bchanakira2

IRB Player of the Year?


Written by Benedict Chanakira (bchanakira2)

Posted in :All Blacks, End of Year Tour, Original Content, Reader Submissions, Springboks on 13 Nov 2013 at 11:29
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The 2013 International season is about to end with the end of year tours to come. This year has seen the All blacks continue their dominance in world rugby. Their only loss since clinching the World Cup was against an English side that was superior on the day, in 2012. They are in a class of their own. Two of their players are favorites to clinch the coveted award. Last year the award went to a New Zealander, Daniel Carter. The All Blacks have had five winners out of a possible twelve. They should make it six in 2013.

Here are the contenders:

Kieran Read -The best number 8 in the world by miles was pivotal in the Crusaders and All Blacks campaigns including a master class display in the unofficial Rugby Championship final against South Africa at Ellis Park. He displays great technical ability, he is explosive and quite quick, has a skill set of backline players. He possesses great leadership as well; especially when the great Richie McCaw was injured he stepped in seamlessly. The perfect number eight solid off the base, high work rate and also links the backs and the forwards well. Highlight: Setting up the first and scoring the last decisive try that led to the All Blacks winning the game against South Africa.

Ben Smith –The versatile utility back. Like the super Israel Dagg a few years ago plays for a side that struggles in Super Rugby. He shows his class by putting in cameo performances week in – week out. Despite his side finishing in the bottom of the New Zealand Conference throughout The season he was the best full back in the tournament. Selected for the All Blacks, they preferred Dagg and he was moved to the wing. Finishing top try scorer of the Rugby Championship charts as he continued his magnificent form. A pivotal player to his sides’ successful campaign. Highlight: Hold the record for most Rugby Championship tries, eight in six matches.

Jean de Villiers- The Springbok captain has led from the front, and in times that needed composure he managed to assure his young side kept their head. He has been the best number 12 in the world this season. He has varied his game, from the odd crash and bash to displaying flair and creativity. Leading the Rugby Championship’s Defenders beaten column and an impressive eight line breaks in 6 games, while being solid on defense bar his mishap on Beauden Barrett’s try. He may be nearing the end of his career but like McCaw continues to put in eye catching displays. If he is to remain at his best he may need to be managed better by SARU. Highlight: Running over Beauden Barrett for the Springboks bonus point try followed by a passionate celebration which gave the Boks a sniff.

Willie le Roux-The wing-cum fullback has brought an X-factor to this Bok side. A side that was in need of their own version of Israel Dagg. Possibly the most dangerous player on attack in South Africa. He has a deceptive goose-step and has more chips than a Simba packet. He would play the second fly half role at times as he comes from the back and creates and plays with unorganized defense. le Roux’s weakness is defense. An Achilles heel which if sorted out could see him be even more deadly. Highlight: Making his Springbok debut and securing his place in the Springbok XV. Being part of the historic Cheetahs side that made it to the play-offs.

Leigh Halfpenny- The Welsh diminutive fullback has had a stellar season. Amongst some the best 15 in the game. He went down south with the Lions; they managed to beat Australia 2-1 in the series. The final test being a humbling. Deceptive pace, side step and an accurate radar on his boot saw him claim the player of the series. He was the player of the tournament in the Six Nations as Wales won the title. Clearly the best player in the Northern Hemisphere. Highlight: British and Irish top points scorer: breaking the record held by Neil Jenkins.

These are the contenders.Michael Hooper and Israel Folau, missing out for me but lets see who will win it. I go with one of the All Black players. Ben Smith being the favourite. Excelling at a weak team, and with the mighty All Blacks.



57 Comments

  • Kolisi gets my vote. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 1, posted at 13.11.13 11:43:30 by McLovin Reply
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  • @McLovin (Comment 1) : Haha! You misspelt Bismarck. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 2, posted at 13.11.13 11:46:31 by gregkaos Reply
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  • @gregkaos (Comment 2) : Bisvark? :twisted:

  • Comment 3, posted at 13.11.13 11:50:25 by McLovin Reply

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  • Read is a shoe in for the title. Bissy would be my South African player of the year, now if he can just sort out his discipline.

  • Comment 4, posted at 13.11.13 11:50:55 by Bump Reply

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  • Read or Halfpenny. I reckon they will pick Halfpenny. B&I Lions tours are huge.

  • Comment 5, posted at 13.11.13 11:55:23 by Morné Reply
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  • Who decides?

