Will the Waratahs Fan Forum deliver another roasting?

Bay35Pablo Roar Guru

By Bay35Pablo, Bay35Pablo is a Roar Guru

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79 Have your say

    The Waratahs have to be applauded for sticking with their fan forums, the next of which is to be held on the evening of 24 November 2011.

    The ‘Tahs, by all accounts, copped an absolute roasting at their first forum, including from a former (but apparently unrecognised) Wallaby in the form of Terry Curley.

    I expect I won’t be able to get there, again, but I find that the fire in my belly that I had earlier in the year has abated.

    I am willing to see how the new coach Michael Foley, and especially backs coach Alan Gaffney (given the complaints about the backs play), will go before firing up the torch and pulling out the pitchfork again. Having said that, they are just resting – ready to go again if required.

    Some suggested questions that spring to mind include:

    – Why do we have to rely on importing a half back from South Africa? With no disprespect to Sarel Pretorius, where was our plan to groom a replacement for Luke Burgess if and when he went.

    If Brendan McKibbin was good enough to suddenly drop into the semi, what’s wrong with him? What went wrong with the previous plan? Is there a plan to use having Pretorius to groom some talent, so we aren’t in the position of (for the first in a long time I can remember) we don’t have a NSW half back that isn’t in the running for the Wallabies?

    – What happened with Ben Mowen? Why and how did we let go of this (apparent) talent? Are we missing something? Noting that Foley was part of the coaching team at the time, how was a major recruiting decision like letting him go made when the new coach hadn’t been decided?

    – Who’s captain for next year? With no disrespect to Dean Mumm, he seems a No 6, not a lock. Kane Douglas is 202cm and 122kg, Sitaleki Timani 203cm and 120kg, Dan Vickerman 203cm and 120kg. Dean is 198cm and 113kg.

    With Rocky Elsom the Wallabies No 6 (last time I checked), if Dean is captain as seems to be the suggestion, where’s he playing?

    – How does the team plan on playing a more running game, or to the extent they play a kicking game (noting the Reds did it when needed and were still “exciting”) play a more skilled and smarter one than last year? What were the problems identified in this regard from 2011, and what is being done to fix them?

    – The team seemed to lack some structure in the try scoring department last season, with a reliance more on flair and opportunism than building tries. Does Alan have a play book the boys are working on in secret to bamboozle the opposition?

    – While noting our forwards are one of our strengths, are the forwards going to do more running onto the balls the halfback pops from the ruck, rather than standing there so many times with a startled look on their face and then getting monstered behind the gain line?

    I’m interested to see what fellow Roarers think about other questions that might be put.

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    The Crowd Says (79)

    • Roar Guru

      November 5th 2011 @ 7:23am
      jeznez said | November 5th 2011 @ 7:23am | ! Report

      Sheek, that last one and the Mumm question are the key ones for me

      I don’t see how Mumm can be captain as he doesn’t warrant a starting spot.

      For the piggies ball running, the dumb play spread to the Wallabies who used it to the expected effect in losing the semi of the RWC – if that creeps into the Tahs game again we won’t just need pitchforks and flaming torches at the next forum, we should all walk in with chainsaws and dismantle the building.

      To add a couple of question given Robinson, Polota-Nau, Vickerman, Palu are some of the biggest names in our forward pack and have all missed significant time through injury – what is being done to ensure they don’t break down again? With the loss of Mowen who is Palu’s back up?

    • November 5th 2011 @ 7:32am
      Sportfreak said | November 5th 2011 @ 7:32am | ! Report

      It will be interesting. This year’s draw will most certainly result in much larger crowds- will this paper over the cracks. Sponsorships are up again on last year and I think the tahs crowd needs to do their part and properly support their team rather than sit there and expect to be entertained. Any idea where the regional trials will be held?

    • November 5th 2011 @ 8:57am
      Big Steve said | November 5th 2011 @ 8:57am | ! Report

      The dean mumm question is the st important for me. Going through the team he wouldnt even bo on my bench. Timani and vickerman starting at lock. back row alcock, elsom, palu. with dennis and douglas on the bench. although with dennis bieng able to olay lock the might have dennis and mcaffery/perret on the bench. The captain choice will have major impacts on the attitude off the playets and supporters this year.

      i also thibk mcaffery will get some time at 8 this year. same as fitzpatrick at hooker.
      Forum will be interesting as i dobt think we really saw as much change as we wanted after the last one. the choice of foleyy doesnt make me think thrte will be a major ovrrhall of the game plan this year.

      • Roar Guru

        November 5th 2011 @ 12:18pm
        jeznez said | November 5th 2011 @ 12:18pm | ! Report

        agree mate, but Timani will only return mid season after his Japan stint and Vickerman may miss the start of the season given he is having a shoulder reconstruction. Palu and Elsom have both had significant injuries Mumm will see playing time this year. I don’t want him as captain though as later in the season if the Tah pack gets to full strength then I see it as you do and wouldn’t have him in the 22

      • November 7th 2011 @ 10:38am
        Jimmy James said | November 7th 2011 @ 10:38am | ! Report

        McCaffrey has gone to the force.

        Fitzpatrick needs to improve his scrummaging before get more minutes on the field. I was more then impressed with how Ulugia improved over the season.

        • November 8th 2011 @ 11:21am
          Bakkies said | November 8th 2011 @ 11:21am | ! Report

          Ulugia was still poor. He was a solid player at the Brumbies but was squeezed out because of reduced squads and Edmonds and Moore in the squad.

    • November 5th 2011 @ 9:25am
      greg said | November 5th 2011 @ 9:25am | ! Report

      I think the biggest problem with the waratahs is their fans. You could give every fan fifty dollars and a very vocal section of the supposed fan base would complain

      • November 5th 2011 @ 12:58pm
        Bakkies said | November 5th 2011 @ 12:58pm | ! Report

        It’s a problem in Australian rugby not just the Tahs

      • November 5th 2011 @ 4:16pm
        drop kick said | November 5th 2011 @ 4:16pm | ! Report

        well said Greg!

    • November 5th 2011 @ 10:19am
      Working Class Rugger said | November 5th 2011 @ 10:19am | ! Report


      Some very good observations in your line of questioning. Hopefully someone that will be attending the forum will read this and jot these questions down. You highlight a few issues that in my opinion could determine the Tahs ability to compete in the top echelon of Super Rugby next year. The first being the issue of the Captaincy. Anyone but Mumm. However, it seems inevitable. The others as you rightly identified is this habit a receiving the ball from a stationary stance and have to battle for every each. I was taught to always hit the line at pace. Why receiving the ball standing still is beyond me. They’ll find it easier to make metres hitting it at speed.

    • November 5th 2011 @ 12:11pm
      Crazy Horse said | November 5th 2011 @ 12:11pm | ! Report

      As a Force fan I really hope that nepotism sees Dean Mumm as Waratahs captain. He was hopeless when Waugh was injured last year.

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