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Meyer Cheapening Bok jersey?

September 4, 2014 in Rugby, Rugby Championship

Bok FanWith 31 new test caps in 29 tests since his tennure started, one has to start wondering if Meyer knows what he is doing.

It’s become concerning to me that the number of debutants under Meyer seems to be increasing virtually with every match, yet, we keep on hearing people say he sticks with too many old players.

Factually, I cannot agree too much with the latter sentiment. The only “old” players in terms of age is Victor Matfield and Jean de Villiers, whilst, to be honest, there is not too much we can replace them with at this stage. Perhaps too late even if one looks into the preparations for the World Cup next year.

Perhaps the sentiment should rather be that Meyer is sticking with too many players who are not performing well, instead of looking at age but then we can also say that he doesn’t stick long enough with new players before he tries someone else…

Some people have expressed concern that there are too few new players coming through, and that Meyer is not identifying new talent. The former sentiment is totally untrue. Under Heyneke Meyer, as of today, 31 Springboks have made their debut. Between the 31 players, they average 6.8 caps per player since debut, while Eben Etzebeth is the most capped at 25 test caps. If Warren Whitely runs out onto the park on Saturday, he would become debutant number 32.

But somehow when we look at the current squad at the Rugby Championship, which is around 30 players big, we seem unable to recognise those 32 debutants.

That is because several of them have come and gone. Only 9 of those 31 debutants are in Saturday’s squad, while a further 3 players are in the extended squad. So, 12 out of the 31 debutants are still playing . And that is why one would never tell that 31 players have made their debuts under Heyneke Meyer. Twenty players (consider this 3 players short of a full match day squad) have dropped off.

For more and the complete list of players and how New Zealand stack up, visit SportChat.co.za

 

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.

Read more on SportChat.co.za

Lambie to warm bench again

June 5, 2013 in Rugby, Springboks

It was only last year when one of the most talented Rugby players in South Africa was benched for all but 55 minutes of the entire Rugby Championship tournament.  An out of form Morne Steyn was given ample opportunity, in fact, 291 minutes during the Rugby Championship tests to regain his form, to no avail, and it was up to Lambie to take his chances during the Northern Hemisphere tour, when Steyn was rested, and Goosen was injured.

Zane Kirchner was preferred ahead of Lambie at full back.  The reasons for this is still unclear, but some have said that in 2012 Lambie didn’t play enough at flyhalf to warrant flyhalf selection, while some suggested he is actually a flyhalf therefore Meyer does not want to play him at full back.

Read the rest of this entry →

Bok new captain?

June 4, 2013 in Rugby, Springboks

A little bit of a connundrum faces Heyneke Meyer as he may be forced to select Jean de Villiers’ replacement captain and centre a bit earlier than he would have hoped.  De Villiers is currently nursing a tight hamstring, and may not be ready for the first test against Italy.

It wouldn’t be something that Meyer has not been thinking about. If he at all knows, like we all do, that Jean’s likelihood of captaining the Boks through the 2015 World Cup is very slim, due to his tendency to get injured pre and during the tournament as proven since 2003, he would have already identified his captain for the 2015 World Cup, or at least have some idea.

It seems to be a two horse race actually, and we once again might sit with what many people struggled to accept when John Smit was captain.  A leader in the side ahead of the perceived better player.  I won’t open the can of worms on John Smit vs Bismarck du Plessis again, but looking at the options available right now to Meyer, it seems to stir up a very similar brew as with the previous,legendary Bok skipper. Read the rest of this entry →

Only 11 days left!

June 4, 2013 in Rugby, Springboks

So with only 11 days to go, I cannot contain my excitement for MOB 2013! Last year was epic when we went down to Durban to watch the Sharks beat the Stormers, and met up with Playboy bunnies at Boulevards and just having a lekker jol, this year will be even more epic! Without the Bunnies of course, but this is the Bokke!

Imagine us okes, sitting around the camp fire on Friday night, Dutchman and his wife having a glass or two of Muscadel, Cecil Tires, Jaco and their Castle Lite’s, ‘n vleisie op die vuurtjie… ag lekker!

Then a lekker breakfast at the Spur early the next morning, and in at the stadium gates at 10:00 to start the fires, have our beers, have the best kuier since MOB2012, and then enjoy two Epic test matches, historic test matches being the first ever in Nelspruit, when Samoa do their War dance to the Italians, and we see the hard hitting Samoan’s try and decapitate the Italians.  And then, we see the Springboks take on the Scots, in what will definitely be the best game of this series.  We will listen to “Oh, cloud of Scotland”  being played by the live Scottish band, with hopefullya  few Scots int he stands singing their hearts out (I might actually learn the words just to enjoy the sing along) and then we get the Springboks, the National anthem in a full Mbombela stadium….goosebump stuff. Standing shoulder to shoulder with my best mates, of whom I’ve only met Cecil Tires, hands on our chests, painted in green, with BOKKE painted in yellow on our broad and proud chests! Man, what an occasion it will be!

mob2013

Showdown in Bloem!

May 30, 2013 in Rugby, Rugby Championship, Springboks, Super Rugby

ebvserfAn epic battle awaits us this weekend as the two top form South African teams take each other on in Bloemfontein this Saturday.

It will be a battle for top honors in the SA Conference, as the winner of this match will most likely walk away with the top position in the SA log, getting apart from the much forgettable Conference Trophy, a most probably home semi final.

