Man for man marking: England v Wales - International - Rugby Union - The Independent

Man for man marking: England v Wales

 

England

Ben Foden: Solid and reasonably adventurous. No howlers, à la Rome. 6/10

Chris Ashton: Went looking for the ball more than recently and was almost dangerous. 6

Manu Tuilagi: Strong in the first half, faded in the second – knackered, no doubt. 6

Brad Barritt: Excellent tackling from chap raised on 300lb Afrikaaners. Natch. 6

David Strettle: Said he scored a possibly equalising try. Maybe. Very good in defence. 7

Owen Farrell: Whatever "it" is, he has it in spades. A very, very good start at No 10. 8

Lee Dickson: Very good. Quick and eager... though overly so occasionally, at the scrum. 7

Alex Corbisiero: Found Adam Jones to be a large and very hairy handful at the scrum. 6

Dylan Hartley: Solid and less penalisable than usual, which is half the battle. 6

Dan Cole: Good game – got a little change out of Gethin Jenkins at the scrum. 7

Mauritz Botha: One of those Afrikaaners Barritt was talking about. Strong. Also natch. 7

Geoff Parling: Decent first start, if occasionally betrayed by his own excitement. 7

Tom Croft: Lots of line-out ball, lots of leg work – though he couldn't stop the try. 7

Chris Robshaw: Good captain's knock, though couldn't match Sam Warburton. 6

Ben Morgan: On this evidence, will be a very good Test player indeed. In the future. 7

Key replacement: Courtney Lawes. Lost the ball for the try. Whoops. 5

 

Wales

Leigh Halfpenny: Pinged about like a red bowling ball being hit by white pins. Kicked well. 7

Alex Cuthbert: Did his thing well enough without doing much to commend or criticise. 6

Jonathan Davies: A hard centre with soft hands and a lovely rugby brain. Very influential. 7

Jamie Roberts: Struggled, surprisingly, against smaller men. Went off, crocked. 5

George North: A proper player. One big tackle, on Farrell, was a thing of brutal beauty. 8

Rhys Priestland: Not his best day. Charged down, sent to the sin-bin, generally hesitant. 5

Mike Phillips: Best moment was at the off, sending North through with a fine flip pass. 6

Gethin Jenkins: Had a tougher job against Cole than Jones did against Corbisiero. 6

Ken Owens: Line-out service was a little wobbly; pleasingly industrious elsewhere. 6

Adam Jones: Excellent on front foot and back, making one superb covering tackle. 8

Alun Wyn Jones: Herman Munster in a monstrous lock pairing. Tired later, after time off. 6

Ian Evans: Looks a bit like Lurch Addams, plays a lot like Grizzly. Ferocious effort. 7

Dan Lydiate: One of his quieter games, but still good in a rather Richard Hill-y way. 7

Sam Warburton: Magnificent, with his try-saver on Tuilagi the standout. Lions captain? 9

Toby Faletau: Had a lot to do and all of it hard. Now knows how to win while struggling. 7

Key replacement: Scott Williams. Try made up for missed try earlier. 7

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