Friday's Rugby News - Green and Gold Rugby
Rugby

Friday’s Rugby News

Friday’s Rugby News

Fridays Rugby News sees the first squads named, A surprised call up and McCaw backs the Wallabies.


 

 

WALLABIES SQUAD IS IN

2018-Wallabies-v-Argentina-1

The speculation is over and we have our first Wallabies squad.

Rebels Back Rower Isi Naisarani is set to become Wallaby No. 926 after being named to start at No.8. Born in Fiji, Naisarani became eligible to play for the Wallabies in April this year, but has had the eye of the Wallabies coaches for quite some time, even going as a development player on the Spring Tour. 

Waratahs prop Harry Johnson-Holmes has bee the surprise call up (see below story), given he only joined the squad on Wednesday evening local time, despite the fact the squad had been in South Africa for a couple of weeks. HJH has been named on the bench and stands the chance to be Wallaby No.927.

Newly returned Exeter (he still doesn’t have a Super team) halfback Nic White has been named to start a head of Will Genia, in what might be the start of the succession plan for Genia’s retirement.

“He’s come back, he’s shown a lot of intensity,” Michael Cheika said of White.

“I don’t think you need much with the competition and he’s competed very well and he’s definitely earned his spot and to have Willy on the bench, that’s going to finish, it’s a real plus for us.”

With everyone wondering who will replace He Who Must Not Be Named, it appears Brumbies full back Tom Banks will be the first to have a crack at the job, with Rebels Reece Hodge and Dane Haylett-Petty names on the wings. The Rugby Ruckus so eloquently put it “…Not a winger spotted in the 23.” 

Cheika has talked about a new game plan this year, and the squad does suggest there could be something to that, with the a much bigger pack than he has traditionally played, running centres in Kerevi and Kuridrani, and some experienced play makers off the bench.

It might be the cliche but it looks as though Cheika wants to lean into the underdog status the Wallabies will be carrying this year.

“This is an opportunity for our team. We really want to begin building momentum to take us towards our goals in 2019.

“The players are impatient to play at Ellis Park where our Wallabies haven’t had an opportunity to play for quite a while.

“We know we go into the game as heavy underdogs but most of the players have had a touch over three great weeks of training to prepare, so really they just can’t wait to get out and get into the battle.

“I’m feeling a lot belief and commitment from the people in this Wallaby squad. They’ve all invested a tonne of effort into our preparation and I know the 23 men selected to represent us all on Saturday will do us proud,” Cheika said.

The Wallabies haven’t played South Africa in Johannesburg since a 53-8 defeat in 2008 and haven’t won at the now renamed Ellis Park since 1963.

Christian Lealiifano (shoulder), Scott Sio (adductor), Tom Robertson (ankle) and Allan Alaalatoa (foot) were not considered for selection due to injury.

The Wallabies to take on the Springboks

1. James Slipper (86 Tests) 2. Folau Fainga’a (7 Tests) 3. Sekope Kepu (103 Tests) 4. Izack Rodda (17 Tests) 5. Rory Arnold (19 Tests) 6. Lukhan Salakaia-Loto (11 Tests) 7. Michael Hooper (c) (91 Tests) 8. Isi Naisarani* 9. Nic White (22 Tests) 10. Bernard Foley (68 Tests) 11. Reece Hodge (33 Tests)

12. Samu Kerevi (vc) (25 Tests) 13. Tevita Kuridrani (58 Tests) 14. Dane Haylett-Petty (30 Tests) 15. Tom Banks (3 Tests)

Reserves

16. Jordan Uelese (2 Tests)17. Harry Johnson-Holmes* 18. Taniela Tupou (11 Tests) 19. Rob Simmons (94 Tests) 20. Jack Dempsey (10 Tests) 21. Will Genia (100 Tests) 22. Matt To’omua (42 Tests) 23. Kurtley Beale (83 Tests)

ALL BLACK SQUAD IS IN

Photo Courtesy of Keith McInnes

Photo Courtesy of Keith McInnes

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has named five new recruits in his 23 to take on the Jaguares, sorry the Pumas in Argentina this weekend.

Crusaders flyer Sevu Reece will start on the wing, with fellow crusader Braydon Ennor, backrower Luke Jacobson, prop Atu Moli and flyhalf Josh Ioane all named on the bench as potential debutants. 

Sam Cane will wear the captains armband after an incredible return to rugby this year, with Hansen naming an experienced team despite the debutants.

“As always, with the first game of the season, we’ve worked hard on building our relationships, re-establishing our connections and combinations and getting clarity in our roles. We’ll continue to nail the details further in training throughout the week so that we are bright, clear and excited to play with real intensity come Saturday,” Hansen said.

“It’s going to be exciting to watch how the new All Blacks perform along with their more experienced teammates.  The team is a mixture of experience and raw enthusiasm, which I’m sure everyone is looking forward to seeing come together and play.”

Hansen further added: “We have the utmost respect for Argentina.  We know that we’ll be facing a confident, physical side. Their players will have taken a lot of confidence and self-belief from the Jaguares Super Rugby season, and with the inclusion of their overseas players, there will be added excitement to their group. They will see this game as a massive opportunity to make a statement and it will be our job to make a statement of our own.”