But it is not just the two teams that will battle each other for the SA Conference.  There are also a few mouthwatering personal battles to be fought in lieu of the Springbok side to take on Scotland, Italy and Samoa in June. Players who hope to impress Heyneke Meyer enough to get the nod ahead of their counterpart in the other team. Read the rest of this entry →

Dear Heyneke

May 20, 2013 in Rugby, Springboks

Dear Heyneke

You know when you were named as the chosen one for the Springbok Rugby Coach job, I was very happy. Ja, I felt sorry for ou Divvy, but he was the maker of his own destiny, like Morgan Mandela said in that Invictus Movie.

So, last year, when you started picking Bulls players like Jaques Potgieter and JJ Engelbrecht, and gave them Springbok caps ahead of players who have shown their worth in the past and were much better in their positions, I started wondering what’s in your head. Are you a zombie?  Then we see poor Lambie on the bench every single game, while Zane Kirchner keeps running on as full back. I wondered, is Heyneke the only one who sees value in NikNaks other than Simba?

Last year ended pretty okayish for you, with some nice wins in the Northern Hemisphere. But now, we are in a new year, and as much as we love beating the Brits, we love nothing more than beating the All Blacks and the Aussies. We hate nothing more than losing to Argentina or some other third tier side.  We want you to win. Like that song goes, We wanna win. Read the rest of this entry →

Bok Exodus: Good or Bad?

April 22, 2013 in International, Rugby

Bye Bye Bokkie....

Bye Bye Bokkie….

I am losing count of the number of Springboks who have signed overseas contracts since Heyneke Meyer has become the Springbok coach.  Up to last year still, Ruan Pienaar, Francois Louw and Frans Steyn was the only real candidates for overseas based selection while one or two other not so noteworthy players were also selected as stop gaps during the Northern Hemisphere tour.

News has now broken that JP Petersen and Zane Kirchner will also be leaving. Two key roles in the Springboks squad.  I am left wondering what we have left.  Very recently Andries Bekker has signed for Japan, Juandre Kruger also signed for somewhere in Europe, leaving our lock stocks a little bare, and Bekker was not even being considered for the Springboks, having been one of the top locks in SA this season so far.  Read the rest of this entry →

Only 6 places left!

April 17, 2013 in Rugby, Springboks

The Mbombela Test Double Header tickets will go on Sale at 12:00 Today, 17 April 2013.  Many tickets have already been booked by various unions, sponsors and the like, while SARU have taken blocks of tickets which will not be available for sale on Computicket.

Which is unfortunate, because if you live in the Nelspruit area and want to get tickets through Computicket to see the Springboks play in your home town for the first time ever,  you might struggle to get through on their systems, and may be left empty handed, while the white collars of SARU will come from Cape Town and the like to fill up our stadium.  Sorry for you.  it upsets me quite a bit that many local folks won’t manage to get tickets to the game in their home town.  But alas, SARU is SARU….

If you act quickly, however, and from whereever you are, you may still be part of this epic event! Only 6 spots left at the MOB accommodation, and I may still be able to get more test tickets.  So please let me know soon!

Time is running out!

Clink on the Image Below to read more about the MOB!

MO(m)Bela Stadium to Rock!

April 10, 2013 in International, Rugby, Springboks

MOB 2013 is only 2 months away.  “2 months is still long!” You say, but when you consider accommodation to be arranged and tickets to be purchased to have the best possible seats in the house, 2 months is not alot of time at all! Heyneke Meyer has already started with his preliminary training squad, a squad on which I am sure you all have lots to say…

Be that as it may, coming to the MOB is going to be about much more than watching Stampkar rugby by Heyneke’s boys.  It your chance to meet some fellow bloggers, or if you don’t blog, to meet some sports lovers.  Its your chance to be part of a historic event which is the first time ever that Nelspruit will host a Rugby Test Match, and not just one, but two! Read the rest of this entry →

The 2013 MOB, don’t miss out!

March 25, 2013 in International, Rugby, Rugby Championship

I am sure there are many of you who regret not having been to the inaugural MOB last year in Durban, where some of the bloggers met up for the weekend and watched the Sharks thrash the Stormers.

This year, the MOB has been set for the weekend of 15 June. It’s a long weekend, so if you don’t have any plans yet, you do now! And if you do have plans already, well, cancel them, cause you don’t want to miss this one!

Zebra and Giraffe, the picturesque Mbombela Stadium

They key attraction for this year’s MOB will be the first ever Test Match the be played in Nelspruit. Not only will one be played, but two! The Springboks, Italy, Scotland and Samoa will be at the Mbombela stadium in which you will get two tests for the price of one!  Tickets are set to sell between R350 and R500 and unofficial reports are that it WILL BE SOLD OUT!

 We need numbers. Phone numbers, number of people, number of nights, medical aid and Swiss Bank Account numbers! (Ok, not those last two).  Tickets need to be bought, accommodation needs to be arranged and depending on how the group feels, a trip to the Kruger National Park will also be arranged. 

 

Meet the King of the beasts!

So, Baylion, step away a bit from your PC for a bit and live a little by coming to meet up with us in the sLowveld. De La Rey, Sheriff, LeeuBok, Darwinia, Hanjo, Bloues, Dutchman, LT, REM and all the other guys and gals, come on over!

Only 80 days until the MOB 2013! Are you guys ready to have a blast?

  

The battle for number 8 is on!

March 11, 2013 in International, Rugby, Springboks, Super Rugby

With Pierre Spies’ performance this past weekend against the Blues, Heyneke Meyer will have taken note and may even be having a wry grin on his face.  Spies’ performances over the past few years were short of satisfactory, and along with his hand injury last year, allowed for Duane Vermeulen to step up and take his place in the Springbok camp.

Many viewers will regard Spies as the better player, but it is often the non-flashy players who are doing the hard graft around the park and goes unnoticed because they do not rely on open space to ply their trade as does Pierre Spies. 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 →

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 →

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