Trou­ble at No 8

The Daily Telegraph - Rugby World Cup - - Sport Rugby World Cup 2015 -

Thank­fully for Eng­land, Billy Vu­nipola was the most im­pres­sive of Eng­land’s slew of re­place­ments. The pri­mary job of a No 8 is to get over the gain­line. Do that and ev­ery­thing else falls into place, but that in­struc­tion is fre­quently for­got­ten as Ben Mor­gan (above) fre­quently went side­ways rather than for­ward. As soon as Vu­nipola emerged on the scene, it was no­tice­able how much go-for­ward he added and how much bet­ter Eng­land looked as a re­sult. A lot of that might well come down to be­ing a re­place­ment against tir­ing legs, but in a po­si­tion which has al­most be­come a coin toss, Vu­nipola should now be con­sid­ered favourite to start in the crunch game against Wales on Satur­day.

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