Only two days before the transaction deadline, so if you’re going to start a team get crackin! Most of you have probably spent a decent chunk of time tinkering with your squad (I know I have) and maybe have a good idea of who you want on your team. In the event that you’re still undecided about some things, this entry will attempt to offer a few strategy tips. Feel free to offer any of your own below.
I don’t have all that much experience doing this, but last year worked out pretty well, so I”ll offer a few of my thoughts that worked for me. First off, I don’t think it’s worth it to get hung up on match ups too much. You only have 3 transactions a week and often have to do some housekeeping because of either suspensions, injuries, or benchings. So to load up on Stormers players because they’re playing the Lions may not be wise. But, should you have lots of Stormers on your bench, get them in! That makes total sense.
Second, remember that good players are usually consistent in real life and in fantasy. They may have a low week, but they bounce back (unless they’re hiding an injury or something). Fads come and go, so beware of the one-hit-wonder week by a lesser player.
The Wild Card: you only get one shot at it, so use it wisely. Last year, I realized that after the first week, my team was set up wrong. I used it early and revamped the entire thing with the unlimited transactions. But later in the year, I did wish I had it in my pocket because of some injuries that took their toll. Best to save it if you can. Be frugal with your bench or you’ll have nothing left for your starters.
Last year, anyone that kicked for goal was usually one of the most valuable players on their teams. Look at Rory Kockott for example. Is he the best scrummie in SA? Nope, can’t get a foot in the door with the Boks. Is he the most valuable fantasy scrummie? You bet, all because he slots them for the Sharks. Backrowers are huge point earners too because the good ones are so involved. Hard for them not to score big points. This year’s scoring system is set up to boost the value of backs and props a bit this year (as outlined last time) so there could very well be a shift.
I think relative value is important too – how much are you spending vs. how much are you getting. Some of the most expensive players? Outside backs. Some of the lowest point earners? Outside backs. You can usually get much better value out of players that are backrowers or inside center types. Props and hookers I find are pretty fairly priced usually. Let’s have a closer look at this:
|Player||Position||Price (2009)||Points (2009)||Value (2009)|
The point of this is to show that if you’re going to spend the big bucks on a star (they’re all in the $7-$10 range this year), I think it’s better spent on backrowers and inside centers than wingers. Last year there were many good wingers that would get you good point totals without breaking the bank. The scoring change would have to have a large effect for $10 of wingers to earn you the points of $10 of backrowers. I don’t see it happening.
The best prop in the world (Mr. Robinson) only has a price tag of $5, but he also topped out at 200 points last year, which is about as high as you could get for a prop. So money spent is about money earned in that situation. Same goes for the hookers and locks if you ask me.
Ok, let’s get to some shots in the dark here.
Tony Woodcock – I hate to say it, but The Myth would be a find at $3 if he can bounce back. Injuries killed him last year.
Gary Botha – From all accounts he’s a very handy hooker, and cheap as chips. Great for a bench spot.
Matt Toomua – At $2 he’s a steal, just depends on how much he can get on the field. We all know he’s got the talent.
Zac Guildford – Big year in store for this lad. It’s his time.
Keven Mealamu – Great player and may make me eat my words, but at $8 he’s just too much.
Van Humphries – At $6 is more than Horwill. And he almost retired after last year. Nope.
Tanerau Latimer – I don’t think he’ll be as effect in defense because of the rule changes. Not the ball carrier that Messam is.
Joe Rokocoko – Run away now. Blues have a ton of wingers and most are better than Big Joe at the point.
Disclaimer: I may or may not know what the fark I’m talking about. Don’t bet the house on it.