KSA Shark ©

Silly season for a silly player

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :In the news, Stormers, Super 14 on 16 Dec 2008 at 06:54
Tagged with : , , , , , , ,

With the Southern Hemisphere’s silly season in full swing, Jan de Koning of Rugby 365 thinks this is a good time to take a look at the role that controversial loose forward Luke Watson will play in the Stormers team next year.

Luke Watson. To some people those two words are profanities, to others he is the ‘people’s player’. It is difficult to say what number or percentage of rugby supporters fall into which group.

It is even more difficult to gauge how coaches – both at national and on the domestic scene – are planning to utilise the outspoken loose forward next year, simply because everybody has taken a self-imposed vow of silence on the subject.

Take Stormers coach Rassie Erasmus as an example. He is not planning to announce his final squad for the Super 14 season until required by SANZAR, early January.

Watson has been part of the extended pre-season training squad and has a senior Stormers contract.

But will he get any actual game time?

Because the Stormers management have avoided the subject and straight-batted all Watson related questions with a ‘he is being treated like every other player’, it is impossible to ascertain what their true feelings are over his controversial ‘puke on the Springbok jersey’ and ‘Dutchmen’ comments earlier this year.

But what we can do is look at his merits as a player, measure him against the other loose forwards in the squad.

The Stormers have seven senior contracted loose forwards and another four back row players on Colts contracts.

Springbok Schalk Burger heads the list of senior players, followed by Cheetahs import Duane Vermeulen, Munster star Justin Melck (due back from Ireland early in the new year), Francois Louw, Pieter Louw, Pieter Myburgh and finally Watson himself.

That is an impressive list of loose forwards.

But, as they say in those annoying TV adds: ‘There is more!’

Former South African age group captain and newly crowned Barbarians loose forward Nick Koster heads the list of Colts – followed by Cameron Peverett, Conraad Britz and Zandre Jordaan.

The Stormers coach, Erasmus, has already hinted that Koster might be used on the wing – an indication that the make-up of his loose forward starting trio is pretty much settled.

So, if I was Erasmus, who would I start with and what role would I have for Watson?

Schalk Burger is the first name on any team sheet – not just for his brute strength, but also his boundless energy and presence, not to mention his experience.

Erasmus would not have imported Duane Vermeulen at great cost from the Cheetahs if he did not plan on using him, meaning the two flank berths are taken.

It leaves Watson to compete with the two Louws – Francois and Pieter – as well as Melck and Myburgh for the final starting spot.

It is debatable if Watson deserves a starting spot on his 2008 form, but he was a regular starter at No.8 in the Currie Cup after he had recovered from a chronic rib injury.

My choice would be Melck, once he returns from his stint with Irish province Munster. He has not only matured significantly in his short spell in European rugby, but in his eight appearances for Munstermen he has left his mark in no uncertain terms – so much so that they are looking at signing him on a long-term contract.

It now means Watson must compete with the two Louws – Francois and Pieter – and Myburgh for a spot on the bench.

Given Erasmus’s penchant for big line-out forwards – and keeping in mind that his two back-up locks, AJ Venter and Hilton Lobberts, are actually retreated loose forwards – it suddenly seems that Watson might be holding a lot of tackle bags at training this coming season.

Of course, Erasmus – one of those Dutchmen Watson so despises – may well have an important role in mind for him.

But until he names his squad in January we can only speculate. Even then, it might not be till he names his first matchday 22 in the pre-season that we’ll get an idea of where the Stormers coach is heading.


  • Reading it put forward in this way, it certainly seems as if Watson will be playing from the bench IF anything.

  • Comment 1, posted at 16.12.08 07:06:36 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • Silly season seems like the only option to post this bit of news on.

    Drooling over The Naked News
    15/12/2008 22:55 – (SA)

    Retha Grobbelaar, Beeld

    Johannesburg – There’s bad news for those of us who struggle to concentrate on the news.

    With the introduction of The Naked News in South Africa, where real news presenters strip while reading the news, concentration may fly out the window completely.

    Viewers who want to watch the news in this way will have to subscribe to the channel that was launched on Monday.

    The South African version of The Naked News will first be broadcast from the Canadian studio, where the channel started about 10 years ago.

    David Ringwood, who holds the channel’s South African licence, said they would start recruiting the South African news presenters early next year.

    The Naked News is a worldwide channel that broadcasts on television, cellphones and websites in the US, Canada and the UK.

    – Beeld

    😯 😯 😯

  • Comment 2, posted at 16.12.08 08:42:29 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 2) : I’ve seen that. 😀

  • Comment 3, posted at 16.12.08 11:27:34 by McLovin Reply
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 2) : News like you’ve never seen before. 😯

  • Comment 4, posted at 16.12.08 11:28:46 by McLovin Reply
  • (Comment 2) and you can get it in the UAE, don’t think they realise what they are dealing with. Coming back to the silly guy topic, this guy and the politicians will now all cry wolf , if he is not selected and we will be back to where we started and this arsehole will be where he wants to be, the centre of attention, with daddy standing ready if anyone gets too rough.

  • Comment 5, posted at 16.12.08 11:54:24 by Whindy Reply
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  • Province’s lock depth concern me slighty. 🙄

  • Comment 6, posted at 16.12.08 11:55:39 by McLovin Reply

  • @McLovin (Comment 6) : In the UAE? 😯 You would have thought the name gave it away. 😆

  • Comment 7, posted at 16.12.08 11:58:39 by McLovin Reply

  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 2) : Wonder if Riaan Cruywagen will be available. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 8, posted at 16.12.08 12:00:21 by McLovin Reply

  • @McLovin (Comment 7) : That was obviously meant for comment 5. 😳

  • Comment 9, posted at 16.12.08 12:01:13 by McLovin Reply

  • I wouldnt be upset (or surprised) if he picked up a pre-season injury.

