I still think the Tom Curry @ 8 idea is ridiculous... not having any proper 8's in the squad moreso.
However, when Eddie took over 4 years ago and went on a winning run through the 6N's and the Summer, we were all told that it was because other teams were transitioning, trying out new combinations and experimenting at the start of a new World Cup cycle. Whereas England were using a battle hardened team that were hurting from the embarrassment of exiting their own World Cup early.
Eddie should also therefore be allowed some of the same lenience that other teams were granted at the start of a new World Cup cycle.
If we come out of this 6N's having learnt the following, then it would have been a useful exercise:
- Tom Curry is an exceptional flanker, but not a No8.
- 2nd rows should play in the 2nd row. lock/flanker hybrid players should be used in a mid-game emergency only.
- Ben Youngs' time may have come (although I don't see that we're really going to identify an alternative in this tournament)
- Elliot Daly should only be considered as a full back as part of a mid-game reshuffle
- Saracen's players in general may need a break from the international setup while they get their heads in the right place. (I feel that even without Vunipolax2, George, Kruis, Itoje we can still put out a World Class set of forwards)