Its almost impossible to find the motivation for this post after the Sharks’ performance but somewhere, somehow, I have. Here are my thoughts on the 7 games this past weekend. Firstly, nothing makes sense anymore and Superbru was thrown into turmoil where I would guess very few people got 7/7 picks.
And so there are 4 unbeaten teams left…
Highlanders (14) vs Blues (18)
Neither team deserved to win this one. Brett didn’t even arrive for the date so neither performed for 30 minutes or 80… Dagg looked good as did Hobbs. Somehow though the Blues managed a victory. This game also put the quality of the Highlanders into perspective. Canes beat Blues, Blues played terrible rugby and they still beat the Highlanders. Highlanders lost to Crusaders last week and the Saders then looked rank average against the Reds who last week lost to the Tahs who lost to the Stormers who looked average against them in the first half. NOTHING MAKES SENSE I tell you. It’s like when David Blaine makes your card appear inside some dude’s locked car. It just doesn’t add up. OK, so… Blues are average, Highlanders are worse, neither will make the semi finals. I assume Cheetahs will win next week in Bloem against the Landers while Reds host Blues and are sure to win that one. Or are they? NOTHING MAKES SENSE!
Reds (41) vs Crusaders (20)
The Reds surprised even their own mothers with this performance. A really good performance puts them in the top 2 Aussie teams in my eyes and you could get 42-1 on them winning the tournament now. Not the worst bet in the world. I didn’t watch much of the game except for a few of the tries and one has to really feel for the Reds who would be unbeaten had Palu not had an uncommon burst of energy to score a win over them. The Reds really look dangerous on attack and maybe the Sharks should watch this game about 20 times to see how to make use of some good possession. Reds host Blues and this could be an epic game to watch. I believe Reds have never won 2 games in a row so this week we might just see history in the making while children around the world will be delighted with 2 primary colours going against each other… Purple?
Sharks (20) vs Cheetahs (25)
Ok well let’s start by looking at the positives for the Sharks…
Ok. With that out the way… I can’t even begin to explain how much money I had to spend at Baron on Friday night to drown these sorrows. Good news is I succeeded thanks to a drink I found known as the trifecta which consists of a tequila, Jager Bomb and a Patron all in a row (a hand-grenade plus Patron). That did however make Saturday’s hangover that much worse as I had to face facts; 2010 is not the Sharks’ season and they will do well to get a single digit placing on the log. Added to that, the earring I have to get if they lose to the Stormers looks like I have to start shopping for a decent piercing parlour (do they even call it that?). The Sharks had more possession than a jealous wife and played with endless territory. It was however their silky smooth handling skills that stood out. Sorry did I say silky smooth? I meant to say beginner. To avoid retina damage I have decided not to research the stats from the game but I think it was 2 handling errors by a Sharks player to every 1 by the Cheetahs. Add to that and Kockott missed half his kicks and you have to feel the Cheetahs didn’t win this, the Sharks lost it. With this game, it appears by the deserted Absa Stadium seats, they also lost a lot of their supporters (who are fickle, let’s be honest). I, on the other hand, will be watching them play the Crusaders on Friday and luckily for that game, it can’t get any worse because even the Bulls supporters wouldn’t moan too much if their side lost in Canterbury and rumour is Richie might make an early come back to save his Saders.
OK, so disappointed Sharks hat off, neutral rugby supporter hat on. The Cheetahs look good with ball in hand but didn’t get enough to play enough rugby. If they want to win a few more games they need to get more possession because as far as I can recall (1. I was a bit boozed at this point and 2. excuse me for not wanting to watch the highlights) every time they got near the Sharks half, they scored points which is good news for them. So Cheetahs host the Highlanders and as none of this makes any sense, I wouldn’t be too surprised for the Highlanders who lost to the Saders (who lost to the Reds) and the Blues (who lost to the Canes) to beat them but I really don’t think so. Go Cheetahs… if they make it 2 out of 3, Klippies sales all over the Free State are guaranteed to skyrocket.
