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NSW Waratahs

Tuesday’s Rugby News

Tuesday’s Rugby News

Tuesday’s Rugby News looks at the Waratahs looking deep within, Referees, Hunter Paisami making an impact and RA takes 400 games to market.


Soul Searching Tahs.

After a disastrous 0-3 start to the season with a -52 points deficit the soul searching is in full swing in Tah land. The waratahs are heading into their first bye week with plenty to think about. coach Rob Penney had sent them on their way to a short break with plenty to think about.

With games against the Lions, Chiefs and Brumbies coming up after the break the Tahs need a plan to stop the tries that are leaking through their defence at more than four a game.

“I just want them to be honest in their appraisals and their reflections,” he said. “For want of a better word, don’t bullshit each other and don’t bullshit when you’re thinking about what we need to change. If we need to move somewhere else, let’s be open and honest and not be intimidated by it.

 “If we go through all that exploration and we end up where we are now then we’ll commit, work harder and dig deeper. If there’s an alteration to be made that’s also great, but we need to explore every option to get to that point.”
The 2014 champions sit in the middle or bottom end of the table on every metric, most notably in tries (13th) carries (8th), carry metres (11th), offloads (11th) and defenders beaten (9th).
The poor attacking statistics come despite Penney’s effort to strip back the structure in the Waratahs’ game and empower players to play what they see, not what they’ve practised.  He admitted the change had created anxiety among some players.

“We’ve discussed the way forward as a group many times, down to a man, we’ve had lots of conversations about why we’re doing what we’re doing, and if the players believe in it and buy into it then you’ve got to go in boots and all,” Penney said.

North-South Refereeing Decisions

Tom Banks, Tevita Kuridrani

After the bombshell coming out of the Green and Gold Rugby’s forums that SANZAAR’s hometown referees favour the home team in almost every situation but especially if they are from South Africa there is a little good news coming out of the judiciary.

Otago Highlanders winger Patelsio Tomkinson hit on Tom Banks during their game on Saturday night has been deemed by the citing commissioner to be Reds card worthy! This, of course, was clear and obvious to everyone watching except the most rusted on Highlanders fan and the two officials in the middle. My enduring memory is of the ref stating that it was shoulder to shoulder while a slow-motion replay of Tom Banks’ cheek slamming into Tomkinson’s shoulder with clear air all around played on the big screen.

After reviewing the footage, the citing commissioner charged Tomkinson on Sunday, deeming the incident had met the red-card threshold for foul play as direct contact was made to the head.

“I thought it was a red card, it was a shoulder contact direct to the head,” McKellar said.

“It’s history now, for us the game is done and dusted. There’s no benefit moving forward but you just want to see consistency.”

In northern hemisphere rugby, the Highlanders wing Sio Tomkinson would have been sent off for his high tackle on Brumbies fullback Tom Banks.

In northern hemisphere rugby, the Reds wing Chris Feauai-Sautia would have been shown a yellow card for his first-half hit on Jaguares fullback Santiago Carreras

The problem for southern hemisphere rugby is that their competitions are officiated in one way but when they get to the Rugby World Cup they find that the northern hemisphere interpretations hold sway, because they are closer to how World Rugby sees the game.

Hunter Paisami Puts His Hand Up.

Photo Credit Brendan Hertel / QRU

Hunter Paisami isn’t exactly a household name outside parts of Queensland but his cameos in the Reds trials and first two super rugby games had me intrigued. but after the late withdrawal of Red 13 Jordan Petaia Hunter got a starting gig and after my first few minutes, my head was up and swivelling like a Meer Cat.

In the week before Super Rugby getting underway, James O’Connor spoke to foxsports.com.au about the talent coming through at the Reds.

One player that didn’t immediately jump off the page, but who O’Connor said to look out for, was 21-year-old Hunter Paisami.

With his first two touches coming off the bench in Dalby against the Waratahs, it was clear why as Paisami ripped open the opposition defence.

