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All Blacks: Always the victim never the aggressor.

November 28, 2012 in Uncategorized

I read an interesting article on a Ausie website about how Nz are always fast to condemn any “violence” directed at them but then “laughing” the incidents of when one of their players perpetrates.

In recent times there have been a few incidents where it seemed that opposition teams tend to target Richie McCaw with some dirty aggressive tactics. Cooper, Greyling and Higgenbotham comes to mind. Personally I like a bit of aggression in rugby and do not mind a fast short arm jab ect in the ruck and malls. But diving elbow first over a ruck into someone else’s head is taking it a bit to far.

Thing is Mr. McCaw himself is, not unlike Fitzpatrick or Pocock , most of the time on a rugby field on the wrong side of laws. He is a real nuisance around the ruck and mauls slowing ball down and holding back would be tacklers. The fact that most referees turns a blind eye only provoke the situation even more and thus opposition teams tends to take the law in their own hands to sort him out.

Unfortunately two wrongs does not make a right and players caught out doing these deeds are rightfully punished accordingly. Scott Higgenbotham said he learned from his sentence but was not sorry for what he did to Richie. (just shows how irritated these players get)

Now in these example Nz (esp McCaw) was the victims of violence and whether it is provoke violence or not Nz do have the morally high ground in these cases. (holding a defender back is not seen as bad as a punch to the face – although I do not always agree)

But in the last couple of matches the All Blacks themselves have dished out some violence of their own.

Adam Thomson stood on Scotland Alasdair Strokosh’s head. He was only banned for one week (originally after IRB appealed their own progress it was doubled to two) which is a slap on the wrist. In 1999 Brendon Venter was banned the rest of the RWC for a stamp on a Uruguay player.

On Nz rugby show REUNION the presenters laughed the incident off and said there was nothing in it. If this was a Bok/Ausie stamping on Richie or worse Dan  the REUNION presenters would certainly not have taken it lightly and would have said something a long the lines of ” there is no place in rugby for these actions!!”.

Then this past weekend Andrew Hore struck the Welsh lock on the side of the head (in the 2nd minute of the game). The player was hospitalized and if this happened next to a rugby field Hore might well have done some time in jail!!! It was so far off the ball and so early in the game it could hardly have been provoked in any sense. Hore got away with it on the field and Nz effectively played with 15 men for the whole game when they should have been 14.

After the Dean Greyling incident both Heyneke Meyer and Jean de Villiers apologized to Nz rugby and Richie himself publicly and said they were ashamed of Dean’s actions.

Now up until now neither Thomson, Hore or any of the Nz rugby fraternity has publicly apologized for their actions. Hansen only said about the Hore incident:  “It looked like he was trying to clean out the Welshman in front of him It’s unfortunate that it’s happened.” “I am just resigned to the fact that he will probably get cited . . . think they think we’re thugs or something but we don’t play differently to anyone else.”

Really clean a player out more than 2 meters from the ruck with a fist to the side of the head and hospitalizing the player?? And I agree about not playing differently to any one else but they do get punished differently. Can’t they even show the decency to own up to their mistakes and apologize?

BUT the IRB should probably not complain about this because it is their own preferential treatment of Nz players that has lead to Nz rugby fraternity now believing that they are above the law and should be treated differently than any other rugby playing nation. (2 years ago Mealamu headbutted an Eng player and only got 1 week.)

I mean if you have a dog and every time he bites a person you do nothing but pat him, you should not complain when he finally bites a person to death! 

Cheers.

PS: Hore is yet to be sentenced but with only one game in the season left he will probably serve out his sentence during the off season thus in reality only face a one week ban for nearly killing a person. [SIC]

 

 

 

2013 S15 predictions.

November 26, 2012 in Uncategorized

With the Boks season coming to an end and only reconvening in June next year the time has come for our provincialism to flair up again and start boosting our own team chances and braking down the chances of the others. :)

This is the Stormers squad in 2013 according to Wikipedia.

