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Chivas

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Joined October 2012

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I am inclined to agree Ken. Where it starts is not so important as long as it does. The most cost effective approach as Brett points out is possibly building watered down SR teams.

However, I agree that linking the competition back to clubs is important. If the pathway from club to NRC to SR / international is not clear and visible to all stake-holders (fans and players most importantly), I think you don’t just lose fans and fail to bring administrators along (who at times seem more intent on fulfilling their own personal agendas rather than what is in the best interest of the game) who are rusted on to club rugby but don’t feel the same love for the hybridised teams (which SR have become), but you also lose the continuity which allows fans of one competition to transition to other levels.

I personally think that club rugby being held as the zenith of rugby in Australia by rusted on supporters has been problematic and has in many ways held them back, but is not insurmountable as recent commentary suggests. I also think it will become less relevant as the players and fan base continues to evolve.

The question is will it take another decade in the wilderness talking and arguing about it before a decent structure eventually evolves?

The coaches want it, and now it seems RA’s appetite for the NRC might be growing

As good as he was under th high ball and running with ball in hand of which no-one can deny, his defensive reads and kicking for a fb were woeful.

Israel Folau is reportedly on the verge of an NRL comeback

Robertson has had a pretty cushy ride with the Crusaders and hasn’t yet hit Robbies achievements with the side, yet everyone hates Robbie and loves Robertson.

What else has he achieved won a title with the U20’s and got smacked about in a couple of others.

Now I like Robertson but compared to Schmidt, Gats and Rennie he is still pretty green.

Even Jamie has done some pretty amazing things with weaker sides which for me at least counts for quite a bit more than Robertson’s achievements, yet you don’t think these guys are better suited… Based on that sort of comment I am not sure anyone or anything could convince you of anyone else credentials.

Pumas beat All Blacks for the first time

I still want to see if Pari Pari and Akira can step up to the plate. There’s a couple of capable players right there.

Pumas beat All Blacks for the first time

Me personally I just don’t rate Foster. He was an average player, a less than average Waikato coach, an absolute and complete flop when it came to coaching the chiefs. The man is a poor leader and has no vision. He is simply inert.

Sam Cane I rate and I don’t know of too many who think he is not up to captaining. As for those pushing for Razor, that is mostly vocal one-eyed mainlanders or wannabe Canterbury fans.

Pumas beat All Blacks for the first time

Calm down Suzy. One persons comments shouldn’t weigh that heavily on you and if you think the rugby tradition between NZ and SA nd any respect or not between the two nations is based on what Jacko says, you yourself are pretty deluded. I don’t believe that any more than I think Jacko is the voice of NZ or you the voice of SA.

On the other hand, I hope your mum remains safe and well. So far I have been lucky and know of no-one who has gone down with it, and I pray to god every night that that remains so. Stay safe Suzy and don’t let silly comments wind you up so. We have all been through too much in our lives to let trivial comments by nobodies unsettle us.

Pumas beat All Blacks for the first time

U really r a clueless fk, because of course that is what I said. Not wasting my time further with someone as wilfully ignorant as u. Thx.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

I rate Jordie as a significantly more skilled player than Hodge. But yeah like Jordie he will struggle against specialists in their positions. But I think Jordie has time, ability and youth to develop into more of a specialist role like centre, whereas I think Hodge doesn’t have the same options… which is frustrating because he is a strong physical player.

But in saying that I think Hodge is currently the more physical of the two and I rate that about him.

So after those rambling thoughts, yeah they are both the same in that sense. Hopefully they will both be squad members for a long while to come and they develop their games further.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

Yeah I don’t think ii is a reason much less the biggest reason. Thought you might be able to understand that, but wasn’t really holding out much hope tbh.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

Another name misspelled Petaia … apologies. An outstanding talent who just gets better.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

Sorry, right, mixing up my winger and the seemingly forgotten man in the centres. Yes Koroibete had another pretty solid night at the office. Thx RT.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

I was glad to see Akira get a run, shame it was cut short. Want to see Pari Pari get his run sometime soon too. I think players like Pari Pari and Retallick have the ability to lift the physicality and intensity and that is not to take anything away from Tupolutou.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

I agree, he is best as a rover where he can spot where gaps are and exploit them and from FB he is able to do that. He tends to superior at breaking the line more than setting up his outsides.

