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Tipsy McStagger

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Joined October 2017

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My drinking team has a rugby problem

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Hi Highlander, good article. I agree about the AB’s taking the balance too far in favour of the wide game – last year’s WC semi final against England showed its flaws against decent opposition.

Why is there such variability in the All Blacks' forward performances?

Jason Gilmore, who is now doing some good work with Rob Penney at the Waratahs

Dave, Matt and Scott's influence on the Wallabies is already clear

He’s still stuck in the UK – coaching via Zoom apparently

Dave, Matt and Scott's influence on the Wallabies is already clear

I would also like to see the wide game plan get changed up with some narrow play, I don’t think it gets done enough by most teams using pod structures – Argentina have attacked the AB’s very successfully with it

Dave, Matt and Scott's influence on the Wallabies is already clear

Hi Mulgair, the AB’s are past masters at slowing down the opposition’s attacking breakdown ball and the Wallabies can be smarter about it too. Teams dedicate skills work solely on how to ‘tackle’ in order to slow down attacking breakdown ball. When playing in a pod structure there needs to be bigger focus on securing the ruck rather than cleaning out past it, which leaves the breakdown vulnerable. Agree that the focus needs to be on smaller gain line advantage and quicker recycle and doing it repeatedly – it’s the best way to keep a defence constantly backtracking

Dave, Matt and Scott's influence on the Wallabies is already clear

Fullback is a hard one because it depends on the make-up of the rest of the back line. If Rennie persist with the 10-12 play maker axis, then there is not such a need for the 15 to be another play maker (as is the case with the AB’s). I would select Hodge almost purely because of his boot, especially given Rennie’s preference for a tactical kicking game. It would also allow penalties to be taken from 50+m out which really puts pressure on the opposition to not give away penalties – the ability to constantly keep the scoreboard ticking over in test matches if invaluable. Hodge does need a few rough corners to be cleaned up in his game though.

Dave, Matt and Scott's influence on the Wallabies is already clear

Hi Jameswm, a ‘national brains trust’ is a must if Australian rugby wants to see real progress. I know that most other top tier nations adopt the top-down model, especially NZ and RSA.

Dave, Matt and Scott's influence on the Wallabies is already clear

Hi Jeznez,

Out of interest, with the way Rennie will want to play, do you think there is room for both Hooper and Samu in the Wallaby back row, or does one miss out, or even both?

Give Rob Penney time

Hi LBJ,

Penney is not a bad coach. He was very successful with Canterbury (4 titles in 4 years I think). He then took that mindset to Munster and took them to semi finals (he was one the pioneers of “pod rugby” to the northern hemisphere). He then went to Japan with the same mindset and made an average club look above average. Taking Canterbury systems overseas, especially the northern hemisphere, is no easy task.

The narrative is not anti-Australian at all. The FACT (whether people like it or not) is that Kiwi-land is ahead in the rugby IP stakes at the moment, just like Australia was around the turn of the millennium – remember the Kiwis coming to the Brumbies to ask “how do you do it”…. If you want to blame someone, blame the ARU and the state unions for not developing and appointing local coaches (or taking on board what they have to say/coach) – their systems are beyond a joke.

My article does not denigrate Australian coaches and does not say that they should not be given an opportunity or leniency. If you want to read into it that way then so be it.

Your leniency argument is thin. Cheika was given everything he wanted for 5 years, despite his record and antics.

Give Rob Penney time

Hi Paul D,

I think once the COVID finally dust settles, there will be a fair few nervous squad members. I suspect Penney is definitely on the look out for bigger and more dynamic tight five players…

Give Rob Penney time

👍

Give Rob Penney time

Hi Jeznez,

You make good points about the shifting to the tight play in the opposition 22m, the pressure of the shallow try line defence on Will Harrison and the influence Karmichael Hunt has had. Some coaches would tell their players to persevere with the system so as to eventually achieve competency but I guess the bigger picture has to be balanced with pragmatism. I wanted to see a bit more options to negate the try line defensive pressure but I guess that will come with time. Agree with you on Jason Gilmore. After Steve Tandey left, Phil Bailey came in as a part-timer and it was telling – it might just be my imagination but I now see a lot of good, concise and clear coaching in the defence. Agree with you on Michael Hooper – how do you think he will be viewed by Dave Rennie given the type of game Rennie will want to play and do you reckon Rennie may just not pick him?