Props:  Deon Carstens,  Patric Cilliers, Brok Harris, Steven Kitshoff, Frans Malherbe

Hookers:  Deon Fourie, Tiaan Liebenberg, Siyabonga Ntubeni

Locks: Andries Bekker, Ruan Botha,  Eben Etzebeth, De Kock Steenkamp, Michael Rhodes

Loose Forwards:  Don Armand,  Schalk Burger, Nizaam Carr, Rynhardt Elstadt, Siya Kolisi,Duane Vermeulen

Scrum-halves:  Dewaldt Duvenage,  Nic Groom,  Louis Schreuder

Fly-halves:  Peter Grant,  Elton Jantjies,  Gary van Aswegen

Centres:  Marcel Brache, Juan de Jongh, Jean de Villiers, JP du Plessis

Wingers:  Gio Aplon, Damian de Allende, Bryan Habana, Gerhard van den Heever

Fullbacks:  Joe Pietersen, Jaco Taute

As I have said before a very, very strong squad with real depth and if they, like the Boks, can get their backline moving the ball through the hands they might be a tough team to beat.

My team at the start of the year would be:

15. Taute, 14. Aplon, 13. JdJ, 12. JdV, 11. Bryan, 10. Jantjies, 9. Groom, 8. Vermeulen, 7. Elstadt/Burger, 6. Kolisie 5. Bekker, 4. Eben, 3. Pat, 2 Fourie, 1. Kitshoff. ———— 16. Tiaan, 17. Frans, 18. Rhodes, 19. Carr,Armand, 20. Schreuder, 21. de Allende, 22. Joe-P

I am now going to do what I probably should not do and predict how our teams will fare in the 2013 season:

Kings: With some new recruitment’s they should be a really solid CC team. But this is Super Rugby and they will have to learn to piss with the big dogs now. I am sorry but can’t see them being much more than a 1-2 upsets team finishing in the bottom 3 most probably last.

Cheetahs: Their 1st 15 is a solid team and can beat any other SR team on its day but depth (i mean quality depth) is always a problem in Bloem. They do boast the best 10 in SA but the rest of the team is not quite in the same class. I expect them to be in the top half of the draw but only just. Do not think they will make the play-offs.

Sharks: The most complete team in SA. With the best game plan by far. Yet they always conspire to work against themselves losing games they shouldn’t. Will be in the play-offs. Where I do not know somehow they also seem to lose when they should win easily. Might well win SA conference and/or S15 tittle.

Bulls: Did a lot bette in 2012 than expected. But do seem to be a young team with not many world class players as of yet. They do have a lot of very young guys who might make the step up. But my gut tells me they will again be on the edge of the play-offs 5th or 6th or 7th. I think 2013 will be one season to soon for the Bulls. I expect them to really pick up the pace 2014 and beyond.

Stormers: 2013 will be the first season since 1999 when the Cape to my mind do have a well balanced team with most basses covered. For once they did bought smartly in the off season. All of Taute, Jantjies, Rhodes and Cilliers will be very good accusation. I will be surprised if they are not in the play-offs. The down side is that everyone knows the Stormers/WP are at their best when nobody gives them a chance. But lets see. I might be a but subjective but I believe this might be the Stormers best chance of winning the trophy ever.

 

cheers

Springbok’s 2012 a fans tale.

November 26, 2012 in Uncategorized

So the record will read 7 wins, 2 draws and 3 losses in 2012. Not such bad reading and Heyneke Meyer will find it a bit easier walking on the beach and in shopping malls during the Christmas break.

A few observations of the season.

HM started of the season with a lot of weird choices in his Bok squads. Players like JJ Engelbrecht, Jacque Potgieter, Dean Greyling, Werner Kruger  to name a few. It raised a few eyebrows on how players with no real form or shown ability could be fast tracked into the Boks squad. But as the year worn on HM slowly but surely realized that RSA is bigger than just Pretoria.  These players Bok careers are as distant a memory as Jorrie Muller’s.