Against the Jaguares on Sunday, Paisami was an instant hit.

With his first carry he almost ran straight over the top of Jaguares playmaker Domingo Miotti.

And all evening he ran straight, found holes and caused the Jaguares a lot of concern with his bruising carries.

While Paisami played at outside centre, the modern way that sides attack is with a bruising, bigger ball-carrier at inside centre to get them over the gain line.

It’s early stages for Paisami, who was let go from the Rebels in 2018 after an ugly incident with a fellow teammate, but there’s a hint of Ngani Laumape and Bundee Aki about the young Reds midfielder.

Could he shift to inside centre and form a combination with Petaia, should the talented teen’s shoulder injury be not as badly injured as hoped?

He’s a bolter for the Ireland series.

RA takes 400 games to market.

Raelene Castle and Cameron Clyne

Roy Masters isn’t my go-to guy for rugby news. Let’s face it he’s no one’s go-to guy for rugby news and this article is still heavily League orientated.

I mean, how good’s Rugby League, right!

Roy reckons Rugby supporters are so rich they’ll sign up for anything even stuff they won’t watch like schoolboys rugby while League supporters only watch their team. You’re right… It’s complete BS!

But in amongst the bias is a few tidbits of info I wasn’t aware of. Like the number of games per year, Rugby Australia has cobbled together for this TV broadcast deal. 400 games a year or about eight games a week is a decent bit of content in anyones books.

And the BIL tour of South Africa in 2021 and Australia in 2025 look to be part of the deal.

Masters smug superiority comes through in every paragraph.

Fox, which assumed the rights to the Lions tour had not been signed off, have made no new bid for rights after RA rejected an offer late last year to roll over the existing contract.

 RA insists on putting one Super Rugby match on free-to-air television in order to expand viewership, determined to expose the game to more Australians than the one third of the nation with Foxtel subscriptions.

However, Fox demands exclusivity, arguing that some weekends there will only be one of the four Australian franchises playing at home and it may be Rebels versus Stormers, meaning that FTA gets the only interesting game, with Fox screening the eye glazing non-action.

  • AllyOz

    Nine media today carrying reports that the new RA Chairman could be former Sydney Uni Rugby President and experienced professional board member, David Mortimer. Also up for consideration, a Westpac banker (perfect fodder for a spoonerism), the chairman of v8 supercars, Rod McGeoch from the Sydney Olympics. Mike Baird and Kerry Chikarovski (no politicians please from any party after watching Peter Beattie and others….they are just too good at politics). Nick Farr-Jones and Geoff Stooke also get a mention. It might be good to get Stooke from WA back on the national board. I don’t have strong opinions about the others as I don’t really know how any of them would do but, as mentioned, I don’t see much value in politicians in those roles.

    • Keith Butler

      The spoonerism wins by a country mile.

      • Timbo

        nothing to do with rugby but I once worked for a big internet company taking phone calls and once spoonerised ‘Up Front Costs’. I didn’t make the sale.

        • Yowie

          Lucky you weren’t also selling their “Fact Hunt” search engine…

        • juswal

          Shouldn’t you Year 8s be in class?

        • Are they cones Sir?

          *snicker*

        • Damo

          And Karmichael Hunt could never have been hired for that job.

        • Damo

          And Karmichael Hunt could never have been hired for that job.

        • laurence king

          Gives me chills just thinking about it

    • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

      Stooke would be a good Chairman to restore the rift between WA and the rest of Australia rugby. However while Clyne has a say in the next Chairman that is very unlikely to realise. Expect a Chairman closely linked to the Sydney University club.

      • Who?

        And the incoming chair has to be an existing board member, to my understanding…

        • AllyOz

          I thought this was arguing that the David Mortimer was the front runner to become Chair…and he would be new…but I may have misunderstood it. I think Hannes will probably be right if that is the case and I don’t know if that is necessarily a good thing.

