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Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News looks at the ups and downs from our national teams, former Wallabies lashes out at a contentious decision and a wrap-up of all the rugby around (and near) the country.


Wobblies

Dejected Wallabies after loss to Argentina

Dejected Wallabies after loss to Argentina

The Wallabies have stumbled in their opening Rugby Championship campaign, going down 35-17 to the Springboks.

The side was hampered by poor execution and discipline in crucial moments of the match, which saw two bombed tries and a yellow card to Taniela Tupou (We’ll get to that later in the news).

For a more in-depth account of the game, please check out Steve’s review here.

Coach Michael Cheika was still pleased with the showing from his side despite the loss, stating that their were still positives despite their lack of execution.

“I believe we showed a lot of good signs tonight, I know that people may not see that in the result but for us, compared to, for what we’ve been building on, it’s the first time we’ve put some of the things we’re doing out on the field, and I know that the commitment to playing that way, both in attack and defence is there and that it will build as the season goes on,” Cheika said.

“I suppose the No. 1 thing for us now is to get ready and get back to our home ground in Brisbane where we’ve got a great opportunity to go out there to build on what we did today.”

“Perhaps not give away simple opportunities we gave away and convert some more of our own.”

Cheika especially singled out halfback Nic White for praise, impressed with his kicking and control of the game.

“I thought White was very good, he marshalled the troops well,” Cheika said.

“We had a lot of quick ball, which he was arranging pretty well with the forwards and making good passing choices. I really rated the way he played the game, he had a couple of nice kicks and also a lot of pressure in defence, put a lot of pressure from where he defended.”

In the other game in the Rugby Championship, the All Blacks were able to hold off a valiant Pumas 20-16 in an error-riddled contest.

The understrength All Blacks raced to a 20-9 half-time lead through tries to Ngani Laumape and Brodie Retallick.

However, the Pumas kept in the contest thanks to Emiliano Boffelli, who plucked a bomb out of Ben Smith’s hands to bring the margin back to 4 points.

The All Blacks were able to survive the nervous final minutes to continue their dominance over the Argentinians, who have not beaten the kiwis in 24 years.

Hamilton smashin’ every expectation

Grace Hamilton tackled by Sammie Treherne

Grace Hamilton tackled by Sammie Treherne

Wallaroos captain Grace Hamilton has cemented her status as one of the best players in the world, scoring a hat trick in the Wallaroos 46-3 win over Japan at North Sydney Oval.

Hamilton defied her namesake Alexander, proving an imperfect person (jury’s still out) can deliver a perfect performance to earn back-to-back Player of the match awards.

She opened the scoring for the Wallaroos with a barnstorming run, with her efforts and a double to Mahalia Murphy setting the tone for a dominating half, giving the Aussies a 27-3 lead at half time.

The Japanese would fight back after Lori Cramer was yellow-carded, but the Wallaroos held strong and two further tries to Hamilton and Millie Boyle secured the result.

For a more in-depth review, check out Sully’s review here.

Wallaroos head coach Dwayne Nestor was proud of the effort put in by his troops, believing that the win has set them up perfectly for their test series against the Black Ferns.

“That was pretty good,” Nestor said. “Once again we got good go-forward through our carriers and we were able to capitalise on that. In the change room before we came out the girls said let’s make a statement, and I think they did.”

“That was great preparation for us. Really good preparation. You look at last year and you wish we’d had the same preparation before we went to the Black Ferns last year but to have that this year is awesome, and the program going forward next year is even better. Which is really good.”

Captain Hamilton was modest after her 3 tries, 200m performance, giving full credit to the girls for their work and dominance at the ruck.

“No, it’s a complete team effort as I have said before. I am just getting the ball off one of the other girls who has done the hard work,” Hamilton said.

“I was lucky, I was just in the right place at the right time. You know what? We set the platform, we had a little bit of handling errors but in the end, we had momentum and that’s what we wanted to keep, momentum through the whole game.”

Kearns savages referee

phil kearns

From an Australian perspective, the main talking point from that test match was the yellow carding of replacement prop Taniela Tupou at the start of the second half.

Tupou was deemed to have entered into a tackle with no arms after referee Paul Williams had called for a penalty, resulting in his sin-binning for the illegal shot.

This has outraged Fox Sports commentator Phil Kearns, who called Williams disgraceful and out of his depth.

“I just think it was a disgraceful decision,” Kearns said on Fox Sports’ post-match coverage. “So many times we put referees that are out of their depth into these games.”

“We’ve all talked privately about the World Cup referees and there’s a whole bunch of guys there that are totally out of their depth. And big games like that — that is a game-changing moment.”

Fellow commentator and former Wallabies halfback George Gregan agreed with his assessment, believing that it had a significant outcome on the result of the game.

“Those decisions have a big impact on the game because you’re a man down, 10 minutes against a really good side, it’s 14-10 and all of a sudden there’s two converted tries,” Gregan said.

“The Test match has changed from those two scores.”

This was echoed in coach Michael Cheika’s post-match press conference, who tried to argue that the yellow card should’ve gone the other way for a shoulder charge.

“I make it as the wrong call,” Cheika said. “The other guy (Springbok) should have been sent to the sin-bin for a shoulder charge.”

“The fourth official (should have) focused on the green guy who came in with a shoulder charge and then Taniela came in after that to get him, with his arms wrapped at the right height.”

“I’m not sure if big contact is a penalty these days but that’s the wrong decision.”

Rugby Wrap

NZ v Fiji National Anthems

NZ v Fiji National Anthems

We start out looking our eye over our fellow Pool C competitors Fiji, who stumbled against a New Zealand Maori side, losing 26-17.

Fiji took this encounter to trial out new players and combinations after their crushing win last week and the Maori side made them pay for it, running in four tries to tie the two-test series 1-1.

Whilst the scoreline was locked at 7-7 at halftime, the New Zealand Maori dominated the encounter after the break, with tries to Rob Thompson, Alex Nankivell and lock Isaia Walker-Leawere securing the win.

Back in Australia, we start in Western Australia in the premier division where Associates accounted for Wanneroo 29-12, Wests outgunned UWA 45-31 and Nedlands and Cottesloe were dead-locked at 19-19 in the top of the table close.

The championship division saw Curtin Uni defeat Southern Lions 25-5, Kalamunda overcame Bayswater 35-26, ARKs held off Coastal Cavaliers 35-29 and Palmyra destroyed Joondalup 64-8.

In the Cooper’s Premier in SA, Port Adelaide molly whopped Barossa 88-0, Old Collegians pumped Southern Suburbs 64-19, Onkaparinga destroyed Woodville 75-10, Adelaide Uni outgunned Elizabeth 86-10 and Burnside upset Brighton 23-20.

The Dewar Shield saw Harlequins outgun Melbourne Uni 40-13, Power House account for Footscray 46-5, Box Hill upset Melbourne 24-21 for their first loss of the year and Moorabbin held off Endeavour Hills 31-24.

Round 16 of the John I Dent Cup witnessed Royals hold off Gungahlin 25-22, Vikings pump Wests 63-14 and Queanbeyan held off a valiant Easts 27-20.

The Shute Shield witnessed Easts overcame Randwick 33-24, Gordon outgunned Norths 42-34, Sydney Uni continued their strong run with a 47-24 win over Southern Districts, Eastwood survived a scare against West Harbour winning 30-17 and Warringah won the battle of the north over Manly 28-23.

