Good news, folks… I’ve found a new source of Super Rugby match statistics; hence we can relaunch our ever popular “by the numbers” article that gives a statistical analysis of each Sharks game.
Let’s insert the usual caveats here about how much to read into statistical analysis, because it really isn’t as objective as it’s meant to be, yet isn’t subjective enough to provide any level of context to the numbers. In short, statistics certainly give us a piece of the picture, but don’t paint the whole scene completely by themselves.
Enough of that, let’s look at the Stormers match!
We’ll start with some team statistics – these are useful measure that we can track form match to match.
The Sharks got the better of the Stormers in terms of rucks and mauls (74 to 59) , line breaks (2 to 1) and offloads (11 to 4). Set pieces were more even, with 5 scrums won apiece, however the Stormers took one on Sharks put in. Likewise, total lineouts wins went the Sharks’ way (16 to 11), but the Stormers won 3 against the throw to the Sharks’ 2.
The Stormers made more tackles (124 to 99) than the Sharks did, but the Sharks missed a slightly higher percentage (22% against 21%). Those numbers are unacceptably high for either team, though and I’m sure the respective coaches would prefer to see numbers in the very low teens, if not single digits, when it comes to missed tackle percentage.
Marcell Coetzee (13) and Bismarck du Plessis (12) made the most tackles in total, with their effectiveness scores (93% and 92% respectively) also the highest significant numbers. Anton Bresler, Paul Jordaan and Marius Joubert all managed 100% effectiveness, but since none played for more than 10 minutes, we’ll discount them. The worst offenders in terms of missed tackles were Steven Sykes, Wiehahn Herbst and Louis Ludik, each of who missed as many tackles as they made.
In terms of work with the ball, it was again Coetzee who made the most runs (13) making 64m in the process. Lwazi Mvovo (95m) made the most progress with ball in hand, followed closely by Riaan Viljoen (86m) and JP Pietersen (82m). Coetzee also attended the most rucks and mauls (12), with Bismarck on 11 just behind.
Looking at discipline, the Sharks lost the game by conceding 14 penalties to the Stormers’ 6 and there were three main antagonists in this regard; Bismarck du Plessis, Dale Chadwick and Ross Skeate each conceded 3, with Skeate earning a yellow card as well. Much -maligned captain Keegan Daniel only conceded a single penalty, by comparison. Bismarck and Keegan did, however, each concede possession three times (for Bismarck, bad lineout throws count) and with the latter adding 4 missed tackles, the captain does end up in the unfortunate position of being the player with the highest combined error rate, even if he was not the main conceder of penalties.
There is really no other candidate for Most Valuable Player than Marcell Coetzee, though, which I’m sure all of us already figured out just from watching the match.Tweet