1. Ofa Tuungafasi (26) 2. Dane Coles (60) 3. Angus Ta’avao (3) 4. Brodie Retallick (75)  5. Patrick Tuipulotu (21) 6. Vaea Fifita (9)  7.Sam Cane – captain (58) 8. Ardie Savea (35) 9. Aaron Smith (82) 10. Beauden Barrett (73) 11. Jordie Barrett (9) 12. Ngani Laumape (10) 13. Anton Lienert-Brown (33) 14. Sevu Reece * 15. Ben Smith (72) 

Reserves

16. Liam Coltman (4) 17. Atu Moli * 18. Nepo Laulala (17) 19. Jackson Hemopo (3) 20. Luke Jacobson *  21. Brad Weber (1) 22. Josh Ioane * 23. Braydon Ennor *

FROM THE FRONT BAR TO THE FRONT ROW

Michael Hooper Harry Johnson-Holmes Waratahs v Rebels 2019 (Credit Keith McInnes)

After he finished training for Shute Shield, Waratahs prop Harry Johnson-Holmes thought he was in for a quiet night at the pub having a Schnitzel when he got a phone call that would change his life.

“A couple of days ago I was just finished Sydney Uni training, sitting down for $8 schnitty at the Lord Dudley hotel with my roommate, sat down, had a few missed calls, few messages here and there,” he said on Thursday.

“Ended up calling a number I didn’t have saved and it turned out to be Cheik.

“He told me to put down my knife and fork, stop eating the schnitties, get packed and get ready to come over and here I am.”

The next morning he was in South Africa, and a day later he was named on the bench as a possible debut.

Like many before him, HJH had a feeling he would be named to play, but the whole experience was overwhelming that he didn’t quite take in what Cheika was saying.

“He mentioned it on the phone and it was so hectic at the time, I wasn’t sure what i had and what I had misheard and whether it’s a fragment of my imagination but he mentioned it on the phone so I was like, “I think I’m on the bench”, I’m still not sure if that’s true,” he said.

Now in South Africa, Johnson-Holmes is still coming to terms with the past few days, going from the pub to the Wallabies match day 23.

“It’s all numb at the moment, still trying to figure it all out and I’m sure I’ll only realise what’s happening when I’m stepping on the field if that happens. For the moment, I’m just cruising and taking it as it comes,” he said.

The 22 year old Loose Head Prop played 17 times of the bench in 2018, but an injury at the Tahs gave HJH the chance to start, and he took the opportunity with both hands. He started 12 times out of 16 appearances in 2019, and was called into the extended Wallabies squad before the team went to South Africa.

HJH’s impressive season has lead Cheika to back him to stand up at test time.

“The guy was sitting at the Lord Dudley, I think he was having a steak when I rang him a night and a half ago and now he’s here, he’s going to play a Test match,” Cheika said after naming his team on Thursday.

“I’m sure he’s going to do us proud because the energy he brings, he’s been in camp with us so he’ll be really good as well.

“It’s a great opportunity for a lot of guys and I think it’s more based on what we need from this game and what we’d like to achieve out of this game.”

 

THE WALLABIES CAN SURPRISE PEOPLE SAY MCCAW

All Blacks' captain Richie McCaw and coach, Steve Hansen, share a quiet moment following the Kiwi's  defeat.

*Not a Betoota Advocate article.

Former All Black Captain and Future Prime Minister of New Zealand Richie McCaw believes that the Wallabies have the potential to surprise everyone come World Cup time, as they did in 2015 when they escaped the “Pool of Death.”

They went on to lose to the McCaw captained All Blacks in the final match.

But despite their horrid 2018, McCaw believes you can’t count them out.

“Knowing Australians like I do, they are competitive, hugely competitive and they will get themselves in good situation to compete,” McCaw,”They have got ability to win games now against everyone so you don’t want to write them off at all.

“I think sometimes where people are not talking about them a lot leading up to (the World Cup), that’s the best thing you can be. You just come in and surprise everyone.

“But from a New Zealand point of view, there is never a surprise that they front up.”

McCaw was asked about the current court case in Australia and He Who Must Not Be Named and gave a very classy response, refusing to comment directly on the case but said it was “sad for rugby”.

“Without getting into the debate around who is right or wrong, I just think it is sad for Australian rugby that you are not talking about what Wallabies are going to do,” he said.

 

  • Mart

    Urrgh. How i want to hate McCaw. Stop saying nice shit!

    • Dud Roodt

      I find if you just focus on stuff like his stupid hair, or dumb…. face…. you can really… oh fuck it, there’s nothing to hate is there

      • Yowie

        Their Prime Minister is a horrid….ah stuff it I got nothing.

        • HK Red

          Nah, you were right

  • onlinesideline

    TBH – I dont know whether to worry or get excited.

    Im worried about Slipper being a bit over the hill in the loose
    Im worried about FF’s lack of experience in what will be a intense inense cauldron
    Im worried whether Kepu will show up or not – these days its a 50/50
    Im worried LSL is too slow in the loose and a bit of a penalty magnet
    Im worried about Foley
    Im worried we dont have any jet shoes on the wing to make those desparate tackles
    Im worried about DHP being just smoked by some of these young Saffas

    Im excited about Naisarani
    Im excited about Nick White
    Im excited about Tom Banks

    Would have liked to see Luke Jones in
    Would have liked to see JOC in instead of DHP

    Im worried about the hostile crowd and our poor record there
    Im worried that one day the Saffas are going to click with all this talent they have

    Im worried I forgot to put the rubbish out
    Im worried Im in denial about the amount of hair Im losing
    Im worried that Einstein was right, that time and space are relative and life is going to bloody quick

    • Keith Butler

      Time for a chill pill or a nice glass of something alcoholic. Look on the positive side, No Pooper, Two Ks in the centre and Nic White at SH to give Sanchez a reminder. Would have preferred Dempsey or Jones at 6. Concern in the lack of pace on the wings and the thought of HJH coming on after just 2 days acclimatisation justified but let’s win this one.

      • onlinesideline

        Mate, I have fundamental worries about Cheika that I just cant shake. Thats the root of it. When we field a 1st XV that wins and we stick to it and win for 5 or 6 games in a row with the same team, then we can say we may be onto something. But this just seems so so elusive to us these days.

