Johns set to help Wallabies at the RWC

Zac Zavos Editor

By Zac Zavos, Zac Zavos is a Roar Editor

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    Zac Zavos writes: It’s interesting to read that Rugby League great Andrew Johns has been approached to work with the Wallabies during the Rugby World Cup. How much impact do you think his presence will have on the team?

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    The Crowd Says (4)

    • Columnist

      July 27th 2007 @ 10:09am
      Spiro Zavos said | July 27th 2007 @ 10:09am | ! Report

      I was at the Bledisloe Cup test at Eden Park and I was struck by the way Stephen Larkham did his kickoffs. They were sometimes along the ground and at others times deliberately miskicked so that the ball was difficult to regather by the All Blacks. Larkham’s kicks in general play were similarly sort of miskicked to make them difficult to handle.
      My guess is that all this is deliberate and that Andrew Johns is behind this development of the awkward kicks style.
      I think it was before the last Rugby World Cup that England announced it had worked out how to kick a bomb that tumbled erratically as it fell to the ground. Perhaps this is the next Larkham/Johns kick trick

    • July 27th 2007 @ 10:45am
      Longy said | July 27th 2007 @ 10:45am | ! Report

      Bloody hell you’d think we’d never had any kickers in rugby. What about Campo, Mat Burke, Michael Lynah, Roger Gould etc etc etc?????????????????? Jeez what about Grant bloody Fox. If ever there was a great RUGBY kicker how happy were we when he retired.

    • July 27th 2007 @ 12:28pm
      Ben said | July 27th 2007 @ 12:28pm | ! Report

      Australia has some good long kickers. Latham has quite a hefty punt which is worth its weight in gold inside the 22. Giteau can get a reasonable amount of distance as well. Larkham has often struggled with accuracy when he tries to kick long. We haven’t had a good short kicking game (chips, grubbers etc) for some time. Larkham has a short kicking game but rarely seems to have done much with it. Maybe Johns can develop this aspect and breathe further life (just enough for one more tournament) in Larkham’s game.

      Wobbling, skating kicks that are hard to pick up and pitched not for the chasers to run on to but for the back three to have trouble gathering and allow the chasers to swarm the back three may be an ideal tactic to force a strong defence (eg NZ) to backpedal constantly. Defence ofetn counts in tournaments and giving the opposition poor quality ball right between the defensive line and back three and with a swarming chase and defence may be Australia’s best chance.

      The other kicking tactic is the drop goal and my secret suspicion is that Dunning is the team for this purpose. Now that Giteau has shown he can pop over a three pointer in general play, Dunning’s position may be at risk!

    • July 29th 2007 @ 12:36pm
      Bob McGregor said | July 29th 2007 @ 12:36pm | ! Report

      I applaud it and said so earlier when Tiquiri was fined and suggested it should be part of a fund to employ Johns for RWC2007. Our tactical kicking at Wallaby level was hopeless but with Johns on the scene it could have paid off early in first half of the Melbourne Bledisloe when Mortlock should have been awarded a penalty try when elbow charged by
      winger coming across in cover support near the line and ref called a knock on right on the line.

      This sliding kick through was fantastic and a few more judicious ones where APPROPRIATE would take the sameness out of our attack and put us more on the front foot. Under Eddie Joned our attack became so predictable and is main reason he’s not here anymore.

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