Our take on the Sharks victory! plus ... Golden Lions vs WP

Written by Neil Jardine - October 23 2013


Peter Stewart
October 23 2013

I do enjoy Neil’s comment – can’t we dislodge Naas or Mallett, or bring in another chair!?

“Rugby is a thinking game – its’ not a running or a kicking game. This mania for running with the ball and playing open rugby at all costs is stupid – you must adapt yourself to the circumstances and play to your strength”

Interesting quote as we see so much kicking, especially ‘over kicking’ where the catcher has plenty of time to negotiate. Man and ball kicks are better, in my humble opinion as they often generate some activity. I am not sure where defending fits the quote as disciplined and committed defence is very much a crucial factor in today’s games.

Anyway, these are observations from a relatively naive rugby analyst.

Which games fall in the orbit of this blog? Only National and International when SA is playing?

Kingsley Went
October 23 2013

I agree largely with your assessment of the games and feel the Sharks have a lot to do for a win this week. They seem to lack the ability to maintain consistent pressure and they don’t finish as well as they should – although this aspect is a lot better than in years past. I have a very good feeling about next season given the strength of their player pool and the back up structure and I hope Jake will take them away from seeking contact and rather seeking space where they can maximize the running and back up skills they have. Imagine the Sharks on the front foot!

I was interested in the relative merits of the fly halves on show – all good 100% players with good basic skills and they all tackle! Not something common in the good ‘ol days!!

Jantjies I think has reached his ceiling and although capable of moments of brilliance and will almost always do well at Lions level, does not have the finesse (confidence ??) for the higher level.

Catrakilis, is a better player especially under pressure and I think has more time and controls the game better than Jantjies, but this week we saw him run quite a bit more than previously and I don’t think he has anything special to offer in that dept….. he is still growing and could prove me wrong in time.

Lambie has all the skills a good fly half needs and, this season, lacked only match time to develop to his full potential. He has seldom had the luxury of playing in one position for long or with a running or stable backline outside himself and invariably has to carry the line with all its’ attendent pressure. The one big question mark I have is his lack of speed, especially off the mark. Ok, but not great and with a little more speed he would ghost through even more gaps than he does. His class is obvious but until he gets an extended run at fly half with a stable backline and a season a little longer than 10 minutes we will never know just how good he is. I fear another Brent Russell situation and his versatility may be his downfall.

Goosen – to me he shows the best promise of all with all the skills, speed and size. I thought when he got the ball on Sat things could happen. He is very rusty and cannot be judged on half a game and if anything shows a tendency to do too much – hence forcing the game and running toward his centres – and he needs to just let it happen. But his biggest problem is the threat of injury after two big ones in quick succession – can he play a whole season – can he stay away from the physical contact – can he develop the patience ???

What will we do on Saturdays after this weekend ?

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