    A well-placed head stamping “accident” wouldn’t go amiss.

  • Comment 10, posted at 16.12.08 12:08:33 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • Also wouldn’t surprise me if he picked up a pre-season “injury” of his own to head off the fact that he won’t be selected.

    Sort of like when he ruled himself out of playign for the Boks when he wasn’t going to be picked anyway.

  • Comment 11, posted at 16.12.08 12:09:36 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 11) :

    That is probably very likely.

  • Comment 12, posted at 16.12.08 12:15:28 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @McLovin (Comment 6) :

    I actually think you have better depth than we have.

  • Comment 13, posted at 16.12.08 12:16:21 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 13) : bullshit… outside of Fondse and Bekker they have no-one :mrgreen:

  • Comment 14, posted at 16.12.08 12:19:46 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 14) : That’s what are worrying me.

  • Comment 15, posted at 16.12.08 12:26:04 by McLovin Reply

  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 13) : We have Oupa AJ & Lobberts. One’s old & the other short. Short for a lock, short fuse…. 😈

  • Comment 16, posted at 16.12.08 12:27:55 by McLovin Reply

  • @McLovin (Comment 16) :

    AJ will do well ONE LAST TIME as a lock and Lobberts will turn his discipline issues around.

    We have Sykes, Muller and Albert and now that Albert may miss the start of the season i am worried.

  • Comment 17, posted at 16.12.08 12:38:42 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 17) : I see. What about that kid Hargreaves? He seems okay.

  • Comment 18, posted at 16.12.08 12:40:25 by McLovin Reply

  • @McLovin (Comment 18) :

    If Albert is out he is going to HAVE to be okay. 🙂

    I forgot about him but don’t see him as more than a substitute for at least another season. Once Albert goes out to pasture then Hargreaves will make the step up.

  • Comment 19, posted at 16.12.08 12:49:47 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 19) : Not that many locks knocking about it seems. 😐

  • Comment 20, posted at 16.12.08 12:51:41 by McLovin Reply

  • @McLovin (Comment 20) : they all go from Loftus straight overseas

  • Comment 21, posted at 16.12.08 13:01:04 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • It is clear that De Koning has got it in for Lukas.

    What I don’t understand is how he can claim that Luke will be competing with Pieter Louw.

    Louw is not one of the first choice loosies at the Stormers let alone WP.

    And from what i heard it seems Luke is still very much involved at Stormers training sessions.

  • Comment 22, posted at 17.12.08 08:41:43 by wpw Reply
  • Luke must consider moving to the Sharks…

  • Comment 23, posted at 17.12.08 09:04:34 by blckshrk - PROTEAS Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!
  • Yeesss!!! 😀

    51.5 Harris to Clarke, OUT, the double breakthrough! Clarke gives it away just before tea! He charges Harris and tries to go down the ground, he hits it with the inside part of the bat and lofts it straight to Smith who takes an easy catch at mid-on, he’s thrilled, what a strike just before tea.

    Australia 167/5 (52.1 ov)

  • Comment 24, posted at 17.12.08 09:07:30 by blckshrk - PROTEAS Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!
  • @blckshrk – PROTEAS (Comment 23) :

    Surely you jest! 😯

  • Comment 25, posted at 17.12.08 09:25:03 by wpw Reply
  • @wpw (Comment 25) : 😈 Why not?

  • Comment 26, posted at 17.12.08 09:26:57 by blckshrk - PROTEAS Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!
  • @wpw (Comment 22) : I agree… there’s definitely an aspect of vendetta here.

    BTW, surely it would make more sense to play Vermeulen at 8, rather than 7?

  • Comment 27, posted at 17.12.08 09:27:17 by robdylan Reply
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  • @blckshrk – PROTEAS (Comment 26) : apart from the all the other issues, the Sharks don’t need another “little” loose forward. We have JB, Keegan and Skollie already. We need another BIG guy

  • Comment 28, posted at 17.12.08 09:28:35 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 28) : Yeah we do…I hate trying to irritate people who make sense…not much fun. 😈

  • Comment 29, posted at 17.12.08 09:35:10 by blckshrk - PROTEAS Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!
  • @blckshrk – PROTEAS (Comment 23) :

    IS JY [email protected]$N MAL!?!?!?!?!

    I would have a coronary if he even thought about coming to Dbn again.

  • Comment 30, posted at 17.12.08 09:41:44 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @robdylan (Comment 28) :

    Will a BIG HEAD be sufficient?

  • Comment 31, posted at 17.12.08 09:42:48 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @robdylan (Comment 27) :

    If it was up to me Lukas would play from the bench once Vermeulen has settled in.

    Koster??? Eish I dunno. If he is that good then maybe he should start ahead of Francois Louw.

  • Comment 32, posted at 17.12.08 09:42:49 by wpw Reply
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 31) : Or BIG HEART?

  • Comment 33, posted at 17.12.08 09:46:07 by blckshrk - PROTEAS Reply

    blackshark - I'm back!
  • @wpw (Comment 32) : Koster is WAY better than Francois Louw. Louw really is a bit of a no-name brand, despite his famous pedigree

  • Comment 34, posted at 17.12.08 10:11:08 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 34) :

    His work rate is good though hey Rob. Koster is more of a ball player.

  • Comment 35, posted at 17.12.08 10:20:04 by wpw Reply
  • @wpw (Comment 35) : With Burger and Vermeulen in the mix, you can afford it

  • Comment 36, posted at 17.12.08 10:23:00 by robdylan Reply
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