane has picked Knowles and Radley and loads of props so Bateman should be back on the edge where he should be.

You should be having a word with the Coach of the Year and point him in the right direction. Hasn't Wane been at Wigan all year in some advisory capacity?

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4 minutes ago, Stuff Smith said:

I remember that too. But it's not enough. Not now.

And it's not some anti-Wigan bias. I'd pick (the current) Farrell over (the current) Bateman. If he were fit.

To be honest, based on the squad named I would be looking at McMeeken and Batchelor at 11 and 12.  I think their form has been better than Whitehead and Bateman this year.

But the latter two have never let England down and I would expect them to up their game again if they play.

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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3 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

You should be having a word with the Coach of the Year and point him in the right direction. Hasn't Wane been at Wigan all year in some advisory capacity?

I said when Wigan gave Bateman the 13 shirt that it was a mistake. 

I actually think that playing in the middle may have even been part of why he came back to Wigan and the UK.

But just because he prefers to play there it doesn't mean it is his best position. 

"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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4 minutes ago, Cumbrian Fanatic said:

The World Cup draw was made in January 2020, there's a fair argument that the number 1 & 2 sides at that time were placed in the opposite sides of the draw. I the intervening years New Zealand look like they have strengthened, and England have weakened, that doesn't invalidate the draw in my opinion. whoever makes the final from England's side of the draw will beat some very good teams.

But I will maintain they would not presently beat Aus or NZ.

So how were they seeded in Jan2020?

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1 minute ago, Dunbar said:

I said when Wigan gave Bateman the 13 shirt that it was a mistake. 

I actually think that playing in the middle may have even been part of why he came back to Wigan and the UK.

But just because he prefers to play there it doesn't mean it is his best position. 

OK we have different opinions on the present day John Bateman.

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1 minute ago, Dunbar said:

To be honest, based on the squad named I would be looking at McMeeken and Batchelor at 11 and 12.  I think their form has been better than Whitehead and Bateman this year.

But the latter two have never let England down and I would expect them to up their game again if they play.

Yeah, me too. I know i've criticised Bateman, but I wouldn't pick Whitehead either (comes under my plays in the NRL: automatic pick category). 

But I'm not Shaun Wane. In his position, I'd probably go for the easy position of "established stars".

A lot easier being an idiot on a forum than actual coach...

(Still, won't stop me going mental and posting vitriol on here when we lose.)

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6 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

But I will maintain they would not presently beat Aus or NZ.

So how were they seeded in Jan2020?

I agree that England are unlikely to beat Australia or New Zealand, my point was that in January 2020 it was not so clear cut

According to this England, Australia, New Zealand and Tonga were seeded with all other teams placed in Pots 1, 2 or 3

100% League 0% Union

Just because I don't know doesn't mean I don't understand

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30 minutes ago, Harry Stottle said:

OK Dav you don't bet so I will rephrase the question:-

If NZ and Aus were in the opposite side of the draw would you expect the final to be contested by any other nation other than these two?

I certainly wouldn’t be surprised if at least one of them succumbed to Samoa/Tonga but AGAIN why do you think rankings should be based on an assumption when the team you assume to be No1 has only played 4 games in 5yrs losing 50% of them.

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8 minutes ago, Stuff Smith said:

Yeah, me too. I know i've criticised Bateman, but I wouldn't pick Whitehead either (comes under my plays in the NRL: automatic pick category). 

But I'm not Shaun Wane. In his position, I'd probably go for the easy position of "established stars".

A lot easier being an idiot on a forum than actual coach...

(Still, won't stop me going mental and posting vitriol on here when we lose.)

Whitehead has had an inconsistent season overall but has a great game against Melbourne and is rock solid and has been there done it got the tshirt . He’s been our best at this level (when we’ve played ) and would have been my captain

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1 hour ago, Dunbar said:

There wasn't a chance in the world that Bateman was going to be left out of this squad.  He has a Wane type of player written all over him.

And I'm OK with that.  In a game of Rugby League you need characters in the team who are always going to put their hands up and get in the opposition faces.  Bateman is one of those.

And although his performances for Wigan haven’t hit the heights of his first spell at the club he’s put in some good performances for England in the few games under Wane.

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3 minutes ago, Davo5 said:

I certainly wouldn’t be surprised if at least one of them succumbed to Samoa/Tonga but AGAIN why do you think rankings should be based on an assumption when the team you assume to be No1 has only played 4 games in 5yrs losing 50% of them.

I agree with this.  There just isn't enough international Rugby League to go on assumptions and we have to use the seedings.

England were in the final in 2017 and Australia have lost half their games and so England being a high seed is not outrageous (probably the only issue is GB not being England but again, factually true).

I don't think this draw is a fiddle at all.

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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Just now, Davo5 said:

And although his performances for Wigan haven’t hit the heights of his first spell at the club he’s put in some good performances for England in the few games under Wane.

Yes, he steps up for England.

I think it is also telling that he was the top metre maker and only try scorer for Great Britain against Tonga in the first tour game.  He is capable of big international performances. 

"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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4 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

Yes, he steps up for England.

I think it is also telling that he was the top metre maker and only try scorer for Great Britain against Tonga in the first tour game.  He is capable of big international performances. 

He also has a utility value which is often required with the HIA rules these days.

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Just now, Alan Robertson said:

I've noticed a few posts mentioning "Clarke" (as a hooker for the squad) but Jon's well over 40 now. I suppose Daryl Clark might have added something though.

No , its Phil . Wane rang him but he said no

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On Bateman, he may have had an indifferent year but there’s no way you don’t pick him in this squad. He’s a big game player, great attitude and had performed on the highest stages. He is one of our actual big names and we’re running low on those.

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19 minutes ago, Jughead said:

I don’t get the McMeeken love-in. He’s living off a purple patch a few years ago. Farrell would be an absolute shoe-in over him, if fit. 

100%. One of the biggest myths in the game. 

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34 minutes ago, DavidM said:

Whitehead has had an inconsistent season overall but has a great game against Melbourne and is rock solid and has been there done it got the tshirt . He’s been our best at this level (when we’ve played ) and would have been my captain

And that's fair.

Doesn't mean I won't unjustifiably criticise him if we lose. (I know my failings.)

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43 minutes ago, Tex Evans Thigh said:

On Bateman, he may have had an indifferent year but there’s no way you don’t pick him in this squad. He’s a big game player, great attitude and had performed on the highest stages. He is one of our actual big names and we’re running low on those.

Sorry, still not convinced

Great attitude? He's petulant.

Does big names, highest stages = played in the NRL?

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1 hour ago, Harry Stottle said:

Yep I will go along with that, so what about the last two seasons obviously you think he has not been very good hence your comment.

 Still a superb player, just not as superb as he once was.

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