        We have a habit of starting campaigns well, but we need to show some GRIT.
        No mental lapses, backing up week after week. These days teams get exposed very quickly. Another season begins. One good thing is that if the Saffas get penalised in their 60m we have both Nick White and Reece to go for goal. But the long and short of it, is that Cheika has shown his cards. I still dont know who our leaders are. Who is our John Eales, who is our David Wilson or Poidevan, who is our Larkham or Joe Roth. Do we have smarts as a team ? Its the smarts Im worried about, where are they, who has them ?

        Yeah I need a drink.

        • Keith Butler

          Being an SD with a foot in both camps I have double worries. I want The G&G to go well and the SDs but Eddie Jones gives me the yips for exactly the reasons you’ve described. Game management, leaders, smarts lacking and that goes for both teams. Still I’ll be in Brissie next weekend, along with certain well known contributors here, to see the fall of the FISMS.

        • onlinesideline

          That will be an absolute cracker.

        • GeorgiaSatellite

          G’day OLSL. I think the reason we start well but trail off is not grit, but the fact that we only have one game plan, and once the opposition works it out we have no back-up. But maybe it’s grit as well.

          Looking forward to Thor hurling Saffers around the park looking for his phone. I wonder if the mugging was an elaborate motivational strategy :-)

        • juswal

          I’m in the same place, olsl. Worried that there are no tactics other than ‘have a go’, that the Wallas will be not always ‘on’, mentally (compare with the U20s to see how that’s meant to work) . . . can’t see who’s going to lead by example if/when things don’t go to plan. Also need a drink.

        • Geoffro

          The ol’ have a go approach worked a treat in the second half in Argentina last year.Still wondering what happened there.

        • juswal

          Last year, I think, a GAGR commenter said that Cheika’s approach is more of a rough philosophy than a plan with tactics. That’s the real problem for the Wallabies: they know they’re meant to be trying hard, but they don’t know where to be on the field and how to work at a common target.

        • Who?

          I’ve got major concerns about Cheika. He thinks that prop’s going to put down a knife and fork?!
          I’m not surprised that the prop remembered it was a Schnittie not a Steak, but a little surprised Cheik lost that detail. Remembered the pub, not the food.

        • AllyOz

          “If we win 5-6 games in a row” At the moment if we won 5 – 6 games in a row that will give us the Rugby Championship and get us through the pool games of the world cup!!

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Nope. Just years of disappointing results that have left you jaded. Rock on 2020

    • OnTheBurst

      I’m so worried about the baggage retrieval system they’ve got at Heathrow…

  • Braveheart81

    It is extremely good news to hear that the Lord Dudley has an $8 schnitty night!

    • Dud Roodt

      Yeah how good is that! Genuine 2005 prices there

      • Nutta

        Farmers Home Hotel in Wagga used to do $5 roast lamb on Fridays as late as 1996…

        • Dud Roodt

          Jesus that’s good.
          The Forrester’s used to have $10 steak night as recently as 2006ish!

        • Nutta

          The Cauliflower Hotel in Waterloo used to advertise a $10 rump as late as 2012 I recall. That said I was never actually game to try it…

        • Geoffro

          Man,in my formative years they fed you for free,bowls of boiled spuds,chips,snags,cheese and jatz on the bar for the punters.The price of a pub feed these days is bullshit.

        • Braveheart81

          Except now the food is actually good at the vast majority of pubs.

        • Geoffro

          Everything tastes good if you’ve had a gutfull :) :)

        • Nutta

          mmmm… Kebab…..

        • Geoffro

          +1 The ultimate (extra chiili n garlic ta)

        • Nutta

          @disqus_GEk7TCl13b:disqus may have something to add – his mob are pretty devout when it comes to pub grub. But I will admit that my time in sunny Scotland (many years ago) did give me a taste for ‘chips & bits with curry sauce’ that I’ve never quite recovered from.

        • Yowie

          What about deep-fried offal and heroin?

          (apologies to Stewart Lee)

        • Geoffro

          Can imagine,my staple was chips with pepper sauce which was all you could get at my local, bar a toasted sanga or a pie

        • Keith Butler

          Pub grub in the uk is not all it’s cracked up to be. Fast food, badly cooked an$ overpriced. Give me a good curry any day. First experience of Aussie pub food back in 1980. On a budget, counter lunch of thick slice of ham, fried eggs and chips plus a couple of pots. Dirt cheap an$ brilliant.

        • Nutta
        • Geoffro

          lucky their not singing for their supper………….because they’d starve

        • Nutta

          Wynyard Hotel in Tumut used to do the BEST pop-corn chicken-y type thingy back in the mid 80’s but the publican stopped it because blokes would ‘claim’ bowls of them and start punch ups. Good times.

          Duke of Kent pub in Wagga and also the Tatts in Blayney both did the boiled spuds in molten butter thing in late 80’s during winter. Big crock-pot on end of bar and just spoon a couple out and pepper & salt the life out of them. Gold class.

          But THE BEST of all was the Middle Hotel in Adelong in the late 1970’s used to have an old guy who came in on Friday nights and sold cooked local yabbies hot. He would sell them for 10c each straight out of the hessian bag he cooked them in. The bar had bowls and salt & pepper ready to go. I think a schooner was $0.90 or $1 and $0.50 in chips from the cafe was more than 1 guy would eat alone.

        • Geoffro

          Bygone unfortunately.Honestly, if I want a drink and a mag its the pub and a bag of peanuts.If I want a 30$ feed I’ll go to a restaurant and bring me own.Call me old fashioned

        • Nutta

          Nah I’ve always been up for a good t-bone or a steak sandwich, but beyond that i agree it gets a bit OTT pretty quick.