Slowly the good player came to the fore, all be it forced by injuries sometimes, but none the less especially in the forward department the team really started to look like a real Bok team. (bar CJ van der Linde)

In the backs HM also, all be it a bit to late, realized that size is not all that should count. I mean if JdJ could stand up to Tuilagi size really should not be such a big role player.

What we achieved in 2012 was work out our forwards (bar a few injuries) and work out our defense. In these two departments HM should be lauded and should take some real credit.

On the other hand our offensive play has been really bad. At times the boks looked like dear in the headlights with ball in hand and the amount of time our 9 passed to a forward next to the maul standing dead still was enough to break the toughest spirits in South Africa. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that the Boks squad seriously needs a attacking coach. We look like we just do not have a clue and that there is not one minute spend on backline moves during training hours.

Ruan Pienaar might be the closest we got (atm) to Fourie du Preez but he certainly ain’t no FdP!! He had OK games the whole season but his box kicking has been shocking for the most part but even worse was the amount of times he kicked away attacking ball. Though this is a illness that many a bok back had this season. Personally I can’t wait for Hougie to start at 9 again for the Bulls or maybe even young Piet van Zyl to come through the ranks.

Zane Kirchener is a bit of a problem. He is mighty under the highball a good defender but offers absolutely nothing on attack. In a game like against England he is perfect but against Nz players like him is just not good enough. I hope Taute can come through at 15 or even Ludik to take another step up?

The only real other area of concern is in the centre’s where we have an aging JdV and Fransie at 12 and JdJ at 13 and for the moment thats it. Mapoe is destined to play 13 for the Bulls next season and I hope he can get some proper game time. There is of coarse youngsters like Whitehead and Jordaan who could also step up next season.

All in all if the Boks can get most of their injured players back next season they will be right up there with the best in the world especially if they can sort out their offensive woes.

Cheers

Hougie to concentrate on 9 !!

November 22, 2012 in Uncategorized

I read in the Burger that Francios Hougaard would like to concentrate on scrumhalf only from next season.

He feels that a lot of his development as a scrumhalf has been undermined by firstly the Bulls and then the Boks selecting him on the wing.

I AGREE 110%.

Hougie has enormous  talent so much so that when the Bulls first got him they wanted him in the team but FdP was at the Bulls and thus Hougie had to play either OC or wing. This worked well for the Bulls as FdP and Hougie had a good feeling for one another.

BUT this was a bad move for Hougie himself. Because for all the natural instinct and ability he has the technical side of scrumhalf play was never fully developed. Especially his box kicks which is something only a scrumhalf does and training on the wing he never really developed it properly.

Hougie should by now have been  a top class scrumhalf but at the moment he is still just an exciting talent that lacks the nous of a true world class scrumhalf.

Hougie himself said he feel bad for a guy like Mvovo who is a true wing and gets left on the bench. Hougie has by now also lost most of his confidence and has begun to become a liability on defense. Something that you never would have associated with him.

I am truly glad that players are starting to stand-up and speak out about the coaches ruining their careers by playing them out of position.  To many a world class talent has never lived up to their potential because of coaches screwing them up.

I just hope that it is not to late for Hougie as youngsters like Piet van Zyl, who has focused of scrumhalf exclusively, will be gunning hard for a starting spot in the Bok team next season!!!

 

cheers

Goosen in a league of his own?

November 21, 2012 in Uncategorized

A lot has been said about the improvement in flyhalf depth in South Africa in the last couple of years. Not long ago we had Morne Steyn and Ruan Pienaar (a scrumhalf forced into no 10) as our only viable options. (ok maybe Butch was also there at some level)

Pienaar never really cut it at the highest level and he personally never wanted to play at 10 anyways. Morne in partnership with FdP was a good combination and won many a game for the Boks and Bulls.

