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Lambie is the best flyhalf in the country

February 17, 2014 in Rugby, Super Rugby

No golden eggs for this Goose! Just laying!

No golden eggs for this Goose! Just laying!

The Lions upset the Cheetahs and the Sharks put the Bulls to bed. Yes folks, that was the first round of Super Rugby 2014 and my,how short was it? Almost as short as Tjokkie Norris’….uhm….oh wait, this is a family site…

 

So looking back over the past weekend, here’s a few things we can take away and look forward to (and not to) for the coming marathon of week in and week out Rugby. Yes ladies, your husbands are now officially back to the couch  on Saturdays and to the local pub on Friday evenings. Oh don’t complain so much, ladies, we moved the entire SuperRugby schedule a day forward so we could be with you on Valentines day!  Be grateful.

So here’s what we learned (and confirmed) ?

  • Welcome back to a much slimmer and fitter looking Frans Steyn.  Jean de Villiers suddenly has competition on inside centre.  He was solid on defense, carried well and cleaned up some spills nicely.  Also, that deft little kick for Odwa’s try was brilliant! Something he must have picked up in France.
  • Goosen is a walking injury. Ok we already knew that, but what we learned about Goosen is that he is not ready for SuperRugby. Nothing wrong with the boy’s style of play and talent, but his body is just not up to the challenge.  Take a year off totally and condition your body properly. But it’s like these coaches, they play the guys 4 weeks before they are recovered then stuff them up for life. I shouldn’t dare say it, but hell, I hope Goosen isn’t a story of what could have been had he not got a career ending injury.

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Get your Braai On!

June 6, 2013 in Rugby

Check out these awesome Braai’s from Kalahari!  I mean, you’ve painted your Land Cruiser Blue, you hanged those Blue balls on the back, you got your Blue Bulls flags all over, and imagine the awe and amazement when you park near Loftus, and take this beauty, rugby ball shaped, all Bulls braai off the back to braai your lekker Blue Bulls steak!  The envy of everyone in Pretoria!

 

Blue Bulls Charcoal Braai

Click on the image to order yours now! Read the rest of this entry →

No clear favorites, as Super 15 takes its toll

April 29, 2013 in Rugby, Super Rugby

Habana TiredBy this time in the competition last year, the top 6 were pretty much set with about 8 teams still in the running for the top 6 spots.  More or less the same could be said of prior years, with the top teams in the competition being relatively clear between three or four contenders.  This year though, its a little bit different.  Ask me last year this time who will be the champions, I would have said its gonna be between the Chiefs, Stormers and Crusaders.  Ask me now? Well, it can be anyone from the Brumbies, Reds, Crusaders, Chiefs, Bulls, Sharks, Stormers even the Cheetahs. Fact is, the playing field is so level this year, the only certain thing is that the Force, Rebel, Kings and Highlanders will not be making the playoffs.  All the other sides are still in with a chance.

I wonder though if this isn’t another symptom of the most idiotic system ever developed by Sanzar? With professional Rugby players playing physically the thoughest and most demanding rugby on this planet week after week, with little or no time to recover and rehabilitate, it is no wonder that several teams are struggling with many injuries, and that Springbok players like JP Petersen, Bryan Habana, Fourie du Preez, Bakkies Botha, Danie Rossouw, Juandre Kruger, to honestly name but a few, are looking to Japan and France where conditions are much more favorable to the player to prolong their careers. Read the rest of this entry →

Kings are here to stay

April 11, 2013 in International, Rugby, Super Rugby

Let’s forget for just a second about how the Kings, under the directions of chaps like Cheeky Watson, Mark Keohane and their cronies managed to wriggle their way into the Super Rugby at great loss to the Lions Rugby Franchise.

Let;s forget for a second about the conspiracy theories and real reasons behind the drive by these chaps to get the Port Elizabeth Stadium into the Super Rugby fold.

Let’s forget for a second that the Kings abused the system and portrayed themselves as an entity with a noble cause to promote Transformation,while they have done nothing to justify those claims, in fact, they have proven the opposite by allowing more “foreign” players in their squad than allowed, and that is not counting those from African countries who got place in the side ahead of other, more deserving South African, black citizens in that very Union.

Let’s forget Luke Watson’s comments about Dutchman and the Springbok jersey making him nauseous….

The Kings are here to stay.  Read the rest of this entry →

Historic Match in Barberton!

February 21, 2013 in Rugby

 On Saturday the Lions will be playing the Mpumalanga Pumas in Barberton, the small little Lowveld town in Mpumalanga, famous for being one of the richest in gold resources in South Africa.  It is also the home of the Barberton Daisy, and emblem of the Northern Transvaal and Blue Bulls.

Barberton was established in the 1880’s, when the Barber brothers discovered gold in the mountains.  I won’t bore you with the history of gold diggers,first gold mining in South Africa,  illustrious hotels, horse racing, famous “bar ladies”, the first South African Stock Exchange, concentration camp, one of the largest prisons in South Africa, the oldest rocks in the world and the home of Jock of the Bushveld, all part of the rich history of my home town.