Finally, in the sunshine state, the Hospital Challenge Cup saw Wests outgun Souths 43-31 in Jordan Petaia’s return to the game from injury, Bond Uni overcame Norths 31-15, Easts upset Sunnybank 29-13 and GPS won the battle of the ladder leaders defeating Brothers 43-36.

  • sambo6

    Surprise, fucking surprise…..Cheika thinks the wallabies had lots of positives, and just need slightly better execution….

    The silver lining is we’ve only got to listen to his bullshit for another couple of months….

    • Birdy

      From what I understand they had been going great in training, and the ref was a disgrace.

    • Steve

      oh man, it really hurts to keep hearing this. They looked just as rudderless as they have the last 4 years, including players that had great Super campaigns.

      Just shocking.

    • Missing Link

      There’s absolutely nothing wrong with Nathan Grey’s new and improved D-FENS system 2.35. It’s simply a matter of the players not trusting the system and executing it correctly, they only have themselves to blame hahahaha

    • RedAnt

      Yeah it’s pretty telling that Rasie Erasmus’s reaction was ‘we were lucky to win, it was a long way short of a world class performance’ while Cheika’s was ‘lots of positives’ etc.

      • laurence king

        Spiro Zavos had the same thing to say. The number of ‘True Believers is diminishing by the hour.

  • Max Graham

    Not sure why, but looking at Hodge’s unhappy dial just makes me angry. What’s he got to be unhappy about? If I played for the wallabies I’d be over the moon. Like him, I’m shit at rugby.

    • Geoffro

      According to Matt Giteau and a few other “legends” its a disgrace to smile if you’re losing/lost

      • Yowie

        Is that the famous “Giteau’s Law” I keep hearing about?

        • Geoffro

          Yep,Hodge was just obeying the law

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      At least he’s pissed at losing. I’d be more angry if he was happy after that game

    • Geoffro

      Great,put down that shnitty,youre on the next flight to Brissy

    • Hoss

      That’s a pic from the FISM loss in Australia last year. Just before FKA snots a member (deservedly) from the crowd.

    • Keith Butler

      Unhappy because he cannot make his biceps look bigger.

  • Max Graham

    Not sure why, but looking at Hodge’s unhappy dial just makes me angry. What’s he got to be unhappy about? If I played for the wallabies I’d be over the moon. Like him, I’m shit at rugby.

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    Thanks Nathan,
    Big weekend mate and some good rugby. Funnily enough I thought there was some good play by the Wallabies but yet again some stupid decisions under pressure that let the game get away. I don’t know why anyone expects Hooper to kick for goal, he’s always taken the wrong option so why would he change now. How his incompetence allows him to remain as captain is beyond me. Apparently he trains really well though.
    The girls did well and I’m sure the recent games will help them when they play the Silver Ferns in Perth and Auckland. Really looking forward to those games.

    Well unsurprisingly I disagree with Kearns and Cheika on Tupou’s yellow card. If that occurred in any game I was refereeing I’d have no hesitation in awarding a yellow. I call bullshit on him using his arms, he lead with his shoulder. Also it was high and late so a completely correct call. Mind you Cheika must love these as it gives him something to take the focus off the other things in the match. Sorry but I missed all the world class incidents somehow.

    Fiji game was good and while they lost the opportunity to play different combo’s will help them come the World Cup. I’d still be worried about that game if I was Cheika.

    • Keith Butler

      Instead of whinging about referees, which seems to be his default position, maybe Kearns should have followed ex SD hooker Brian Moore’s lead and taken up the whistle. Poacher turned gamekeeper.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        What! And be held accountable! No way mate. Far easier to sit on the side making ill thought out comments that keeps his benefactors paying his undeserved wage

        • Geoffro

          He doesn’t really add much to any commentary team does he ? (him and Marto are particularly irritating)

        • Keith Butler

          Wishful thinking on my part. Kearns will always be Kearns.

    • Who?

      KRL, how’s a hit to the chest high?
      How’s a hit that’s a second after the whistle was blown notably late? Whistle blew at 53:26, contact was made at 53:27 (having run 8m to get there), Tupou immediately regained his feet and had both his feet under him at 53:28. The Saffa forwards barely reacted – Hooper reacted more to Esterhuizen’s more dangerous (because he held on) tackle on Banks.
      I’d debate ‘leading with a shoulder’ – his arms were up, it’s quite arguable he’d have locked on if it weren’t for the whistle. As in, he was far enough into the cleanout when the whistle blew to be unable to avoid the hit, but he could choose not to wrap and then wrestle.
      If I’d reffed that game, I’d have warned him for the timing of the hit, but understood that he couldn’t have bailed and not penalized.
      .
      In terms of blaming the ref for the game, absolutely no way. It was terrible tactics that cost them the game. But on that call, Williams was wrong. It’s also the second time this year he’s looked to punish Tupou for big but not illegal hits. He tried to card Tupou for an ‘almost’ high tackle earlier in the year.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        Mate I see it as a high hit. I don’t agree it was initially made at the chest, yes it dropped down after and as pointed out elsewhere the leading with the shoulder is ok and I admit I got that wrong. But for me just too much wrong with it. His arms came into play after not as part of the tackle, I still think it was high, it was late, he left his feet to conduct the hit and it was never going to clear the player off the ruck. It was just a dumb thing to do

        • Who?

          I’ve watched it and watched it, first contact was clearly made with the chest, and there was no contact whatsoever with the head. in fact, there’s nothing above armpit level. He didn’t slide up.
          Arms after the cleanout? They were there, but didn’t wrap as the whistle had blown. Given the timing of the whistle – a second before contact (but whilst he was at full pace and unable to bail), it’s impossible to know that he wouldn’t have held if the whistle hadn’t blown. If he holds on after the whistle, he’s carrying on. If he don’t hold on, it can give the impression of a shoulder charge. But his hands were so far beyond the Bok 6…
          .
          The complaint that he wasn’t going to retain his feet has some relevance, however in the context of how that game was reffed, it’s irrelevant. No top level ref has been requiring any form of adherence to laws in this area for a long time. He did very clearly remove the player from the breakdown – the Bok 6 ended up flat on his back.
          .
          Dumb thing to do? He’s entered from behind the ruck and cleaned out. If there’s no whistle, there’s no penalty. It was a panic decision from a referee who’s still horribly inconsistent.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        Mate I see it as a high hit. I don’t agree it was initially made at the chest, yes it dropped down after and as pointed out elsewhere the leading with the shoulder is ok and I admit I got that wrong. But for me just too much wrong with it. His arms came into play after not as part of the tackle, I still think it was high, it was late, he left his feet to conduct the hit and it was never going to clear the player off the ruck. It was just a dumb thing to do

    • Dud Roodt

      High? How can a clean out that doesn’t hit someone in the head be high? People generally aren’t standing around as tall as a honeymooners dick at a ruck, they’re most often hinged at the hip, so short of hitting their feet to try and effect the cleanout, how much lower could he get?
      Also, what do you mean “lead with the shoulder”? Isn’t that what everyone is supposed to do with a clean out? I don’t know about you, but everyone I’ve ever played footy with is told to clean out and/or tackle with their shoulder?
      He also quite clearly wrapped his arm immediately.

      • OnTheBurst

        Yes I agree. The clean out was fine, it was just that it was fractionally late and right in front of the ref.

      • Geoffro

        Wish someone had told Uelese to tackle with his shoulder

      • UTG

        How do you do anything except lead with your shoulder in a clean-out?

