Let’s have a look at the statistics coming out of the Boks’ unfortunate 14-all draw with the English in last weekend’s third test. Theses number, as always, are courtesy of the amazing Verusco Stats Portal.
The Boks again shaded possession in the game, holding the ball for 42 minutes to England’s 38. They forced England to make more tackles (206 to 167), but both sides’ tackle effectiveness was lower than they’d like, with SA on 87% and England just ahead on 88%. An astounding 21 handling errors from the Boks, against 10 from England, added to their undoing, while penalties were reasonably even (Boks 13, England 10). The Boks lost 3 of their own line outs, against 2 from England, but no scrums went against the put-in for either side.
Looking at tackles, it was once again that man Marcell Coetzee who emerged head an shoulders above all others, with 19 tackles and none missed. Next best, but some way back, were Wynand Olivier (13 from 13), Beast Mtawarira and Juandre Kruger (both 13 from 14). There weren’t a lot of other 100-percenters in the side, with only Gio Aplon (7), Eben Etzebeth (4), Jean de Villiers (3) and Bismarck du Plessis (2) joining Coetzee and Olivier in missing no tackle attempts.
Morne Steyn (8 from 11) and Flip van der Merwe (9 from 12) were the main missed-tackle offenders, missing 3 apiece, whilst Ruan Pienaar (4 from 6), Ryan Kankowski (6 from 8), Adriaan Strauss (6 from 8) and Pierre Spies (11 from 13) missed 2 tackles each.
Looking at antics with ball in hand, Steyn redeemed himself somewhat as the man to make the most total metres, with 120. Coetzee came in second with 98, while JP Pietersen managed 95. Line breaks were few and far between with centres Olivier and de Villiers credited with just 1 each. Coetzee made the most offloads (3), while it was Juandre Kruger (11) and Coetzee (6) who made the most passes outside the halfbacks.
There were some decent numbers when it came to forwards hitting rucks, with Beast and Pierre Spies sharing the spoils (30 each). Second was Kruger (28), with Coetzee and Jannie du Plessis (27 each) joint third. Gio Aplon was the best of the backs, hitting 18 rucks.
Penalties were evenly distributed, for the most part, with JP Pietersen conceding 2 and a fair few others 1 apiece. Bimsarck du Plessis lost possession 3 times (those line outs!) and Coetzee twice. Nobody really stood out from a combined error rate point of view, with Steyn, Bismarck du Plessis and JP Pietersen making 4 total errors each.
Our Most Valuable Player for the week is none other than Marcell Coetzee, with his name mentioned more often than any other in the stats that matter.Tweet