robdylan

Sharks MUST keep Downey


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks on 27 Oct 2010 at 11:12
Tagged with : , , , ,

With the news that Mike Rhodes has been released to join the Lions, the Sharks simply have to act fast to retain the services of Justin Downey, or risk being caught out in the loose-forward department come next year’s Super 15.

Downey, who was released to join Griquas on loan for the second round of the Currie Cup, emerged as one of the stalwarts of the Kimberley side’s campaign – as this analysis of loose forward statistics throughout the competition shows, there wasn’t an open-side flanker in the Currie Cup who performed better on defence than Downey did. His average of over 20 tackles a game was simply out of this world – it was also nicely double the amount pulled off by any of the Sharks’ regular open-sides.

Downey’s real strength, though, is his versatility – he has regularly played in all three positions in the back row for the Sharks XV and College Rovers (as well as Griquas, where he alternated between 6 and 7) and at 1.91m and 105kg is pretty much the ideal in-between size. He can be used as an openside, together with a big 7 like Willem Alberts and a smaller number 8 like Keegan Daniel, or can add pace at 7 without sacrificing too much bulk – as would happen if Daniel and Jacques Botes were played in tandem. While John Plumtree has been reluctant to give Downey game time with the senior side, preferring Rhodes, the experiment of sending him to Griquas has shown that he has all the skills and aptitude necessary to mix it with the big boys.

Whatever Plumtree was looking for in Rhodes, he clearly didn’t see enough of it to warrant extending the big man’s contract and one can only hope that he’ll now be big enough to admit that Downey should have been given more opportunities – and rectify that mistake. Skholiwe Ndlovu is another player who was preferred to Downey in the squad this year, but he too is being cut loose, leaving the Sharks with a definite loose forward spot up for grabs in the contracted group. With Lubabalo Mthembu the only junior loose forward to have a confirmed senior contract for next year (and he’ll be playing for the National Sevens team until May anyway) the Sharks need to make sure they retain Downey to ensure they have at least 6 contracted loosies for the Super 15.

Griquas are hot on Downey’s heels, of course and would love to retain his services on a more permanent basis, with the Cheetahs understandably keen to draft him straight into their own Super 15 squad. Downey’s a Durban lad at heart, though and I’m sure he would prefer to play for the Sharks, as long the coaching staff can rectify the damage that they’ve done over the last two seasons and give him a commitment about meaningful game time in the 2011 season.



81 Comments

  • I think Rhodes is a loss.. HE can also play in the lock position.. I can see him doing well at the lions

  • Comment 1, posted at 27.10.10 11:18:33 by mikey Reply
    moneyVodacom Cup player
     
  • @mikey (Comment 1) : you’d think with Deysel’s propensity for injury, the Sharks would have wanted to keep him as a ball carrier…

  • Comment 2, posted at 27.10.10 11:21:53 by robdylan Reply
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  • Not really fair to compare tackles made in the Currie Cup. When playing for Griquas, you gonna make lots of tackles cause you ain’t got the ball. That said he did really well over there. Deserves game time..

    Just not sure with Alberts, Deysel, Botes, Daniel and Kanko in the mix if he will get a meaningful run unless there are injuries.

  • Comment 3, posted at 27.10.10 11:23:20 by Sportbilly Reply

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  • @Sportbilly (Comment 3) : well, Deysel is already out for the initial stages of the competition, so that’s down to 4… with Alberts the only real closed-side option

  • Comment 4, posted at 27.10.10 11:26:28 by robdylan Reply
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  • Don’t think we need him to be honest. We have Ojiambo showing potential and rovers have a couple loosies that i rate more than Downey anyway. We will be fine. Also plum would even choose Burden at looseforward before he choses Downey. If i was Downey i would make the move to Ep; they on the rise and are willing to pay from what i hear.

  • Comment 5, posted at 27.10.10 11:29:17 by JJR Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 4) : Ag nee man. Wolla out again?

    Yip, then they definitely need other options at 7. Surprised they let Rhodes go so easily. They clearly rated him over Downey though so one wonders what offers they will be will to make to Jus.

  • Comment 6, posted at 27.10.10 11:29:51 by Sportbilly Reply

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  • @JJR (Comment 5) : EP’s a great move to make for some fringe players right now. Great salaries going around by all accounts and players can only say good things about Solly.

