Stormers coach Rassie Erasmus says a lack of self belief is killing his team, after they slumped to another close defeat – going down 6-12 to the Waratahs in their Super 14 Round Eight match at the weekend.
All five the Stormers’ defeats this season, in seven starts, were inside six points – 15-20 to the table-topping Sharks, 8-14 to the Blues, 10-14 Bulls, 7-11 to the Crusaders and 6-12 to the ‘Tahs at the weekend.
Two Lachlan Turner tries – both scored from chip kicks – earned the Waratahs the win in Sydney and may well have finally extinguished any lingering semifinal aspirations for the Cape team.
The Turner tries came in the sixth minute and the 76th minute, and were essentially the difference between the two teams in another of those games where the two defensive systems cancelled each other out.
However, Erasmus said the Stormers should take full blame for letting themselves down.
“We can only point fingers at ourselves,” the Stormers coach said, adding that his team had opportunities, but that execution let them down.
Erasmus lamented the fact that his team again got pinned down in their own territory for long periods, while the Waratahs had no trouble in getting out of their own half.
Asked what is at the heart of his team’s inability to turn their opportunities – close defeats – into victory, Erasmus made it clear self doubt has set in.
“In the beginning of the tournament, if you lose a couple close games, then the self belief goes and a bit of doubt sets in,” the Stormers coach said.
“The challenge for the coaches and the management is to get that belief back into the players and obviously at this stage I’m struggling to get that belief into the players.
“It is definitely not a talent problem,” Erasmus said, adding that as a group they will get it right.
“I know it is a bit late in the season and things are slipping away from us, but I can tell it is not because the guys are not trying – it is just a matter of a lack of self belief.”
Captain Jean de Villiers said his team can “take heart” from the defeat in Sydney and promised that his team will “keep on improving” every week.Tweet