I wrote an article before the Super 14 season got under way – in fact, before all the nonsense with Steve Meyer, Ish Dollie, Andy Goode and whoever else even started – to the extent that the Sharks needed to back Monty Dumond to deliver the goods in the Super 14. Ruan Pienaar’s display in Christchurch has made me realise just how right I was.
Monty has been stuffed around. After a very good Currie Cup in 2009, where he and Charl McLeod were the form halfback pairing and very largely responsible for the Sharks ending on top of the log, he then found himself behind Juan Hernandez in the pecking order. Naka Drotske then offered him the prospect of regular Super 14 game time, but those dreams were also dashed as the Sharks opted to keep him in Durban following injuries to both Hernandez and Pienaar. The scramble to find another capable flyhalf ended up being a frankly embarrassing mess, with everyone who had ever worn the ten jersey in a club game anywhere in the world all of a sudden linked to the Sharks.
Steve Meyer came in and was quickly elevated to the “saviour” role, before the most stunning brainfart in modern Super rugby history saw him resign on the eve of his Super 14 debut, following a lover’s tiff between him and his French girlfriend. Dumond duly started against the Chiefs and turned in a solid performance in atrocious conditions. He was, of course, dropped straight afterwards for Pienaar, who has stated time and again that he does not want to play flyhalf. John Plumtree elected not to take Dumond on tour, though, opting to bring in out-of-shape journeyman Andy Goode instead. After Pienaar delivered yet another utter dog’s breakfast for an hour in Christchurch, the podgy pivot, nicknamed Andy Foode for obvious reasons, managed to get himself sinbinned not ten minutes into his Sharks debut!
Forgive me for overreacting here, but to my mind, the Sharks don’t actually have a capable flyhalf on tour at the moment. If it were up to me – and I know that this might seem far too sensible to ever occur to the likes of Plumtree – I’d have Monty Dumond headed over to Sydney on the next available plane. He may not always be the most exciting guy out there but faced with the current crisis, I’m all for any player who is capable of executing the basics of his position superbly, under whatever pressure and in whatever conditions he finds himself.
Monty this seems strange to me
The movies had that movie thing,
But nonsense has a welcome ring
And heroes don’t come easy
(With apologies to R.E.M)Tweet