WP livewire flanker Francois Louw has stuck to his word and responded to the questions that Sharksworld readers have submitted.
Sharksworld would once again like to thank Flo for taking the time to chat to us and wishes him well for the upcoming preseason training and Super 14 campaign.
Here we go:
Francois – congratulations on an excellent season so in 2009! We’ve had a lot of discussions on this site about the various roles that loose forwards fill within a team. You have played in a number of different positions in the back row. Which is your favourite and why?Comment 4, posted at 22.10.09 12:26:59 by robdylan
Thank you very much. To be exact I have only played 6 and 7 this year and last year only played 7. I don’t think there is too much difference as only at scrum time, 6 will be on the open side and 7 on the blind. The rest of the time you play the game that suites you and is required by the team. I enjoy both but playing 6 in this years Currie Cup has been great and things seemed to have been going my way.
Francois, with WP narrowly missing the final of the Currie Cup this year, how do you feel about the upcoming season?
I think the guys had a great season and narrowly missing out on the final was very disappointing. I really think that game could have gone either way. We have laid a great foundation to work of for next years Super 14 and I’m really looking forward to it.
2nd question, with so much looseforward talent at WP and South Africa, does that put you under more pressure to perform? and how difficult will it be to get into the Boks side?Comment 6, posted at 22.10.09 12:46:46 by war1
Well healthy competition is always good. It ensures survival of the fittest and thus getting the best result for the team. I think it is pretty hard to get into the Bok team as you know, I’m still sitting out…
Another one – Francois, everyone is suddenly talking about teh “specialist fetcher” role again, especially since Heinrich Brussow has had such a good season. Do you feel that every team absolutely has to have a “Brussow-clone” in order to compete, or can effective counter-rucking still nullify the threat posed by a ball thief?Comment 7, posted at 22.10.09 12:55:36 by robdylan
I see it more as a ball stealer. These days all players are doing it, not just flankers. Some are just more effective than others. I do think it is an advantage but so is a player that can counter ruck effectively. Ultimately it would be great to have both in your team. So I guess it is a good thing to have one.
Did you have to get a Tetanus Injection after the biting incident? Or did Van Dyk’s teeth crack on the steel? Comment 22, posted at 22.10.09 15:52:28 by GI Ice (Now its WAR!)
Haha! Actually I did. Just precautionary.
Which Rugby player has been your biggest inspiration? And why?Comment 28, posted at 22.10.09 16:24:24 by Miguel
Always a difficult question. As a youngster, you always seem to look up at the ‘flashy players’. Kicking flyhalves, the guys who score all the tries and so on. In high school I moved to loose forward, was a back before if you were wondering, and so started to naturally look in the area. I must say that the pioneers of loose forward rugby, in my eyes at least, have been Richie Mcaw and George Smith . But your local heroes will always be the biggest inspiration, Corne Krige, Bob Skinstad, and my grandfather, Jan Pickard.
Do rugby players get all the hot chicks when out and about?Comment 34, posted at 22.10.09 16:40:58 by xtal
Haha! Nice question. Aah, I don’t know.
Is the mood in the WP camp really the one 4 all and all 4 one as presented in the media?Comment 35, posted at 22.10.09 16:44:57 by xtal
We have had a good season together and everyone backs one another completely. I really think that is a formula for success in a rugby team.
Ok my question: The pressure on all players of your caliber is tremendous and the squad seems to be very close knit. How do you relax away from the game?Comment 37, posted at 22.10.09 18:36:56 by mbayshark
I like to just hang with mates. A lot of them don’t play rugby and its sometimes nice to just get away from it all for a while, whatever that may be.
Hi Francois,Do you ever feel additional pressure to perform seeing as your grandfather is a legend of WP rugby???
I wouldn’t say pressure but rather inspiration. He was a great man and a great rugby player, who did a lot for WP rugby. So to achieve even the slightest of anything he has would be a great honour.
Another question: Who are your best mates in the team?? Bash Grant perhaps?? Comment 38, posted at 23.10.09 06:48:20 by wpw
Bash is definitely one of them. He’s actually my roommate on tour, so we get along quite well. There aren’t really any ‘clicks’ in the team. Everyone gets along with everyone so I can’t say there are specifics guys.
What does the blue and white hoped jersey mean to you? Via email
It’s my team! What do you think?
Hey Flo!How much influence do coaches have on “professional” players ?
Is it more of a guiding role or do they really teach old dogs new tricks?Comment 39, posted at 23.10.09 10:05:11 by blackshark
They can have a lot. We have a amazing coaching unit at WP, who have really put in a lot of time and focus on the smaller things, which ultimately make you a better player.
I think you can always learn something new. Not that I’m an old dog but I think the game is continuously changing and you need to be on top of it and develop as a player. The coaches help you to do that.
Pressure wise how does Curriecup rugby compare to S14, do you prefer one above the other and is there a huge difference in the coaching styles and gameplans with Allister in the CC and Rassie in the S14?Comment 40, posted at 23.10.09 10:25:31 by Volstruis
There is pressure to perform in both. I think what makes a good player is to perform consistently in all games and tournaments. The same goes for coaching. The standard doesn’t drop at all in either tournament. Allister and Rassie obviously have different styles of coaching but the basic structure and consensus stays the same and is carried though in both teams.
As a Cape Town boykie, how often do you eat a Gatsby?
Now and then. The best Gatsby I’ve ever had was with Morgan Newman and a local spot in Athlone. Unreal! (Im guessing it was Golden Dish Ed)
Francois, isn’t it a little insulting for a player of your calibre that the Sharks have not tired to poach you?Comment 41, posted at 23.10.09 13:12:23 by Loosehead
Who says they haven’t?
Francois, do you have any idea why you can never find a Cheetahs supporter during the Super 14, yet when the Currie Cup is on, suddenly there are lots of them?Comment 44, posted at 23.10.09 13:30:50 by robdylan
I don’t really know the answer to that. Good point!
How Louw can you really go?Comment 84, posted at 24.10.09 06:51:37 by Rahul
How Louw do you wan’t me to go?
Whats your take as Schalk as captain? – via email
There have been talks of Schalk as captain. I think if he was to be made captain he would carry out that roll effectively. He is a great player and all the guys have a lot of respect for him. I think he’d do a good job!
Thanks again to Flo for being a sport.For any further questions or info catch him on www.francoislouw.comTweet