September 30, 2012 in Uncategorized
A Lovely weekend of rugby that leaves one with mixed feelings. As far as the Currie Cup is concerned , it looks at this stage if there is only two serious contenders, and that is the Lions and the Sharks. Now , at last when all the hard work starts to bear fruit, the Lions is going to exit the Super rugby competition. If the Lions just started to play like this earlier, Saru might have come to a different conclusion.
Anyway, the Lions was just in a different class and they knew how to get the win. At long last they matured and got mentally tough. Province without Reinhardt Elstadt in the pack is like Rocky without Sylvester Stallone, no punch and no pun intended either. He is a real iron man on the field and like Tiaan Strauss in years gone by , you see the difference when he is not playing.
The Bulls like the WP before them got drowned in the Shark tank, although they put up a better fight. In this game i could not help but to notice Kobus Reinach , Louis Ludick and Keegan Daniel. Reinach is another youngster that can seriously challenge for a place in the Bok team if he does well in Super Rugby next year. The Cheetahs absolutely had the Griquas number. Marcel v d Merwe, is another Cheetah prop to be watched. I just get the feeling that the Cheetahs attention is already on Super rugby and that is what Naka is building towards. There will not be any easy wins next year in Bloemfontein.
Luckily my crystal ball was broken and gave me the wrong info on Heyneke. Heyneke did make changes. He at long last dropped Morne Steyn. Although i know that Johan Goosen is just about the best 10 South Africa has seen over the last 50 years(only Naas could be compared to him), i still felt that Elton Jantjies should have been brought in even before Goosen was fit again.
I have been watching Jantjies and Goosen during the season and now with the Boks. I am very impressed with their cool heads and their decision making. This is the two 10’s for the World cup. I also think Heyneke made a mistake by not starting the more experienced De Jongh next to De Villiers. Taute should have been the man on the bench. We will also have to decide where Frans Steyn must start when he comes back. I believe that he must be the fullback , with Lambie the reserve. Fat chance with Kirschner still in the running.
The forwards did very well and get 5 stars for their hard work. There was a lot of problems with our lineouts. Completely missing people in the lineout on this level is just not on. If you do miss the entire lineout there must always be someone on the lookout for that kind of mistake and be ready to rectify it or minimise the damage. The All Blacks used to be masters in taking advantage of these types of errors and they certainly would have noticed it. Young Goosen went through like a flash to save just such a situation for the Boks
Francois Louw was definitely the star of the day and i cannot think of any blogger here that did not say that we must have a fetcher. Most of us called for Brussouw, but Louw was the lucky man and he really is shining. Duanne is also getting better and better. At one stage i must say some of the Boks forwards looked as if they were struggling to get around the park and looked a bit slow.
Whatever we do next week , we must not even dream about making the same mistakes against the All Blacks that we made against the Aussies and think that we will get away with it. This test is going to be massive and if we win this test we will be making a big statement. Not as big as it would have been if the All Blacks did not already won the Series, but any win against an All Black side is a good win. They do not have weak sides, only less good sides.
My last thought that i want to leave here is that some people is still very much into the colour thing in sport. Heyneke according to me , is not racist. He might have contact lenses supplied by the Bulls that makes it easier for Bulls to be selected. Kirschner is not white , but he selects him. Basson would have been in the team, if it was not for his injury. Aplon and De Jongh plays for the hated province. Jantjies plays for the Lions. Habana is lucky, he played for the Bulls and he and JP Pietersen is so good that you cannot play without them. Mapoe is playing for the Lions(back to his best form) and Rhule(Cheetahs) will be so good next year that he will just have to be included in the team. Kolisi will definitely be there next year and Scarra Ntubeni is at least a hundred times better than Chiliboy Ralepele. But, guess what? Heyneke will bring Chiliboy back into the fold when he comes back from injury and is matchfit, because? Because he is a Blue Bull. No prizes for this one because it is such an easy answer.