Eureka City Racecourse

 

But want to elaborate a little bit on the history attached the Coronation Park, the field where the Lions will be taking on the Pumas.

To my knowledge, this will be the first time in history that a match of this caliber will be played on this unique Rugby field.  Today the home of Barberton Rugby Club, Coronation Park is steeped in History as much as the historic town itself. Read the rest of this entry →

Boerseun is Back!

January 31, 2013 in Rugby, Super Rugby

At last! We can see some Rugby again!

Ja, ok. Last year we saw way too much rugby.  But to go “cold turkey” for nearly three months is just agonising to say the least, and neither the Heineken Cup, Top 14 or Aviva Premiership can fill the void that’s been left.

It’s not SupeRugby yet.  But it’s almost as good. It could have been better though.  If the Bulls were playing the Stormers and the Ceetahs were playing the Sharks, the rivalry between the sides alone would have been worth the admission price.  But I will take the Bulls vs Lions and the Cheetahs vs Stormers any day of the week over Bordoux vs Northampton on a lily white pitch of snow.

Read the rest of this entry →

Rugby: Not for dummies anymore

January 29, 2013 in International, Rugby, Super Rugby

You know the stereotype.  Rugby players are dumb.  They are the fat overweight props that won’t amount to anything in life, and then the fast 100m athletes who become wings, but cannot catch a ball, and then the only smart guy on the field is the flyhalf or scrumhalf who decides where the ball must go.  The rest are dumbasses that barely scraped through matric, don’t study at varsity, and spends all their time playing with balls.

Almost as dumb as boxers who get their brains bashed in all day long.  Rugby players are just a bit smarter cause they let their bodies take the beating. Read the rest of this entry →

Caution: Strong language

January 28, 2013 in Babes, Other sports, Rugby

Some snippets from the weekend

Well done to Bafana Bafana for coming back so brilliantly and ensuring South Africa goes into the next round of the Afcon!!  To be honest, as someone who doesn’t have any interest in football,( no not even the UEFA, Premier League, ManCity or Manure) I wasn’t interested in watching the game, having seen how early on Morocco already scored, and given our inability to score goals, I thought I’m not going to waste my time watching the game. And while sitting outside, taking in the fresh evening air, I heard the neighbourhood erupt in cheers I realised Bafana must have done something great, like, score a goal, so I rushed inside, tuned to the game, and saw Bafana on 1-1 with Morocco.

Now, perhaps if there wasn’t the potential for us to be knocked out, I would not have been so nervous, but realising that we need to either draw or win to go to the next round, depending on Cape Verde’s result against Angola, I was on the edge of my seat as Morocco came with wave after wave of attack. at 2-1 down I thought I’m giving up, but alas, Bafana pulled through and scored the equaliser, setting up the draw to go through to the quarter finals.

Well done Bafana, and here’s to hoping you make it to the next step!

 

Since he’s in the news again, I thought this picture may be relevant….again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

And so the Lions pulled off the win against the Cheetahs.  It wasn’t so attractive to watch to be honest, and the Cheetahs really messed around a bit.  Now the Lions will be boasting about the victory, but the fact of the matter is, it doesn’t mean anything. The Lions are not in the Super Rugby, the Cheetahs are, and really, there is enough time left for the Cheetahs to sort out what needs sorting out before the SuperRugby kicks off.

This weekend will be interesting though when the Lions meet the Bulls.  I think it is going to be a very intimidating experience for the Lions, especially since they are not used to playing in front of more than 15 people in the stands, and as we know, Orlando stadium will be buzzing!

With Lance Armstrong’s confession still fresh in our memories, this one really made me laugh!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not long to go before the kick off for the season,  so get those brownie points in! In the meantime, enjoy this little teaser from Robbie Wessels. (Sorry Lions fans, it’s a bit old, like, 2012’ish)

Click image to view

 

Highs and lows of 2012 ~ in pictures

December 12, 2012 in Cricket, Currie Cup, International, International, London 2012, Other sports, Rugby, Rugby Championship, Springboks, Super Rugby

As we come to the final few weeks of the year, and with absolutely buggerall to watch anymore, except for some Heineken Cup, where you can see old Southern Hemisphere has-beens in action against the best of Europe, it’s perhaps a time to reflect on the year which is past…a year that flew by quicker than Rickie Ponting’s last test innings…

Read the rest of this entry →

Why should Mujati get a passport?

November 9, 2012 in International, Rugby, Rugby Championship, Springboks

Guys, wanna catch a Mujati Beer?

I haven’t blogged for a while. Been quite busy (yes, I actually DO have a job!) and nothing really inspired me to write something…until now.

I will say from the onset that I have always been pro-Mujati coming back to SA for the Springboks. He is a great talent and it was a wry pity that he left and the circumstances under which he left was just as pitiful. 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 →

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 →

SARU shows second face, again.

August 16, 2012 in Rugby, Super Rugby

Well, not only did we lose the Lions to the nasty underworld of Rugby politics today, but also one of my favorite bloggers, BayLion, who deleted his account after the news broke.