        Love these people claiming it was high when Williams himself said it was contact with the chest.

        If these are KRL’s thoughts on a clean-out he’s seen on a slow-motion replay, I’d hate to be in playing in a game officiated by him.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          mate happy to admit my comment on leading with the shoulder was wrong, of course you do in every tackle. I think the issue is more about him flying in and leaving his feet to hit a guy who wasn’t even near the ball after the whistle.

        • UTG

          Everyone leaves their feet to clean-out though. Eldstat, who Tupou hit, left his feet to hit Rodda. Eldstat was part of the maul so it doesn’t really matter where he was in relation to the ball.

          The crucial element to the whole debate over timing is that Tupou was committed to the shot before the whistle was blown. Shots are never deemed late when the tackler is already committed; how many times do we hear the referees explain that a tackler was already committed when they hit a ball-player just after they have passed/kicked the ball? In fact, when Tupou rocked CLL in the Reds vs Brumbies match Williams said he was fine with the timing because he was already committed despite CLL not being in possession when he was hit.

          Unfortunately, Williams has history of giving out YCs when he sees big contact even though they’re fine under the rules. I can empathise with him to an extent given the push for player safety but in a test match you expect top quality referees who can differentiate between strong yet legal contact and dangerous play. He’s just not up to the job at the moment and needs a bit more time plying his trade at Super before he makes the step up.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        That pic is after the hit where he’s gone down. He hit higher than that but as he drove forward he dropped. To be fair you’re absolutely correct in tackling with the shoulder. That was poorly written by me. My issue with this incident is that when he hit the player it was high, it was after the whistle, he didn’t bring his arms forward until after the hit and it wasn’t clearing anyone out off the ball. He also left his feet to do the hit. I guess my biggest issue is the dumbness of it. I still stand by the YC and I would have awarded the same

        • Keith Butler

          For as long as we live KRL top grade referees will not referee the ruck according to the letter of the law because they’ll be pilloried by media pundits (you know who I mean) for not letting the game flow.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          I think the issue is that a referee will just rule on what they see and because that depends on where they are the referee and the spectators, and players, all get a different view of the same incident. Maybe the hit by Tupou was actually OK but for me seeing a player come flying in and leaving his feet to hit another player which wouldn’t clear him off the ball anyway is something I’d probably go to the YC for as well. If nothing else it was a dumb play

        • Keith Butler

          With me being decidedly old school, when you were allowed to ruck the ball with your feet and if an opposition player happened to be in the vicinity of the ball they were fair game, wearing your referees hat can you clarify something for me. When you clear out someone can you just come in and legally hit them, through the gate of course, or do you have to be bound first. This dinosaur needs to know.

        • Who?

          Technically, you’re supposed to bind before you drive. This is a very old law – it was reinforced after Bakkies Botha broke Adam Jones’ arm in the 2009 Lions series. But how often do you see it enforced? Especially on jackals..?
          If there were consistency of enforcement, it’d be easier to argue that it was a penalty for that reason. Further, if the whistle hadn’t gone, perhaps he’d have been able to bind a little more than he did? There wasn’t time to bail on the contact, but there was time to choose not to bind.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          The law states that you have to bind onto a player to join a ruck or a maul. It comes down to timing and how it’s viewed but if I see a player flying in like that then I question that there is any intent to bind. Obviously you hit with the shoulder and then bind but flying in, leaving your feet like that with your arms back behind is just asking for a card, especially in a RWC year when referees are being more diligent

        • Huw Tindall

          I complained about leaving the feet during clean outs on a Nick Bishop article over on The Roar and he replied clarifying you can go off your feet as part of the clean out but you then need to get back on your feet after and can’t just lie on the ground/player/ball.

        • Who?

          That was a great discussion, wasn’t it?
          Nick replied with what’s currently enforced, not with what’s allowed in law. In law, you’re not permitted to enter without binding or with your shoulders below your hips. But that happens at every other ruck – he pointed out the ball carrier’s supporters often go in almost dragging their nose on the ground then regain their feet. Which I maintain is completely illegal.

        • Huw Tindall

          Top thread that was indeed. There I was shouting at the TV about players ‘going off their feet’ at the ruck and all along it seems the refs have been fine with it! The ruck is a nightmare and you feel for the refs who need eyes in the back of their heads and a real-time video feed of the other side of the ruck to be a chance of getting the calls right.

        • Who?

          Thing is, if there were direction to enforce the laws as written (as we discussed in that thread), life would be easier. It’s not harder today than previously – it’s just the build up of precedent. It’s like the precedent that led to the stupid CTPE scrum engagement sequence, which emphasised the hit. Which wasn’t written in law. Going to the new sequence (which I still haven’t seen properly implemented according to the original intent of the guideline) required no changes to law, only discarding of irrelevant precedent.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          I’m not so sure. There’s certainly no law about it and it comes down to how the referee sees it. Leaving your feet to dive in and smash a player nowhere near the ball isn’t something I’d be comfortable letting go

        • RobC

          He didnt go off his feet actually KRL. He was on the ground on contact. Rodda was under Nela, which had the effect of lifting Nela after the contact

          Proper use of TMO would have sorted this. Same for timing. Nela was always in the clearout process before the Ref put his whistle in his mouth.

      • WR issued some videos to try and clear it up. You hit with the shoulder, that’s fundamentally ok, it’s about your arms and hands relative to your shoulder as you hit. Basically they should be in front of your shoulder as you make contact – so you’re in the process of wrapping – rather than behind – no hit then wrap.

        That changes the way your shoulder joint and the muscles around it are configured. You can still drive all your body weight and maximum force through, but you hit with muscle and not bone so things are relatively padded and over a bigger area so there’s less risk of injury.

    • Nutta

      You know I will disagree with you on the Tupou card but that’s ok because we are civilised folk who can disagree.

      What get’s me though is the focus on this aspect of the match. This did not cost us the match. 3 blown tries in the 1st half is what cost us the match.

      And for the life of me there must be something completely wrong with my rugby compass because among the handful of rugby truisms I grew up with is the simple idea that against a rush-defense I have my play-maker pop in a couple of chips or grubs in behind the 12/13 channel chased hard by wingers & breakaways. Charging defenders being repeatedly removed from the contest early on by watching little kicks fly over their heads or past their knees into the open country behind puts the breaks on their bull-charging like little else. Or do I have this completely wrong?

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        No mate you’ve got it right. TBF I think if I was refereeing and blew the whistle and straight after a prop left his feet to hit a player in the ruck I’d probably go straight to yellow. With the slomo available to the international referees maybe a different ruling should have occurred.

    • Disagree on the high, but after that fun video from WR, I’d agree it was yellow. It looked like his arm was back to me and that made it a shoulder charge from the angles I saw. That makes it start as a yellow.

  • Parker

    So did I understand Cheika’s appraisal of White’s game properly? Basically said he did the job of number 10. So what is Foley doing there?

    • Bernie Chan

      Aaahhh…only Cheika knows…

  • The Jackal

    Got to be expecting almost a completely new XV this weekend. Got to give people a go see if they have anything because outside Slipper, Naisarani, White & Kerevi no one showed up last weekend. Need to figure out who the A Team is for All Blacks in Perth. So this week (as long as there aren’t anymore fitness camps to rule more players out). Not my ideal XV by any stretch & could possibly get toweled up but they need to find something.
    1. Sio
    2. Fainga’a (Not a Test player but who else is there)
    3. Ala’alatoa
    4. Arnold
    5. Simmons
    6. Valetini
    7. Wright
    8. Naisarani
    9. Genia
    10. Leali’ifano
    11. Koroibete
    12. Kerevi
    13. Petaia
    14. O’Connor
    15. Beale
    16. Uelese/Latu
    17. Slipper
    18. Tupou
    19. Jones
    20. Dempsey
    21. White
    22. To’omua
    23. Maddocks

    • Brumby Runner

      I generally agree that there needs to be some changes to see the options, but have a problem with a few of your suggestions.