          It all started downhill in about December 1982 when random breath testing came in for NSW. Up until then a man could sink a dozen schooys and drive home just fine… i swear i can take you to just about any old pub in NSW, pull out the old cash-takings-book and you will find December 1982 fast enough as tap beer-sales pretty much fell off a cliff leading into xmas. RBT killed bar sales. That meant you needed other stuff to ‘get them in’ because beer and spirits sales effectively now had a ceiling. That’s what led to the AHA lobbying the NSW govt to allow the original card-machines into pubs (followed eventually by full-flight pokies around late 1990’s) but also the food thing to start.

        • Geoffro

          In a nutshell.Lucky were not too ancient wed be upsiding the six oclock swill

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Fuck you’re old

        • Nutta

          A bloke asked me a week or so ago as I came off the field – ‘Fk man! How fkn old ARE you exactly?’

          I told him to guess. He said ‘I dunno… 40?’

          I laughed and said I would take that.

        • Parker

          Last week an old Digger went into a pub and asked the Rodd n Gunn clad barman for a pony of 1933 beer. With a big wink to his other patrons he poured the old bloke a beer from the regular tap. When the old timer sculled his drink, the barman asked him with a smirk how his “vintage beer” tasted. The patron answered, “Good thanks sonny. Here’s your thruppence for it.”

        • juswal

          The Lord Gladstone on Regent Street serves a $10 steak with chips and salad on Thursdays. Dunno what cut it is . . . it’s just a good piece of beef, cooked right.

        • Nutta

          i might just try that…

        • juswal

          I’m very fond of the Lord G. Unrenovated, no image, good line-up of taps and a hard-working kitchen.

    • formerflanker

      Are they paying for the extended advertising?

    • onlinesideline

      Its also good news to know there is actually a pub left in Paddo.
      The Lord Dudley – the memories, the memories.
      Thursday nights.
      The vibe, the adrenline of youth.
      The “do you wanna go for a drive somwhere” moment
      the “YEAH OK” response
      The late night walks around the harbours edge
      The sound of a Manly ferry wave hitting the shore and breaking the silence.
      The optimism of youth coupled with the beauty of sin city on a summers night.

      Sydney

      • Braveheart81

        I think there’s 2 or 3 less pubs in Paddington than there were 20 years ago. There are still a massive number of pubs in Paddington.

        • Nutta

          Yeh but BH mate are they truly pubs or are they Rodd & Gunn showrooms?

        • Braveheart81

          I guess you can’t control the people there (wearing Rodd & Gunn) but I reckon a lot of the Paddo pubs are still really good pubs.

      • Brisneyland Local

        Been thrown out of the Old Lord Dud a few times. Apparently the didnt appreciate my nude impression of Mick Jagger whilst walking along the bar!

        • onlinesideline

          was there actually anyone on the door in those days ?

        • Nutta

          By the time BLL was full enough to nude up and do that, the old girls in the ladies lounge doing Sherry and Shandy rounds would have been able to handle him.

        • onlinesideline

          lol – the blonde pearl necklasse “darlingg” crowd. What a bunch of degenerates. I have never met a demographic I felt the least connected to as a human being than that lot.

        • Brisneyland Local

          It was 1992, and I was thrown out by the owner. He was pretty cranky. He was also cranky with his bar girls because they were clapping along. Apparently someone thought it was funny! ;-)

        • onlinesideline

          lol – I know thw type. The ex GPS guy who is only 28 but looks like 48 and has the beginning of wino face / and a very discrete problemo with the geegees.

        • Brisneyland Local

          That was him!

        • IIPA

          A nude Mick Jagger impression is one step away from bovine sprinklering you do realise?

          You sure it wasn’t a nude Keith Richards impression complete with air guitar?

        • Brisneyland Local

          There was no weeing involved, it was me prancing up and down the bar to “You start me up!” Puffed up lips, chest out. I was killing it!
          Besides it was almost 30 years ago. Those things were laughed at. these days I would have been arrested. Mind you thirty years ago, I was very fit, and had a head of hair.

        • Keith Butler

          Probably the lips and pout scared the locals. And of course your large maracas.

        • Brisneyland Local

          I think it was the low hanging coin purse!

        • Yowie

          Did the manager say “Hey you, get off my bar!”?

        • Brisneyland Local

          Boom tish! Pure gold

        • Parker

          And he replied, “I see what’s troubling you is the nature of my game, oh yeah.”

        • Hoss

          No sympathy for the devil at all.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Mate it’d take 5 guys to throw someone as big as you out

        • Brisneyland Local

          Mate I was pretty socially confused (hammered) so only about 3.

      • Nutta

        I thought you were getting a bit off-track there.

    • Nicholas Wasiliev

      That’s the best news I’ve heard all week! And I help cover the news…

    • John Miller

      Serves to distract you whilst you buy $12 pints.

  • Dud Roodt

    I’ll be interested to see the reaction of GAGR’s to the squad, as there will be the ones who would hate Cheika’s selections even if he’d asked their opinions and done exactly what they asked, there are the eternal pessimists and then the eternal optimists (I fall somewhere in the middle of the latter two).
    I think the squad is a good one given the cattle at our disposal. I’ll be interested to see how HJH goes. Springboks at Ellis Park is being thrown in the deep end, but I think he’s got buckets of potential.
    If the selections were mine to make I probably wouldn’t have started Kepu, but don’t mind the thought of Thor coming on with 35 to go and tearing the big Saffas up.
    I like the backrow. Think it’s the most balanced we’ve had for some time.
    Don’t mind giving Nic White first crack at 9. I was never his biggest fan but fair crack to the bloke given how he’s been playing. And with Genia’s drop in form over the last 2 months of SR it might be good for him.
    I don’t reckon we had much choice at 10 with CLL gone. As much as people on here talk about Foley being the worst player/human being (other than KB) that’s ever walked the earth, he is still most likely our best 10. CLL of course was far more consistent this year and deserved his shot, hopefully he’ll get it after returning.
    Love the centre combo (it couldn’t/shouldn’t have been any other way).
    Like Banks at FB but not overly excited by the wings. Think it’s more due to a lack of choice.

