robdylan

Sharks Super Rugby 2014: The halfbacks


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 21 Jan 2014 at 11:33
Tagged with : , , , , , , , , , ,

When it comes to those crucial selections in jersey 9 and 10, I think it’s safe to say that most Sharks fans probably know pretty much exactly what to expect for the coming Super Rugby season.

Scrumhalf, in fact, is one of the few areas in the squad where depth is something of a concern. The only names we’re likely to see this year, barring injury, are the incumbents from the Currie Cup, with Charl McLeod‘s good form towards the latter stages of that competition probably nosing him ahead of Cobus Reinach in the early season pecking order. Outside of those two, White will be forced to turn to the young Vodacom Cup options, Stefan Ungerer and Hanco Venter, or look outside of the province, in case an injury should occur.

One fancies that unless one of the juniors really puts his hand up in a big way this year, the Sharks will be on the lookout for at least one more experienced scrumhalf – perhaps one with whom White has worked before – to bolster the squad.

Flyhalf is a little different in that White has already laid his cards plainly on the table; Patrick Lambie, he says, will be the first (and pretty much only) choice player in that position and will wear the number 10 jersey until it falls off him. Fred Zeilinga and Tim Swiel look to be the likely deputies, with both named to travel to London while Lambie enjoys his honeymoon. One feels that both will get a chance to run the show against Saracens this weekend, with whomever performs best likely to assume the mantel of official understudy.

The other man currently in the picture is Hansie Graaff, who has continued to train with the Super Rugby side even after the “first cut” at the start of the year. It’s likely, though, that he will find himself playing more often in the Vodacom Cup, unless an injury should strike.



37 Comments

  • Hoping to see Cobus Reinach make a big statement this season and perhaps even get back into Bok contention.

  • Comment 1, posted at 21.01.14 11:55:35 by vanmartin Reply
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  • so rob, when will the sharksworld app be up and running?

  • Comment 2, posted at 21.01.14 11:55:51 by MJ Reply

    MJUnder 21 player
     
  • @MJ (Comment 2) : yes…. good question.

    Next? :)

  • Comment 3, posted at 21.01.14 11:56:21 by robdylan Reply
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  • Zeilanga can be a back-up scrumhalf too but maybe Jake wants a specialist. Reinach needs to put in a good performance this year as I see him as a future bok. Fred has exceled at Currie level and to me ahead of Swiel.

  • Comment 4, posted at 21.01.14 12:01:09 by Grasshopper Reply

    GrasshopperVodacom Cup player
     
  • @Grasshopper (Comment 4) : I know Fred has played age-group rugby at scrumhalf, but I just don’t see Jake using him there. He’s such a damn good flyhalf that it would really be a waste to use him as anything else.

  • Comment 5, posted at 21.01.14 12:03:37 by robdylan Reply
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  • I have a feeling that Pat and Fed will be the initial flyhalf options with Swiel contending for the fullback place or even as a 12 alternate to Frans Steyn.

  • Comment 6, posted at 21.01.14 12:11:31 by SheldonK Reply

    SheldonKAssistant coach
     
  • A part of me is actually glad Lambie is not going with to England. We know what we have in him, but I am really curious to see how well Swiel and Zeilinga will perform, knowing that the one that does the best, will probably be the second choice flyhalf for a while, while the other will have to work hard to prove himself in the VC. Both are excellent prospects, really looking forward to seeing how they react to the challenge!

  • Comment 7, posted at 21.01.14 12:12:29 by HeinF Reply

    HeinFTeam captain
     
  • I really don’t feel confident with our 9′s. If Reinach can improve he will definitely overtake McLeod in the pecking order. McLeod is an average Currie Cup scrummie and not really good enough for super rugby but we have slim pickings in this dept. Perhaps some of the South African scrummies excelling overseas are feeling homesick??

  • Comment 8, posted at 21.01.14 12:23:11 by lostfish Reply
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  • @lostfish (Comment 8) : I don’t think Charl is poor just very inconsistent.

