Lancaster’s needless by the numbers tinkering

cost England yet again.

It was never going to be the so called gamble of Lancaster’s starting XV that would cost England in their second group match.

Picking Farrell an Burgess wasn’t the gamble the anti-league media types who wanted to just stir things up kept telling us.

It worked right up until Lancaster decided to meddle in that by the numbers way of his. That way in which he can’t see something isn’t broken so doesn’t need fixed. So many minutes on the clock, got someone on the bench, got to use him.

So off comes Burgess on comes Ford which means not only is there a change in personnel but a shift of player into a new position. And all of a sudden there’s Jamie Roberts.

Big square head hadn’t been seen all game, take Burgess off and he appears, one pass later and Wales have a try and we’ll it looked over from there.

The kick to the corner didn’t cost England, this piece of management did.

Yet so many still point to that initial team selection, even though Ford hadn’t excelled in the opening game and of the two centres it was Barrett that failed.

Why not point out that the front row looks better when the so called understudies come in. Cole is a walking penalty, Mahler hit and miss in the scrum, while Youngs can’t scrummage, hook or throw in.

All seasoned union pros unlike Burgess, so more to blame for their failings.

As for that kick, well the one for the posts wasn’t a gimme, it could have worked if England had put as much thought into it as Wales. As soon as it was obvious they weren’t going to contest the line-out plan B was required.

Now I love an up the jumper Dean Richards rumble over the line as much as the next number 8 but it was never going to work, quick ball out required.

It shouldn’t have come down to Robshaw having to make the decision in the first place, England should have been out of sight but as in so many games under Lancaster they’ve blown when comfortable.

So that’s this world cup pasting post, let’s hope it has a similar outcome to the one having a go at Ashton and in his team in 2007.

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