  • Comment 6, posted at 13.11.13 12:00:32 by McLovin Reply

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  • Sharks have signed Innocent Radebe. Very good signing this, very good young flyhalf.

  • Comment 7, posted at 13.11.13 12:13:03 by Morné Reply
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  • @Morné (Comment 7) : He was on the bench for a Sharks under 19 game this year already, if I remember correctly.

  • Comment 8, posted at 13.11.13 12:25:28 by war1 Reply
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  • Kieran Reid should win. Halfpenny kicked well against an average Oz side. Ben Smith also in contention .

  • Comment 9, posted at 13.11.13 12:25:43 by SheldonK Reply

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  • @war1 (Comment 8) : http://www.sharksworld.co.za/2013/10/10/sharks-u21-and-u19-teams-announced/ indeed he was.

  • Comment 10, posted at 13.11.13 12:27:13 by war1 Reply
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  • As for the IRB player of the year, Kieran Read. In my opinion he should have won it in 2011 and 2012 as well.

  • Comment 11, posted at 13.11.13 12:28:08 by war1 Reply
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  • It should be Reid, but Halfpenny will take it I think.

  • Comment 12, posted at 13.11.13 12:50:36 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • Did you know that Marius Joubert was on the short-list in 2004?

    How did that happen?

  • Comment 13, posted at 13.11.13 12:52:24 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 13) : a hatrick against the AB’s would have helped.

  • Comment 14, posted at 13.11.13 12:56:08 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 14) :

    Ah, so there is method in the madness?

  • Comment 15, posted at 13.11.13 13:06:07 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • Halfpenny will take it. Winning Lions tour and a chance for a NH player to take it.

  • Comment 16, posted at 13.11.13 13:09:33 by McLovin Reply

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  • Read or de Villiers

  • Comment 17, posted at 13.11.13 13:09:58 by vanmartin Reply
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  • My pick would he Read.

  • Comment 18, posted at 13.11.13 13:11:07 by Pokkel Reply
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  • Might I just say that this is a great, well-written article. Keep on contributing!

  • Comment 19, posted at 13.11.13 13:31:00 by Culling Song Reply
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  • In a fair world it would be Reid; the guy is peerless at the moment. I also have a sneaking suspicion the award is going to go north though…

  • Comment 20, posted at 13.11.13 13:34:11 by Culling Song Reply
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  • Scots have announced their side. When are the Boks?

  • Comment 21, posted at 13.11.13 13:55:17 by McLovin Reply

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  • Reid – no contest

  • Comment 22, posted at 13.11.13 13:58:07 by Bokhoring Reply

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  • @McLovin (Comment 21) : Tomorrow afternoon according to 702.

  • Comment 23, posted at 13.11.13 13:58:41 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @McLovin (Comment 21) : this afternoon apparently

  • Comment 24, posted at 13.11.13 14:02:22 by The Hobbit Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 23) : @The Hobbit (Comment 24) : So anytime between this afternoon and tomorrow afternoon. :smile:

  • Comment 25, posted at 13.11.13 14:03:58 by McLovin Reply

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  • KR !No player touches him in world rugby at the moment ,except maybe Bismarck!!

  • Comment 26, posted at 13.11.13 14:15:34 by Talent Reply
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  • @McLovin (Comment 25) : correct… remember we on HM time here :roll:

  • Comment 27, posted at 13.11.13 14:27:05 by The Hobbit Reply
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  • 14:30 (SA time) tomorrow.

  • Comment 28, posted at 13.11.13 14:32:39 by McLovin Reply

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  • Reid will get it, but I hope its halfpenny!

  • Comment 29, posted at 13.11.13 14:41:49 by KingsArmy Reply

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  • Id give it to Smith.

    What that oke did in a dreadful Highlands team was downright miraculous.

    And then theres the small matter of his 11 tries this season for the ABs.

    Great year.

  • Comment 30, posted at 13.11.13 15:15:06 by John Galt Reply

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  • @Morné (Comment 7) :
    Great little player.
    Ridiculous he didn’t make the SA schools side.

  • Comment 31, posted at 13.11.13 15:22:20 by John Galt Reply

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  • McCaw has won 3 times, I think Read deserves at least 1.

  • Comment 32, posted at 13.11.13 15:24:03 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @Talent (Comment 26) : Agreed

  • Comment 33, posted at 13.11.13 15:38:28 by Bump Reply

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  • Read deserves it.