      Simmons is just taking up space when another real rugby player could be trialled. He came on for the last twenty minutes or so on the weekend and had almost no involvement in the game. I’m certain that even the lineouts were being organised by Arnold while Simmons was there. I’d try LSL in the second row this weekend and have someone like Philip on the bench.

      I’d stick with White at No 9 to see how his combination with Lealiifano works. Powell on the bench and given a good 20 – 30 minutes at the end.

      No way Petaia could come in after less than 20 minutes club game time after such a serious injury. Kuridrani should be retained to see how that centre combination works together with Lealiifano at 10.

      Banks also needs to be retained, possibly on the wing to give JOC a go at 15. Could be the other way round, though. Beale off the bench.

      I really do like the look of the backrow you have nominated.

      • Damo

        Agree with your sentiments here. We really don’t have the luxury of fiddling with the team too much. We need to stick with 12,13 and 15 as is, and make it work. Whoever plays 10 has to get both SK and TK into the game. What a wasted resource TK was in this game- and not really his fault.
        But before this the forward pack need to work together and hit in attack and defence like they really mean it. The Argie forwards against the AB’s smashed everything that moved, and while they made mistakes they definitely tipped the opposition off balance. They also didn’t throw a lot of hail mary passes by the way. That habit seems to be ingrained into Australian teams and it drives me insane.

  • Crescent

    Well. Back at the desk on Monday, and in no better mood having watched both the Wallabies match and AB’s match again last night. Poor handling, poor execution, poor discipline. I am seeing a one dimensional attack plan – maybe they borrowed the Brad Thorns crayons and colouring in book when they were cooking up the “new” plays, although at least the defence system was about hitting what is in front of you, not having to run around like a chook with your head cut off.

    Tupou’s YC for me, says more about giving the official a reason to look at you for foul play. For mine, it was late (I haven’t timed it – couldn’t be bothered). The whistle had gone and Williams saw it straight away, so it was always a reversal at a minimum. That after some good play to win the initial turnover and penalty when the Boks were in good attacking position. It is that lack of match smarts across the team (not singling out Tupou for lack of awareness) that was the complete killer.

    The lack of an answer for the rush defence and lack of numbers supporting the ball carrier will see us continue to suffer in Test matches. Despite all of that, we left points on the park before half time where we could have stolen the momentum of the game to our favour. That is the most irritating part of watching the match for me.

    • Who?

      I’ve said plenty about the timing (Williams was wrong – wasn’t even a penalty). But there’s two commonly held points here outside the YC that need to be clarified.
      .
      It wasn’t a penalty. It was a scrum for a failed maul. So it wasn’t a reversal of a penalty, it was awarding a penalty over a scrum.
      Secondly, the scrum was the wrong call. At the beginning of the maul, Williams had called Hooper out of the maul (joining at the side) – Hooper didn’t move. So it very arguably should’ve been an initial penalty against the Wallabies for Hooper’s entry, rather than the scrum for Arnold sacking the maul.

      • Crescent

        I was of the view that Williams considered Hooper was being held in by a smarter Bok forward who heard him very clearly being told to get out. Still doesn’t make his decision not to penalise Hooper right. Because I like to feel right, it will solidify my view of the general lack of awareness and game smarts needed to succeed at the highest level within the Wallaby setup

        • Who?

          I’m good with that. :-)

    • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

      It was definitely a late shot after the whistle and a penalty to the Boks. The YC was harsh but so was the YC against the Boks in the 1st half. High tackles and after the whistle cheap shots cause injuries and in a RWC year will be penalised as Word Rugby aims to showcase rugby as the “game played in heaven”. I have no problem with the harsh line officials are taking against foul play – we need to get rid of that element of the game as it can end careers. A good team understands how to exploit the extra man by raising the tempo or shut down space when you are a player down. When a team is one player short it is all about controlling possession and less about territory. A good coach will prepare his team for these scenarios and will expect better discipline from his players and will definitely not let them off the hook by finding excuses for them. Cheika again shown that he is just not at this level. It will be a tough 2019 for the Wallabies.

      • RobC

        It wasn’t after the whistle.

        • Who?

          It was. A whole second after the whistle. ;-)
          NO way he was bailing on that.
          .
          But I do completely agree with the point that, regardless of how the ref messes up, you’ve got to be prepared to defend with 14 men in the modern game.

        • RobC

          no mate. you might want to watch it again, carefully

        • Who?

          I’ve watched it multiple times. He starts his run before the whistle, the whistle is blown at 53:26 on the game clock, he’s about to take his last step, shoulders already down. He makes contact at 53:27, and is back on his feet at 53:28. So, 1 second after the whistle is blown, but absolutely unavoidable and close enough that there’s no way I’d ever call that a penalty.

        • RobC

          Oops sorry mate. I didn’t catch your message properly there

    • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

      It was definitely a late shot after the whistle and a penalty to the Boks. The YC was harsh but so was the YC against the Boks in the 1st half. High tackles and after the whistle cheap shots cause injuries and in a RWC year will be penalised as Word Rugby aims to showcase rugby as the “game played in heaven”. I have no problem with the harsh line officials are taking against foul play – we need to get rid of that element of the game as it can end careers. A good team understands how to exploit the extra man by raising the tempo or shut down space when you are a player down. When a team is one player short it is all about controlling possession and less about territory. A good coach will prepare his team for these scenarios and will expect better discipline from his players and will definitely not let them off the hook by finding excuses for them. Cheika again shown that he is just not at this level. It will be a tough 2019 for the Wallabies.

  • Missing Link

    The Good:
    – KB
    – Nic White
    – Kerevi
    – Our lineout

    The Bad:
    – DHP bombed try
    – DHP poor read to unnecessarily join a ruck leaving the shortside open for Jantjies to score
    – Kerevi forward pass to LSL – bombed try
    – Hooper not taking the 3 right in front and opting for a scrum (SA front row already giving us a work over)
    – TK was missing the whole game
    – Our scrum
    – Decision on Tupou, wrapped his arms and hit the opponents chest, had would up before the whistle, pretty hard to stop a Mack truck on a 10c piece when it’s going full tilt.
    – Uelese getting KO’s 2 minutes after coming on

    • Geoffro

      Agree except for Hoops decision which hes copped so muck flak for.He explained his decision at the post match presser and I tended to agree.Would have been good to go to half time with a lead and if it had come off it would have been lauded as a bold move.

      • John Tynan

        Test matches I’m all for taking a definite 3 and get the ball back, vs a possible 5-7.

        • Geoffro

          Yes,thats the prevailing thought.Im a more risk/reward type

        • Keith Butler

          But the fans want to be ‘entertained’.

        • Geoffro

          Funny that,always been more partial to rugby than chess as a spectator sport myself as well

        • There is a case for taking the scrum… and if it had been the Boks’ captain and it hadn’t worked out, I’d have felt more sympathetic. But look at the scrum outcomes stats I posted to the match report, the second one where it’s broken down by teams. Remember one of those “wins” for Australia is that scrum Hooper called instead of taking the penalty, when he thought momentum was in their favour….

