robdylan

Strong Saffa flavour as Sarries prepare for Sharks


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 8 Jan 2014 at 13:05
Tagged with : , , , , , , , , , , ,

Saracens have named their 23-man squad to face the Sharks at Allianz Park in London on Saturday 25 January.

Former England lock Steve Borthwick captains a strong outfit that includes former Sharks Brad Barritt and Alistair Hargreaves, among a slew of other South African players. Barritt, Matt Stevens and Mouritz Botha are both capped England internationals, while Neil de Kock and Schalk Brits have both played for the Springboks.

The back row, in particular, should be an all Saffa affair as former Bull Jacques Burger, one-time Lions captain Ernst Joubert and WP exports Nick Fenton-Wells and Justin Melck have all been named.

Saracens squad:
Backs: Chris Wyles, David Strettle, Michael Tagicakibau, Marcelo Bosch, Brad Barritt, Duncan Taylor, Sam Stanley, Charlie Hodgson, Neil de Kock, Richard Wigglesworth.
Forwards: Richard Barrington, Nick Auterac, Schalk Brits, Jamie George, Matt Stevens, Petrus Du Plessis, Steve Borthwick (capt.), Alistair Hargreaves, Mouritz Botha, Jacques Burger, Nick Fenton-Wells, Justin Melck, Ernst Joubert.



53 Comments

  • Not too familiar with the English players but that seems quite a strong side.

  • Comment 1, posted at 08.01.14 13:17:34 by Pokkel Reply
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  • I hope the weather isn’t too kak for this game.

  • Comment 2, posted at 08.01.14 13:18:06 by Pokkel Reply
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  • A few England backs missing, but this is pretty close to a full-strength side.

  • Comment 3, posted at 08.01.14 13:19:40 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 2) :

    Wont matter too much; they’re playing on artificial turf…

  • Comment 4, posted at 08.01.14 13:20:01 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • Hope we see some of this- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I0uuaPepZOs

  • Comment 5, posted at 08.01.14 14:05:33 by JJR Reply
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  • Hi guys can’t wait for the match are the broadcasting it

  • Comment 6, posted at 08.01.14 14:25:26 by Gerrietheshark Reply

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  • Tempting…

  • Comment 7, posted at 08.01.14 14:33:03 by McLovin Reply

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  • @McLovin (Comment 7) : do it!

  • Comment 8, posted at 08.01.14 14:36:48 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 8) : Maybe, just the travel to get there… :|

  • Comment 9, posted at 08.01.14 14:44:18 by McLovin Reply

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  • @McLovin (Comment 9) : it’s a bit of a bitch, isn’t it?

    I’m going to be driving from Sevenoaks, if that helps?

  • Comment 10, posted at 08.01.14 15:19:35 by robdylan Reply
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  • Now the only question is who to support. Actually, what am I talking about, of course it’ll be Sarries!
    Not you spite you banana boys, of course, but they really are my local side… and i do go watch them play more than I used to watch the mighty WP back in the day.

  • Comment 11, posted at 08.01.14 16:48:58 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • neither side want to lose this game …so we can expect a good game for sure.

  • Comment 12, posted at 08.01.14 16:53:05 by sharksupport Reply

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  • There are too many of their top players missing to make it worthwhile travelling to London to go watch that match. The Sharks should thump that Sarries side

  • Comment 13, posted at 08.01.14 23:11:14 by Saffex Reply

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  • I like to ride my bicycle

  • Comment 14, posted at 08.01.14 23:59:53 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 14) : I like to ride my bike

  • Comment 15, posted at 09.01.14 00:00:57 by robdylan Reply
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  • It’s just a pity how damned expensive the tickets are for this, otherwise I’d be all over it like a rash. :(

  • Comment 16, posted at 09.01.14 07:54:58 by Seaton Reply

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  • @Seaton (Comment 16) : I was also a bit surprised, hey… ended up paying nearly £100 for two of us, with parking.

  • Comment 17, posted at 09.01.14 10:03:01 by robdylan Reply
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  • yoh, but you want to hear the Saffers squeal when the Sharks want to charge a measly R100 for a ticket :)

  • Comment 18, posted at 09.01.14 10:03:38 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 18) : To be fair though, a straight currency conversion does not make it an apples-with-apples comparison. Spending power plays a huge role.

  • Comment 19, posted at 09.01.14 11:18:20 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 19) : tell you what, I reckon R100 still goes a heck of a lot further in ZA than £6 (or whatever) does here.

  • Comment 20, posted at 09.01.14 11:46:36 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Saffex (Comment 13) :

    With the exception of 2 or 3 players, thats the side that has been playing in the Heineken Cup.

  • Comment 21, posted at 09.01.14 12:31:23 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • No injuries please! That’s most important….

  • Comment 22, posted at 09.01.14 12:33:35 by Ben Reply
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  • @Ben (Comment 22) : exactly!