        • juswal

          The prospective new chair has to get onto the board before the board can elect him/her as chair, but could be a new appointee. It would just be a matter of the board electing an acting chair to preside while the new members are appointed and office-holder elections are scheduled.

        • Who?

          But that’s pretty unlikely – because the nominations committee is run by the existing board, and they’re not going to want to miss their chance at power. Why would they give it to an ‘outsider’..?

        • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

          He will be an insider by then. Clyne also came in as new board member and Chairman – it was part of the deal.

      • laurence king

        It would be good to see the man get on the board

  • KwAussie Rugby Lover

    Thanks Sully,
    The Tahs seem to be having to think to a new way of playing that they have never done before and it seems that’s why Beale and some of the other senior players are struggling with it. With the “Player Power” demonstrated so high at times it’s going to be interesting to see how this develops. I think Penney may need to let some blood flow to get things right.
    I’m with you on the inconsistent refereeing, I do get that referees are told to let the game flow and that if something doesn’t have a material impact on the game then let it go which is why we see so much inconsistency, but I think the high tackle needs to be a lot more consistent. I do get that it’s hard on a player in the heat of the moment, especially if the ball carrier drops, but they have to learn to deal with it and that’ll only happen if there’s consistent ruling on the field.
    I like Paisami but I still think JOC would be better at 12 and then he can work with Petaia for the 13 position and as a back up for 12. It’s great to see players like him coming through though.

    • Wonky Donkey

      When a coach says they are taking away the structures and coaching to play heads up rugby, how much are they stripping back?

      I havent coached rugby but I do know that even when you play instictively you still have decision processes and need other players to have a sense of expectation.
      Otherwise you would get rambos playing on a different wavelength

      I imagine the tahs changing to play whats in front of them will take more than a season. Learning to play instinctively will take time aaages.

      • Teaching “elite” players to play instinctive heads up rugby?

        Seems correct pathways are important after all…
        Makes you wonder where our heads have been the last few years

    • Anonymous bloke

      The Brumbies went through this after McKellar took over and it took a while for them to get better at it. And even now when they are more able to play what’s in front of them, as seen on the weekend as soon as it became a bit slippery they reverted to the territory + maul game.

      • Wonky Donkey

        Hey at least they have something to revert back to. Haha

  • KwAussie Rugby Lover

    Team, A bit off the table but for any veterans on this site in Brisbane, you can ring Triple M on 133353 and secure your free ticket to Sat game V Sunwolves.
    Go for it

    • Hoss

      I survived the ‘Folau Wars’ – does that qualify me ??

      • Yowie

        As the saying goes
        “War is hell….and that’s why this battlefield is chockers with drunks, homosexuals, adulterers, liars, fornicators, thieves, atheists and idolaters”

  • Hoss

    Another year, more ‘soul searching’ more sports waffle – ‘heads-up rugby’. Its all code for ‘4 more years boys, 4 more years’

    I don’t blame the new coach one iota. In fact i reckon the results are probably a blessing for him – cause it gives him
    carte blanche to make wholesale, long term changes. Now is the perfect time to cut and the old builders adage rings true – ‘measure twice, cut once’. Cut deeply, cut accurately and play the longer game. This Tah’s fan can accept a coach laying out a plan for the future (ala the Padre and the young Reds team he inherited / built). Its time to identify the core of your team and stick with them, let them learn their craft, positional play and develop the physical and mental attributes required to deliver top class performances week in, week out.

    For example is Holloway a 4,5,6, or 8 – do you reckon he knows ? Is Sour Mash a 6 or an 8. Is HJH a 1 or a 3 ? Where does Tizzano fit / how do you get him more game time with Lee Magors a fixture in 7 ?? How do you get Mason & Harrison time to grow as 10’s ? Can someone see if the Bovine Sprinkler left behind notes for The Commissioner on ‘how to pass’ because so far this season…………..