    Approaching McCaw-like stature already.

  • Comment 34, posted at 13.11.13 16:38:59 by Big Fish Reply
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  • Bissie has played superbly but was out half of the season and won’t get a nod. Folau might be one of the nominees and possibly Habana too, depends how many they nominate (They’ve nominated between 4-7 players in the past).

    I’m not saying he deserves it but they will give it to the 6 nations and Lions player of the tournament, Leigh Halfpenny. They have to appeal to the poor NH on occasion (they nominated Owen Farell last year who isn’t even close to the top 4 in the world hahahahaha :lol: ) and this will be one of those times.

  • Comment 35, posted at 13.11.13 17:50:23 by SeanyJMc Reply

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  • “has more chips than a Simba packet.” Great quote Benedict!! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 36, posted at 13.11.13 17:52:17 by SeanyJMc Reply

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  • Sorry to be the one to piss on your parade Benedict but this article displayed a very biassed and slightly uninformed view.

    First off, only test matches count, so super rugby form means nothing. So limit your view to test form.

    Secondly, you seemed to have missed all the NH games. There is a little competition called the Six Nations. Kudos for noticing Leigh Halfpenny. Hard to miss the Lions’ new record holder for the most points in a series. You have however missed a brilliant season by Alex Cuthbert and George North – key in winning the 6N and for the Lions in destroying the Wallabies. Matt Scott and Stuart Hogg from Scotland also had exceptional seasons, as did Vunipola from England, Sexton from Ireland, and Parisse from Italy.

    That said, I don’t believe any of the names I added are higher up on the list than Read, Smith, De Villiers or Halfpenny. But they all made at least as big an impact as Willie le Roux.

    Willie played in 10 tests and scored three tries. He was moved from fullback to wing because of his frailty under the high ball. People seem to forgive their golden boys their faults because they display some quality which they think is sorely lacking – in his case attacking flair. Let me remind you close we came to losing to Argentina, was it not for the “boring and predictable” goal kicking of Morne Steyn. Willie’s inability to field the high ball that day nearly cost us.

    If you really want to add a second South African’s name, then Eben Etsebeth is probably the only name worth mentioning. He was nominated for team of the week by every rugby site that I follow (a substantial number) and he was selected almost weekly.

    Other players such as Duane, Brian and Morne are a bit of a stretch though.

  • Comment 37, posted at 13.11.13 19:41:13 by King Shark Reply
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  • What no Sharks?????????? :twisted: It must be Kieran Read!!!! So the B&I Lions beat Oz but so did SA and NZ, hell the Ozzies were a joke this year they almost lost to the Pumas in Oz!!!!!! Halfpenny was good, but Read was great and helped the All Blacks to a (thusfar) perfect record in 2013.

  • Comment 38, posted at 13.11.13 21:45:27 by JD Reply
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  • @King Shark (Comment 37) :
    The only trait on display here is your own distinct lack of class.

    At Sharksworld we make a point of recognising the time and effort taken by someone to write an article. Not to mention the courage needed to throw your opinion up for public dissection.

    By all means, disagree with someone’s opinion, but don’t mistake your own for fact.

    Funny that at the end of your long diatribe the only tangible change you suggest is the exclusion of le Roux.

  • Comment 39, posted at 13.11.13 22:36:45 by Big Fish Reply
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  • I am an avid fan of the 6N. However I feel that compared to the Rugby Championship it is quite inferior. The two best teams in the world are from down south. These aremyopinions and its great we all sharing them here.

    The Welsh wings were good but could they walk into an SA or NZ side now? Willie? I felt he changed the Bok side and yes, he does have those weaknesses as do some of the players noted above.

  • Comment 40, posted at 14.11.13 00:11:14 by bchanakira2 Reply
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  • Can’t wait for the team announcement.

    Read that Bakkies and Flip was training together. And Lambie at flyhalf.

    I’m not even sure I want to see Lambie at 10 anymore. I don’t think there’s much he can do to impress anyone anyway.

    Would be sad if HM can’t bring himself to start PSDT with Bakkies. I thought that was the point of having him there.

  • Comment 41, posted at 14.11.13 10:37:17 by Letgo Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 41) : I never for a moment expected PS to get a start on this tour, which is why I was very surprised to see so many experienced journos jump to completely the wrong conclusion after what McFarland said on Monday

  • Comment 42, posted at 14.11.13 10:42:24 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 41) : Whats wrong with Lambie? I don’t think he did any worse than most of the players last weekend. I can’t wait to see him starting at 10 and get the opportunity to show some of the skills he put on display during the CC final. Hopefully we won’t be defending for 3/4 quarters of the game against the Scots.