    I hear the Sharks wanted this to be a low-key warmup, but once sponsors got involved and started demanding their “pound of flesh” it rapidly escalated into a full-strength encounter.

  • Comment 23, posted at 09.01.14 12:38:56 by robdylan Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 21) : good to see Saffex is getting 2014 off to a good start.

    Using up his nonsense quota early on :)

  • Comment 24, posted at 09.01.14 12:39:17 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 24) :

    One thing having a strong opinion; quite another when you spout off without having the facts right. 14 internationals in that Sarries side.

    Only big ommission is Farrell, but Hodgson has been playing ahead of him all season and is in fantastic form.

  • Comment 25, posted at 09.01.14 12:56:09 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 25) : well, even the global village needs one, I guess.

  • Comment 26, posted at 09.01.14 13:00:35 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 20) : My apologies, I got my terms confused. I referred to spending power but had the concept of disposable income in my head. What I’m trying to get at is that prices are largely market driven (monopolies/cohesion is a discussion on it’s own). It boils down to what a particular geographic market can afford. Prices for rugby matches are what they are over there because currently there’s enough disposable income in enough households on that side of the pond to still fill seats at that price point.

  • Comment 27, posted at 09.01.14 13:29:34 by vanmartin Reply
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  • @vanmartin (Comment 27) :

    Tickets to the Autumn international against NZ were starting at £80… thats R1,400…

  • Comment 28, posted at 09.01.14 13:56:29 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • Greetings all.

    Hopw 2013 was great for you and hope that 2014 will be even better.

  • Comment 29, posted at 09.01.14 13:59:23 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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  • @Salmonoid the Subtle (Comment 29) : thanks Salmo! Same to you, bud.

  • Comment 30, posted at 09.01.14 14:01:13 by robdylan Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 28) : Sorry if I’m being dim but I’m not sure what point you’re trying to get at?

  • Comment 31, posted at 09.01.14 14:02:09 by vanmartin Reply
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  • According to Wikipedia, Allianz Park has a seating capacity of only 10 000. With so few seats to fill Im sure they can charge even more and still be oversubscribed.

    Can their capacity really be that small?

  • Comment 32, posted at 09.01.14 14:03:09 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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  • @Salmonoid the Subtle (Comment 32) : yeah. You’ve got to remember that it’s essentially a club ground.

    Just like Durban or Johannesburg wouldn’t have more than one 60k seater rugby stadium, neither does London.

  • Comment 33, posted at 09.01.14 14:05:00 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 33) : Fair enough, but isnt their “pulling power” equivalent or similar to what our franchises can expect.
    How many premier rugby clubs are there in the greater London area?

  • Comment 34, posted at 09.01.14 14:30:23 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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  • @Salmonoid the Subtle (Comment 34) :

    Not even close bro.

    Rugby in the UK, 6 Nations aside, hardly exists to the average person.
    Many club games (provincial equivalent) arent even televised.

    Sarries normally move their home games to Twickenham or Wembley when they have a big game. But most games they wont fill that 10k stadium.

    Ive been to games where there arent even 5k people in the past.

  • Comment 35, posted at 09.01.14 14:37:09 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 33) :

    Well London has about 5 such stadiums… but only one for rugby…

  • Comment 36, posted at 09.01.14 14:38:09 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 35) : Thanks for the education – I really thought it was bigger than that.

  • Comment 37, posted at 09.01.14 14:44:01 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
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  • @Salmonoid the Subtle (Comment 37) :

    No worries mate.

    To add further colour, you do get some better-supported sides up north, but its still not massive. Football rules here, completely.
    The only time the average Joe watches rugby is during the World Cup (if England are doing well) and perhaps a few 6N games.
    Other than that, the game doesn’t exist for them.

    To give you an example, on a winter’s Saturday afternoon in Cape Town you’d find WP playing ion a TV in almost every bar. You would never see Saracens Leicester in a bar in London. You wouldn’t even see Saracens Wasps if it was a top of the table clash.
    Most Premiership games aren’t even shown on Sky (DSTV) – they’re shown on ESPN and you need a further monthly subscription to even watch it on the telly.

    The Irish, on the other hand, have some of the best supported sides in the world.
    Partly because of the Irish diaspora, but Munster is the most supported side in the rugby world.

  • Comment 38, posted at 09.01.14 14:51:07 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 38) : I love it when you talk fancy words like “diaspora”

  • Comment 39, posted at 09.01.14 15:00:05 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 39) : I had to google it…. :roll:

  • Comment 40, posted at 09.01.14 15:14:33 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 21) : Goode, Ashton, Tompkins, Farrell and the two Vinipola’s…….also they include Barritt and Wiggelsworth, but both are in the extended England squad, so doubt they will play

  • Comment 41, posted at 10.01.14 01:57:09 by Saffex Reply

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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 25) : Try again…..i think the only person speaking sh1t is you……2 or 3 my ass

  • Comment 42, posted at 10.01.14 01:59:11 by Saffex Reply

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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 35) : What crap…..most games are pretty much sold out and most of the games are either on Sky or BT Sport

  • Comment 43, posted at 10.01.14 02:01:30 by Saffex Reply

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  • @Saffex (Comment 41) :

    Ashton has been injured and strugglign to make the Sarries side.