    Huge game against Puma’s coming up. I really hope they make it up. Then the floodgates to EP will open.

  • Comment 7, posted at 27.10.10 11:31:52 by Sportbilly Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 4) : Heard from Robbie Kempson that we are interested in Jacques engelbrecht of the Eagles. About same size as Deysel, probably slightly taller though. Not as good as Deysel obviously, but will be good to have in the squad. Check him out when Eagles play Leopards over the weekend. I think he will be at 8.

  • Comment 8, posted at 27.10.10 11:32:56 by JJR Reply
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  • @JJR (Comment 8) : Yeah, also heard that during the EP/SWD game.. Looks a good player.

    That Jacques Potgeiter that we let go to the Kings also looks lively at 6.

  • Comment 9, posted at 27.10.10 11:35:22 by Sportbilly Reply

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  • @Sportbilly (Comment 7) : Would be great for Rugby in Ep and will develop more talent for the bokke. The region have some good rugga schools. Will be a difficult game, but they should take it at home. If they do make it up, it will be cool as you said to see the players that join the team. Looking forward to it.

  • Comment 10, posted at 27.10.10 11:36:00 by JJR Reply
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  • @Sportbilly (Comment 9) : Puts his body on the line…good player, i even rate him more than Downey.

  • Comment 11, posted at 27.10.10 11:37:07 by JJR Reply
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  • @JJR (Comment 8) : why do we even HAVE an Academy if we keep buying players…

  • Comment 12, posted at 27.10.10 11:38:32 by robdylan Reply
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  • @JJR (Comment 11) : a lot easier to shine in the first division…

  • Comment 13, posted at 27.10.10 11:40:14 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 12) :

    The academy is there to produce talent like Rhodes and Cilliers so we can profit from selling thme to the Lions?

  • Comment 14, posted at 27.10.10 11:47:53 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 14) : The fact that SARU is restructuring Club Rugby will only be good news for KZN. Heard that Roux wants to get it up there with Varsity Cup in terms of profile..

    With KZN’s strong club base this can only be good…

    Although it seems that KZN Rugby has some other issues to sort out too.

  • Comment 15, posted at 27.10.10 11:51:35 by Sportbilly Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 13) : Rob, i saw a list of contracted players for Griquas the other day, and downey was on that. okey, it was on a “agents” website, but where theres smoke… :|

  • Comment 16, posted at 27.10.10 11:55:41 by VanWilder Reply

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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 14) : BWAAAAAA :)

  • Comment 17, posted at 27.10.10 12:00:31 by robdylan Reply
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  • @VanWilder (Comment 16) : trust me, I have it on the best possible authority that Justin has NOT signed for Griquas yet.

  • Comment 18, posted at 27.10.10 12:01:21 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 18) : i trust you then. these flippen agents :evil:

  • Comment 19, posted at 27.10.10 12:02:50 by VanWilder Reply

    VanWilderCurrie Cup player
     
  • Downey was in great form for the Griquas. I really hope the Sharks can hang onto him.

  • Comment 20, posted at 27.10.10 12:05:14 by lostfish Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 18) :

    mmmm i heard he has signed a 1 year contract with the griquas

  • Comment 21, posted at 27.10.10 12:10:24 by Zibbie Reply
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  • @Zibbie (Comment 21) : did you here that from Justin Downey or from somebody else?

  • Comment 22, posted at 27.10.10 12:19:48 by robdylan Reply
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  • Profile for Jacques engelbrecht from sarugby.net

    Full Name Jacques Jacobus
    Surname Engelbrecht
    Height 193
    Weight 107
    Birth Date 10 June 1985
    Birth City Cape Town
    Marital Status Single
    Favourite Film Comedy
    Favourite Music Any but metal
    Favourite Food Pasta,Steak,Sushi
    Primary School Fanie Theron
    Secondary School Monument

  • Comment 23, posted at 27.10.10 12:26:57 by dawj Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 22) : and this is an example of me being a diva, not so Ice?

