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Morne Steyn: When is enough enough?

Morne Steyn's boot has led to plenty of victories for the Springboks, but is it time he got the boot himself? (AAP Image/Tony McDonough)
Roar Rookie
26th August, 2016
22
2002 Reads

How is it possible Springbok coach Allister Coetzee could suit up Morne Steyn on the bench this week?

His form was so bad during the 2014 Championship season that he was benched for Handre Pollard and was not even selected for the 2015 campaign.

But let me get to the point. Even before Steyn’s poor performance of 2014, all of us knew he was a one-dimensional player. It was all about his boot. But despite his accuracy most of the time, the net result was still a loss.

This was because, as most of us frustratingly know, tries win matches and tries come when the ball is distributed – not kicked.

That means a good, not great, flyhalf will carry the ball and subsequently distribute it, or make a break with it because he has a good read of the playing field.

So how’s this stat on Morne Steyn? During the 2013 Championship campaign he played 470 minutes – in other words he was on the pitch for every one of the six Test matches the entire time – except for ten minutes.

During that time, he made 109 metres and carried 20 times. That same season, Aaron Cruden was on the pitch for just 88 minutes.

During that time he made 88 metres and carried 23 times.

This is absolutely mind-blowing because taken at its most basic level, Cruden played just eight minutes more than a single match and yet he carried the ball more than Steyn who played around 435 per cent more of the time over the same period.

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Cruden had seven offloads during this time compared to zero for Steyn.

And this was the year that Cruden was just coming into his own – sharing time with Carter and Beauden Barrett at the FH position. Why then is Coetzee putting Steyn in a position to play another Test match?