          Got to wonder what gave him that idea.

        • John Tynan

          Totally.
          They did win the scrum, but….

        • That’s true, and I scored it as a dirty win, 8 run.

          But I don’t regard it as a bad play by Naisarani. When the 8 picks up and goes sideways, with the 9 following him, it’s clearly a called play. Whatever bright sparks a) designed it and b) called it on the field are the ones to blame. A 24 year old winning his first cap – he’s not going to change the play.

          But letting the Boks defence charge off their line (which they’d been doing all half) and hammer into you like that was dumb. When there’s no space for a chip over (which Foley seemed to have forgotten about admittedly) they can just charge all the harder.

          An 8 run but straight, maybe. Get the rest of the forwards looping around but going forwards into the breakdown. 9 passing and having the backs look for space, yes. Ideal time for the miss pass… because their backs will target Kerevi for sure. White can throw a pass to TK can’t he?

          I can possibly forgive Hooper for calling the scrum, although given how well the Wallabies’ scrum had gone I am stretching my forgiveness. I can’t forgive him (as captain I’m assuming it was him) for calling that dumb play.

        • John Tynan

          Love reading your insight, EP.

      • I don’t care what his justification is. Je was wrong.

        • Geoffro

          Obviously , they didnt score any points.

    • Geoffro

      Agree except for Hoops decision which hes copped so muck flak for.He explained his decision at the post match presser and I tended to agree.Would have been good to go to half time with a lead and if it had come off it would have been lauded as a bold move.

    • Cornchips

      People keep talking about TK being missing. I actually don’t think it matters who you put into 13 they will be missing because it did not seem like the ball would get any further than Kerevi, how often did Hodge get a touch either? It’s a terrible game plan which will never cut it at test level, but I think it unfair to say the 13 was missing when them being missing seemed to be part of the plan.

    • I’ve commented on it in more detail above, but unless there is a game plan (however simple) the has Kerevi getting the ball to TK (a lot of scissors moves or Kerevi not power running every ball) or a 10 that pick options and pass to 12 or 13 I don’t think TK was missing, he was just not used. There’s a difference.

      • Who?

        I really think it’s been a common complaint about our 13’s since Mortlock retired. That they’re absent. But Mortlock was such a dominant player that he saw a lot of the ball, and since then we’ve focused other places. Like Folau. Or Kerevi. I completely agree – it wasn’t TK’s fault he didn’t see much pill.
        Also would’ve loved a few inside balls or chips against that rush defence…

        • UTG

          Two key reasons we didn’t see much of TK:

          (1) The rush defence meant Kerevi couldn’t offload in contact to TK so he missed ball there.

          (2) Quite rightly, we tend to use TK running the unders line first phase in a pretty basic block play. He’s very good at getting over the ad line and has always run this line well. It then frees us up to use Kerevi out wide where he can get a one on one. If you can get Kerevi in a one on one then he’s so good it’s almost all over no matter who the defender is, he’ll drop his arm and you’ll get shrugged. However, the strong rush defence from the Saffas meant that face balls to Kurindrani flat at the line were too fraught with danger and he was easily picked off by the defence. They ran a block play early in the first half and hit TK on the unders but he was contained well and couldn’t put a shoulder into Jantjes. Foley and Kerevi then adjusted accordingly and dropped deeper looking for spaces on the edges. The wrap plays start working again and they find a bit of space on the outside. So TK is used as a decoy rather than a runner for the majority of the game.

          Note, he was also subbed for MT relatively early so he didn’t get the benefit of playing against tiring defence when there may have been more opportunities for him to receive cleaner ball.

          I’m sure they’ll tinker with the game plan and look to get him more involved in the future but playing with Kerevi his major role will always be the battering ram running flat while Kerevi receives it in a bit more space. It’s just the way their skill sets work.

        • Who?

          The rush defence didn’t help, but having plays designed where Kerevi was running sideways…
          .
          Having plays where everything was out the back – at 20 minutes, Foley ran backwards tor throw a pass across the face of a defender who’d gotten past him, to a player even further back. Why were we continuing with second man plays against a rush defence? These were off scrums and lineouts – there’s space for that face ball across Samu running slightly overs to TK on an unders line on first phase.
          .
          But we’ve got to remember this is no longer Larkham’s attacking plan. That unders line? That was a ball generally thrown from Larkham to Mortlock – and whilst I appreciate TK running it, it’s never been as effectively used to TK as it was from Larkham to Mortlock. Mortlock ran a greater angle back at the defensive line, it was thrown from the 10, and there were options running at 12. Whereas under Larkham’s coaching, it was often thrown from the 9, with no alternative recipient.
          This is Cheika’s team now, we may never see that line run again.
          .
          And we did see Kerevi try to throw an offload to TK, but, given they’ve hardly played alongside each other, and given everyone’s always too flat, TK was too flat on Samu to be able to receive an offload, having overrun and stopped before Samu got the hands free, so Samu went to ground and TK came back to secure the breakdown. If we see them given time to develop the combination, I’m confident that they’ll work it out.
          .
          I don’t blame TK or Kerevi, it’s their first game together. It takes time to build a combination, and I still think that, well coached, they have the potential to be the premier centre pairing at Bill. But what we’ve seen of the game plan isn’t good, and our 10 doesn’t throw cutouts to the 13. Just like he doesn’t throw inside balls. We’ve seen that Banks loves running off an inside ball between the ruck and 10, we didn’t see it used once. And that could’ve been fantastic against that rush defence. But Foley can’t throw a decent inside pass – he telegraphs it badly.

        • UTG

          Well, the Boks were playing an umbrella style rush defence (they were also offside for a lot of the opening half hour). There’s space outside that if you can get around it, hence why they played the second man plays. They actually did get around it toward the back end of the first half which was when DHP and Hodge made a couple of little half breaks.

          We weren’t playing a lot of full line outs so there’s not a whole lot of pay running TK on the unders into a bunch of big South African loosies. I’d say this is another reason we didn’t see them running the unders.

          Agree, Banks on the inside line would have been good to see (not sure about Foley’s ability or lack thereof to throw an inside ball, I’ve not paid a whole lot of attention but I’ll take your word for it). I do think, however, you really need your pack to be getting strong go forward for that to work effectively. When your forward pack isn’t retreating in defence it’s easy to set your 10-20-30 and neutralise any threats running close to the ruck. Once defenders start turning their backs and worrying about the forward runners in the wider channels it’s much more dangerous.

          As I said before, I’m sure they’ll tinker with the game-plan and I agree Kerevi and TK will improve. I actually thought Foley and those outside him adjusted their depth better and responded to the rush defence better this match than they have in the past. I’d be keen to see CLL given a run at 10 this weekend if his shoulder is better but I think, as far as games go, that was far from Foley’s worst. If we’re going to cut slack for others on the basis of combinations it’s only fair to do so to him as well.

        • Who?