But now we have some real depth with Lambie, Goosen, Jantjies, Steyn all tested at the highest level and then you still have exciting youngsters like Pollard and Swiel ect.

But one thing that this past season has proven is that at this moment young Goosen just looks to be in a class of his own, one or two tiers above the rest.

MU did the stats and it is alarming that the FH’s are getting less than 50% of the ball the SC is handling!! No wonder we are struggling.

But again Goosen in his one full game had the highest percentage of all the Bok FH this season. Not nearly as high as Nz or Aus but still better than the other SA FH’s. Is it just a coincidence? Did HM change the GP for that one game?

Now to be fair of the 4 FH Elton has been getting the short end of the stick. It is clear that HM does not rate him as high as the rest and his lack of distance with the boot might play a role in that.

I really do think HM should have a nice long chat with old Naka and ask him to wrap the youngster in cotton for the next season or so. Kinda like Nz did with Carter. He is injury prone, mostly I think because he is pushed at the highest level from such a young age. He should have been playing Cheetahs o/19 this season if he was an average player.

Although the rest of the FH’s all have potential and the skills. At the moment only young Goosen has shown the ability to become a world class FH.

Cheers

Is it HM fault Lambie did not ace the Test?

November 20, 2012 in Uncategorized

So Lambie has started 2 test and has been OK in parts of them and pretty poor in other parts. In fairness 2 tests is not a lot of time to proof one self on international level and Lambie is still pretty young.

But that considered Lambie’s performances to date as a Bok FH has left a lot to be desired. Basically he has not yet shown the same form and dominance he has (at times) shown at the Sharks at CC and SuperRugby level. He looks uncomfortable at the moment.

A lot of Lambie supporters says it is HM influence on the man. That HM is basically trying to neglect his strong points and make him focus solely on tactical kicking.

Kinda like what HM did to Hougie who has gone from clear 1st choice SH in the start of the season to an no-confidence retread wing. All because HM forced Hougie to kick a lot (ala FdP) and tactical kicking is Hougies weakest part of his game. Hougie now can’t even make the Bulls starting 15 in the CC. Thing is Hougie is a talented player with loads of other strengths just not kicking. Mind you on the evidence thus far Pienaar is not that much better. But let me not digress. 

Lambie is not the worst tactical kicker in the world proven by the CC games he won for the Sharks in atrocious weather in Durbs. But he has been focusing so much on kicking or setting up the crash ball via JdV. That he has totally forgotten about skip passes, loop around’s, dummies, stepping ect. And for this you can sort of blame HM. He publicly stated he wanted Lambie to work on his kicking and Lambie is now trying to show that he has worked on it by kicking the whole game. But this mindset has really had detrimental effects on our game. HM should realize Lambie is not Morne. Just like Hougie is not FdP.

On the other hand as I have said HM can instruct Lambie how he thinks he should play and what he expects of him on the field. But HM is sitting in a box in the stands shouting like a striking miner in a walkie-talkie, he is not on the field forcing Lambie to do anything. Yes I know MU said that HM might sub him if he starts deviating from the GP. But if Lambie can create an gap (ala DC) and send JdV or JdJ over for a try how will HM be able to sub him? Like Victor Matfield said a GP is a GP but the player should still see when it is time to deviate and score a try. (FdP was a master at this)

And this is what has disappointed me in Lambie.  In the first half the Boks were dominating, playing a lot of rugby in the Scotish 22 and yet Lambie did not really set the world a light. Once when we had good front foot ball he even tried to grubber the ball through the defense only to kick it into his opponent and we lost the ball. I do not know if this was done to show HM he is willing to kick anywhere on the field but it was surely the wrong option. A 1/10 chance at best.

I do not know if it was just the exuberance of youth or the fact that HM said he is the complete FH playing him after just 45 min of CC rugby. BUT young Goosen did seem to have a feel for when to kick, when to run and when to pass. Yes he also made mistakes (he is only 20) but he also created a lot of go forward ball for his outside backs. Yes it was against a seriously depleted Aus side but even then they should be better than Scotland?

