Here at Sharksworld, we’re protective about our players. And we don’t like to see them getting messed around. After another weekend where the tracksuit pants stayed on, CapeShark would really like to know what Snor’s plan for Kankowski is.
So once again the magnificently over-hyped Pierre Spies turned in an oh-so-average performance for the Boks. There’s a surprise. While not nearly as obscure as in his previous outings, it was clearly enough to keep Ryan Kankowski warming the bench for yet another entire game. Now I’m no fan of pointless substitutions but the question must be asked: what exactly is the coach’s plan for Kankowski? Why is a player who went on the rampage for the Sharks against Western Province a fortnight ago get thrown into the Bok team to simply collect splinters for 80mins? Especially considering it was more of a sevens game than a test match.
Has anybody ever noticed that Kankowski is only selected to play when Spies has suffered an injury or been so diabolical that he cannot be risked for another game? This is what I like to refer to as the ‘Last Chance Saloon’. It’s a Damned If You Do or Don’t scenario. In these circumstances Kankowski is expected to score a hat-trick of tries or something of that superlative nature otherwise the Cape and Pretoria media cabal launch into a frenzied tirade against the guy.
So what exactly is the allure of Spies? Is he really any better than Duane Vermuelen, Ashley Johnson, Willem Alberts or even Keegan Daniel? It’s not like we’re trawling for eighthmen depth in this country. You might even say we never had it so good. So why is this guy (whose lethargy has been statistically shown up time and time again) allowed every opportunity to redeem himself and no-one else gets a look in? It’s just one of those puzzling questions that add to the enigma of Peter De Villiers. Equally surprising are the ludicrous reactions he manages to elicit from the TV commentators, even though in reality Guthro Steempkamp is far more impressive with ball in hand.
Anyway back to Kankowski. As I’ve mentioned before, game time is the key factor for any player. I’m sure even the Hoff himself would rather turn out for the Pumas and play 80 mins than sit ignominiously on the Bok sidelines. We hope for Kankowski’s sake he starts getting a bit more time on the field, be it for the Sharks or the Boks, cos right now he’s losing out on both fronts. And the Sharks are all the poorer for it.
To end off, I’d like to highlight another Sharks eighthman. Regarded by those in the know of French rugby as perhaps one of the greatest in the game. He’s helped steer his team to claiming the French championships and the Heineken cup. He’s been one of the most consistently impressive players on the French circuit for the last six years. It’s a shame Shaun Sowerby couldn’t have turned out more performances for the Springboks other than his solitary cap, but it seems he too was playing second fiddle to someone far less stellar. And got &%#ed off.Tweet