    And that brings me to Gilbert. I have enjoyed his skill over the years. The times he has got it right and been on-song – wow, its been poetry in motion. But…………just how many rank / shite / disgraceful pooch-rooting shows do i have to watch in between. I get that for every diamond found you need to sift tonnes of crap to in between, but its been a while since Gilbert’s produced a diamond of any substance. To that end – i’d cut him free, completely free. You cant keep trying to rebuild a house on rotten foundations, sooner or later you put in new foundations and thats were the 2020 Tah’s sit today. Rebuild again and need to do it again at seasons end – or take the Hoss approach, rip the band-aid off fast and get left with a little sting, not a festering wound. As Walt Disny said ‘i’d rather limp without you, then limp with you’.

    There’s a new generation of talent coming through, ‘The Funky Bunch’ looks exciting, Harrison has skill and its easy to forget Sour Mash, The Ranga and Holloway (to name a few) are all still young men and have learning to do. But now is the time for decisive, tough and uncompromising leadership from Pennie – the type The Padre has delivered in spades at the Banana Republic and look who’s laughing now. Personally i would support such a vision and plan, what i cant accept is more of the first three rounds and the dilution of my fondness for the sky-blue jersey.

    • Mortahs Incoming – custardtaht

      Yep, the Reds with the same amount of wins as the Tahs, who are in the start of the 3rd year of their rebuild and look no more likely to make the finals this year, than they have the previous 2 years.

      I can imagine the banter in the Reds locker room…..Hahahahaha the Tahs are shit, we have 2 bonus points.

      • Hoss

        I try not to let facts impede on my pieces.

    • Reds Revival

      I think you have hit the proverbial nail on the head. Penney has a window of grace to put in his plan. As Ben Darwin said, very few coaches sell a long term plan to their board. They sell the sizzle of fast turnaround and quick results, but I think that everyone realises that’s not going to happen for the Tahs. Now is the time to start the rebuild towards next WC, and with the Reds going to be on song by then, we should be a much stronger rugby nation in 4 years time (well, I hope that we are anyway).

    • Ads

      Agree with the sentiment mate but not sure the reds are showing the results yet.

      • Hoss

        Et tu ads ? (see Custard Taht below)

        I would rather be where the Reds are in their journey than where the Tah’s are. At least the reds have looked into the darkness and are coming out the other side, the Tah’s are truly ignorant to just how bad they are.

        • Yowie

          the Tah’s are truly ignorant to just how bad they are

          I’m sure that the comments section can assist with correcting this over the season.

        • laurence king

          I think that our recently departed national coach suggested last year that criticism from various fan sites was a major reason for the Wallabies poor form.

        • Hoss

          Yep. 100% it was not the selections, tactics, game plan or myopia from the coach. Nope, 100% the fans.

          So to all the rugby fans I’d like to apologise for all the missed tackles, poor kicks, lack of skill, coherence or ability i displayed since 2015.

          The problem for Mr Segall was that much of his tenure he had 100% control – selections, staff, tactics, fitness the lot – i wonder were he believes 100% of the blame from that period should land……….

        • Yowie

          I can’t wait to read the autobiography. The chapter headings will just be a list of people (individually or by category) who have done the wrong thing by him or held him back from success. “Referees” will be a long spiteful chapter.

        • Hoss

          It’ll go straight to musical ‘Raelene & me’

        • Yowie

          Come on, Raelene
          Oh, you know what I mean.
          Can’t send players, Wales means everything
          You in that dress, my words I confess
          Verge on dirty
          Ah, come on, Raelene

        • Yowie

          …joined in a bit of a medley with Joy Division:-

          When losses bite hard
          And ambitions are low
          And resentment rides high
          But no relationship with the CEO
          (and not much with the chairman)
          And we’re changing our ways
          Taking different roads

          Turinui will tear us apart again
          Morgan Turinui will tear us apart again

        • Who?

          The chapters on doors and walls will be good value too. Or will they be called “Coach’s boxes” and “Change rooms”..?