In the end all the focus on tactical kicking from the coaching staff must have and effect on the player BUT as an Bok FH you should be able to take it on the chin and play the game as you see it in front of you.

So is HM to blame for Lambie being so lame? I would say in part yes but not fully Lambie should shoulder some of the blame too!

Sherifff might shoot me for writing this post  so if I disappear from these blogs please send the Hawks to his house.

Cheers

PS: For BayLions my opinion on Elton Jantjies is still undecided. He has not yet had enough time on the field for the Boks to decide how good he is. Not his fault I know but not mine either. I will reserve my opinion on the guy until next season after he played some games for the Stormers. But that he has huge potential is a no-brainer.

 

Bok team vs England

November 20, 2012 in Uncategorized

The team I would pick against the Poms.

15. Taute: Zane again did pretty good under the high ball but again did nothing else. He kicked away turn-over possession while we had an overlap. He has had his chances and should be dropped.

14. Mapoe: If Pietersen is able he should play if not. Then I would select Mapoe he has played a lot of rugby at 14 and won’t let the team down. He can’t be worse than Hougie has been all season.

13. JdJ: Had one chance and nearly had a clean break. Defended pretty well. This will be a real test if he is big enough for international rugby. It doesn’t get any bigger than Tuilagi .

12. JdV: I think he is out on his feet and his creative side is pretty exhausted. But as I have said 100 times he is the only 12 on tour. He was injured in week one , had flu in week two. Hopefully he will be good to go on Sa because we need a blinder from him

11. Mvovo – if un-injured he should get a chance. If not Hougie will again need to do duty at 11.

10. Jantjies – Lambie had an OK 1st half and a bad 2nd half. Whether under instruction from HM or not he should play his natural game and be more positive. I mean HM isn’t on the field he can’t actually stop Lambie from playing positive. I would give Elton an chance to see if he can cut it.

9. Vermaak – Ruan has had OK games. Kinda like Zane. But he kicks to much ball and kicks badly to boot. To slow and does not attract enough defenders and just like the Stormers in S15 he just shifts the defense down the backline. Would not mind Hougie getting an chance but then he should never kick.

8. Vermeule – again good but not brilliant. Have to agree with critics in the current loose trio he is to slow. But I am not sure about Arno yet so I would stick with Duane.

7. Coetzee – Alberts had a good 1st half but we need more speed in the loose trio so I will bring on Alberts from the bench.

6. Flo – one of the only players on tour who can say he has been 100% and would make my world team atm. Brilliant player. WP can kick their own arses.

5. Kruger – was OK not brilliant. but we won 100% of our line-outs so he must be doing something right.

4. Flip – If Eben is cleared he should play. If not Flip should easy.

3. Jannie – the best in SA and becoming one of the best in the world.

2. Strauss – had an blinder on Sa deff our second best hooker

1. Steenkamp – if he is injury free. If not Heikie.

16 Chiliboy ; 17 Pat ; 18 Heikie,CJ, Malherbe(depending on injuries) 19 Franco 20 Alberts 21 Lambie 22. Hougie 23 Zane or Rhule dep on injuries.

Now I am 100% sure HM will not choose this team. And in reality I do not expect him to now for the last game. He should have made the changes game one but now it is to late.

This is just the best available 15 atm who I think will be able to play a better type of game. Call it an Anti-HM-GP. :)

Has Heyneke Meyer lost the respect of the Bok fans?

November 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

This is the question I asked myself after this weekends dismal display against the no.8 going to 9 side in the world.

The answer: I would have to say YES. Except for a few die hard Bulls supporters who still believe it is 2009 the rest of the country is fast getting fed up with Mr Meyer.

