Hi all… again sorry for the delayed posting. Things have been hectic around here and I haven’t had the time to talk about my favourite topic. Well I shall head back in time a bit to last Saturday and our woeful game against the English. It was a shocker and it was pedantic. We never got going. And that is where the warning should be for the English.
We managed a draw out of the match and frankly I feel we should have lost it. We were by far the worst team on the pitch. Be that as it may the Roses still only managed a draw. They had us under pressure, mostly created by the indifference of Hougaard and Steyn’s woeful kicking and not by them putting us under pressure.
Our forwards were slow to the ball again and as feared, Jacques Potgieter brought nothing to the table. And that brings another question forward. How effective was Marcell Coetzee really? Yes he is industries and always seems to be able to get forward when he has the ball but he can only produce when we have the ball. We missed a “fetcher”. We missed a person who could win ball for us on the ground so that we could use it. Expecting Marcell to fulfil two roles is ridiculous. How can he fetch and carry? He was stuck in two worlds. The only person that comes to mind in that regard is Francois Louw, who in my opinion would have been the perfect foil for a missing Alberts. He is big and strong and can pilfer exceptionally well. My other problem in the forward department was the disappearance of Spies again. He did so well in the first two tests but when he had to physically front up again due to the injury to Alberts, he was nowhere. He proved in the first two games that he has strength but why when it relied on a bit more does it seem that someone slipped Spies a bit of kryptonite in his coco? It makes no sense. When Werner Kruger came on our scrums were shocking. We would have had more grunt with Spies at prop!
In the backline, things where a shambles. To say that Wynand Olivier was the best player on the field for the Boks goes a long way to pointing out how crap the rest of the team really was. Hougaard’s service and kicking was exposed again in a pack that didn’t dominate. Good scrumhalves play behind a great pack, but great scrumhalves can play behind a losing pack! Hougaard seems uncomfortable. It is almost like the playbook of Heyneke Meyer doesn’t fit him snugly enough. Steyn’s kicking will be harped on for ages, or until he fixes it because other than his kicking there is no reason for him to wear the green-and-gold. His kicking is what got him his spot and it could now be what costs him his spot, for there are better “rounded” flyhalves out there than him. His distribution and general play are also sorely lacking. Wynand Olivier was the only player who stood out, not so much of a great game but because out of everyone he was the one not causing problems for a change. Jean also tried manfully and I feel that the main reason Olivier and de Villiers failed was because of Hougaard and Steyn’s shocking game play. I’d say the entire backline sucked mainly because of those two.
I am a huge Hougaard fan but feel he needs more mentoring. I have never been a Steyn or Spies fan and hopefully the people more deserving of those positions will get them ahead of these two. In fact I think that if Duane Vermuelen is fit, Spies might lose his spot, but I feel that Meyer will carry on with Steyn until the cows come home, which is sad. Here is hoping it isn’t true.