Give Rob Penney time

Hi PeterK,

If Hannigan was told to make a call himself based on what he sees then not a worry. I suspect that the message would have been to not contest the lineout at all – vast majority of teams go this way on 5m defensive lineouts. Either way, there a unfortunate signs that some (established) players are going against instructions

Give Rob Penney time

Hi Dieselpwrd,

Thanks. I hope and suspect that Penney will be working overtime on basics with the Tahs. Fix the small things and the big flashy things will come automatically.

Give Rob Penney time

Hi Sinclair Whitbourne, I really hope Penney doesn’t go down the same path as Gibson. I suspect Penney is a better coach than Gibson. The tartan is a modern art masterpiece….

Give Rob Penney time

Hi Morsie, Hooper is a gifted athlete and a very good 7. My opinion is, and many will disagree with me, is that Samu is a smarter player. It will be very interesting as to who Rennie picks. Hooper may well prove me wrong and in the process show that he was constrained by his previous coach…

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie

Hi Soapit, he has been playing mostly at 8 for the Brumbies. I would not consider him an international 6 but it could happen depending on the game plan. Just a gut feel I have about Rennie picking him at 7

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie

Hi Harry, I agree. Developing forwards take longer than developing backs and the requirements for forwards in International rugby are a step up from Super Rugby. My opinion is that he may be able to pick one pack to hold it’s own at the moment but after that the pickings get very slim. Given recent departures, the locks loom as interesting selections

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie

Hi Savant, it may well be that Rennie goes with White and Toomua as halves. I would not be surprised to see Ryan Lonergan and Noah Lolesio as his development picks…

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie

Hi Karl, no doubt about Hooper’s work rate. How his personality goes under Rennie’s regime will be interesting. My opinion is that Rennie will prefer Pete Samu at 7

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie

Hi Jameswm, Phillip (along with Rodda) is heading overseas, which is a shame, he may well get picked this year though. LSL should be an automatic selection but his partner and back ups will be interesting. Angus Blyth looms as an option for Rennie and I don’t mind what I saw from Trevor Hosea with the 21’s. Do you mind if I forward you my email so I can pick your brain on S&C stuff?

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie

Hi Jameswm, that is info I am not privy to unfortunately. I would assume they are doing roughly the same as what you are suggesting. For me, players like Reece Hodge are a good illustration – he looks fit, and no doubt he is fit, but his ability for sustaines repeat efforts and top speed are not good enough. Which is unfortunate because he is a good player. Game plans also factor heavily on how quick players fatigue though

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie

Hi PeterK, the ‘complete package’ back three stocks are thin but I would hazard a guess at Andrew Kellaway, Andy Muirhead and Filipo Daugunu being names being mulled over in addition to those you mentioned.

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie

Hi PeterK, my view is that Rennie will bring a lot to attack and skills. I have no doubt he is sound defensively but his teams do concede a lot of tries and he does not coach rush defence. I guess we agree to disagree on whether forwards or backs will be his biggest problem. Hooker and locks will prove problematic in my opinion (including back ups). Outside centre will be his most interesting pick for me. I will wager that Irae Simone gets first crack at the 12 jersey under Rennie…

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie

Hi Mailaman, I would not be surprised to see names like Bell, Tupou, Valetini, Samu and Wilson in the forwards. The locks will be a problem area and I think it very likely that some left fielders will make the team/squad

The biggest challenge facing Dave Rennie