          I agree there’s space if you can get around the rush defence, but at some point a good 10’s got to realise that you’re playing the riskier option to run backwards and throw tight passes deep in your own half than it is to thrown the ball over the rush defence, chip over the defence or try a wipers kick.
          .
          Fair call on the unders line with the lineout. But the point about it being a new attacking regime is still valid. It may not feature in Cheika’s plans.
          .
          I just hope that Cheika doesn’t use Beale’s cameo to stick him in at 15 this week. Or 12……. I hope they give the Kerevidrani a decent go.
          That said, I don’t anticipate significantly better outcomes. Cheika’s far too good at meeting my expectations of him and his teams. :-(

        • UTG

          I mean to his credit Foley did try the kick through and DHP dropped it. If we’re talking about percentage plays then I’m not sure kicks through the midfield are necessarily less risky than going wide through the hands Grubbers in phase play are tough to execute on the run against a well-organised rush defence and the risk of deflection is pretty high. If you get the wrong bounce on a chip then you could also see their speedy wingers zip through and score.

          Now wipers I do agree with you on. It’s much easier to identify space and given that all the players are moving cross field chasing it’s likely you’ll pick up the opposition if they have a fortuitous bounce. Foley is also actually half-decent kicking across field and DHP isn’t too bad under the ball (although a good wipers kick can find turf it doesn’t need to go to hand) I hope they don’t consign the cross field kick to the dustbin just because Folau is gone. The Crusaders scored so many tries from it and guys like Ennor and Reece aren’t noted for their ability to jump.

          I don’t want to see Beale at 12 but I can see arguments for him at 15 given you shift Banks to 14 and play Koro at 11. However, we must ensure we keep Kerevi and Kurindrani as the central axis, I don’t want to see him wearing 15 and playing 12. He’s always played his best for Australia when he’s just needed to chime in, not be the focal point of attack.

        • Who?

          The issue I had with not going for a kick earlier was that we were playing 15m behind the gain line on first phase, and running backwards to throw the pass. I’m thinking about the set piece at 20 minutes – it was terrible. All sideways, stealing time and space.
          .
          I agree the wipers kick is the best option, because it’s effectively just a higher wide pass, and I’d trust Foley to put in a wipers kick over trying to throw a 20+m cutout ball over Saffa giraffes. And whilst DHP had some shocking moments last game, he did have a few fantastic moments under the high ball (or restart).
          .
          Ultimately, I could see a back three as you’ve proposed. And be happy enough with it. But I think we’re more likely to see Banks benched, DHP still there, even Hodge still there (maybe on the bench ahead of Banks, with Koroibete starting). Completely agree about retaining the Kerevidrani and Beale being at his best when he’s in that roving attacking commission, rather than carrying all the responsibility. Though, if he could prove he’s still got it, I’d also strongly consider JOC over Beale at the back – was always a big fan of JOC…

        • Well, I’m going to blame picking Foley in part for the “absent 13’s” issue. Good sides will use 12 as a decoy and pass straight to 13 sometimes. Not convinced Foley can see that far, let alone pass that far! (OK, that’s unfair, but on my darker days I do feel like that.)

          I’m not sure an inside ball is the answer if they’re rushing well – you should put your runner into a world of pain as their 7 (well 6 because Saffas wear their shirts the wrong way round) and 8 charge into that space – but a chip or grubber… yes please.

        • Who?

          My reply below pretty well agrees with you, except for the inside ball. With so much sideways running early in the game, I can see opportunities for Banks or similar to run a strong overs line behind the rush defence on an inside ball from the 10 or 12. Especially given the defence was rushing outside in at the 12, but still rushing inside out just a bit at Foley.
          .
          Foley had opportunities to run behind the rush defence, he missed them (unusual – he loves a run), trying to get back behind the defenders to pass the ball to players even further from the gain line…

        • I certainly won’t complain if they add this to the repertoire.

          You usually analyse defensive patterns faster than me, so I’m going to accept they were there rather than go back and subject myself to a third painful watch of the match. Los Pumas tended to rush too, Barrett was chipping away and kicking (less successfully) out to the wings. The AB were also flooding close channels with multiple players. That defensive system was brutally efficient, we definitely need more than we saw in Joburg to crack it.

  • Brisneyland Local

    Morning GAGR’s, well the positivity has not returned. My points for today:
    – I am now trying to look at the YC scenario for both teams in regards to how they dealt with it. Arguments can be made both ways that they were or weren’t yellows. So I am trying to get past that because it is a moot point. They were both given YC, regardless of whether they were warranted or not.
    – The DDF dealt with their yellow card well they came away zero sum gain. The Wallabies on the other hand did not. They were in the negative.
    – Our game plan couldn’t adapt. Are we surprised by this? Has the Wallabies game plan ever been able to adapt?
    – And before some one else says it I will:
    “Our game plan used to be get it to Izzy, and it has adapted to get it to Samu Kerevi!” true.
    – Our defence plan sucks because it is another Nathan Grey over complicate things and have the players confused again.
    – Our attack plan sucks because we dont have a 10 that can orchestrate an attack.
    – SO the question I have to ask, my learned GAGR’s, is how do we adapt our plan?
    Over to you blue leader!

    • Bernie Chan

      Perhaps the greatest failing of Cheika’s coaching is the inability of the team to adapt…We also have a Captain who is very enthusiastic but tactically woeful…”take the points…” and get the ball back!
      I think you are right…”give it to Samu…” is the only attacking strategy, pity we don’t have a flyhalf who can put a player into a gap on either side, long-or-short.
      Hoss notes Ben O’Keefe has got the opening Wallas game at the RWC…we could be ‘cooked’…

      • Brisneyland Local

        BOK is not renowned for being a Wallaby fan. And against my second favourite team (F1J1) it could be a disaster. Fiji are looking really good at the moment. They lost their second game to the MAB, but they fielded a B team perse to get some of their other players blooded. I noted there were a number of players from the Drua NRC team playing. SO the Kiwi coach is blooding some depth which is a great thing.

        • Keith Butler

          O’Keefe is a knob.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yep. So we have to develop a game plan to counter Fiji’s threats with out getting even further on the wrong side of this guy.

        • Funk

          Ahh, but our Fearless leader doesn’t think it’s worth his time to review the oppositions strengths and weaknesses.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yep!

      • Hoss

        Gets worse from there Big Bad Bernie – we have French refs from that point on & that my dear friend is a colossal cluster fuck waiting to happen. We need to be on our AAA+ game (last sighted against the Welsh in 2015) just to take these fucking clowns out of the equation. For if its close you can back it in that BOK & the French Penguins will take every opp to fuck it right up.

        Merde !

        • Yowie

          The Wallaby captain could have a word with the French ref to the effect of:-

          “Remember Villers-Bretonneux before you reach for that whistle or card pocket mate.”

    • Keith Butler

      Dead right with all your observations BL. Just waiting for Rod Kafer to jump on the “ get the ball to Samu” bandwagon. Kerevi’s threat will be nullified if we don’t come up with some alternative attacking strategies.

      • Brisneyland Local

        At the moment he is being used as a bash brother. Which he has some talent at. But it would be good if our 10 could put him in a hole at speed. That would be perfect.

        • Geoffro

          If we had a game plan or someone who coud run the backline the greater risk would be of him being caught out of position , hes running around looking for so much work

        • Brisneyland Local

          Very true. At least some one is! ;-)

      • UTG

        Watch the LSL no try and tell me how it is just get the ball to Samu. It’s a clever piece of manipulation orchestrated by the playmakers to stack the open side with forwards. Naisarani makes a good carry from the kickoff and Foley gets front foot ball and they go out the back to Kerevi to get over the gain line. They then go short side to Banks and Hooper and the Boks over commit. Now Foley has the whole Saffa forward packed stacked on the open side while Kurindrani sits in a pod out to attract the SA backs. Foley hits Kerevi behind and he scoots through. It’s a brilliant piece of attacking football let down by poor execution at the last moment.

