De Kock gutted at Sarries ‘suicide’

Written by (Quinnyshark)

Posted in :Uncategorized on 28 Apr 2008 at 12:48
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Rugby365 reports that Saracens captain Neil de Kock said his team had literally shot themselves in the foot in going down 16-18 to Munster in a thrilling Heineken Cup semifinal at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry, on Sunday.

The defeat means Saracens are effectively out of the running for a place in next season’s Heineken Cup, given that they are struggling to stay in the top six in the Guinness Premiership with just two league matches left. 

“We are gutted and disappointed not to have won, but we ended up shooting ourselves in the foot,” De Kock said in his post-match reaction. “The gut wrenching thing is we are probably going to have to wait another two seasons to have another crack at this competition. That is a really tough pill to swallow.”

De Kock put his own demons aside to give coach Alan Gaffney, who is leaving the club, a ringing endorsement on behalf of his squad and the supporters. “We haven’t gone all the way, but you can see the contribution he [Gaffney] has made here,” said the Springbok No.9. “It’s very disappointing to see him go [at the end of the season] but he has brought us so far.”

His words were echoed by flank Richard Hill, who admitted it was a wrench not to have helped Sarries end their barren pursuit of silverware in his penultimate match before retiring. “Alan has been brilliant and there is no doubt we’ve come a long way as a team and a squad in just two years,” said the flank. “We’ve made a few semifinals but now it is a case of building year on year. “The aim has to be to raise the level of consistency and convert one of these semifinals into a Final. “This was the last time I will play at that level of competition,” he added. “We’ve come so far as a team and were only a matter of a few points from getting to a Heineken Cup Final.” Gaffney was awash with emotion during the post-match press conference as his ashen-faced skipper, De Kock, sat beside him wondering what might have been.

Gaffney was also left to rue a lapse in concentration, which saw Alan Quinlan cross for Munster’s second try just before the interval. “The try on half-time was a killer, we didn’t react to the penalty in Munster’s half, we turned our backs. It was a costly error,” Gaffney said. “It was always going to be a war of attrition, but we fought through it and I’m very proud of what they did.”

Gaffney, who will hand over the reins to former Wallaby coach Eddie Jones next season, went on: “To hold out with 13 men and not concede any points and then nearly pinch the game at the end is disappointing but I’m delighted with the way we performed. “They were prepared to do anything and everything they could to win the game, which is a great credit to them “It was an entertaining game of rugby, both sides tried to play, despite the conditions. There’s definitely something to build on. “The unfortunate thing is now we don’t qualify for Europe, we’ll be in the Challenge Cup next season, and that’s a bit strange for a defeated semi-finalist. But we know the way the seedings work.”


  • Good game this. Sarries could have won it were it not for Nick Lloyd’s brainfart of Epi-c proportions…that & Cencus Johnson’s binning, & the debacle that was the uncontested scrums thereafter…

    Also felt that Glen Jackson should have looked for the drop a little earlier, he was in good positions aroundthe 85th minute but they insisted on trying to take it up. He left it too late, & ultimately Munster didn’t give him the space or field position to look for the drop in the last minute.

  • Comment 1, posted at 28.04.08 12:53:03 by Le Requinny Reply
  • Must also add that Sarries no 11 , Ratavou, was phenomenal. Bloody fast & strong on his feet.

    Eish, wish the Sharks had a winger like that.

  • Comment 2, posted at 28.04.08 12:54:02 by Le Requinny Reply
  • I am so pissed that this match was not shown or is not being shown again on SS Africa.

    SS5 in SA had the match.
    SS5 Africa had to watch RPM. 👿

  • Comment 3, posted at 28.04.08 12:55:36 by KSA Shark © (FJ!ELN!) Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • What’s RPM? Revs per minute or something?

  • Comment 4, posted at 28.04.08 13:01:19 by Le Requinny Reply
  • Was a very tough old game and probably the game of the weekend for me, although the Wrcester/Irish game was also a cracker with some superb handling.

    Felt Sarries were bit unlucky – the Nick Lloyd brainfart appeared to be quite well orchestrated by the Munster players. From footage they grabbed him by the strap to his headgear and basically choked him until he hit back.

    JAckson played well but when it really counted he just couldnt get in position for the dropgoal attempt, despite the Sarries forwards recycling possession on the Munster 22 a fair few times in the closing minuted of the game.
    Difference between an average to good flyhalf and a world-beater. When it’s hero time some players stick up their hands… others dont.

    Unfortuante way to bring the curtain down on Richard Hill’s career.

    But well done Sarries – you acquitted yourselves well.

  • Comment 5, posted at 28.04.08 13:13:39 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • Quinny

    Yip that is right, it is a Vehicle magazine show, much like topcar and wheels etc from the days gone by.

  • Comment 6, posted at 28.04.08 13:20:45 by KSA Shark © (FJ!ELN!) Reply

    KSA Shark ©

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