robdylan

Boks v England: Player ratings


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Springboks on 29 Nov 2010 at 10:41
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The Boks turned in a vastly-improved performance on Saturday to extend their unbeaten run against the English to 7 test matches. Let’s see how they performed individually.

1) Beast Mtawarira. A superb performance from the big man – the Bok tight five kept the English under the cosh all day and the front row, in particular, were dominant throughout. Beast was prominent on the drive and on defence. The best he’s been on this tour. 8/10
2) Bismarck du Plessis. A deserving man of the match, Bizzie was on fire and went out of his way to atone for a poor showing against the Scots. Lineouts and scrums were flawless, while he made huge impact with ball in hand as well as (particularly) on defence. 9/10
3) Jannie du Plessis. The anchor in the Bok scrum, Jannie deserves special praise for dominating his highly-rated opponent, Andrew Sheridan. The big doctor has emerged as the Boks first-choice tighthead and the opportunity of some continuity in selection is doing wonders for his game. 8/10
4) Bakkies Botha. Added his usual hard edge to the Boks pack and deserves a special mention for maintaining a high level of personal discipline despite, at times, ridiculous levels of provocation from the English pack. Bakkies lived up to his billing as part of the best tight 5 in world rugby. 8/10
5) Victor Matfield. Reigned supreme in the lineouts and deserves some praise for the way the Boks eschewed the kick-at-all-costs approach in favour of some more intelligent rugby. Guilty of some selfish play in the first half which robbed his team of a scoring opportunity. 7/10
6) Deon Stegmann. In a pack AS DOMINANT as this one was, we were all hoping to see more of the openside flanker. For a fourth test in succession, he was anonymous, both at the breakdown as well as in open play. Made his tackles, but that’s about it. 4/10
7) Juan Smith. Another close candidate for man of the match – Juan was everywhere and kept the English defence busy all afternoon with his surging runs. A tyro on defence as well as a more-than-useful tail lineout option. 9/10
8) Pierre Spies. We all know Spies is a front-foot player and he was pretty useful behind a dominant tight five. Full of running and always keen to take on the defence. Did, however, cost the Boks a try by not feeding Gio Aplon after a lovely break. 7/10
9) Ruan Pienaar. A very solid test match from a player who has blown hot and cold on this tour. Pienaar kicked less and his distribution was for the most part very good. When he did put the ball to boot, he generally found space and turned the opposition. 7/10
10) Morne Steyn. On a day where the Boks finally elected to give the ball a bit of air, Steyn showed why he is not the right flyhalf to use for such a game. His passing is ordinary in the extreme he put his centres under huge pressure through inaccurate distribution. Missed a few relatively simple kicks at goal too. 5/10
11) Lwazi Mvovo. Had far more opportunities to get involved in the game than he did on his debut against Scotland and for the most part, acquitted himself well. Was unfortunate not to hold onto a tricky pass from Steyn in the first half that may well have resulted in a try, but made amends with a trademark score in the second period. Solid on defence throughout. 7/10
12) Jean de Villiers. Mastermined the Bok rush defence which unsettled the English backs on the few occasions when they did have the ball. Offered nothing at all on attack, though, as part of a centre pairing that lacked any rhythm or fluency. 6/10
13) Frans Steyn. Proved again, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that he is not an outside centre. Showed a lack of basic handling skills and generally offered nothing on attack, apart from one clever offload to Spies in the tackle. Looked marginally better at fullback later in the game, but his all-round form and conditioning will add fuel to the fire suggesting that the club game in France is a good few levels below where he needs to be to excel at test rugby. 4/10
14) Gio Aplon. A brave player who made the most of the limited opportunities presented to him. Did well to get into a good supporting position on occasions, only to be denied the pass that would have set him away. 6/10
15) Zane Kirchner. Let it never be said I can’t admit when I’ve been wrong. Zane, on this occasion, was incredibly good at fullback and delivered his best showing in a Bok jersey to date. He was the best of the Bok backs by quite some margin. 8/10
16) Adriaan Strauss – not on long enough to be rated.
17) CJ van der Linde. Performed admirably in the scrum (against a by-then broken English pack), but ensured a 12-point reversal by trying to be clever when the Boks had a 3-man overlap. 5/10
18) Flip van der Merwe – added huge physical presence when he came on ensure that the pack went from strength to strength. An impressive player who looks the part at this level. 8/10
19) Willem Alberts – Flew all over the field, putting in huge tackles and making ground with ball in hand. Scored his third try in as many tests to cap off a remarkable debut tour. 8/10
20) Francois Hougaard – Came on at wing and acquitted himself well, although he was frustrated by a similar lack of opportunities to Aplon. A highly versatile player with great skills and a never-say-die attitude. How did Province let this kid go? 7/10
21) Pat Lambie – Came on for a minute at the end, in a game that was screaming for his brand of rugby all along. Not long enough to be rated, I fear.
22) Adrian Jacobs – Added a much-needed creative spark in the centres when he came on and made us wonder, for the umpteenth time, how come he has never been picked to start on this tour, with the other centre options so clearly not up to it? Pulled off a clear try-saving tackle towards the end as well, just to further dampen the ardour of the “Adi-Jacobs-Caren’t-Tekkel” brigade. 8/10