Lions (947) vs Chiefs (1132)
Hashim Amla might as well be playing in this game the scores were so high. A try every 4 minutes and 9 tries apiece. Dick Muir and Chief’s coach Ian Foster are now engaged in a bidding war for Waterboy’s Robert ‘Bobby’ Boucher Jr and both teams have started playing continuous games of “Risk” to help their teams understand the meaning behind the word “defense”. [Insert bad joke about Avis and try harder here]. Chiefs scored 5 log points for their efforts and Lions got 2 thanks to an 85th minute try. Credit to the Lions for coming back at the Chiefs after they were 600 points down with 20 minutes to go. Chiefs now play the primary school kids from Perth who look like hosting the wooden spoon come May. Lions play the Canes. Away. Oh boy.
Hurricanes (47) vs Force (22)
Canes continued their winning streak and really look the business this year. Might it be a Bulls Canes final? Too early to write the Crusaders off and even the bookies still see them as favourites ahead of the Bulls and Canes. Look the Canes were hardly playing against the Wallabies here but they had to do a job and they did it. Dare I say it but they have a better backline than the Bulls and match them in the tight 5. A very balanced rugby team! It could be an interesting game between the Canes and the Bulls with the Bulls probably favourites only because the game will be played in the city of nose rings. The Force are seriously struggling at the moment. A pretty decent rugby team can be made up using their injured players like Andre Pretorius, David Pocock (far too close a name to Peacock to be taken seriously), Richard Brown, Cameron Shepherd, Nick Cummins, Ryan Cross and Mark Bartholomeusz (possibly a Czech name for Bartolomeu?). No one can really blame them for being shite. Definitely the team everyone else is looking forward to play this year but Force games make for incredibly difficult Superbru picks. For example, this week against the Chiefs, the margin could be anywhere between 1 and 120 (the Superbru maximum). Force will be grateful that Sivivatu and 3 others have flown back home from the Chiefs for a few reasons but they now face Lethal Masanga, personally my favourite fantasy rugby player from 2009. Masanga played in a tough game for the Chiefs Development Team vs the Blues Development Team this past weekend so he should be looking forward to a much easier outing against the Force.
Bulls (50) vs Brumbies (32)
Jacques Kallis would be extremely proud of the Bulls as they scored their 3rd 50 in as many games. They really look the part and the only chance the Bulls have of not winning the Super 14 this year is if they lose all their away games and don’t secure a home semi and final. Or King Kong arrives in Pretoria and destroys Loftus. Judging by their recent performances, they look unstoppable at home after what was their 12th win in a row. If you were any coach, for any team, in any world right now and you had to pick a World Cup halfback combo for a tournament starting tomorrow, you would pick du Preez and Steyn. It’s awesome for Springbok rugby to have such a dominant halfback combo playing together at every level which bodes so well for New Zealand 2011. I would be lying to say I watched the whole game, drinks with a lady friend was a much better option once the 2nd half started, but it appears that the best way to beat the Brumbies is to play a parasitic style of rugby. Just ask Ashley Adam-Cooper who was lucky not to be manhandled as I suspected. (On another note, did you see Giteau called him dumb? HAHAHA). So? What do we have this weekend? Bulls host the worst try-scoring team in the tournament, the Tahs, and shouldn’t have much problem pushing them over while the Brumbies will be playing the Stormers in what might just be the closest game of the coming weekend.
Stormers (27) vs Waratahs (6)
The Stormers are improving and look a lot more comfortable at home but they still don’t quite look like they will be in contention at the end of May. They need to keep on improving from here on in and the real progress will be told come this weekend against the Brumbies. The Waratahs might just be the most boring team in this tournament and they proved it by getting as close to scoring as a pimpled teenager. It was really tough to stay awake during this match (after Friday’s sorrow drowning) and the Stormers did enough to win but without a bonus point they really should have found. The Stormers’ defense is looking pretty damn good it must be said. If they could just unleash some of their backline players they could be in with a shout. Habana looked better this week and looked for work which he was rewarded with a good try, the first of many in Stormers kit. I am just not sure what else to say about this, I was actually too bored to take notice of anything interesting from the game. Oh, one thing that did excite me were the Stormers’ cheerleader outfits. Ay Karamba! We should start a Super 14 cheerleader competition, the only way Aussies and South Africans can guarantee victory over New Zealand! So, back to rugby. Stormers host the Brumbies this weekend… This game should clear up as to which of these 2 unknown forces will have a good run at making the top 4 this year. I suspect whoever wins this weekend will play in a semi final.
So after week 2, how do I predict the log will finish?
Respect. Take it easy this week. See you for breakfast on Friday to watch le Sharks. Please God may the Sharks win!Tweet