It is not the results, the Boks has always been pretty poor in the EOYT’s, it is more the fact that he and Jean is flat out denying that there is even a slight problem with their team selection and more importantly their GAME PLAN!!! While the rest of the world can all see that there is a HUGE problem with the whole Bok setup.

Heyneke would like us to believe that a narrow somewhat “lucky” win against the Scots is good enough for the Green and Gold. If the All Blacks played like we did this weekend Hansen would surely have ripped the skin off a few of his players.

Yes we all know the Boks has loads of injuries, that they lost a lot of senior players since last year and that HM and his coaching staff are still finding their feet at international level. But surely even with all these mitigating factors the Boks performances of 2012 was just not good enough!!

Why when every team in the world from Scotland themselves to the mighty All Blacks are trying to play a more ball in hand possession orientated game plan, do HM think the way forward is a forward dominating kick the ball to the opposition game where no 13,11,14 and 15 are only there to tackle and chase kicks?

A game plan where there are NO dummy runners, NO offload in the tackle, NO blindside wing coming into the line and DEFF NO fullback ever being involved in attacking play????? I mean JdJ got the ball once the entire game on Saturday. With this one ball he side stepped the first defender and this was probably the most exciting part of the bok’s play on Saturday.

The one play that summed up the game was when we got a turnover on the halfway line and had an overlap, Zane (because this is all he can do) kicked the possession away straight into the Scots fullbacks hands. They kept the ball and worked their way all the way to our 22. And this is not the first time this season someone in the Bok team kicks turnover possession away!!!!!

Another daft decision by Mr Meyer was the inclusion of CJ van der Linde as tighthead cover above Pat Cilliers. Pat has been solid all season long as replacement for the good Doctor. CJ came on gave away 3 penalties and was murdered in the scrums. This caused us to be pinned in our own half for the last 15 mins. A direct result of HM in ability to rate players. I said on Wednesday that this was a huge mistake and so it turned out to be.

Look irrespective of what happens on Saturday this was not a season the Boks, their coach or their fans would want to remember. And this being a rebuilding year; a year where the team, the coach and the management still needs to find each other and themselves nobody expected miracles BUT we did expect them to build towards a winning game plan and team.

IF HM will not even except that his team choices and game plan is seriously flawed how on earth will he be able to change the fortunes of the Boks? The first part about solving any problem is admitting that you have one!! By the time HM and his stooges realize that their game plan will only win them 55 – 70 % of their games it will be to late to change it before the next world cup. As Steve Hansen said it did not take the All Blacks one or two weeks to get there game plan and team working it took years of practice.

THE SADDEST PART OF THIS WHOLE YEAR IS NOT THAT THE BOKS HAVE BEEN LOSING THE IMPORTANT GAMES AND SCRAPPING THE ONES THEY SHOULD HAVE WALKED. THE REAL SADDEST PART IS THAT THERE IS NO REAL HOPE OF IT IMPROVING IN THE NEAR FUTURE WITH THE CURRENT BOK SQUAD AND MANAGEMENT. 

CHEERS…

Bok team to face Scotland.

November 14, 2012 in Uncategorized

15 Zane Kirchner, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Jean de Villiers (captain), 11 Francois Hougaard, 10 Pat Lambie, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Juandré Kruger, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Gurthrö Steenkamp

Substitutes: 16. Schalk Brits, 17 Heinke van der Merwe, 18 CJ van der Linde, 19 Flip van der Merwe, 20 Marcell Coetzee, 21 Morné Steyn, 22 Jaco Taute, 23 Lwazi Mvovo

All in not a bad team.

Although HM seems reluctant to go all the way with his changes. He keeps on telling us that he wants to build momentum and not change to much. But to be honest there has not been much if any momentum build this year even though he has tried to keep changes to a minimum.

Comments:

Positive:

Like JdJ at 13. I have said he should be given a fair chance in his favorite position and he got it.

Like the fact that Lambie has got another chance.

Negative: 

If JdJ at 13 why not give Taute a shot at 15? Zane has had plenty of chances.