The only thing is when he has a quiet game by his standards, people talk of him at first five because it gets the ball into his hands more often.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

My thought too pm. Mo’unga will be the first five going forward and it seems a waste to have BB on the wing so Jordie can play fb. If you have BB at fullback, there are better options for wing than Jordie. So unless Jordie can recreate himself in the centres or improve his speed I see him as a huge talent who can’t nail down a position. He has to be part of the squad and I imagine will remain so, but in clutch games I see him more as a player who can add a different dimension, depending on what is going on… like he has all the skills.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

I thought the Wallabies contained Laumape really well. I was thinking Goodhue is the better runner at the moment and made more of an impression against the Wallaby defence, but then it is hard to compare as both sides changed their personnel. I thought Parisima had another strong game. He is a handful.
As for BB vs Mo’unga. I personally think Mo’unga is the more complete and natural first five. BB has to be in the side, but then where do you fit Jordie. I thought while Reiko had little chance of stopping the first Wallaby try, he didn’t force the runner to step him or force him to pass by not targeting the player with the ball.
I was disappointed for Akira as he is a genuine talent if he can find himself in this side. At one point the commentators were bemoaning the fact the Wallabies had committed a lot more to the ruck which was coming back the ABs way than the ABs had committed, but that was down to the fact Akira had charged it forward and that is what it took to drag him down. But in saying that the Wallaby defence across the park was solid.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

Makes for nice rhetorical conversation, where simple ideas rule the day, but in reality I’m fairly certain one tough tackling forward isn’t the reason why the ABs were unable to crack the Wallabies.

The Polynesian teams have plenty of tough tackling players, but they don’t win so many against the top teams.

I thought the Wallabies totally deserved the win as I thought their defence was much more cohesive. The big tackles by Swinton while looking good for the tv, didn’t impact the AB momentum or result in turn-overs and I doubt would feature much in any post match analysis by the AB’s. If we stalking of effective tackling, Kuridrani had a bigger impact on the game as he was able to completely contain his opposite (not an easy thing to do against Reece) and genuinely apply defensive pressure through his chasing and accuracy.

Good on Swinton for not missing the tackles in front of him and for hitting them backwards, but of more importance was he was complemented by his other loosies who together made a respectable and well balanced unit. I think that was a far bigger deciding factor.

Five talking points from Bledisloe 4

Huge contrast between every one of the ABs and their opposites.

Some seriously good signs from the new All Blacks coaching team

I also think Parkinson will be in the mix at some point, so lock is less of a worry. The loose forward combination is ok, but the props are pretty lightweight. I like how Goodhue and ALB are developing, but I still rate a fit Crotty.

Some seriously good signs from the new All Blacks coaching team

I’m not sure that pink is representative of how the Wallabies played. They weren’t spineless, they were a bit brainless and didn’t show sufficient respect for the ball, the opposition or the conditions and lacked patience.

Also while that may not be the greatest AB side, they had enough players who had standout games to put the young wallabies outfit to the sword, including Whitelock, Tuipulotu, Cane, Coles, Taylor, Sotutu, Mo’unga, Goodhue, Clarke, Barrett’s. That is a massive amount of experience (especially when compared to their opposition) and when these guys click I would argue they are a beast of a side to contain. Add to that ALB, Ioane, Frizell, the props and Aaron Smith and Laumape all played decent… so ignoring the rhetoric and looking at the game, I come away with a slightly different read.

Groundhog day for the Wallabies: Four talking points from Bledisloe 3

I thought Sam and Patrick had big games. How long before Pari Pari and Brodie are ready to run?

Groundhog day for the Wallabies: Four talking points from Bledisloe 3

Well that was a slaughter. Wallabies can’t take much from that, but in the same breath they can’t play worse and hopefully for their sake they wont run into those conditions again for a bit.

While they were beaten across the park tonight it was only a few weeks ago they were competing well. I think it will take a while for this team to build into a decent side, but they are young enough and good enough to be a different side with a couple of years under their belt.