  • Comment 9, posted at 21.01.14 12:36:44 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 9) : is that not the same thing, though? When you get right down to it

  • Comment 10, posted at 21.01.14 12:39:55 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 10) : I suppose, I realised after I posted.

    What I should have said is he can be brilliant at times. :grin:

    And I also need to come up for my namesake. :)

  • Comment 11, posted at 21.01.14 12:45:29 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 10) : Am I allowed to join this debate? :D

  • Comment 12, posted at 21.01.14 12:46:03 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 9) : He is very inconsistent, occasionally he has a decent game but when it comes down to it, he has no kicking game to speak of and his passing is usually woeful and he tends to wait far too long at the scrum allowing the defence to reset and nullify our attack.

  • Comment 13, posted at 21.01.14 12:47:05 by lostfish Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 12) : Are you supporting the Sharks again?

  • Comment 14, posted at 21.01.14 12:47:50 by lostfish Reply
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  • @Uli Boelie (Comment 12) : ummm….

    :mrgreen:

  • Comment 15, posted at 21.01.14 12:48:28 by robdylan Reply
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  • @lostfish (Comment 14) : I did what I had too, to get the cup back in KZN :D

  • Comment 16, posted at 21.01.14 12:50:44 by Uli Boelie Reply
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  • I see the Goose is back and starting for the Cheetahs.

  • Comment 17, posted at 21.01.14 12:54:15 by VinChainSaw Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 17) : Let’s hope he stays injury free for more than 10 seconds.

  • Comment 18, posted at 21.01.14 12:56:06 by lostfish Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 17) : that will be another thrilling 3 weeks

  • Comment 19, posted at 21.01.14 12:56:19 by robdylan Reply
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  • @lostfish (Comment 13) : Who is to blame for that? :roll: Only the coaches at the time. He is at times an intelligent player but if you look back to Ruan Pienaar when he played for Sharks, he had to be “trained” out of similar things. Charl can be be a Bok again. Still rate Charl above Vermaak,Schreuder,Duvenage,Bondesio & van Zyl.If you are talking overseas scrummies, do you rate Cockett,de Kock,Claasens as well? :twisted:

  • Comment 20, posted at 21.01.14 13:02:25 by markm Reply

    markmVodacom Cup player
     
  • @markm (Comment 20) : I wouldn’t blame the coaches for McLeod short comings. Blame management for not being able to secure a decent scrumhalf. McLeod isn’t Bok material, the only reason he was ever selected for the Boks is because the first 10 scrumhalves in the country were injured. Not de Kock and definitely not Classens. Kockott, yes. He has been playing some brilliant rugby in France and was also named as the Top 14 player’s player of the year.

  • Comment 21, posted at 21.01.14 13:11:30 by lostfish Reply
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  • Its not only the sharks, the whole of SA is thin on scrummies. I enjoy watching Mcleod, but he’s already over 30 I think. Charl haven’t impressed me mush. Schreuder[spelling] of strms got some pressure on him this season. Van Zyl move to bulls, hopefully he can have a big season. Venter that played well for Kings last season is now at cheetahs. Its gonna be a dash for the line……

  • Comment 22, posted at 21.01.14 13:26:28 by KingsArmy Reply

    Vodacom Cup player
     
  • @KingsArmy (Comment 22) : I hear good things about this Pumas boy, Faf de Klerk, who made the Lions squad

  • Comment 23, posted at 21.01.14 13:33:56 by robdylan Reply
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  • Kockett qualifies for France soon I think, huge loss!