    • Mart

      They could have put Sefa on one wing.
      There’s some tall timber in the pack for once

    • formerflanker

      The sending home of winger Maddocks for a club game indicates the selectors don’t want speed at the moment.

      • Andy

        Or shit defence out wide

      • Dud Roodt

        As Andy so eloquently put it, as much of a fan of Maddocks as I am, he has some huge defensive frailties that won’t be hurt by playing some club rugby.

    • Steve

      I like the squad Dud. I’m pissed off he’s managed to injure 3 props in two weeks.

      • Nutta

        Calf injuries?

        • onlinesideline

          abductor

        • Nutta

          Abduct who? Why would I do that?

        • onlinesideline

          you can abduct her, you can use the ab doctor, you can use duct tape, just stay away from the groin

        • Nutta

          Damn Dude. This got all incel way too quickly didn’t it? I feel dirty now.

        • Yowie

          “it’s just coincidence that my holiday patterns correlate with a list of missing persons”

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          He’s got all the pies

        • Who?

          No I don’t! :-P
          Certainly don’t have any goat curry, either……

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Mate I am cracking up so much over this thread. It’s just gold

        • Who?

          It’s been vintage G&GR…
          I’ve contributed so much! :-P

        • Steve

          I thought the only way you could injure props that fast would be by greasing the floor in front of the donut table!

          Right?!

          I’ll see myself out…

        • Nutta

          Dude you’re not far from the truth. My hammies fused to my spine some time in the late 1970’s and it’s pretty much been plain sailing from then.

      • Dud Roodt

        How has he managed to do that? Was it him that stole Tupou’s phone?! Gees I knew things were tight for Cheik but didn’t think he’d stoop to that!

        • Who?

          Robertson, 7A’s and Sio were all uninjured heading into camp (whereas Leali’ifano was apparently already carrying his). All different injuries this time, but not ideal to train the guys so hard off the back of a Super season and heading into a RWC that he ends up, having started with 6 props, needing to call in a bloke from the other side of the world four days before the first Test.
          .
          We know that Cheika’s trained them hard, as he’s once again talked up a player’s INTENSITY at training as the reason why they’re getting a start (White over Genia). He loves the INTENSITY! :-P
          .
          Squad’s not terrible, but the real test will be game plans…

        • Brumby Runner

          Irrelevant.

    • Brumby Runner

      I have the right to be critical of Cheika’s selections, hard earned over the past 4 years of disappointment continually being dished up by him.

      On the current team, I have only a couple of quibbles, none of which I think will change the outcome in a comprehensive way. I would have had Valetini on the bench in place of Dempsey (I know the argument that JD covers all three back row spots, but Valetini has also started at 7 for the Brumbies. He could do the job in an emergency.). I am also concerned by the make up of the back three. I do wonder exactly what led to Koroibete being sent home, but in his absence any of Naivalu, Pulu or Speight probably would be a better fit in one of the wing spots.

      I don’t think in any universe that Cheika was the sole selector of this team.

    • As a lot of people have said, it feels slow in the back three. I appreciate Lilo is expected to be fit next week but I’d have considered keeping QC in the squad as injury cover unless there’s absolutely no way I’d ever pick him even if both Foley and Lilo get career-ending injuries in TRC and I’d have given him a run this weekend if Lilo wasn’t fit.

      I’m a bit worried about the amount of injuries to props. What is happening in training to kill the props? I’m not blaming Cheika, tempting though it is, I’m just curious about wtf happened to injure them all.

      For the first time in a few years, I haven’t looked at a team and wanted to put red lines through huge chunks of it. I’d quibble about a few selections but I quibble about a few selections in every national team sheet I look at. So, I’ll give it a solid B+. Worrying about all the back-three stops it getting an A.

  • Yowie

    “Ended up calling a number I didn’t have saved and it turned out to be Cheik.
    “He told me to put down my knife and fork, stop eating the schnitties, get packed and get ready to come over and here I am.”

    Telling a prop to stop eating? Is “lightweight props” some aspect of Cheika strategic genius?

    • Geoffro

      Sounds a bit comical and not too professional to me (didn’t recognize the number but turned out to be Cheik),surely he must have been alerted he was on some sort of standby.Bet that Schnitty didn’t get left on the plate as he raced out the door.

      • Yowie

        There are enough of those sorts of stories knocking around about first wallaby call-up.
        Eg a player gets a call out of the blue from the Wallaby coach, assumes it’s his mates winding him up, tells the caller to f*ck off, caller calls back, it actually is the wallabies coach (on speakerphone, with the coaches’s wife in the car), etc.

        • Nutta

          I know it’s cliched but Stephen ‘Beaver’ Donalds story of being lake fishing in the back blocks of bugger-knows-where whilst Graham Henry was trying to find him to come to the rescue of the 2011 World Cup is one of the funniest chats I ever heard. Bearing in-mind the public flogging he got after being blamed for losing the Hong Kong Test to us lets just say he had no reason to think anyone in Black would be ringing him soon so him and some mates went way up back country fly-fishing. Then every bugger started ripping their hammies until Beaver was apparently the last 10 standing in NZ. I’m not sure Graham Henry was ever told to ‘fk-off’ and then hung up on x3 times because ‘its a fkn stitch-up mate’. Apparently it was his dad or uncle who eventually rang him and convinced him it wasn’t a gee-up and the rest is history…

        • Steve

          Something charming about all these stories – pretty sure none of them are true but that’s never been vital to a good story.

