Touchdown: Kyle Eastmond scores for Bath against Leicester Tigers in the Aviva PremiershipKyle Eastmond didn’t make it into the latest Opta Team of the Week, but there was plenty of love for him on BT Sport’s Rugby Tonight show.“He’s the most balanced runner in the Premiership,” said Ugo Monye. “As a winger, having a 12 who can distribute the ball as well as he can, whether it’s kicking, passing or taking it to the line, is an absolute nightmare (to defend against).”It was a timely endorsement of the Bath centre’s talents ahead of the EPS announcement on 22 October. Some very good players are going to miss out on England selection and Eastmond finds himself not only competing against a battery of strong (and bigger) midfield contenders but also trying to shrug off the baggage of England’s previous outing in Hamilton, when he was replaced at half-time after the All Blacks made seven line breaks and scored four tries.It would be a travesty if Eastmond was discarded on the basis of that ropey 40 minutes, not least because the gaps that appeared in the English midfield owed more to a collective failure, with New Zealand’s ‘catch-and-drive’ sucking in loose forwards and exposing backs to one-on-one tackles.Fancy footworkBetter by far to remember the first Test of that series, when Eastmond showed the speed of foot, speed of hand and, above all, speed of thought that few in world rugby currently possess.Eastmond’s footwork in traffic against Northampton Saints last weekend, followed by a perfectly weighted pass, was rightly lauded – see the clip below.But we’d seen similar skill on the Test stage last June in Auckland, when he stepped inside both Ma’a Nonu and Aaron Cruden within five strides.In that same match he showed his touch on the pass when putting Manu Tuilagi between the All Black centres, and his ability to play first receiver was also demonstrated, such as when he filled in on the blind side and put Israel Dagg under pressure with a well-judged kick. Naturally, the best teams can do both, and in Eastmond England have a player whose trickery would complement a more physical ball-carrier outside him.The 25-year-old Lancastrian has three club games – against Saracens, Wasps and Glasgow Warriors – in which to book his slot in the EPS. England then have 12 Tests to fine-tune their team by the World Cup, starting next month when the Big Three and Samoa visit Twickenham. They should ensure Eastmond is part of the ride. Eastmond’s ‘unseen’ work was also of the highest order: he forced a turnover scrum with a choke tackle on Dagg, created another turnover when anticipating the wrap-around and enveloping Conrad Smith, and took advantage of his small stature (5ft 7in) to get low over the ball at the ruck. He even cleaned out Richie McCaw.Such details matter hugely, of course, because World Cups are always won by fine margins.Balanced pairingSo, should Eastmond be starting for England? If only there was an easy answer. It’s unthinkable that Tuilagi won’t fill one of the berths. But with Billy Twelvetrees proving inconsistent in his dozen starts, and a Tuilagi-Luther Burrell pairing unlikely to provide enough finesse, Eastmond’s chances of reprising his Auckland partnership with Tuilagi are not to be sniffed at.A Tuilagi-Jonathan Joseph axis, as tried twice in South Africa and with Tuilagi playing at 12, would surely flounder on the back of Tuilagi’s limited distribution skills. Brad Barritt has started exactly half of Stuart Lancaster’s 30 Tests but might be regarded as a retrogressive selection.Fine start: Henry Slade has impressed in the Aviva Premiership so far with Exeter ChiefsThere are two potential bolters, Henry Slade and the soon-to-arrive Sam Burgess. Of the two, Slade is the likelier choice; he has a cool head, passes beautifully off both hands, and can defend solidly if unspectacularly. He kicks exquisitely from hand and off the tee, and offers a left-foot kicking option – not to be underestimated. On current progress, he’s a shoo-in for England at Japan 2019 but is England 2015 too soon for him?Josh Lewsey and Trevor Woodman broke into England’s 2003 World Cup-winning team late in the day, but they played at full-back and prop. The current England is still deciding on a fundamental – are we going to smash the door down or unpick the lock? Unfairly castigated following England’s rout in Hamilton, the Bath centre is in blistering form and deserves a shot at the 12 shirt for the autumn Tests LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS TAGS: Highlight
4SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Ben Prager Prior to forming Prager Creative, Ben worked with design studios, branding firms and advertising agencies to push great strategy and design for all his projects. His experience with all aspects … Web: www.pragercreative.com/creditunions Details There’s no doubt that it’s an exciting time of year. We’ve hit the home stretch for 2018. The industry has experienced further growth in membership numbers and auto loans. And interest rate hikes have consumers looking to switch to more trustworthy financial providers with better rates. Which means it’s the perfect time to build a solid marketing plan for 2019. Sure, it can be difficult to shift your focus away from your current efforts, especially as you work hard to hit those year-end targets. But if you don’t put the effort in now, you run the risk of always having to play catch-up once the new year rolls around. And the further you fall behind, the harder it is to catch up, let alone get ahead. So if you want to give your credit union the best chance for success in 2019, answer these five questions and start planning for one of your greatest years yet. How did we fail in 2018?Too often we approach the planning process by looking at what was done well and then replicating it. But to really set your credit union up for success, look at the goals you didn’t achieve and figure out why they didn’t happen. Then determine what needs to change so you can reach them this year. By digging into the detail of what didn’t work, you’ll uncover where you need to reallocate resources or rethink your approach.Think of it also in terms of how the competition sees you. A recent survey from the Federal Reserve and the Conference of State Bank Supervisor found that community banks see credit unions as the biggest competition for consumer loans. By acknowledging your weaknesses and addressing them, you are able to stay ahead of the competition and mitigate the tactics they will use to try overstep you. The key is to always keep the competition top of mind, and ensure you are fighting back harder than they’re fighting you. Do we really know what to do with social media and video?Despite being a key driver for consumer engagement, many credit unions still lag in using social media and video content as viable marketing tools. The good news is credit unions have a distinct advantage when it comes to content marketing: they have a rich resource of stories and a highly personal nature that is perfect for engaging with consumers online. Be aware that social media is much more than just another outlet to push promotions. It’s a forum for relationship building, understanding your members, and delivering value in the tailored, personal way that members love. Video also gives you the power to connect in a way words can’t. If you don’t have a video telling your story and letting the consumer know the difference between a bank and a credit union, it’s a must for early 2019!What more can we get for our media spend?When it comes to media buys, the best attitude to have is the one that says “everything is negotiable”. And if it’s been a while since you’ve asked for more, now is the time to do so. Lower rates and fees, more value-adds, and better frequency should all be on the table. Consider working with a media buying pro. They have substantial relationships with media outlets and therefore greater power to negotiate for a better result. Also let go of the belief that you must have a presence in every medium. If your budgets are limited, select the channels with the strongest opportunities for your credit union. You’ll not only avoid sacrificing results from spreading yourself too thin, you’ll find you are better placed to try new approaches and take bigger risks. It’s the most effective way to get to the bigger pay-offs.Can we defend an ADA compliance lawsuit?Despite recent wins for credit unions in the ongoing ADA compliance saga, the threat of litigation is far from over. And if your brand hasn’t addressed the issue, you are leaving yourself vulnerable to litigation. Don’t believe that it won’t happen to your credit union, because at the this stage, every credit union is at risk. That is, of course, unless they have a website that is compliant. Consider this a top priority for your 2019 website strategy.Are we overwhelmed and drowning?Time is one of the most valuable assets to any organization. Freeing yourself of time-consuming obligations gives you the opportunity to focus on new challenges. Actually having time to just THINK rather than putting your head down and knocking things of the old to-do list can be the most valuable time spent.Look at it this way: if, right now, you can’t be proactive about getting a great start to the year ahead, find a partner that can take on the responsibility of getting you to a winning position. It could be the edge your brand needs for an unbelievably successful 2019.
Ryan Giggs says he does want to be Manchester United manager one day.He’s currently assistant to Old Trafford boss Louis Van Gaal, and was speaking at the Soccerex event in Manchester.Despite the tough start to the season for United, Giggs has backed the Dutchman to revive their fortunes by giving young, homegrown players a go.