Who will be Lions’ magnificent seven?

The battle for the No 7 jersey on the British & Irish Lions tour is one of the toughest to call and the progress statistics from the opening three rounds of the RBS 6 Nations showcase the strengths of the leading candidates. [more]

Who will be Lions’ magnificent seven?

The battle for the No 7 jersey on the British & Irish Lions tour is one of the toughest to call and the progress statistics from the opening three rounds of the RBS 6 Nations showcase the strengths of the leading candidates.

England’s Chris Robshaw leads in metres made, while Wales’ Justin Tipuric has the best tackle completion percentage. Ireland’s Sean O’Brien has beaten the most defenders and Scotland’s Kelly Brown has made the most tackles.

But when it comes to turnovers, the area in which Australia’s David Pocock excels, Scottish skipper Brown is way out in front of his rivals. He has made seven turnovers in three games, while the next best is O’Brien on three.

Both Robshaw and Tipuric are in negative equity on the turnover count, but have made up for that fact by providing useful line-out possession. Robshaw also leads the way with by far the highest offloading game.

BATTLE OF THE NO 7s
  Chris Robshaw Justin Tipuric Kelly Brown Sean O'Brien
Team England Wales Scotland Ireland
Minutes Played 240 196 225 225
Tries 0 0 0 0
Carries 39 12 12 44
Metres Made 103 31 10 95
Average Gain 2.64 2.58 0.83 2.16
Breaks 1 1 0 1
Defenders Beaten 0 0 0 8
Off Loads 6 0 0 2
Passes 22 11 1 5
Tackles 31 29 43 28
Tackle % 86% 94% 93% 88%
Turn Overs Won 1 0 7 3
Turn Overs Conceded 2 1 2 3
Penalties Conceded 1 1 2 6
Line Outs Won 6 5 2 4

The official RBS 6 Nations statistics also make interesting reading in other areas and highlight the fact that in five of the nine games played to date the team enjoying less territory and less time in possession has gone on to win the match.

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Round 1 – WALES 22, IRELAND 30
Wales 61% territory / 22 min, 57 sec with ball
Ireland 39% territory / 12:14 with ball

Round 2 – SCOTLAND 34, ITALY 10
Scotland 38% territory / 13:31 with ball
Italy 62% territory / 20:55 with ball

Round 2 – IRELAND 6, ENGLAND 12
Ireland 57% / 16:59 with ball
England 43% / 13:47 with ball

Round 3 – ITALY 9, WALES 26
Italy 57% territory / 18:36 with ball
Wales 43% territory / 14:00 with ball

Round 3 – SCOTLAND 12, IRELAND 8
Scotland 30% territory / 09:58 with ball
Ireland 70% territory / 19:33 with ball
 

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