I’d have picked Slade at No12 for Eng­land in 2015 - Walder

The Rugby Paper - - News - ■ By JON NEW­COMBE

NEW­CAS­TLE head coach Dave Walder says Eng­land must fight fire with fire when they face Aus­tralia in Satur­day’s piv­otal Test.

Ahead of the Novem­ber Tests, Michael Cheika’s side had scored an im­pres­sive 51 tries in 11 Tests in 2017.

Eng­land man­aged four tries in each of their last two wins against the Wal­la­bies, and Walder wants to see a sim­i­lar at­tack-minded ap­proach next week­end.

He said: “I love watch­ing Aus­tralia play, I think they at­tack bril­liantly. Paul Gus­tard will have a cou­ple of tricks up his sleeve to shut them down but we need to take the game to them too.

“Tra­di­tion­ally, Eng­land are very strong up front and have suc­cess against Aus­tralia, so I ex­pect them to take the at­tack through the for­wards and then the likes of Henry Slade, Owen Far­rell and Jonathan Joseph are more than a match for any team. The good thing is that they can choose how they play.

“The key to win­ning the game will be stop­ping Aus­tralia. To do that they need to de­prive them of the pos­ses­sion, and when they do have the ball to make sure it is as slow as pos­si­ble.”

Walder is a big fan of Henry Slade and hopes the Ex­eter man gets an ex­tended run in the team.

“I think he is a brilliant. He was my pick to play 12 at the World Cup in 2015. He’s got the abil­ity to play like a 10; he has a left foot; hits hard in de­fence; has speed to makes breaks and can step – and he’s con­fi­dent pass­ing off both hands. He looks to be a com­plete player.

“Owen Far­rell is a fan­tas­tic player but hav­ing Slade in there gives you a di­ver­sity of at­tack­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties that can cause a lot of prob­lems.”

Walder won four caps while he was a player at New­cas­tle, at a time when Fal­cons reg­u­larly adorned the Eng­land back­line.

Tom May and Michael Stephen­son lined up along­side him when he made his de­but in 2001, while Jonny Wilkin­son, a shoo-in at No.10, was away with the Lions in Aus­tralia.But there hasn’t been a sin­gle Fal­con capped out­side of the scrum since Toby Flood last wore the jer­sey in 2013.

No.9 Michael Young and full-back Si­mon Ham­mer­s­ley have got close with Eng­land Sax­ons call-ups, and Walder be­lieves their time may still come.

“We’ve got a lot of guys who are ca­pa­ble of putting their hand up. Michael Young has had a bit of a rough start with in­juries, but it is good to see him back out there in the last cou­ple of weeks and he’ll be knock­ing on the door.

“Ham­mers was fly­ing and then suf­fered an ACL at Wasps a year or so ago. He was back ahead of sched­ule only to pick up a cou­ple of smaller knocks at the start of this year which have maybe de­layed him.”

Cum­brian-born cen­tre Chris Har­ris has grad­u­ated to the Test scene af­ter Scot­land came call­ing.

Walder added: “He has been re­ally good in that 13 chan­nel. He car­ries hard, is a big threat on the ball and de­fen­sively he is solid.”

At­tack guru: Walder

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.