Close sidebar

Five Players Who Furthered A Case For Lions Inclusion Last Weekend

EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND - SEPTEMBER 07: Warren Gatland is announced as the Head Coach of the British & Irish Lions for the 2017 Tour to New Zealand during the British and Irish Lions Press Conference at Standard Life House on September 7, 2016 in Edinburgh, Scotland. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

Another pulsating weekend of international rugby has passed and there were some stand-out ties. As all the talk is surrounding those all important World Cup seedings which will be determined at the end of the season, there is also the back-drop of the scrap to be included in Warren Gatland’s Lions plans.

Here, we look at five players who will have gone up in the Kiwi’s estimations after their showing last weekend.

Tadhg Furlong

The Irish tighthead prop has been in immense form for the Irish. After claiming the number 3 jersey, he has really made it his own.

Of course, the likes of WP Nel make a strong case for inclusion, but Furlong’s work in the loose has simply been remarkable. His ball-carrying and tackling go above and beyond expectations of an international tighthead.

In the space of a year, he has gone from the third choice tighthead prop at Leinster to being the frontrunner to start for the Lions.

DUBLIN, IRELAND - NOVEMBER 19: Tadhg Furlong of Ireland is tackled during the international rugby match between Ireland and the New Zealand All Blacks at Aviva Stadium on November 19, 2016 in Dublin, Ireland.  (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)

Elliot Daly

Daly took on a curious role on Saturday for England, constantly alternating with Jonathan Joseph between second centre and wing, but he carried out this role to perfection. He took his try exquisitely, and sent Eddie Jones a strong message that he should start against Argentina.

While he is not yet an automatic starter for England, the Wasps centre/fullback possesses a versatility that would appeal to Gatland. Should he continue his rich vein of form throughout the season, he would be difficult to ignore.

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 19:  Elliot Daly of England is tackled by Nikola Matawalu of Fiji during the Old Mutual Wealth series match between England and Fiji at Twickenham Stadium on November 19, 2016 in London, England.  (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

Jonny Gray

The younger of the Gray brothers was the standout performer for Scotland as they recorded a hard-fought victory over Argentina at Murrayfield.

Lock is an incredibly competitive area when it comes to Lions selection, with Joe Launchbury, George Kruis, Maro Itoje, Alun Wyn-Jones and Devin Toner, to name but a few, in contention.

However, if Gray can replicate that towering performance throughout the coming months, he will be on the plane.

EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND - NOVEMBER 19: Jonny Gray of Scotland drives forward with the ball during the Scotland v Argentina Autumn Test Match at Murrayfield Stadium  November 19, 2016 in Edinburgh, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Josh Van Der Flier

Every Lions tour has a bolter, and the Leinster flanker could well be the dark horse to get the shout from Warren Gatland.

His carrying against the All Blacks suggests that he is not intimidated by his rapid rise through the ranks. A ball-fetching seven, Van Der Flier gets through a remarkable amount of work around the park, and should he secure a starting berth in the ultra-competitive Irish back-row, a trip to New Zealand next June would not be out of the question.

DUBLIN, IRELAND - NOVEMBER 19:  Josh Van Der Flier of Ireland is tackled by Sam Whitelock of New Zealand  during the international rugby match between Ireland and the New Zealand All Blacks at Aviva Stadium on November 19, 2016 in Dublin, Ireland.  (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)

George Ford

Worries are abounding that Jonathan Sexton simply does not have 80 minutes of test rugby in him anymore. The Dubliner is becoming increasingly injury-prone, and will sit out Ireland’s test with Australia this weekend.

Ford put in a barn-storming display against Fiji last weekend, and he is silencing the critics.

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 19:  George Ford of England prepares to kick a conversion during the Old Mutual Wealth series match between England and Fiji at Twickenham Stadium on November 19, 2016 in London, England.  (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

Heineken Rugby Club celebrates and rewards real supporters who make the game what it is.

Heineken Rugby Club – where rugby meets the world.

Read More About: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Author: The PA Team

This article was written by a member of The PA Team. If you would like to join the team, drop us an email at write@punditarena.com.