        • Yowie

          “I reject structure on and off the field”

        • Yowie

          P “Tactics session today Coach?”
          MC “Yeah Nah gather round and let’s have a look at what fans are saying in the GAGR news comments section today…Oh look, Hoss has made up a mean nickname for some of yous, you-know-what-I-mean”

        • KwAussie Rugby Lover

          You’re a friggen legend mate

        • Patrick

          If he needs a new stick to shove up there, I’m happy to help out.
          If I told my boss that criticism was why my results were shit he’d let me know what he thought and then some.

        • Ads

          Hahaha, yeah I agree they are further down the track than us. Their young forwards are paying dividends. Thorn to me is still questionable re his failure around the backs and strategy/game tactics. He’s a good forwards coach and is instilling the right team-first culture.

        • Hoss

          Fair call and results are results (both 0 from 3). But i feels it in my water these young bucks at the Reds are a team on the rise and a team of real substance. A refs call here, a bounce there and they finish the road trip from hell on 10 points instead of 2 points and sitting pretty for a run of home games.

          The Reds will sting from the games dropped, they really should / could have won all three – bar their own errors / immaturity (maybe youthful exuberance / game naivety perhaps) – but they were in it to the tonsils, where as my Tah’s…..-52 points differential and conceded 14 tries so far……….There’s legitimate reasons the Tah’s are on the nose. Gibson, Hore, recruitment, retirements, transfers – all genuine reasons – all issues EVERY SR side faces so many of these obstacles surely would be ‘war gamed’ and succession / contingency plans developed. I mean for FFS, i am a few sangas short of a picnic lunch and i still prepare for what-if’s so that WHEN they happen i am semi-prepared and any impact is minimised. And it’s not all Beale’s fault, I have been a fan and i dont have a personal issue with him as such, only that you are better getting out a year early than a year late and that’s where i see his career – a years passed the ‘use by’ date and that’s where i call for leadership. If he was a Brian or a G Smith, Larkham , Eales type who could benefit the team from his aura and wisdom and teachings so-be-it. IMO i dont get the feel he is that type of person.

        • Ads

          Agree with all that. For the Tah’s now is the time to ring the changes. There’s nothing to lose. Sayonara Beale. I wasn’t trying to have a go at the Reds. They are in a good place relatively. It has taken 3 years though to kinda/nearly get there. Maybe that’s how long proper change takes.

        • Hoss

          The only constant in life is change and yet the Tah’s…….

        • Don’t forget taxes

    • laurence king

      For all the criticism regarding Penney’s appointment, I think that he is the right man for the job. It will be interesting to see if he is prepared to drop Gilbert the crab. If he does, it will certainly send out a message. Thorn was prepared to cut better players to create a different culture, I’d hope Penney is made of the same stuff.

      • Charcoal

        It’s a shame that he has been lumbered with some of the support coaching staff carried over from the previous coaching regime. In particular, Chris Whittaker as attack coach. As great a player as he was in his day, he is a shit coach, which is evidenced by his abysmal record as coach of the Sydney NRC team which finished bottom of the ladder. But then again, he’s another Randwick stalwart, so he’s not going anywhere.

        • Huw Tindall

          Whittaker was literally asked like the week before NRC to be the coach so not hanging that on him but his record without Folau and Naiyaravoro is shite so I’m definitely not sold on him as an assistant but not ready to cut him loose yet.

    • Keith Butler

      Crikey Hossman this one sounds like it came from the heart but you are dead right. It has to be a case of out with the old and in with the new and be buggered if you don’t feature in the finals for a season or two. It’s about building for the future. I’d like to think that the Rebs we’re heading in that direction but they seemed to be looking for the instant fix in recent seasons. Nice to see some youngsters coming through in last Saturday’s game as replacements. They sneaked the game for us.