  • Comment 24, posted at 27.10.10 12:27:15 by robdylan Reply
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  • @dawj (Comment 23) : oh wow… he’s HUGE compared to Downey… :roll:

  • Comment 25, posted at 27.10.10 12:34:42 by robdylan Reply
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  • I woke up this morning still a little pissed off that we let Rhodes leave. They let him go because they of economics? Having quality depth was part of the reason we qualified top of the table and earned a lot of money by hosting the semi and final, and now i hear we signing a player from the eagles instead of keeping our own home grown player whose come through the ranks. I just can’t see the logic and it makes a complete mockery of the academy as well

  • Comment 26, posted at 27.10.10 12:41:51 by RuckingFun Reply

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  • @RuckingFun (Comment 26) : where does this story come from that we’ve actually signed this oke from the Eagles?

  • Comment 27, posted at 27.10.10 12:58:41 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 12) : @robdylan (Comment 13) : The academy has many really good players coming through especially in the centre position which is great, but to be honest the only guy from the u 21 that can be a good 7 for us in future is Ojiambo, and i have not seen us play many huge crassball 7′s last few years. we chose the small faster number 7 all the time and the talented big guys are forced to play Club. I am really tikked off to see Ojiambo only used towards end of season and theisinger was also hardly used. Our loose trio had now balance until the last few games. Everitt needs to work with Plum, cause i am sure Plum would want Ojiambo playing more than Dunlop was. I mean there is no real chance Dunlop will play for the first side.

  • Comment 28, posted at 27.10.10 13:00:35 by JJR Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 12) : We can definately pick many players out of the academy in most positions, but sometimes we do lack in producing a Deysel like number 7 to be honest. Maybe u19 have one or two, but havn’t really seen too much of them.@dawj (Comment 23) : If he ways the same as kankowski then my name is reba. The guy is at least 110kg. That sight has some seriously old stats from like craven week and u20 days.

  • Comment 29, posted at 27.10.10 13:04:44 by JJR Reply
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  • @dawj (Comment 23) : Sight=site…sorry got too excited.

  • Comment 30, posted at 27.10.10 13:07:01 by JJR Reply
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  • I have checked with Jaques Engelbrecht – he is awaiting an offer from the Sharks, but hasn’t had one yet.

  • Comment 31, posted at 27.10.10 13:10:58 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 12) : now=no…sorry, panicking writing exam in about 40 min.

  • Comment 32, posted at 27.10.10 13:11:03 by JJR Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 27) : even if we don’t sign him i still can’t see the logic behind letting Rhodes go…

  • Comment 33, posted at 27.10.10 13:12:25 by RuckingFun Reply

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  • @JJR (Comment 32) : oh my and ur on SW :mrgreen:

    good luck with the exams ;-)

  • Comment 34, posted at 27.10.10 13:13:02 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • its really a shame and for us as fans to c our guys go to other teams well :cry:

    money has to do with it but it really hurts the same :sad:

  • Comment 35, posted at 27.10.10 13:15:24 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 31) :

    Rob that photo of GO Black and White day for our team what time does it close ;-)

  • Comment 36, posted at 27.10.10 13:17:09 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • @chaz (Black and White forever) (Comment 36) : it runs all day Friday, i think

  • Comment 37, posted at 27.10.10 13:25:34 by robdylan Reply
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  • @RuckingFun (Comment 33) : Maybe there are other issues at play…

  • Comment 38, posted at 27.10.10 13:26:10 by robdylan Reply
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  • seems I know Engelbrecht’s agent as well

  • Comment 39, posted at 27.10.10 13:41:08 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 37) :thanks and anyone can join ok only the Shark Fans :oops: ;-)

    i need that jersey other wise i’m going to hv to get one on my own to go with my sign BALL for the bar maybe i’m lucking this time around :mrgreen:

  • Comment 40, posted at 27.10.10 13:46:55 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • Honestly don’t know why they let Rhodes go. Being at all club games as well, he was really doing well. AND SO DID DOWNEY!!!. For the last couple of years I’ve been watching him, he was always giving 110%. He deserves more than what he is currently getting from the Sharks.

  • Comment 41, posted at 27.10.10 13:50:30 by Marietjie Reply

    MarietjieUnder 21 player
     
  • @Marietjie (Comment 41) : I empathize with you but giving 100% and being good is not justification to make the team.

    As I said when some guys missed out on Bok training squad selection. Being good is not enough, you have to be better than the player in the side. As good as Downey is, he is not better than Alberts, Botes, Deysel, Daniel or Kankowski.

    As much as it hurts us, a player can’t just be put in a team because he gives everything he has.

  • Comment 42, posted at 27.10.10 14:09:36 by KSA Shark © Reply

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  • I didn’t rate Rhodes.