  • Comment 43, posted at 14.11.13 11:16:56 by gregkaos Reply
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  • Plumtree also reckons Lambie is a test 10. I’d like to see him play consistently there!

  • Comment 44, posted at 14.11.13 11:20:35 by bchanakira2 Reply
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  • @gregkaos (Comment 43) :

    Nothing wrong with him. I’m glad he’s getting an opportunity. I’m just already preparing for the backlash once the game is done and he has missed one kick or skewed one drop goal attempt.

    I’d like to see him get way more game time and get a proper chance to prove himself in the position.

  • Comment 45, posted at 14.11.13 11:28:04 by Letgo Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 42) :

    I really thought he might get a chance, especially when I heard Bakkies was selected, because why else would HM bring Bakkies back? We already have Etzebeth?

    I would have loved to see Etzebeth and PSDT together, is HM not also excited for the prospect of them playing together. This baffles me a little. Surely playing them together won’t influence the team that badly that we lose?

  • Comment 46, posted at 14.11.13 11:30:07 by Letgo Reply
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  • @Big Fish (Comment 39) : Hear, hear! And as bchanakira2 mentioned in the post below yours, despite le Roux’s weaknesses he brought a new dimension to the Bok’s attack and is well respected by the Kiwis which says a lot.

  • Comment 47, posted at 14.11.13 11:41:50 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @Letgo (Comment 46) : Flip calls the lineouts so I doubt Meyer is prepared to hand that responsibility to PSdT for an entire game at this point in time which is understandable. I believe it’s a decision that would benefit both the team and PsDT.

  • Comment 48, posted at 14.11.13 11:45:15 by vanmartin Reply
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  • Willie has given us something more than the odd kicking game.

    Well, throw the youngster into the kitchen. PSdt coulddo something! Who knows? If we want to groom him for 2015 let’s test him this weekend.

  • Comment 49, posted at 14.11.13 11:51:19 by bchanakira2 Reply
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  • @bchanakira2 (Comment 49) : I hear what you’re saying regarding du Toit but in that case I’d prefer he make his start with Flip (as opposed to Eben or Bakkies) so that he can play without the huge responsibility of calling the lineouts on his shoulders from the get-go. It’s just such a vital part of the Bok gameplan and probably even more so in NH conditions.

  • Comment 50, posted at 14.11.13 12:41:48 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 50) :

    Thats like saying you dont want your flyhalf to kick for posts from the get-go. Or your hooker throw into the line-out from the get-go.

    Calling the line-outs is part of his job – either he can do it or he cant.

  • Comment 51, posted at 14.11.13 12:45:22 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 51) : Yeah lets give the 21 year old a start with the sudden responsibility of calling the shots on the Boks most potent attacking platform while he earns his 2nd cap. :roll:

  • Comment 52, posted at 14.11.13 13:05:20 by gregkaos Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 51) : “Or your hooker throw into the line-out from the get-go. :lol: ”- horseshit !Any forward can call in the line-outs ,what are you smoking? Trying to hard to be a discerning/matter of fact voice ,you are just getting annoying.

    And for that matter ,any player capable of kicking for posts the best in their team ,should be kicking for posts. The idea that only the 10 should kick for posts is a prime example of the dogma that plagues the minds of South African Rugby supporters.

  • Comment 53, posted at 14.11.13 13:15:53 by Talent Reply
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  • I realize the irony in my last post :lol: but left it just to poke at Vin :lol:

  • Comment 54, posted at 14.11.13 13:17:54 by Talent Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 51) : Either you’re trolling or being disingenuous Vin. Either way I’m on to you ;-)

  • Comment 55, posted at 14.11.13 13:25:28 by vanmartin Reply
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  • Halfpenny for me is without a doubt the most influential player in World Rugby this year with Read a close 2nd. The company Read plays with makes it that much easier to stick out. Leigh Halfpenny stuck out like a sore thumb in a class of lesser players than those who play with Read. LEIGH HALFPENNY!!!

  • Comment 56, posted at 14.11.13 23:18:10 by Ludz Reply

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  • Kieran Read!

  • Comment 57, posted at 16.11.13 18:13:33 by bchanakira2 Reply
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