      • Hoss

        I give credit to your 9 & 10 and Matt Philips was huge. I gave Two-cows some stick in the game before this and he controlled the game beautifully, played to the conditions and was very good. How good ? Hard to tell with the Tah’s being a lighter shade of poor, but good none-the-less (maybe the UK-type conditions helped, given his recent experiences there) Louwrens similar – very good, but magnified by some strange D by the Tah’s. Philip didnt get the kudos i think he deserved (and my MOTM). Swinton came and snarled and spat and menaced and genuinely did not much. The kid has hands like flippers and couldnt catch Coronavirus whilst eating slow-roasted Monkey Nuts with a side of Bat in Wuhan provence. Matty P calmly showed him how it was done. No theatrics or BS, just controlled and precise and got the cookies.

        • Keith Butler

          Nothing quite like a wet, cold Saturday afternoon for running rugby in Leicester, believe me.

    • GeorgiaSatellite

      I listened to Henny Penney on the Rugby Ruckus podcast a few days ago and he seemed to be pretty sanguine and realistic about all that. Omelette/egg-breaking and all. I agree, an opportunity to rebuild (or just build?) – but can he rely on the board’s backing to make the required personnel changes, a la The Padre? Time will tell.

    • KwAussie Rugby Lover

      Mate I think you’re 100% correct. I just cant see the misogynist dickheads running the show there allowing that to happen. They still believe the past is the future and if only we were allowed to pick Wallabies from Shute Shield we’d be back at No 1 in the world

    • Patrick

      I just wish they’d dumped Beale (and Foley) a year ago, but otherwise agree entirely.

  • idiot savant

    No no no Sully please! The reds have played distributors with quick hands at 10 and 12 the last 2 weeks and the outside backs have had more space and time than they’ve had for years. They scored 4 tries in Buenos Aries. Compare that to the last 2 years where the Reds played give it to Kerevi the big crash ball Centre. Two years where the outside backs had little space and the reds averaged 2 tries a game. Let’s never go back there. The All blacks could have chosen Laumape. They chose Crotty. Big arsed 12s don’t deliver enough tries for outside backs. SBW was a distributor. He just happened to also be able to crash ball. Play jordie on the wing when he comes back but for gods sake leave distributors in the inside channels.

  • Reds Revival

    Not sure if I will be stealing the thunder of tomorrow’s rugby news, but Brett McKay has written a really interesting article (on a much lesser site), outlining that RA are looking at up to 17 different formats for club/NRC/SR competitions going forward. It would appear that RA still values the NRC, but wants to find a way to tap into the club competition. His preferred option was a club elimination cup scenario (much like the FA Cup in soccer). This allowed the clubs to run their normal competition, while also allowing NRC to continue as a launch pad for the SR sides.
    I’m liking some of the ideas that are coming out of RA at the moment. At least The Pirate is trying to bring everyone back into the same tent. As someone said the other day, once everyone is on the same page again, it won’t take rugby very long to heal itself. Fingers crossed. I would love nothing more to see the great game I love become successful and popular again!!

    • Huw Tindall

      The more and more Ralene gets into her tenure the more and more I’m liking her. When is the last time there was unanimous agreement in Australian rugby about anything and she did it with TV rights of all complex things. Pathways is another win for her locking down the schools to u20s path and players with regular comps and training.

  • Charcoal

    It’s typical of Roy Masters isn’t it, when he gleefully grasps every opportunity to put the boot into Rugby, when at the same time he glosses over the negative aspects of his beloved Rugby League. I’ve never heard him say anything positive about Rugby yet. He’s the last sports journalist I would rely upon to give an objective analysis of anything to do with Rugby. He really should be working for the Daily Terror.

NSW Waratahs
@Only1Sully

Just another Rugby tragic. Shane "Sully" Sullivan has been in man love with the game since high school in the 70's. He inflicts his passion on family and anyone who will listen. He can't guarantee unbiased opinion but he can tell you the Reds are Awesome! To read non-rugby content head to http://www.onesully.com.au

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