77 Comments

  • Hello folks. Long time…
    1. I think the player analysis is great. Basically; awesome pack, shit backline.
    2. I think Ruan’s kicking was A LOT more accurate this game.
    3. When Steyn misses that many kicks, his value in the team is Zim Dollarish.

  • Comment 1, posted at 29.11.10 10:47:23 by deanoelsch Reply
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  • I would have rated them pretty much the same Rob..

  • Comment 2, posted at 29.11.10 10:48:42 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • Hougaard never wanted to stay at WP.Was one of the times that they actually did try and keep a player.

    Adi should have come on way earlier

  • Comment 3, posted at 29.11.10 10:49:49 by Clayton(PJLD) Reply
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  • Why is Frans Steyn rated so poorly? I really thought he had a good game. Not great, but good.

    Everywhere on defense and when he did get the ball in the backs looked to create something from nothing every time. He’s not an outside center that’s for sure, but does he really deserve a 4? Was he worse than Morne?

  • Comment 4, posted at 29.11.10 10:50:40 by Letgo Reply
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  • Ruan still waves his arms around way too much for my liking

  • Comment 5, posted at 29.11.10 10:50:50 by Clayton(PJLD) Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 4) : Fransies defence was great and he was a bit better than in other games but he still doesn’t deserve anything higher than a 5

  • Comment 6, posted at 29.11.10 10:54:51 by Clayton(PJLD) Reply
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  • @deanoelsch (Comment 1) : your point 1 sums it up perfectly :)

    Good to see you here again

  • Comment 7, posted at 29.11.10 10:54:52 by robdylan Reply
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  • I mostly agree but I think Frans Steyn probably had his best game of the year so far and deserves at least a 6.

  • Comment 8, posted at 29.11.10 10:56:06 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 4) : “looked to create something from nothing”? Askies? All I saw was him fumbling the ball every time the other muppets managed to get it as far as him.

    I’m sorry, that offload to Spies was the only decent thing he did all game, according to what I saw. Then again, this is just my subjective opinion, so take it for what it’s worth :)

  • Comment 9, posted at 29.11.10 10:56:23 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 4) :

    His first half performance must have been the worst of all the backline players.. His passing was terrible.. He was nowhere near the standard of player we need in that position..

  • Comment 10, posted at 29.11.10 10:59:08 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 8) :

    If that was his best game, it says a lot about his other games..

    As mentioned, his game has gone backwards tremendously!!

  • Comment 11, posted at 29.11.10 11:00:27 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 9) : You’ve never been objective when it comes to Fransie :mrgreen:

  • Comment 12, posted at 29.11.10 11:00:53 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 8) : I’m coming to the conclusion that Frans Steyn plays two games every week. The one you, letgo and a few others see, and the one I see :)

  • Comment 13, posted at 29.11.10 11:03:06 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 12) : I’ll stick my hand up and admit to that :)

    Although, I did do a very kind article about him a few weeks ago, as you may recall. Before he turned in 3 tests’ worth of the biggest dross I’ve ever seen in my life!

  • Comment 14, posted at 29.11.10 11:05:28 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 14) :

    Can you believe that rugby365 rated Zane, Lwazi and Frans all at the sme rating.. What rubbish is that?

  • Comment 15, posted at 29.11.10 11:10:02 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 14) : @robdylan (Comment 13) : He is not a 13′s backside and I think Adi was great when he came on but he deserves more than a 4 even if it was just for his defence which was great.

  • Comment 16, posted at 29.11.10 11:10:35 by Pokkel Reply
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  • When we heard about snow and rain last week I was glad that Lambie wasn’t picked but when I saw how good condition actually were I wished Lambie was on the field. Morne created nothing and with all that quality ball I’m sure Lambie would have created more opportunities. Again I don’t understand Divvie. He brings on Lambie in the other games with the Boks in trouble and in the game where he could have done well he gives him 1 minute on the field.