Why keep Hougie on the wing when he is struggling so much. Give the guy a brake and get a real wing on the pitch.

Would have selected Pat as back-up 3. CJ is not what he used to be and I think he will struggle at 3 if required.

Why keep Morne on the bench? As a safty option? Why not give Jantjies a shot?

I would have switched Alberts and Coetzee but that’s just my opinion.

Well as HM said he did not want to change to much, even though after Sa game he prob should, he stuck to his guns and only made 2 changes. So credit must prob go to him for sticking to his word.

Lets hope the Bok backs can break loose a bit and attack a bit more with ball in hand.

Cheers.

Bok team vs Scotland

November 13, 2012 in Uncategorized

Scotland being Scotland this should have been a chance for HM to rest some overplayed players and give the youngsters a run.

BUT the season HM has had (and the 2010 result) will probably force HM to make the minimum amount of changes.

HM has publicly stated that he might rest seriously overplayed and slightly injured captain Jean de Villiers. The problem with this is that HM did not take one back-up 12 on the tour. Sure JdJ can play 12 but he has been on form at 13. JdJ has brilliant feet but his distribution skills are lacking a bit to be a good 12 thus he is more suited to 13.

My team against Scotland:

15 – Jaco Taute: HM believes he is a FB and so does the rest of the world so play him there. Zane has had plenty of game time give him a rest.

14 – JP Pietersen – Had little opportunity in the game and got a harsh yellow. I would expect a better game against Scotland

13 – Juan de Jong – If JdV is fit he should play mainly cause HM seemed it fit to take only one 12 and an injured one at that. If JdV injured then I would have Mapoe at 13.

12 – JdV – Captain had an OK game but is deff slightly injured. JdJ can play if the captain is injured but he is the only recognized 12 on tour.

11 – Mvovo – He need a start people questions his defense but Hougie had another shocker against Ireland esp on defense. Earls made him look like a school boy.

10 – Pat Lambie – He deserves another chance. Maybe so does Elton but I would put Elton on the bench.

9 – Ruan Pienaar – Had a solid game against Ireland. He is not FdP nor Joost but he is the best we have.

8 – Duane Vermeulen – Had an OK game stole some ball and defended well. Not seen the best of him yet at test level

7 – Marcell Coetzee – Our loose trio looked a bit slow and heavy against Ireland. I would bring on Alberts as impact player.

6 – Flo – Had another blinder against Ireland. Should be next bok captain if he can give up the pound.

5 – Franco vd Merwe – Kruger had a off game and has not looked the part since the Eng series.  It is time for a change.

4 – Eben – Had an solid game. He might be getting tired but should be replaced after 60.

3 – Pat Cilliers – the good Dok has a slight injury would keep him on the bench or rest him. Cilliers has not disappointed yet.

2 – Adriaan Strauss – Also had a good game. Showed real leadership qualities.

1 – Gathro Steenkamp – If he is fit he should play.

16 – Chiliboy – seems unfair after HM did not afford Schalk one min on Sa. Personal choice because he plays in Sa. But Schalk prob better player.

17 – Heinkie vd Merwe – Scrumed well on Sa. Did give away 2 penalties. But was not even at training.

18 – The Good dok if not injured. Otherwise will go to Malherbe the only other 3 in the group. Do not believe CJ can cut it at 3 anymore.

19 – Big Flip – has been improving the whole season. Seems to give less penalties away. Eben also had a long long season.

20 – Jano Vermaak – 2nd best 9 on tour

21 – Elton Jantjies – I would like him to come on with 20 to go.

22 – Mapoe – Or if JdV is injured Rhule.

23 – Willem Alberts – as loose forward cover. He can make an impact when coming on.

But I am sure HM will not move Taute from 13 and play Zane at 15. He will porbably bring in JdJ at 12.

Also not sure if he will drop Hougie but he seriously needs a break from rugby.

Cheers

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