          “…had a few missed calls, few messages here and there” is a little clumsy, needs to work somewhat on delivery. 6/10.

        • Nutta

          It was the dismount that let it down yeh? Those East German judges are always hard on the dismount.

        • Who?

          My nickname for Donald is “the Black Hole”. Because he sucked the light out of the stars around him….

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Yeah he was out on the coast with no phone coverage and his wife wasn’t totally sure where he was. Had to get an uncle or brother or something to go looking. Classic

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    Thanks Dylan,

    It’s always good hearing those stories about players called up and missing calls and all that. I bet he’ll be on cloud 9 for a while coming to terms with this. Hope he does well on Saturday.

    Pretty happy with the squad although I do think the lack of pace out wide could be an issue depending on how the Boks play. Great kick return capability though so the Wallabies should be able to spend a fair bit of time in the Boks half or 22.

    I like the AB squad. There’s a few surprises but I think Hansen’s explanations on them are good and demonstrating some long term planning which is something I always like to see. Really looking forward to the games this weekend.

    Richie’s spot on, although I always think most of the top teams can beat each other on the day. The bounce of the ball, some decisions made or not made and referees call can always change a game. I think NZ has got some good processes that tend to take some of these out of the picture a bit but it can still happen.

  • Nutta

    Morning Fellow Cringers

    At 1725 metres elevation, at Ellis Park there is only 82 per cent of the oxygen normally found at sea level. That means a few things:
    * Kicks fly longer
    * Long passes and long lineout throws are easy to over-shoot esp as over-enthusiasm or fatigue creeps in
    * Big men get tired quicker
    * The over-excited at kickoff don’t last

    This means Kepu and Simmons in-particular need to be carefully managed and LCL may well prove a mobility-liability faster than usual. However it also means Foley will be ok kicking because it’s the only time he has a decent range off the toe. Our centre-pair makes me smile but the lack of outright speed somewhere in the team concerns me a bit vs the Flash(es) that Saffa wingers have been over the last few years. The Bokke will use Etzy & Matsy to lead by example to keep the game pace low and run big kilos at Foley all day which again makes me concerned about LCL fatigue wise.

    For the rest of it…who bloody knows?

    Big Ups McAwe for the ‘sad for rugby’ comment. I don’t think I’ve ever said that before about him. But credit where due.

    • Yowie

      There is a story about George Smith and altitude.

      Apparently before the Brumbies went on a South African stint they got an in-house lecture on the effects of high altitude. Fast forward to Leg 1 (Durban) and the Brumbies are playing touch footy on the beach. Apparently after a bit of a sprint George Smith was puffing and complaining about the low-oxygen effects of high altitude.

      • John Miller

        Funny.

        George Smith was also the F off to the Wallabies coach on loudspeaker culprit as well I believe.

        Has there ever been an openside flanker who consistently came back from each Super off season a little rounder or failed as many beep tests as George Smith, whose game day motor was just inexhaustible.

        Cr@p trainer.

        Rugby Titan.

        He would never have even made the game day XXIII on Michael Cheika’s watch.

        • Yowie

          Yeah, i thought so (the F-off bit) but couldn’t back it up quickly via google. My George Smith book containing that fact is at home (on a plinth, under glass in my little George Smith shrine).

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      I think if the forwards are able to get ball, which I think they can, then the Wallabies will do ok. I’m also concerned on the lack of pace but I do like that they can kick so the battle of the kickers should come out in Australia’s favour and lots of time in the Boks 22. If the Boks send the ball wide then I think the lack of pace will show and that could be an issue.

      mate I’ve been telling you for years he’s a good guy

      • Brisneyland Local

        Only if Hodege is kicking. If it is Foley we are screwed!
        (Except for tee kicking).

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          At altitude even he can get distance. Trouble is he’ll kick well there and be his usual shit in Brisbane

        • Brisneyland Local

          He might crack 35 m in Ellis Park!

    • GeorgiaSatellite

      Can we expect Hodge to take penalty shots from our own 22?

      • onlinesideline

        check out insta stories on wallabies profile – looks like he just booted a 65m kick

    • Just on a point of pedantry, it’s not the lack of oxygen at altitude that causes longer kicking, longer passes or longer line out throws. It’s the lower air pressure.

      The lower partial pressure of oxygen causes a decreased rate of recovery after exercise, which tends to lead a build up of fatigue toxins and so on. It can also cause feelings of euphoria.

      • Nutta

        You are entirely correct. I stand euphoric.

      • Yowie

        Technically correct – the best kind of correct.

      • Gun

        Or to be technically technical Eloise, its the lower air density. Why an aeroplane goes faster at altitude. Sorry my old man occupied my body for a second.

        • Well, yes and no.

          The standard formulation for the drag equation, F=kv^2 has an air density component hiding in k. k=pCA/2 with the limitations of Disqus for writing maths equations, and the p is the air density.

          But most of us can’t measure air density very easily, and can measure air pressure and temperature directly and relative humidity (and thus water vapour content) simply.

          Using Tv = T(1+0.61r) where r is the water mixing ratio and T is the temperature in Kelvin (naturally), the air density drops out as P/RTv and we can drop that straight into the equation above in place of the p, using simple, direct measurements.

          The ideal gas equation is still my friend (despite hydrogen bonding in water vapour). And the density is less relevant for the other parts of the original comment.