  • Comment 17, posted at 29.11.10 11:14:02 by Pokkel Reply
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  • Fransie Steyn should stick to 15, centre no way…

  • Comment 18, posted at 29.11.10 11:22:36 by Charlie Reply

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  • Ayway do I look unfit ? :lol: :lol: :lol:

  • Comment 19, posted at 29.11.10 11:23:53 by Charlie Reply

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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 15) : I love Jan de Koning, but his player rating and team of the week selections are frankly baffling sometimes… Makes me wonder if he actually watches the games.

  • Comment 20, posted at 29.11.10 11:28:19 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 17) : baffling, isn’t it? Lambie should have come on at half time

  • Comment 21, posted at 29.11.10 11:30:00 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 13) : I didn’t give him good ratings for his other two games, but I felt that he was much better in this game. I also think once we get rid of Morne Steyn (like that’s ever going to happen). all our backs will look better.

  • Comment 22, posted at 29.11.10 11:30:19 by Letgo Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 22) : ok – negotiated settlement, Fransie can have 5… that ok? :mrgreen:

  • Comment 23, posted at 29.11.10 11:34:51 by robdylan Reply
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  • FINALLY everyone is starting to agree with me Morne is SHIT and always has been!!!!!!

  • Comment 24, posted at 29.11.10 11:39:48 by Ben Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 23) : :smile:

  • Comment 25, posted at 29.11.10 11:49:10 by Letgo Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 25) : I know better than to argue with you, Coach

  • Comment 26, posted at 29.11.10 11:54:57 by robdylan Reply
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  • I agree Frans is too erratic, shows some poor decision making and is not claim enough under pressure whatever position he is playing in the backline. All of this could be attributed to youth and potentially poor mentoring but I thought his time overseas might have matured his play but it doesn’t seem to have been the case.

    The other Steyn in my opinion is a typical “High veld” fly half limited in his play, a lot of this can unfortunately be traced back to South African and particularly Bulls limited game plan. Having said that I thought he looked better in the Bulls set up in the Super 14 earlier in the year.

    However whoever the mystery person is that is behind the Bok’s backline play is (I suspect Dick), needs to be sent to join Putt coaching in the NZ third division.

  • Comment 27, posted at 29.11.10 11:58:39 by Dive Pass Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 26) : Who’s Couch ?

  • Comment 28, posted at 29.11.10 12:08:58 by Charlie Reply

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  • I think Frans Steyn had his best game in a Bok jersey for a very long time – he defended really well and looked to create something from nothing on 2 occasions that was unfortunately undone by poor handling. He deserved a better rating than that. Those 2 drop goal attempts were iffy at best, but he showed signs being on the comeback.

  • Comment 29, posted at 29.11.10 12:18:41 by MB1810 Reply

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  • good day all
    rob mate even though i resepct your views on most things and seldom differ

    i do not think for one minute you have judged frans fairly

    your dislike of the man shows that , and there is no way in hell he was our worst back, infact no doubt had it not been for frans’s defence saved quite a few tries when the english broke through defence and i know of 3 occasions for a fact

    so sorry cant agree at all, also on a few accasions with rush defence jean was caught out with frans having to cover , how come he never gets credit??

  • Comment 30, posted at 29.11.10 12:20:35 by sharks_lover Reply
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  • @MB1810 (Comment 29) : you ok with 5/10? I’m not going higher.

    His moustache is worth 9/10 though. Only the coach’s is better!

  • Comment 31, posted at 29.11.10 12:21:49 by robdylan Reply
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  • @sharks_lover (Comment 30) : let’s agree to disagree, shall we?

  • Comment 32, posted at 29.11.10 12:23:04 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 22) : letgo a lot of the problems in the backline are poor coaching and planning

    that backline one could see when passing they did not understand each other

  • Comment 33, posted at 29.11.10 12:23:12 by sharks_lover Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 32) : yessir :lol:

  • Comment 34, posted at 29.11.10 12:23:30 by sharks_lover Reply
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  • and a part of that is morne steyn whom i blame as he is far to deep , once the ball goes to the backline their defence has lots of time to cut us off

  • Comment 35, posted at 29.11.10 12:24:27 by sharks_lover Reply
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  • morne steyn misses a lot of tackles and seems scared to take contact

  • Comment 36, posted at 29.11.10 12:26:25 by sharks_lover Reply
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  • oh and good day everyone :mrgreen:

  • Comment 37, posted at 29.11.10 12:28:00 by sharks_lover Reply
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  • I’d give Fransie a 5/10 simply because of his superb cover defence. He also put in a great kick at fullback. His hands really let him down. Gavin Rich commented that it was so cold over there his fingers were frozen and simply typing was a painful exercise. Other players managed though so that really can’t be used as an excuse. He’s way off his best and anything more than a five is based simply on past reputation.