        • McWarren

          If only the plan included a Banks or Hodge or anyone else in support. I suspect Kerevi held the pass too long as he doubted LSL had the legs to finish.

        • UTG

          May well have, although he had Foley on his other side backing up as well. Unfortunately, I think it was just a screw up on Kerevi’s part (and LSL, perhaps could have held his depth a touch more). You’d expect them to get the draw and pass right 99 times out of 100 like you’d expect DHP to pick it up and dot it down 99 times out of 100. Unfortunately, those two screw ups off the back of enterprising attack came in the same game.

        • Who?

          Foley was the initial support, but he was too flat, if not in front of Kerevi. He drew Kerevi’s eyes, but was never a genuine option. And then Kerevi didn’t see LSL until far too late…

      • Agreed. Given their lack of time together, we don’t need complex ones right now. Run either the 15 or the blindside winger on an in-to-out scissors, and Kurundrani on an out-to-in scissors if you’re going to insist on that stupid sideways line.

        Run a straight line and put a player on each shoulder for an offload.

        Have a 10 who can pick a short or a long pass and use him as a decoy.

        Four plays… and none of them are hard. Heck, school kids run most of them. But it’s more variety than we saw on Saturday.

    • Custard Taht

      I am not sure the Wallabies need to adapt the plan. The plan is good, we love the plan, and I think that after 59 test matches and 29 losses, the last thing the rest of the world will expect, is for Cheika to trot out the same plan…….it is cunning in its simplicity!

      • Funk

        it is a Cunning Stunt!!

        • laurence king

          And I was going to write that cunning was a typo

        • AllyOz

          Cheika’s next interview:

          Baldrick: I applied for the job of village idiot of Kensington.
          Blackadder: Oh. Get anywhere?
          Baldrick: I got down to the last two, but I failed the final interview.
          Blackadder: Oh, what went wrong?
          Baldrick: I turned up. The other bloke was such an idiot, he forgot to.

        • AllyOz

          oh sorry….copyright BBC and all that shit

      • Brisneyland Local

        Starting to sound just like a Blackadder quote isnt it!

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Interestingly I did see some positives during the game that gave me hope there is some changes. While there were a couple of bombed tries, they came from play that had developed and was positive and I just hope this can continue. While some players went missing others such as Naisarani and White were pretty good. (Hats off to White, I was unsure if he’d step up and he did) I thought the back 3 looked more balanced but weren’t playing as a team very well. Unfortunately with Hooper always standing off you need someone to do the 7 work at the ruck and I’m not sure anyone was really doing that consistently.

      For me it’s really about the continuation of the bad that never seems to get better. I think it’s both a player and a coach issue but by hell I’m looking forward to November

      • Trouble for Hooper is, they’ve picked a 6 and 8 who are from teams where they’ve had a fetcher at 7 and so they’re used to doing 6 and 8 things. I thought they both didn’t look out of their depth for people with hardly any caps, while Hooper basically looked like he expected Pocock to miraculously appear and do all the jackalling…

        Saying to someone you’ve picked because they’re a good 8 or a good 6 “Oh, you need to jackal too” is bit tight.

        • NSWelsham in London

          this i totally agree with… we may have picked a “balanced” backrow in terms of correct height, weight etc etc. but one thing was clearly missing and the boks knew it…. not one of the Australian on-field 15 attempted a pilfer (if they did, i didnt see it..) they knew this which made their job at the breakdown all the easier.. I hate to say this but if Cheika persists with Hooper we need a Pocock somewhere to contest..

        • Some of us have being saying for years don’t pick Hooper…

        • I don’t think hooper qualifies as a forward. He does not play like a flanker and when he is on pitch someone always has to fill in the duties he is technically supposed to do.

          Not everyone is a fetchr but he hardly clears rucks and when he tries he is mostly ineffective.

        • Someone wearing a 7 shirt really should be a fetcher though…

          A couple of years ago now I had a chat on here with someone (Hoss I think) and said I thought Hooper should play 13 at SR level to get used to it, and then switch at test level if you want to include him in the side that much. Without the second playmaker, he could make a decent 12 too, maybe, although I still think he’s a better 13.

          I’m not advocating that he replaces either of the current centres, he doesn’t have the experience to play there, but I agree he’s not a 7 and the side needs one.

        • laurence king

          A 7 playing as a 7? How dreadfully common.

        • Even when England were criticised for picking two 6.5’s they had someone who jackaled for the ball…

      • Brisneyland Local

        100 % correct. The only real positives I saw was the depth at 9 and Isi N. The line out was ok too. The rest was pretty average.

    • I’m not sure why we need a really complex defensive plan any more?

      Foley isn’t a great defender, nor are any of his replacements – some are better than Foley, but none you’d bet your mortgage on to make a tackle. But, fundamentally, 10’s around the world tend not to be the greatest defenders – they spend time working on passing, kicking, looking for space, running, and they’re not that big. There are exceptions to that rule of course but you notice them because they’re rare.

      So the Wobblies defence has to do, whoever is in the 10 shirt, what every side does. So, you get an openside who tackles and covers the 10’s inside shoulder and the 12 cheats in half a step to cover his outside shoulder and everyone keys off that. The 10 defends a narrow channel. Someone, usually the 9 or the blindside winger sweeps and covers that gap behind the 10 as their starting spot – it’s a good spot for the chip over too.

      This is not rocket science. I was one of the piggies as a schoolgirl, but played in the back row, and had to learn this because I usually played 8 and had to cover that gap where the 7 went in case their 8 or 9 picked up and tried to go through that hole, or they put a player back on an inside ball into the space. You see it done faster and better then we did it at school but you see it done by international sides. Even if they’re doing a press defence, that part of it is still there, it’s just modified a bit for the speed of the rush – it’s more of a forward movement than the sideways one it used to be.

      • Brisneyland Local

        Spot on. It is bad though when our 10 cant defend and cant attack!

        • Let’s hope Lilo’s shoulder is better and he shows more imagination in attack…

        • Brisneyland Local

          He cant show less! ;-)

  • Bert

    The cheating by the TV match offical was my biggest complaint and I was at the game. It had a huge influence/impact on the game by firing up the crowd and reversing decisions. (My family was one of the of 8 or 9 wallaby supporters in a sea of dark green).
    The first Boks try had a solid hint of a forward pass (our seats were right in line with it), all the ground replays showed front on replays only. After the LSL try the ground replay immediately showed the side on replay to the crowd (maybe twice?) who went beserk and the ref reversed his decision. The same with the DHP no try.
    It was happening all game, the producer was deliberately screening out all the Boks infringements and zooming in on any Wallaby one they could find.
    Srum replays focused on Wallaby props loosing binds, but after the Boks had overextended (just out of frame), there was an possible Bok obstruction before a long break in play that was not screened, etc etc.
    The bok supporters next to us were apologising. “Looks like your going to have to win it the hard way” they said.
    I know there is a bit of home ground advantage but this was like having an extra ref.
    Sadly, Australia should totally imitate the ploy.

    • Geoffro

      There is something to what you say.The other side angle of Kerevis forward pass looked almost flat so was not shown again

    • Monk EyBoy

      TV Match Official (TMO) is a referee and doesn’t control what is on the big screen, he has a couple of TV screens and needs to get the PPV guys to give him the shots to review. The big Screen is controlled either in house but usually just streams the PPV coverage until add breaks etc. South African TV coverage is always parochial. The TMO for that game as an Englishman I believe.