  • Comment 43, posted at 27.10.10 14:15:34 by Honey Badger Reply

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  • @RuckingFun (Comment 33) : agree.. bit of a big mistake :|

  • Comment 44, posted at 27.10.10 14:38:37 by bergshark Reply

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  • @Honey Badger (Comment 43) : :shock: honey badger???

  • Comment 45, posted at 27.10.10 14:39:29 by bergshark Reply

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  • @RuckingFun (Comment 26) : @robdylan (Comment 25) : lets give him a chance to prove himself,guys .. anyway,how many knew of jean deysel when the sharks signed him ..? lets give this guy a fair chance (not like jean stemmet got from the coaches :sad: )

  • Comment 46, posted at 27.10.10 14:44:48 by bergshark Reply

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  • @bergshark (Comment 46) : I can virtually guarantee that if Downey got no chance, a guy like Engelbrecht won’t either. He will be brought n “for depth”, play Vodacom Cup rugby for 2 years, then leave to go overseas or join the Lions.

    He weighs 110kg, btw

  • Comment 47, posted at 27.10.10 15:01:29 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Honey Badger (Comment 43) : Rhodes started off quite well, but he certainly doesn’t have the same physical presence as Alberts or Deysel. He is a big boy, but he should do more with it.

  • Comment 48, posted at 27.10.10 15:02:12 by robdylan Reply
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  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 42) : that so true it makes me feel ok if i look at it that way, it hurts but if a player wants in he must be the best of the best just as simple as u put it KSA :smile:

  • Comment 49, posted at 27.10.10 15:15:20 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • @chaz (Black and White forever) (Comment 34) : Exam over!!! 80% multiple choice…not sure if i did great or very bad…? Another 2morrow then all my focus is on supporting The Sharks this weekend. My B-day friday…will be really low if The Sharks lose on Sat. But, i believe this group has got The BMT and the character to take the cup.

  • Comment 50, posted at 27.10.10 15:26:21 by JJR Reply
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  • @JJR (Comment 50) : Exam over!?
    Mine haven`t even started yet!

    Wonder if I can get a docter certificate due to currie cup scheduling problems . . . :sad:

  • Comment 51, posted at 27.10.10 15:36:58 by Original Pierre Reply
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  • @JJR (Comment 50) : I think so too… and that thought is probably worth of an article…

  • Comment 52, posted at 27.10.10 15:39:16 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 52) : I would`ve felt better if we had Frans Steyn, Butch James and Brad Barrit in the squad.

    But hey, I have faith in our forwards!

  • Comment 53, posted at 27.10.10 15:48:05 by Original Pierre Reply
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  • @JJR (Comment 50) : just remeber to do ur Go all out in Black and White Photo on friday maybe u shall win a get a jersey signed by the team and gee then u acn post it to Chaz :cool: ;-)

  • Comment 54, posted at 27.10.10 15:54:04 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 48) : Guess we are just lucky to have guys like Deysel and Alberts,other players don’t look to good compared to them.
    @bergshark (Comment 45) : Why the face,whats your score for the final?

  • Comment 55, posted at 27.10.10 16:12:40 by Honey Badger Reply

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  • @Original Pierre (Comment 53) : Frans “super 14 final brainfart” Steyn? No thanks…

  • Comment 56, posted at 27.10.10 16:17:47 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Honey Badger (Comment 55) : shocked that you dont rate mike rhodes (great player to have on the bench and give guys like alberts,deysel and the locks some rest ..prefer rhodes` style of play to that of skeate ,but since skeate is here and rhodes is gone ,i`m backing skeate to step-up and make a huge impact next season )..
    dont predict scores because i`m no good at it :| .. just hoping for a sharks win ,that`s all :grin:

  • Comment 57, posted at 27.10.10 16:22:07 by bergshark Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 56) : frans “and all those nasty words you called him( :shock: :smile: )” steyn ? will have him in any sharks team of any era any day ..

  • Comment 58, posted at 27.10.10 16:25:33 by bergshark Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 47) : “or join the lions” :smile:

  • Comment 59, posted at 27.10.10 16:27:13 by bergshark Reply

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  • Both Rhodes and Pat are huge losses.

    Two years ago Pat Cilliers was our star prop before he got injured and I thought Rhodes was one of our stand-out forwards in the couple of games he played when Alberts was out.