  • Comment 38, posted at 29.11.10 12:28:34 by vanmartin Reply
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  • Sky broadcast crew: 3/10

    That was some of the worst camera work I’ve seen in a while. I counted two instances where the camera went off ball during play. And what’s with the close-ups on the less than handsome English front-rowers while time is off? Why not use the time to do a replay or some analysis. The commentators at one point, were describing a play to the viewers and offering their analysis and on-screen we were left having to watch players slowly make their way to a line-out.

  • Comment 39, posted at 29.11.10 12:34:46 by vanmartin Reply
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  • I must’ve watched a different game on Saturday cause I thought Fran Steyn was woeful.
    Knock-ons, two fluffed passes spring to mind, running skew. The only thing he did was tackle, whcih he did well. Oh, and who said the eighties was dead? That tache with the long hair bleongs in an eighties cop drama!

  • Comment 40, posted at 29.11.10 12:42:08 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • I also didnt think we played al that well to be honest though.
    Thoguht the execution was pretty poor and our forward dominance should’ve been converted into many more points than we had.
    England were simply woeful and we bullie dthem off the park.

    My concern is that Matfield said after the game that this is our blueprint for the WC – heaven help us if thats the case.
    It amazes me that after all these years we’re still the rugby side that depends on blikseming the opposition up front to win a game. And when that doesnt work, ala Scotland, there is no plan B.

    This approach will work against NH teams but Oz and NZ will spank you if they’re even remotely able to gain parity up front.

  • Comment 41, posted at 29.11.10 12:45:36 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • Dan Retief has a very nice no-nonsense piece up on his website regarding Saturday’s win. Well worth a read. He has a few of his notes regarding the game in there as well and it confirms Frans Steyn’s bad day at the office on attack.

  • Comment 42, posted at 29.11.10 12:59:02 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 42) : Link please…

  • Comment 43, posted at 29.11.10 13:12:50 by Charlie Reply

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  • @Charlie (Comment 43) : namesurname dot com

  • Comment 44, posted at 29.11.10 13:18:29 by Clayton(PJLD) Reply
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  • It’s not Frans’ fault if he gets picked at 13, so considering that, I’ll add 1 to his rating.

  • Comment 45, posted at 29.11.10 13:21:18 by Jarson (AddicteD) Reply
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  • @Charlie (Comment 43) : http://www.danretief.com

  • Comment 46, posted at 29.11.10 13:24:31 by robdylan Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 42) : It doesn’t confirm anything!

  • Comment 47, posted at 29.11.10 13:50:06 by Letgo Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 47) : I’m a Frans fan as well but seriously it’s time to remove the Frans-tinted glasses. He cost us on attack. He’s not a 13 by any stretch of the imagination and he’s played much better than he did on Saturday.

  • Comment 48, posted at 29.11.10 14:01:43 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 48) : frans will also say he is not 13
    he is a 12 or a 15, he also is not a 10

    the problem here is bad selection and bad coaching, the player does not select himself

    infact the starting lineup for the past weekend should have had frans at 15 and adi start at 13 his natural position

  • Comment 49, posted at 29.11.10 14:12:04 by sharks_lover Reply
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  • @sharks_lover (Comment 49) :

    sharks_lover, I buy your argument that he would not select himself at 13… thats fair.

    But IMHO Fransie looked out of sorts. He looks a bit over-weight and just generally a yeard or so slower than the he was and he’s making silly mistakes and basically off the boil slightly.

  • Comment 50, posted at 29.11.10 14:22:02 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @sharks_lover (Comment 49) : I think we’re in complete agreement here but ratings don’t (and shouldn’t) take a player’s favoured position into account.

  • Comment 51, posted at 29.11.10 14:23:26 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 51) : correct! Give that man 10 points!

  • Comment 52, posted at 29.11.10 14:33:58 by robdylan Reply
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  • @sharks_lover (Comment 49) : Steyn’s best bet is 15…

  • Comment 53, posted at 29.11.10 14:37:08 by Charlie Reply

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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 50) : He showed so decent pace in catching the england winger on the way to the tryline.

  • Comment 54, posted at 29.11.10 14:37:48 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 52) : Agree…Give that man a Bell’s… :lol: :lol: :lol:

  • Comment 55, posted at 29.11.10 14:38:35 by Charlie Reply

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  • @Pokkel (Comment 54) : …you meant to say to the halfway line ;-)

  • Comment 56, posted at 29.11.10 14:39:58 by Charlie Reply

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  • I’m not saying Frans was great OUT of position at 13 but under the circumstances I think he did OK.