    Farrel has been playing second fiddle all season.
    Tomkins has been usurped by Barrit.
    Yes, Goode was left out.
    Mako Vunipola has been struggling with a rather serious knee injury for some time.
    No idea where his brother is, but he’s hardly a super-star. He’s only 21, ffs.

    Saracens play a squad system – you must be the only guy in the world that wants to try to fit 30 players into 23.

  • Comment 44, posted at 10.01.14 12:51:56 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @Saffex (Comment 42) :

    Wahtever dude. You’ve got so much form in talking shit you’ve lost all credibility.

  • Comment 45, posted at 10.01.14 12:52:26 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @Saffex (Comment 43) :

    Again, running your mouth off without looking at the facts. What a deluded world you live in.

    http://www.premiershiprugby.com/stats/attendance.php?includeref=18099&season=2012#18099

    Best supported club was Leicester, with 250k spectators – over the whole season.
    Newlands gets that in the first 5 or 6 games of SuperRugby.

    As for televised games – http://www.premiershiprugby.com/matchcentre/broadcast.php
    3 games a weekend. Wow.

    But, what crap, as you mentioned.

    Do you get into lots of fights by any chance?

  • Comment 46, posted at 10.01.14 12:56:28 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 46) : On TV the crowds look decent (if only in size hahahaha…..) think it looks good because maybe it’s smaller stadiums than in SA (Capetown, Durbs, Jozi, etc)? but yes must say from where I sit soccer seems to be better supported in both SA and UK.

  • Comment 47, posted at 10.01.14 17:56:12 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 47) :

    To put this in perspective, check out the following link.
    It lists rugby stadiums by size.

    With the exception of Twickenham, which is pretty much only used for internationals or special events (like season openers and double-headers), the biggest rugby ground in England comes in at number 50.

    As opposed to South Africa, which has 5 stadiums listed under the top 15!

    To put this further into perspective, listing the English stadiums by size, there are more than 30 football stadiums that are larger than the biggest rugby union stadium.

    The largest rugby stadium in the UK isnt even used by a Premiership team.
    If we looked at the largest stadium in the Premiership, it wouldnt even fit into the top 50 largest stadiums in England.

  • Comment 48, posted at 10.01.14 18:45:56 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 48) : where’s the link?

  • Comment 49, posted at 10.01.14 18:59:10 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 49) :

    Astute question Robert!

    Try these on for size:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_stadiums_in_England

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_rugby_union_stadiums_by_capacity

  • Comment 50, posted at 10.01.14 19:08:25 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 49) : @VinChainSaw (Comment 50) : was wondering about it myself.

    Thanks that was an eye opener, wow some of the “big” clubs in England play in really tiny stadiums no wonder it looks packed on TV, if 10 000 people pich for a Sharks game it looks as if only the ballboys are in the stadium. ;-P

    Just for info how’s the ticket prices there compared to soccer and to rugby ticket prices in SA?

  • Comment 51, posted at 10.01.14 20:31:28 by JD Reply
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  • @JD (Comment 47) : The only soccer matches in SA that is really well supported is the big derbies, tv viewing soccer surely is better but attendance at stadiums rugby is better in SA. Many of the not so big soccer clubs in SA also only has 15000-20000 capacity and the stadiums is most of the times not even half full

  • Comment 52, posted at 10.01.14 22:48:42 by BR Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 44) : Ah yeah of course, so the teamsheet for todays game is just a load of sh1t.

    All of 5 players in their side that wont be playing against the Sharks……..I suspect it will be more like 6, for I am sure Barritt wont be playing against the Sharks either.

    As for attendance at the grounds……..well yes, the grounds are small but always full……..unlike the CC

    Glad to be of service

    15 FB
    Alex Goode
    14 W
    Chris Ashton
    13 C
    Chris Wyles
    12 C
    Brad Barritt
    11 W
    David Strettle
    10 FH
    Owen Farrell
    9 SH
    Neil de Kock
    1 P
    Mako Vunipola
    2 H
    Schalk Brits
    3 P
    James Johnston
    4 L
    Steve Borthwick
    5 L
    Alistair Hargreaves
    6 F
    Jackson Wray
    7 F
    Kelly Brown
    8 N8
    Billy Vunipola

  • Comment 53, posted at 12.01.14 14:40:20 by Saffex Reply

    SaffexCurrie Cup player
     

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