    With Deysel so injury prone (and by the look of it Alberts isn’t too far behind here) we are going to delve intoour loose forward larder some time or another. Let’s hope whoever it is can fill the boots of Wolla and Big Vic.

  • Comment 60, posted at 27.10.10 16:29:40 by rhineshark Reply
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  • @Original Pierre (Comment 53) : add to those names jean deysel and ruan pienaar :smile:

  • Comment 61, posted at 27.10.10 16:31:23 by bergshark Reply

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  • @rhineshark (Comment 60) : totally agree .. bit short-sighted from the sharks .. but perhaps they rate dan ojiambo more .. just a thought ..

  • Comment 62, posted at 27.10.10 16:33:07 by bergshark Reply

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  • @bergshark (Comment 62) : I’m not even sure that Oijambo will be returning next year

  • Comment 63, posted at 27.10.10 16:38:12 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 63) :

    Rob i’m looking for a post that clayton did the one with all the photo’s of the fans going to a game just can’t remember the heading
    Can u help please ;-)

  • Comment 64, posted at 27.10.10 16:44:23 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • I thought Downey and Lusaseni both signed for Griquas already . . .

  • Comment 65, posted at 27.10.10 16:57:31 by Original Pierre Reply
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  • @Original Pierre (Comment 65) : They were on loan

  • Comment 66, posted at 27.10.10 17:02:57 by war1 Reply
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  • @chaz (Black and White forever) (Comment 64) : maybe mail clayton :)

  • Comment 67, posted at 27.10.10 17:13:31 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 67) : i did but he not looking at his mail he must be busy ;-)

  • Comment 68, posted at 27.10.10 17:16:07 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • @chaz (Black and White forever) (Comment 68) : lucky I’m NEVER busy :)

  • Comment 69, posted at 27.10.10 17:28:58 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 69) : gee i’ve been looking i didn’t relise how many post there the SW fan look they hv alot of time on their hand to comment to so many :lol:

  • Comment 70, posted at 27.10.10 17:34:07 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 69) : found it :razz: at long last had to go through until may 16 that was a very long time ago :roll:

    STORMERS MAKE IT A CAPE TOWN SHAKEDOWN may 16

  • Comment 71, posted at 27.10.10 17:59:17 by chaz (Black and White forever) Reply

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  • Ojiambo MUST be signed.

    That boy will terrorise opponents for years to come!

  • Comment 72, posted at 27.10.10 18:27:24 by Big Fish Reply
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  • on current form, i wouldn’t care whether downey he stayed or went. he wasn’t that impressive with griquas. but i felt the same about keegan when he joined the sharks and keegan has finally matured into a good loose forward.

  • Comment 73, posted at 28.10.10 08:27:50 by try time Reply

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  • Anton Bresler. New Kid on the block. Hope he does well IF he gets the opportunity to play.

  • Comment 74, posted at 28.10.10 08:28:35 by Marietjie Reply

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  • Anton Bresler. New Kid on the block. Hope he does well IF he gets the opportunity to play. :lol:

  • Comment 75, posted at 28.10.10 08:29:07 by Marietjie Reply

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  • @Marietjie (Comment 76) : Don`t you have to get permission from Wayne Fyvie to use the expression ” new kid on the block ” ?! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 76, posted at 28.10.10 08:31:58 by Original Pierre Reply
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  • making 20 tackles a game for the griquas says as much about the players around him, considering how badly the team played during his and stemmet’s period there. i would like to see how he develops over the next year. but he wouldn’t be in my super 15 squad yet. but i do agree we shouldn’t ditch him just yet.

  • Comment 77, posted at 28.10.10 08:32:57 by try time Reply

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  • @Original Pierre (Comment 77) : hangin tough.

  • Comment 78, posted at 28.10.10 08:34:00 by try time Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 63) : rob you know something we dont? he not eligable to play for the juniors next year?

  • Comment 79, posted at 28.10.10 09:27:52 by VanWilder Reply

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  • Sharks MUST keep Downey

    Good luck…

  • Comment 80, posted at 28.10.10 09:35:57 by Morné Reply
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  • @VanWilder (Comment 79) : nope – he’s a senior next year and cash is tight

  • Comment 81, posted at 28.10.10 09:48:29 by robdylan Reply
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