  • Comment 57, posted at 29.11.10 14:43:39 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 57) :

    Okay is good enough for a few teams pokkel, such as England, Italy, Samoa, Wales etc.
    South Africa is not one of those teams and okay simply isnt good enough.

    I didnt think he was in prime physical condition which to me is non-negotiable as its the one thing a player has absolute control over. A player cannot influence the path of his career, if he gets selected, if the ball bounces right for him, the weather, hsi team-mates etc. But physically there is no excuse.

  • Comment 58, posted at 29.11.10 14:47:41 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 52) : hehehe i was about to type give that man a bells but charlie beat me to it :lol:

  • Comment 59, posted at 29.11.10 14:51:08 by sharks_lover Reply
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  • @sharks_lover (Comment 59) : I’m more a Chivas fan :)

  • Comment 60, posted at 29.11.10 14:57:08 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 60) : Glenfiddich just a pity I can’t afford it :sad:

  • Comment 61, posted at 29.11.10 15:02:52 by Pokkel Reply
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  • Why is Frans Steyn seemingly above reproach?

    He made a great cover tackle on Cueto and a beautiful off-load to Spies, but he was non-existent on attack and just not up quick enough on defence.

    Definitely carrying a few too many pounds too.

  • Comment 62, posted at 29.11.10 15:10:07 by Big Fish Reply
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  • @Big Fish (Comment 62) :

    If this is above reproach, I would hate to see people who are reproached……

  • Comment 63, posted at 29.11.10 15:14:43 by Dive Pass Reply

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  • @Dive Pass (Comment 63) : har har har :)

  • Comment 64, posted at 29.11.10 15:57:05 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 60) :

    No better than Johnny Walker!

  • Comment 65, posted at 29.11.10 16:00:16 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 65) : Johnny Black, perhaps.

  • Comment 66, posted at 29.11.10 16:13:14 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 66) :

    You know me well..

  • Comment 67, posted at 29.11.10 16:25:15 by Richard Ferguson Reply
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  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 67) : Indeed I do :) I love Johnny Black, actually. Could drink vast quantities of that stuff.

  • Comment 68, posted at 29.11.10 16:47:57 by robdylan Reply
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  • Rated too high IMO:
    - Ruan: kicked too much (and 3/4 were useless kicks) and part of the reason why the backs were a bit slow…he was good with ball in hand when he ran himself but that is ALL he was good at (my rating 5)
    - Jacobs: What did he do oon attack? What spark? Nothing changed when he came on. Not worse than JdV adn FS…but nothing better either (my rating same as JdV 6)

  • Comment 69, posted at 29.11.10 17:16:01 by Hmmm Reply

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  • Rated too low IMO:
    - Spies: He rucked well, strong with ball in hand, quick hands to set Alberts away and got around the field to cover in defence (my rating an 8)
    - Frans Steyn: He is a poor mans 13 and just could not get the timing of his passes right everytime, but he did cover wll on defence and did put Spies away with a great offload in the tackle (my rating 5)

  • Comment 70, posted at 29.11.10 17:20:16 by Hmmm Reply

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  • Deon stagman is not the answer at 6…

  • Comment 71, posted at 29.11.10 17:21:00 by Hmmm Reply

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  • @Hmmm (Comment 71) : gee, really? Wow! :roll:

  • Comment 72, posted at 29.11.10 17:26:29 by robdylan Reply
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  • Hmmm… look who the cat dragged in!

  • Comment 73, posted at 29.11.10 17:28:46 by VinChainSaw Reply
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    VinChainSawTeam captain
     
  • Lmao @ Vinnie. :lol:

  • Comment 74, posted at 29.11.10 18:45:11 by wpw Reply
    Author
    wpwAssistant coach
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 21) : Then again is that sorry excuse of an attacking backline even ready for Lambie. If they’re all at sea with a distributer as slow as Steyn imagine how out of sync they’d look with passes fizzing past they’re heads! In a shocking turn of JDV’s fortunes – the man once hailed as the best attacking 12 we’d produced in history – he was described by an English journo as a defensive crash-balling centre!

  • Comment 75, posted at 29.11.10 20:28:26 by neilster Reply

    Vodacom Cup player
     
  • @neilster (Comment 75) : Yeah, but that’s because he’s playing next to a fly half that can’t pass.

  • Comment 76, posted at 30.11.10 10:17:21 by Letgo Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
    LetgoAssistant coach
     
  • Let’s see how m steyn does with diff gameplan and in a backline coached by a competent backline coach..

  • Comment 77, posted at 30.11.10 10:31:43 by bergshark Reply

    bergsharkSuper Rugby player
     

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