  • Brisneyland Local

    Well well well ! Three holes in the ground usually containing water (optional if you are in country NSW). I must admit I am pleasantly surprised by the squad.
    – I would prefer CLL but he is injured so Foley it is. When know what we have in him.
    – Kepu is about my only concern. Whilst he has put in some long shifts this year he is usually blowing chunks at the 30 min mark. And his discipline is a problem. But he is an experienced hand.
    – Good to see Nic white get a start and give a rest to Genia against the DDF.
    – We lack a real speedster. But we lack that across the whole country really.
    So over all I am pleasantly surprised, and I am glad to see the other selectors have appeared to have a degree of influence. I am looking forward to the game.

    • Nicholas Wasiliev

      Good points BL, though on your point of a speedster I’d argue Banks has got some toe on him.

      I’m very worried about that forward pack. The Boks will probably sense blood there and will want to bully us up front, and I’m worried we might not be consistent enough. As experienced as Slipper and Kepu are, if only 7As wasn’t injured. HJH does have a lot potential but I worry about his experience a lot considering how much him and Kepu were bullied by the Sharks, and I’m concerned he might not be ready yet.

      But apart from that, it’s an interesting squad.

      Good to see that we have options!

      • Funk

        Yep me to, HJH up against “Rock Hard” Koch. Koch will be looking to monster HJH and exploit any weaknesses come scrum time…

        • Nutta

          I’m thinking Slipper has already been told he is doing at least 70min.

        • Funk

          70min at altitude…he might need a bit of the stuff he got banned for to keep him going that long.

        • Nutta

          Never underestimate the power of the magic sponge…

      • Brisneyland Local

        YEah, overall I was hoping for the best and expecting the worst. On the balance a pretty good squad. Banks has got toe, but he is not in the same league as those Saffa wingers. And to be honest we really havnt had a speedster for a while. Rocket Rod Davies for top speed was a blinder. And Digby was a really quick accelerator. But it would be great to have a genuine speedster again.
        Pack will be interesting.
        I hope that Hodge does all the ball in hand kicking, mind you at altitude Pop gun Foley might even break 30 metres and find touch. ;-)

        • onlinesideline

          Banks is fast fast fast. He reads the game well, runs great lines.
          He is going to outshine the lot of them.
          You watch him cantor over twice on Sunday

        • Brisneyland Local

          I am truly hoping so.

        • Andrew Luscombe

          Is Lockie Turner still playing?

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yeah he was a flyer too. I had forgotten about him.

        • Timbo

          Retired sadly

    • onlinesideline

      Banks cant burn most blokes though. Hes done it to the Saffas in SA before.

      • Brisneyland Local

        True. I am looking forward to this one. Goat curry cooking in the slow cooker. Selected the Red to have with it. Cant wait.

        • onlinesideline

          WTF is a goat curry ? Are we talking actual goats ?

        • Brisneyland Local

          A curry made with Goat meat instead of lamb or beef! Beautifulllllllll

        • Yowie

          Is goat meat so tough it needs the slow cooking,or is that just your selected method among options?

          (I’ve bought goat curry form the local Indian takeaway and it’s good)

        • Crescent

          Goat meat just responds really well to a nice long and low slow cook. Each June long weekend we hit the farm, take a couple of goats for the pot, cook them over a full day on coals – fantastic feed.

        • Brisneyland Local

          My goat supplier gets me really nice soft goat. The slow cooking is so that the goat flavour infuses better. 48 hours is generally my selected period. Barossa Shiraz (generally a Langmeil or a Whistler). Dessert will be pears poached in redwine served with a blue vein cheese.

        • onlinesideline

          mate that sounds good
          I hope its all infused with the indescribable afterglow of winning Gold

        • Brisneyland Local

          Me too!

        • Yowie

          …not salted with the tears of defeat.

        • Keith Butler

          You’re kidding!

        • Brisneyland Local

          Nope!

        • Keith Butler

          So much for my subtle English humour.

        • Brisneyland Local

          I am as subtle as a meat cleaver! Especially with goat around! ha ha ha ha

        • Keith Butler

          Your goat curry set me thinking. Found a nice receipe for ‘Skippy’ Rogan Josh could give it a bash on Sunday. Off now to find some fresh roadkill.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Kangaroo curries are good. Not as nice as goat but good. I used to feel bad about eating one of our national emblems but not any more.

        • Yowie

          It just passes under the radar, like subtle English home-stadium TMO feed decisions.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          He’s kidding about maturing

        • Nutta

          You’ve changed. Go back and find that guy skolling black champers at the Dud and ask his opinion of goat stew with red plonk.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Some would say I have matured.
          Others would say I have sold out and become a pretentious wanker.
          I think it exists somewhere between the two! ;-)

        • Hoss

          What a site we have when one states ‘my goat supplier’……I will have to speak with my yak peddler and see if he knows of him?

          Only in rugby.

        • Yowie

          on the “Black and Black Rugby Forum” they speak of their “sheep pimp”

        • Geoffro

          Definitely couldnt eat something I just made love to…………not afterwards anyway

        • Yowie

          That reminds me, on the way home I better purchase a second melon for eating.

        • Geoffro

          I wish I had that optimism.Too long married Im afraid

        • Keith Butler

          From rugby to goats, to sheepshagging in almost a single bound. We need serious therapy that only a G&G win can bring.

        • Geoffro

          Amen to that

        • onlinesideline

          welcome to the southern hemisphere mate

        • Hoss

          Yep – don’t knock it till you try it.

        • Timbo
        • Yowie

          hahaha awesome film

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Mate let’s leave Baaaaabara and meeeeery out of it. We don’t eat them

        • Yowie

          You should always use ewes who use lube

        • Brisneyland Local

          Well normally I would say butcher, but he isnt a butcher. So I was stuck for words and that seemed to fit.