I can only imagine that his blog is not the only loss this decision will cause. Look, I guess we all knew it was inevitable. SARU was never forthcoming with a decision, and the only things they mentioned were that they are trying to work it out with Sanzar, that the Kings must be included, and no franchise will be impacted negatively. Now, I’ve for long knew that SARU cannot be trusted. They often do a round about on their word and this is not the first time they’ve shown what big fat liar they are.

But it is sickening the see it really happen and in such a blase manner. To think that the Golden Lions Rugby Union will not be negatively impacted by excluding them from the Super Rugby next year is a true indication of how narrow minded and idiotic the South African rugby administrators are. And what do they promise GLRU in return? “Oh, you’re screwed by the way next year, because all your players will leave because you cannot pay them, because you don’t have money because you don’t have Super Rugby exposure, but please try again to play with your dilapidated side against the Kings, who will have most of your players anyways, and play your way back into contention…for the next 2 years….” Read the rest of this entry →

More tries and less penalties in 2012 SR!

August 7, 2012 in Rugby, Super Rugby

It seems some of the tweaks the SANZAR made to the officiating of the Super Rugby matches are helping to make the game more attractive.

Still, the major issue remains that the sheer quantum of Rugby being played is just so much and it becomes a major effort to really enjoy the tournament. Now with the test break inbetweem, it becomes even more cumbersome, and the impact of such a long season will now be seen when the Currie Cup and the Rugby Championship series starts.

We’ve hardly played the Super Rugby final in the weekend that has passed, and this coming weekend it the players will be up against it again as the Currie Cup commences on this side while the ITM Cup in New Zealand only starts on the 23rd of August. And then, next week, the first matches of the Rugby Championship starts.

To be honest, be beer budget cannot handle this any longer, and my cholesterol levels are spiking from all the braaivleis…

But back to the Super Rugby that’s passed, I’ve collated some key stats and they paint a pretty interesting picture.

 

 

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

Matches played

120

          120             94             94             94
Points scored

5879

         5,561          4,907          4,203          4,128
 – Av per match                    49.0         46.3         52.2         44.7         43.9
Tries scored

589

          559           528           498           483
 – Av per match                    4.91         4.66         5.62         5.30         5.14
Home wins

69

            64             61               57             57
 – Home %

58%

53%

65%

61%

61%

Penalties

2193

         2,371          1,837           896          1,074
 – Per match                  18.28         19.8         19.5           9.5         11.4
 – Minutes per                    4.38         4.05         4.09         8.39         7.00
Bonus points

120

      108.00          89.00       106.00          82.00
BP per match                    1          0.90          0.95          1.13          0.87

From last year, the average number of points per match have picked up, but is still below that of 2010. But on the positive side is that the increase in points is attributed to an increase in tries from 2011 at 4.91 tries per match while 2011 had only 4.66 tries per match. It is still a tad off the pace in terms of the number of tries in 2010.

Looking at penalties, it’s relieving to see a reduction of 8% in the penalty count. However, the penalty count is still twice the number per match than it was before the implementation of the law interpretations back in 2009, when there were only 9.5 penalties per match vs the current 18.28 penalties per match.

The big culprits in conceding penalties were the Bulls, with 11 penalties per match, then the Chiefs with 10.93 penalties per match and third is the Reds with 10.53 penalties per match. The most disciplined team was the Blues, with only 7.93 penalties per match, then the Rebels with 8.73 penalties per match and third most disciplined were the Cheetahs with 8.87 penalties per match.

What is interesting about those statistics is that the most disciplined team in the competition this year had a hapless year in terms of results, well, in fact all three most disciplined teams were pretty much out of the top 6 by the halfway mark, whilst the most ill-disciplined teams reached the Top 6, with the second most ill-disciplined team walking away with the trophy.

If one looks at it over the season, the winning teams conceded 53% of the penalties overall; that number slightly made to look more equal than it really was, with teams like the Reds being punished by Bryce Lawrence in that 17-7 penalty count in the Crusaders favour in round 11 and similary Stu Berry penalising the Force to no end when they lost the the Cheetahs with an 18-7 penalty count against them.

Home games seem to be less of an advantage than it was back in 2010, although it was more of an advantage this year than last year with 58% of home games being won.

A big increase in Bonus Points though, with 12% more bonus points being scored than in 2011. Only one 4 try Bonus Point was scored more than last year though, with the 12 more losing Bonus Points being achieved.

That shows that the matches have, by large, been more competitive this year, and whilst scoring more tries, less penalties and a less convincing home field advantage, this year’s Super 15 was by far more improved from last year’s version.

Hopefully next year there will be even more improvement!

Super Rugby 2012 a success?

July 16, 2012 in Rugby, Super Rugby

So we were left with the last round of the 2012 Super Rugby season to see who the Top 6 would be! The top 2 were basically already established, with the Crusaders also confirmed as finalists, but the Hurricanes, Brumbies, Reds, Bulls and Sharks all had chances to make the finals.

And up to the last game of the last weekend, the final spots have not yet been confirmed. Read the rest of this entry →