      • Bert

        Yes, I should have said ‘onground producer’ or something similar. But it was very obvious that there was a very knowledgeable editor/producer on the video knobs putting home team slanted shots up whenever they could. It would then fire up the crowd which became something the ref ‘couldn’t’ ignore.
        It felt like only one team was being held to account.

    • Da Munch

      It was the White knock on in the 21st minute that changed the feed for the scrum that just stuck out as cheating to me. It was found really quick and then the obligatory forward was told to take a seat and then replayed on the feed until the ref was notified and the scrum given to SA, the obligatory forward was then fine. I thought at the time I’d have to eat my words if one call found by the TV coverage people went against SA, which of course didn’t happen. And I thought the rules for TV replays had been changed so that it was only foul play or review of tries that they were to be used for.
      Shit game by the Wallabies anyway so the TV coverage didn’t really effect the result but with the cheating by the TV coverage as you’ve noted and the Rebels, Waratahs and Highlanders 43-6 penalty count against the Lions you’ve got to start thinking that SA isn’t worth traveling to as cheating is so rife.

  • Brisneyland Local

    :-)

  • laurence king

    For the last two seasons, I have been hitting myself on the head with a rubber mallet for I have believed that my pain will bring about a change in fortune for my beloved Wallabies. I still believe this, but I have recently changed the brand (I have done this before alas and it didn’t work but ….) and I sincerely believe that this time, this weekend that the spirits of Wallabies past will arise in the breasts of these young heroes and they will sweep the Argentinians off the park and in such a fashion that it will put fear into the hearts of pretenders across the ditch.
    I think that our team has lost all belief in Cheika and every bit of dribble that comes out of his mouth (like us). They want to buy into it, after all, there is no other game in town. It’s down to wishful thinking, a sense of dread, resilience that’s paper thin – like me, really.
    It was a bit of a risk of Erasmus not picking his best players on the weekend, but his judgement proved correct. He read the situation pretty correctly. And I cannot see that Hanson will think any differently. If Hansen for example picks his best and we get hammered, then maybe, just maybe, Cheika might be sacked, and Hanson would have to be a fool to want that.

    • Got to admire your optimism.

      I watched Los Pumas defence stymie an admittedly ring rusty and, in the second half, nervous newbies ABs side. I watched a well coached, passionate AB defence shut down a side that had the ball and created opportunities.

      I’m not looking forward to this weekend. A Wallabies side that admittedly created a bit against a sub-par defence is going to meet a much stronger defence, and a Wallabies defence that looked paper thin all too often is going to meet a side that pushed the ABs to the limits. Have to see what the sides look like before I make a final call but I’m struggling to be optimistic right now.

      • laurence king

        Fantasies aside Eloise, I’m not optimistic. It could get ugly, oh what am I saying, all Wallaby games are ugly of late. I fear that the Argies will have more enthusiasm and intelligence all over the park

  • A Dingo Stole My Rugby

    I’ve long held the view that teams are often built in the image of their coach, and this team, post-RWC2015, seems to me to be very much in Cheika’s own image.

    His coaching “style”, if you can call it that, revolves almost entirely around a ‘blunt instrument’ approach, with Plan B, if it exists, being a reliance on one of the X-factor players doing something extraordinary off the cuff. Pretty much the same as his tenure at NSW.

    Cheika as a Randwick player was exactly this kind of non-cerebral, blunt instrument presence, and we know who provided the flair in those teams.

    It looked to me like he decided to take on RSA with his usual sledgehammer tactics, surely one of the dumbest things you can do against a team full of giant slabs of South African beef. Did he really expect to prevail? And as he no longer has access to the team’s former best X-factor individual, Cheika’s shortcomings were cruelly exposed by a team of RSA fill-ins.

    I also believe that everywhere he’s coached, Cheika has shown that he has a shelf-live of around 2, maybe 3 years max before he starts to lose the plot. He did very well at RWC2015 because he was a fresh voice, motivated the team well, and we got some not inconsiderable leg-ups from certain referees (not that you will hear Cheika ever admit that – referees are his mortal enemies, never his friends).

    I reckon that with the exception of a few of his well-known loyalists, Cheika probably lost the dressing room in the year after the world cup. And I don’t think they’ve listened to him since. They certainly don’t look to me to be a team playing with confidence in the coach or his plans, such as they are.

    At least now we don’t have to hear those pitiful excuses of “we can’t afford financially to sack him” or “there’s nobody else who could do the job”, propagated by his fan club in the media.

    He might want us to remember him as a misunderstood genius who never got a fair go, but to me, he will be the coach who presided over the worst era in Wallaby rugby in my memory. He has left whomever succeeds him with a horrible mess to repair. If I were a coach on the rise, I’m not sure that I would want the job just now.

    • laurence king

      I think that if Cheika was gone this afternoon, that there would be a marked improvement on the weekend. I think that everyone would find another gear.

      • Yowie

        At least the opposition would have to stop and think about what type of Wallabies game plan might be coming their way.

        • laurence king

          Whatever it was, it would have 23 Wallabies jumping out of their skin

  • The planning for the World Cup is not.
    A bunch of players thrown together last minute with many leaving Australia immediately after. We need to start the whole show over and concentrate on the stars of tomorrow if we’re to have nay hope in the future. The players are there, the talent is there. Planning for the Wallabies to win any games over the next few seasons and have any chance of doing well in a future World Cups needs to start now.

  • juswal

    Gordon can start to imagine themselves in the SS finals. Next week they have the chance to push Easts further down the ladder, then they finish against the Two Blues.

  • Max Graham

    I’ve been thinking. Most of our big issues can be solved by tweaks:
    1. LSL to either start at lock or be in the stands. He doesn’t have the wheels or engine for 6, and as he can’t run a line out, isn’t able to be a bench option. Pick a 6 that’s a 6. Samu, Valetini, Dempsey.
    2. DHP to be replaced by a younger model. Petaia or JOC
    3. Hodge….. who does this man have dodgy pics of? Inexplicable that this dude is a test player and me and all my drunken, hopeless mates aren’t. He can kick a long way? If that’s the criteria, let’s sign Tony Locket. Even as fat and old as he is, it would be a step up.
    4. A 10 that can tackle. Few options here – Foley is easily targeted at 10 and will continue to be. Hard to stop fast ball when the opposition makes 20 yards at every first phase. Toomua belts people. Hasn’t missed a tackle in this life. Also doesn’t look like a tool. The game plan seems to be run it yourself or pass to Kerevi so he can manage that.
    5. Replace the entire coaching team with literally anyone. Okay, this is a dream, but the first 4 options should be obvious to anyone with access to YouTube.

    • laurence king

      Number 5 is crucial as I think that Cheika has utterly crushed the spirit of this team.

      • Max Graham

        Not sure. I personally think the culture of Oz rugby players is woeful and has been for many years. Some of these senior blokes now who talk badly about the current generation have selective memories about how they dodged the hard stuff and undermined coaches. Think back to David Nucofora – wins the Brumbies their last title and then run out of the country by Player Power. Now he’s a miracle worker in Ireland.

        • laurence king

          Well, not a problem with what you’re saying. However, I don’t think that any players in the current side are trying to undermine Cheika, I think they’re trying, but just emotionally spent

Rugby
@NathW1997

Loved rugby since the day I could remember, got the nickname Footy to show that, I watch Matt Dunning's dropkick every night before going to bed

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