        • Yowie

          More of an animal-slaughtering enthusiast?

        • Brisneyland Local

          Specialist delicastessan type! Which adds more to the me bing sold my soul commercial wanker type! ;-)

        • Damo

          “You roast one lousy goat”…
          Hey, by the way who is the supplier?

        • Brisneyland Local

          Rosalie Deli

        • Hoss

          No apology necessary mate. I feel you are lifting the quality of discourse on this site immensely. I just spoke to my sex worker procurement liaison officer and he was wrapped that some decorum was being returned to professional titles.

        • Geoffro

          maybe they coud talk to HR at my company,Im a bit miffed at being referred to by my staff as that c**t

        • Hoss

          That’s harsh mate, at least my staff put ‘Mr’ in front of mine

        • Yowie

          Viktor said all that with his thick Russian accent and limited English?

        • Hoss

          Mainly ‘u vant blund or uther comrade and u know it costs extra for gerbil right’ – but I knew he was impressed.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Pure gold. Cant wait to see you up here next weekend.

        • Hoss

          Got the all clear from parole officer mate to travel interstate.All systems go.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Just make sure you wear your Rooty Hill Rolex.

        • Hoss

          Can’t get the bastard off.

        • Damo

          Or as they say in Israel, “the game they play unleavan”

        • Geoffro

          Yummy,but my wife would probably leave me if I tried to cook a cute little goatee.My carnivorous instincts are severely limited these days and getting a bit sick of tuna pasta.

        • Yowie

          Me, I can’t usually get them ’cause my girlfriend’s a vegetarian, which pretty much makes me a vegetarian. I do love the taste of a good burger goat curry.

        • Geoffro

          Gotta weigh up your priorities

        • Hoss

          My wife freaked out when I ate rabbit – admittedly we were in a pet shop at the time, but still…..

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Is it cheaper to buy them at the butchers or the pet shop?

        • Hoss

          I thought it was just like the lobster tanks at those swish restaurants Briz eats at. How am I suppose to know it’s for kids pets, there should be signs. Thought it was just a buffet-type arrangement.

        • Yowie

          The clue was all those kids in the pet shop at the time, all of whom now can’t un-see you going all Ozzy Osborne on Bugs Bunny.

        • Brisneyland Local

          My daughters named our goats. Dinner and Curry! Such good little girls! they know which side their bread is buttered on!

        • Patrick

          Wrap it in bacon

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Maaaate you need to get with the times. BL living his past. Only option in Afghanistan is goat curry and flat bread

      • Geoffro

        They rate him pretty highly over there.He’ll be heavily marked

    • Crescent

      Having taken another look at the Saffa line up, the lack of speed on the wings is probably less of a worry than I first thought. Outside Mapimpi, their main speedsters appear to be in NZ. Perhaps the selection panel has been doing their homework and picking a side relevant to the opposition. I also like the extra week at altitude – the acclimatisation period will assist in the stamina department.

      Concern is HJH has not had the period to settle in at altitude, so his amount of game time will need to be managed.

      I am looking forward to seeing a good contest (I certainly hope for one!!) – and I really want to see a sensible defensive plan, with a couple of different attacking plans, just to give me some hope we might have a chance of seeing the quarter finals at the big show in Japan.

      • Brisneyland Local

        I think you are right. Lets look at the new game plan. Defence for us is always a worry. Trying to hide Foley and Beale in defence has been an issue. Now there is only one to hide.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Mate it’s also the fucked up plan Grey develops. The players don’t know what the fuck they’re doing half the time

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yep. my concern is he went back to the drawing board and came up with some thing even more complicated.

    • From NooZealand

      Out of ignorance: how can White can play for the Wallabies without a club and JOC needed a club before wearing the Gold? Cheers.

      • Brisneyland Local

        JOC has a contract with the Reds. It was signed this week. NicWhite has one with the Rebels I believe.

        • Geoffro

          Actually dont think hes got a SR club yet.Signed a contract with the ARU.Don’t know why his situation was different to JOC’s

        • Brumby Runner

          The only distinction I can make is that White would be signing a standard contract with whichever club he ends up at, while JOC’s contract needed special behavioural clauses that had to yet be agreed between RA, the Reds, JOC and RUPA. That was never a done deal until it was actually signed.

          BTW, the latest indications are that Nic is more likely to come back to the Brumbies in 2021, though not yet a done deal.

        • Brisneyland Local

          White definitely has his ARU contract, the Rebels one is what I am hearing back channels but hasnt been confirmed by the club yet. Yes it is different, and I am not sure why this has occured.

        • Who?

          Because RA. They pick and choose which rules to follow as best suits their current situation.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yep! That about sums it up!

        • From NooZealand

          Cheers and feel sorry for the loss.

  • Red Block

    Hate to suggest it but I wonder with one eye on the RWC, Cheika has gone in for some high altitude training and given the WBs an absolute flogging this week.
    The Boks won’t care but gee if this is their B team, their A team will be very good.

    • Brisneyland Local

      As I have been saying. It isnt their B team. It is their A- team!

  • adastra32

    I have a (genuine) question of you. Was the mood in the GAGR ranks pre-RWC 2015 as pessimistic as it is currently?

    • onlinesideline

      opposite

    • Brisneyland Local

      It was very positive. The Cheika longer term era is the era of negativity.

  • voodoo economics

    McCaw is spot on. The wallabies have the potential to go all the way this World Cup. Unfortunately, due to the coaches inability in regards to formulating an effective game plan and overall self delusion we will be falling way short of that potential.

Rugby
@DylanGLanges

Once captained the 3rds Rugby team, but then again so did Nick Farr-Jones

More in Rugby