  • Comment 24, posted at 21.01.14 13:38:42 by Grasshopper Reply

    GrasshopperVodacom Cup player
     
  • @lostfish (Comment 21) : Point taken.I rememeber a number of years ago Sharks played Valke in Brakpan. I was there & spoke to some of the players afterwards. McLeod played really well that game & when I asked Adi Jacobs about him his exact words were “Watch some big union sign him soon!”Charl was signed shortly afterwards :grin: Lets concentrate on getting Reinach & Ungerer & Venter up to “big boy” status :lol: @Grasshopper (Comment 24) : Kockett qualifies next month for France.Imagine Freddie & Kockett in the french team together! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 25, posted at 21.01.14 13:49:37 by markm Reply

    markmVodacom Cup player
     
  • @markm (Comment 25) : I don’t want to cause that is one lethal combo right there

  • Comment 26, posted at 21.01.14 13:53:42 by benji Reply
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  • @lostfish (Comment 13) : aurther Murrey aka CM is weak,he cannot pass off the deck,has to take at least two steps and wiggle the ball in hand before passing ,a rubbish pass,and that’s if he gets to the breakdown at all and as for cR he worse,Sharks have huge weakness at 9

  • Comment 27, posted at 21.01.14 13:58:38 by benji Reply
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  • Charl McCloed does well when he clears the ball from rucks and scrums etc and does not try to be the play maker. When he tries to do too much thats when errors creep in and he just tries harder and makes more errors. Same applies to Reinach and its why some people think the Sharks scrummies arent good. If they both just stick to their primary functions of clearing the ball then they are actually both very good

  • Comment 28, posted at 21.01.14 14:10:47 by SheldonK Reply

    SheldonKAssistant coach
     
  • What do you guys feel about Ruan Pienaar coming back? I realise it’s highly unlikely, but would you welcome it?

    If I recall rightly, when JW was bigging-up Bismarck as a winner, he also lavished the same praise on Ruan – re being a senior World Cup winner and a WC winner across all age-groups before the age of 22.

  • Comment 29, posted at 21.01.14 14:19:51 by MerckZ Reply

    MerckZSuper Rugby player
     
  • @SheldonK (Comment 28) :I’ve got no complaints about Charl’s play making during the CC final. :)

    One thing that does stand out for me about Charl is the amount of pressure he puts on opposing half backs. He is very quick off the mark and quite cunning in where he crouches when preparing to attempt a charge down and pressure the kicker into mistakes.

  • Comment 30, posted at 21.01.14 14:24:46 by gregkaos Reply
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  • @MerckZ (Comment 29) : I also noticed that.

    AND he’s said he wants to end off at the Sharks

  • Comment 31, posted at 21.01.14 14:27:19 by robdylan Reply
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  • @MerckZ (Comment 29) : It would be awesome if Ruan came back. He is playing awesome rugby in Ireland. He has matured a lot as a player and doesn’t let the little things mess up his game.

  • Comment 32, posted at 21.01.14 14:45:12 by lostfish Reply
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  • @gregkaos (Comment 30) : That intercept and his 2nd try only came about because he was clearing the ball quick to Lambie and not trying to make the play himself. Its then that the odd chance arrives to snipe around the fringes and he does hav sum pace.

  • Comment 33, posted at 21.01.14 14:50:11 by SheldonK Reply

    SheldonKAssistant coach
     
  • @lostfish (Comment 32) : Ruan and awesome in the same sentence…..seriously! Let’s rather move on and find a youngster. F du preez is also getting old, but he can still come off the bench and finish the game in last 20/30 min for bokke. We need someone to give the bokke a good 60 min.

  • Comment 34, posted at 21.01.14 14:58:44 by KingsArmy Reply

    Vodacom Cup player
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 23) : Will keep a lookout for him……someone needs to step up this season

  • Comment 35, posted at 21.01.14 15:02:18 by KingsArmy Reply

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  • @markm (Comment 20) : always been a fan of Rory! what a los to the Sharks :(

  • Comment 36, posted at 21.01.14 23:59:53 by capesharks Reply

    capesharksUnder 19 player
     
  • Why do we always want to get old guys that only have one or two years left? The Sharks got in Fred and Hanco Venter the perfect 9/10 combination for the future, give them a change. I think Venter stepped up big time and are the third choise scrummie training with the squad. what about giving him a run in two or three Super games and see what he has got to offer.

  • Comment 37, posted at 22.01.14 06:19:52 by jzb0709 Reply

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