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Stormers should not try so hard!

May 3, 2013 in Rugby, Super Rugby

It’s always seen as a bit of an injustice when a team loses a Rugby match despite having played the best Rugby all game long.  That was the case again this morning when the Stormers, despite winning every aspect of the game, lost to the Blues in North Harbour by an agonising 1 point.  What makes this loss even more agonising, is that the Stormers scored the only 2 tries of the match, while the Blues, traditionally known for their dangerous running rugby, didn’t score a single try.  A feather in the Stormers defensive cap as you may, but that’s where the party ends.  Scoring the most tries doesn’t win you matches.  Scoring the most points does.

It’s irritated me to some extent when, for the past two seasons, the Stormers suffered harsh critisism for not scoring enough tries. Yet, the ended first and second on the log, which is the important thing in this competition. I mean, you can be everybody’s favorite team, but if you don’t bring in the money, you soon find yourself on the street…like the Lions. Read the rest of this entry →

New Zealand teams running the most, but SA Flyhalves get the most ball?

March 5, 2013 in Rugby, Super Rugby

 

Week 2 (or is it week 3? these Aussies always just have to confuse everything!) has come and gone and already some teams are being touted as this year’s champions, and others are being written off.  It’s still early days, chaps, so let’s not jump to conclusions too soon, or make any rash decisions.

Lot’s of focus on the Stormers, which I can get because they have been South Africa’s premier team in the Super 15 and as they say, high trees and a certain south easter, does make for some spectacular viewing. 

Last week I asked the readers to vote for their stand out performance of the week in the weekly race to the Bok number 10.  As it stands, despite having a bit of an “off” day against the Chiefs, Johan Goosen is still in the lead on the votes with Lambie in second spot.  Morne Steyn, whilst he will still be around during the Rugby Championship (he is only leaving after the Currie Cup) is backing up the rear.  To me, Morne Steyn was again very accurate with the boot and actually ran a few times with the ball in hand, one of those runs leading to a try and one out of every 4 passes went to the wing.  Lambie on the other hand was a bit stuck in an arm wrestle, and while he did miss a couple, he had a few nice runs and 1 in 3 passes went to the wing.  Goosen was a bit unfortunate to run into a very strong Chiefs side.  He missed several of his kicks (all but 1 in fact), but he remained the go-to guy for the Cheetahs, hoping he would create something for them each time he touches the ball. His defense was a bit shoddy and some of his passes were poor.  All in all, considering zero missed tackles and surviving the onslaught of the Stormers, I pick Lambie as my pick of the weekend.  Who was your top flyhalf this past weekend? Read the rest of this entry →

Springbok Flyhalve: A 3 Horse race!

February 25, 2013 in Rugby, Springboks, Super Rugby

Well well! What a weekend of Super Rugby! Apart from the dull encounter up North in Bulls country and the snooze inducing encounter down under in Brisbane, this weekend’s “kick off” of the Super Rugby season really provided some much needed quenching of thirsts accross continents!

One thing is for sure, and that is the South African teams have a lot of work to do to match the intensity and raw speed of the New Zealand teams.  In Australia, only one team really stand out and that’s the Brumbies.  Sorry Quade, either go back to boxing, or get Genia back on your inside. Frankly, you are perhaps better at boxing than at Rugby without him!

And how about those Kings, hey? Love them or hate them, for me (with egg in my face) they earned a certain amount of respect for the way they played and kudo’s to the supporters filling a stadium, where Ellis Park would most probably have been as quiet as a….well, come to think of it, is there anything as quiet as Ellis Park right now? I still believe the venue is at the root of the Lions troubles…and perhaps a lesson to be learnt by some that perhaps encapsulating the festive vibes from what the 2010 Soccer World Cup stadiums provided may in fact assist with the longevity of the unions. Traditions unfortunately do not fill the pockets nor pay the bills. Feet do.  And pardon the little stab, Luke supporters, but what does he do on the field while someone like that Jacques Engelbrecht chappie is warming the bench? Does he still think he is a quota player or what? Read the rest of this entry →

Stormers’ Flyhalf woes continue

February 3, 2013 in Rugby, Super Rugby

With Elton Jantjies allowed a leave of absence and Peter Grant still playing in Japan, it was an opportune time for Kurt Coleman to show that he is a capable replacement for either when the SupeRugby season kicks off.  He failed to impress though, and his woeful kicking at goal was further emphasised when the Cheetahs kicked a goal 50 metres out in the 81st minute to clinch the match.

Read the rest of this entry →

Pressure mounting on Heyneke

October 21, 2012 in Currie Cup, Rugby, Rugby Championship, Springboks

With Johan Goosen out for the season, and based on his Rugby Championship selections, Meyer has only two options left at flyhalf for the upcoming Northern Hemisphere tour: Elton Jantjies and Morne Steyn.

After his form left alot to be desired during the RC, Morne was left to rest and refocus, while Goosen and Jantjies took up the reigns at flyhalf.  Last week Morne showed some good form, but last night again, his team’s lack of ability to dominate left him with very little chance to get into any sort of rhythm.

Elton Jantjies’ performance with the boot last night was not enough to give anyone comfort that he will have what it takes on the big stage. Given that it was a crunch game, his lack of conversions shows on a lack of BMT on his part, something that’s been questioned in the past.

So, despite the apparent wealth of flyhalves we thought we had in South Africa, we have an off form player in desperate need of rest and re-focus, an injury prone, talented youngster who is on crutches until next year, and an inexperienced, talented youngster who seems to freeze on the big stage. Read the rest of this entry →

Why Zane is favoured over Lambie

October 10, 2012 in Rugby, Rugby Championship, Springboks

With Ruan Pienaar saying Lambie should decide where he wants to play, I again wondered about the argument between who is better for the Bok side, Lambie or Kirchner.

To the naked eye, Lambie is clearly the better player, being able to play at flyhalf, inside centre and full back. Many say this is his downfall, the fact that he is so versatile, yet to me that is actually a strength.  Players like Stephen Larkham, Berrick Barnes, Matt Giteau, Stirling Mortlock and even Dan Carter have played in various positions throughout their careers and it made them better players overall. Read the rest of this entry →

Oscar Wilde ~ Talent borrows, Genius steals…

October 3, 2012 in Super Rugby, Uncategorized

It’s not ironic that the Stormers are benefitting most from the Lions being ousted from the Super Rugby tournament after they voted strongly in favour of the Kings.  It was genius.

Culling the Lions franchise, in essence meant that their players became free targets, and the Stormers knew all too well that they want some of the talents the Lions possess, and with the Lions bargaining powers severely hampered, the Stormers knew they would be well positioned to lure in some of those talents. Read the rest of this entry →

Could Goosen be the Springbok’s Carter?

September 26, 2012 in International, Rugby, Rugby Championship, Springboks

Can Goosen be SA’s Carter?

Come 12:00 this afternoon, many a Springbok fan will get a hernia when Morne Steyn is once again selected to start in the number 10 jersey for the test against Australia at Loftus this weekend.

I highly doubt that Goosen will start this weekend, as many are hoping for, simply because I don’t think its the right time yet.

Many disagree with me, and I am quite aware of the fact that I’m treading on unpopular waters here. I mean, it just makes sense to start Goosen against this year’s weakest opposition, doesn’t it? Or…does it? Read the rest of this entry →

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