KSA Shark ©

Rassie: “It wasn’t a nice game to watch.”

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :In the news, Stormers, Super 14 on 29 Mar 2009 at 07:46
Tagged with :

This match was about as attractive as a warthog in mud — and the Stormers could not even blame jet lag for their defeat.

Richard Knowler writes for The Times that New Zealanders have heard plenty of South African Super 14 teams gripe about the long- haul flights to Australasia over the years, but the Stormers had no such excuse at AMI Stadium yesterday.

A bye meant the team from the Western Cape had a full week to prepare for this match at a luxury resort — a complex renowned for tricky water hazards on its golf course — on the outskirts of Christchurch.

Yet the Stormers played like a weekend hacker with just a few battered irons and a putter in his bag.

Things started rosy enough for the visitors when No8 Luke Watson shrugged off four weak Crusaders tackles to cross over for the opening try in the ninth minute, but that was to be their lot.

The remaining 71 minutes was peppered with poor passing, dropped passes, turnovers and wayward kicking. The difference between the two sides was two penalty kicks by Stephen Brett.

Crusaders right wing Adam Whitelock scored the only other try in the match in the first spell. This meant the crowd of 14000 was forced to endure the next 40 minutes to see just one penalty kicked.

This was a nasty way for the Stormers to start their five-match Australasian tour. They next face the Waratahs, who beat the Blues in Auckland on Friday, in Sydney.

Stormers coach Rassie Erasmus as good as acknowledged that this match was not one that would be used as a promotional tool for the code.

“It wasn’t a nice game to watch. It was a very scrappy affair,” he said. “I don’t think it was great rugby from either team.”

The Stormers were forced to defend for prolonged periods and were prepared to sacrifice free kicks at the breakdown to slow the Crusaders’ ball down. The Stormers also used their speed in the back line to shut down their opponents’ obsession to play to a plan based on width.

“They didn’t give us a lot of lineouts or a platform to attack from,’’ lamented Erasmus, who noted his scrum struggled to get much leeway from referee Keith Brown.

With Brown seemingly reluctant to dish out full-arm penalties or yellow cards, the match was punctuated by free kicks.

But juicy attacking opportunities were often wasted by the lack of cohesion both teams suffered from.

This display from the Stormers was a far cry from the shellacking they gave the Lions at Newlands fortnight ago and even taking the bye into consideration, it was perplexing to see them go off the boil so quickly.

“Overall, both teams didn’t play well tonight. I will never accuse a team of not playing well, but I don’t think any of us can be proud of the way we played,” admitted Erasmus.

The Stormers loosies of Duane Vermeulen, Schalk Burger and Watson were kept busy in defence and, at the breakdown, scrumhalf Ricky Januarie was continually sniffing around for opportunities.

However, spectators who hoped to see the attacking skills of Jean de Villiers and Percy Montgomery were disappointed.

The pair were rarely sighted with ball in hand and the score might have favoured the home side even more if their players had made better use of their possession and finished off promising movements.

For the Crusaders, lock Isaac Ross and No8 Thomas Waldrom were their best performers.

Crusaders 11 — Try: Adam Whitelock. Penalties: Stephen Brett (2).

Stormers 7 — Try: Luke Watson. Conversion: Willem de Waal.


  • Go Lukas!

  • Comment 1, posted at 29.03.09 08:42:50 by wpw - Stefan the attacking Genius!!! Reply
  • @wpw – Stefan the attacking Genius!!! (Comment 1) :

    He scored me some valuable FL points with THAt try. 😎

  • Comment 2, posted at 29.03.09 08:52:36 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • U not seriaaaas? Is Luke in your FL team?? 😯

  • Comment 3, posted at 29.03.09 09:10:53 by wpw - Stefan the attacking Genius!!! Reply
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 2) : @wpw – Stefan the attacking Genius!!! (Comment 3) : there are some limits to wanting to win 🙄 :mrgreen:

  • Comment 4, posted at 29.03.09 09:14:10 by rekinek Reply
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  • rassie – I agree with you – it wasn’t pretty at all

  • Comment 5, posted at 29.03.09 09:14:36 by rekinek Reply
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  • @wpw – Stefan the attacking Genius!!! (Comment 3) :

    Hey Doke is note my favourite person (probably one of my least favourite).

    He is a very good rugby player. He is just exceptionally kak at being interviewed. 😆

    But why on earth would I pick a team on emotion?


  • Comment 6, posted at 29.03.09 09:22:04 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • @rekinek (Comment 5) :

    The original headline was a little heavy handed so I changed it. 😉

    Original: “Crusaders have nothing to fear from Cape no-hopers”

  • Comment 7, posted at 29.03.09 09:24:30 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Ja well. He has probably been our best player this year, not that there are many of his teammates playing well…

  • Comment 8, posted at 29.03.09 09:27:28 by wpw - Stefan the attacking Genius!!! Reply
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 7) : good choice. it sounds like a bit dum title – crusaders won – they will not play against stormers again thi season – so …

  • Comment 9, posted at 29.03.09 09:31:13 by rekinek Reply
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  • @wpw – Stefan the attacking Genius!!! (Comment 8) : some of them do – jd was ok, grant as well – but they are just not clicking. and maybe because some flash individuals are trying too much – just thinking aloud

  • Comment 10, posted at 29.03.09 09:33:24 by rekinek Reply
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  • @rekinek (Comment 9) :

    Yeah, it is almost as if they have taken a preview of the match and rehashed it as a report, but forgot to change the headline. 😕

  • Comment 11, posted at 29.03.09 09:41:48 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • I wonder if Rassie will keep his job if the Stormers continue on their losing run. Mid table is just not good enough for a team who did so well in last years competition.

  • Comment 12, posted at 29.03.09 10:17:05 by wpw - Stefan the attacking Genius!!! Reply
  • @wpw – Stefan the attacking Genius!!! (Comment 12) :

    How long did it take to replace the Bald guy (I can’t remember his name) Kobus Something? (What is he doing nowadays)

  • Comment 13, posted at 29.03.09 11:21:32 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • “Overall, both teams didn’t play well tonight. I will never accuse a team of not playing well”

    Am I alone in finding that a contradiction? 🙄

    Stop making excuses Rassie – you have plenty of talent at your disposal.

    This is really disappointing from a side with some quality players.

  • Comment 14, posted at 29.03.09 11:27:01 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • Too many observers, they were counter rucked on numerous occasions. And if Rassie is a rugby visionary GOD help us, kicking the ball out directly when carried back, not kicking it out for a penalty, ppor support at the ruck these are just basics & he can’t teach his players this 😡 Thank goodness sanity prevailed and John Plumtree is our coach, I am not a Stormers supporter, but they played so poorly I was getting very hot under the collar, this was a Crusaders team up for the taking, but now the Stormers have probably started them building up confidence before touring SA. Also watched a very Poor Bulls peroformance and only the 2nd week of their tour 🙁

  • Comment 15, posted at 29.03.09 21:37:49 by Dynamite Reply


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