Too much dropped pill for me tonight to be able to get any sort of read on the Wallabies from this game. They are better than that.

But still I think they are pretty light on in the centres and the forwards were soundly beaten. In slippery conditions that is game over right there.

Mo'unga magic leads All Blacks past woeful Wallabies in record blowout

No personal responsibility… it’s someone else’s fault they behave this way. Sounds about right.

Reds trio refuse to take pay cut, stood down by QRU

The interesting thing is and the reason I never played in the backs apart from lack of speed. skill and size was the complexity of the moves put me off. I played on the wing a few times and could hold my own, not with pace, but I could step inside, outside and always beat my man. But while I could run a switch with an inside runner to confuse the opposition easily enough, what you are showing is far more variety and bodies in motion, which is why in my mind these things need to be practiced a lot as a backline.

In the AB’s we had so much experience in the backs; Smith, Carter, Barrett, Nonu, Crotty, Smith and the young players like ALB, Mounga, Jordie are all thinkers too gives a luxury not many teams have. and that is before we even talk forwards. As you mention the 2003 English side was similarly full of smart operators.

That being said I look at players like Itoje as the new breed and they are also freaks who best operate within a framework not too a formula; but in saying that depending on who your backs are and who you have available aren’t you limited. For example as strong as a player as Tualigi is, is he the thinking player of say a Crotty or ALB. And doesnt that then limit the options you have?

In your view is developing smarter players who can run plays dynamically like a well oiled machine, the responsibility of the coach in conjunction with the players and do you think this is where England may be coming up short.

Brilliant explanation of the back-line moves by the way. Wish we had the sorts of resources around that there are now when I was playing.

What's wrong with Eddie's England?

Actually, that is a great point Biltong Corne. There is a very smart player and coach. Not the biggest, strongest or fastest but one of the most complete and very best due to his ability to read the game aka Richie McCaw.

But with that being said, I still believe there is something to be said for set moves and training them.

However, I don’t like too much formula either, as when something doesn’t work players keep reverting to failed options rather than adapt and thinking on their feet. When you have capable players like Pollard you need to utilise all their skills and rugby smarts. Same applies to set-pieces like lineouts and scrums.

Having players able to think and play smart and know how to read their options on the fly when exhausted is best, but takes a lot of very hard work. Which is why I don’t think basic catch and pass, catching a high ball, ball retention etc. are things a coach needs to be involved in developing directly with players. These skills are on the player to develop and hone. Wayne Smith for example was better utilised when not a head coach, because he had a vast array of skills training he could provide for players to practice on their own. Watch vids of Wayne Smith drills or Aaron Smith.. pretty simple and obvious, but I never needed to go to practice that at rugby practice… that is stuff we practiced routinely most days among a couple of us. A lot of people suggest the fact that players can’t do the basics is somehow the fault of the coach. In this day and age I don’t think there is any excuse for not being able to catch a high ball, pass, catch and tackle effectively. On top of that developing strength, speed and reflexes can also be trained mostly on your own… but with strength, conditioning and skills coaches this is also no longer the domain of a head coach.

Now I have completely gone off tangent, I will stop 😊

What's wrong with Eddie's England?

Two questions Nick. Really insightful article around manipulating the opposition back line.

If you can see this is what they do well, how come others can’t counter it or is there no counter? And then why don’t more teams do it, especially teams that play a more perscriptive style like the Springbok?
As a result of relying on this style are you even more programmed into pre-game solutions rather than adapting to play what is in front of you?
While England certainly have some great players like Itoje who must be in line for international player of the year; do you think they are being hamstrung by not empowering players more, especially when they have some of the best players in the world in their prime?

Reading between the lines of this article, the better option is to empower players to take advantage of what is in front of them and train strategies for confusing opposition back-lines so you can take advantage of such plays from set piece or static ruck and maul situations. It is not an either or situation really then… broken play (play what is in front of you), static play use either a pre-cooked solution or depending on factors make one up more suited to the side being played against which is different to the side being imagined in practice.. captains or back-line director’s call.

Thanks again for the interesting read.

What's wrong with Eddie's England?

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