Will we learn from RWC 1999?

Written by Morné Nortier (Morné)

Posted in :Original Content, RWC 2011, Sharks, Springboks on 31 Mar 2011 at 10:22
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John Smit is being done a massive disservice at the moment, one that could spell disaster and cost him the Springbok captaincy for the Rugby World Cup later this year.

When Peter de Villiers laid out the roadmap for the Springboks for the 2011 World Cup season yesterday, one statement stood out above all else – he will only name his captain on the 2nd of May.

After the disaster that was the Rugby World Cup in 2003 new Springbok coach, Jake White, took little time to name his captain.  Such was his faith in John Smit that he named him long before even picking his first Springbok squad.

Under White, Smit excelled as captain.  Of course it was not all plain sailing as everyone will remember, where in 2006, a year before the Rugby World Cup in France the media and public wanted both to be sacked from their respective roles within the Springbok setup.

Both of course silenced their critics in the best way possibly, by winning the World Cup a year later in 2007.

Smit, along with many senior Boks including Victor Matfield decided that their future following the 2007 world event was in Europe and continued to take up lucrative deals with European clubs.

Then came the surprise selection of Peter de Villiers as head-coach for the Springboks in 2008.  I say surprise because at the time (and even now), many believed the job would/should have been given to Heyneke Meyer.

One of the first things De Villiers did when taking up the job, was fly to France to chat to Smit to try and establish whether the Rugby World Cup winning captain would still be interested in leading the Springboks under De Villiers.

De Villiers quite obviously shared the same faith in Smit as a leader for the Springboks as Jake White did before him.

Smit returned and after a disastrous start to De Villiers tenure in 2008, the Springboks completed a magical year in 2009 by winning the British & Irish Lions series in South Africa, followed by a Tri-Nations title in the same year.

Many people wondered at the time if the senior Boks, including Smit of course, would call it a day after the Lions series as there was nothing really left for them to achieve.  To many people’s surprise, they all stuck around.  Their motivation?  To be part of the first team to successfully retain the Rugby World Cup in 2011.

Not many coaches in the world would have forced these players to quit.  How could you?  They were the toast of the rugby world at the time!

Then… the experiments started, specifically with Smit.

De Villiers believed at the time that if Smit is going to the World Cup, moving him to tighthead prop was the way to go as this would extent his career.  Over and above this, the apprentice at the time and also a World Cup winner, Bismarck du Plessis, could no longer be ignored.

Most will have you believe the move to tighthead prop was a massive failure, so in 2010 Smit was quietly being re-introduced to the hooker position at Springbok level.

At the end of 2010, after yet another disastrous season for the Springboks, Smit decided to stay at home for the End of Year Tour to undergo an operation.  In came Victor Matfield to take over the captaincy, but more importantly, stepping up to the hooking position was Bismarck du Plessis.

The End of Year Tour was not plain sailing for the Boks either, wins over Wales, Ireland and England were overshadowed by a shocking loss against Scotland.  However, Bismarck was in scintillating form, regarded by many as the best hooker in world rugby at the time.

Fast forward to 2011, the season that will define Smit and other senior Boks and whether they deserve to be included in the Rugby World Cup squad judging on their form in the extended Super 15 competition.

Sharks coach John Plumtree had no hesitation to name Smit as his team captain for the 2011 Super Rugby event, being one of a long list of coaches who recognises Smit’s ability not only as player, but as captain.

But Plumtree faced a massive problem, in fact, the same problem Peter de Villiers faced and still face as Springbok coach.

The Sharks front-row ironically happens to be the first choice or regular Springbok front-row apart from player of the year 2010, Gurthro Steenkamp, who also missed the End of Year Tour due to injury.

Plumtree had to make the decision on who will make up his front-row between the Beast, Bismarck, John and Jannie du Plessis, all players who represented the Springboks in 2010.

His solution?  Again ironically enough not far from what Springbok coach Peter de Villiers tried…

“John Smit, having the ability to play anywhere in the front-row will cover all three positions in the front-row.”

Ingenious, or foolish?

He stuck to his word too.  After one/third of the Super 15, Smit was selected on the bench after an early season niggle against the Blues and Force and came on as hooker, he played tighthead against the Rebels, and loosehead against the Chiefs and Crusaders.

Some of these selection were injury enforced, but the fact that John Smit’s starts had been limited to both prop positions, and none in his Springbok position of hooker, has done him absolutely no favours.

I made mention of the fact prior to the start of the season that Smit’s ability to cover all three positions is a massive bonus, and one that would serve the Sharks extremely well, but covering these positions, should not mean starting him in all of them when you have specialists available.

John Smit is a hooker, and in Bismarck du Plessis and Smit the Sharks (and Boks) arguably have two of the top 3 or 5 hookers in world rugby today.  Smit’s role therefore should primarily have been as a hooker, who in a crisis, can pack down at either prop (the operative word being crisis).

Plumtree’s obvious dilemma came by naming Smit captain which has seemingly forced him to start Smit whenever fit, even if that means at prop while having Jannie or Beast or even young Van Staden having to shift to the bench.

It is the wrong decision.

The Sharks are in an enviably position to rotate Smit and Bismarck throughout the tournament, having two of the best hookers in world rugby fit and fresh for the duration of this marathon, and more importantly, in top form for the Boks later this year.

If captaincy is the issue I believe Plumtree is getting this wrong too.

A captain’s role during the 80 minutes he spends on the field in a match, probably makes up 20% of his job as the team’s leader.  The Sharks have also shown that they have many capable on-field leaders in their ranks that can easily keep things together in the absence of Smit if he is starting from the bench, or rested completely.

And although it goes against conventional thinking, there would have been nothing wrong with naming Smit squad captain but not necessarily team captain of the match-day 22 if he comes from the bench.

The problem that Peter de Villiers face, is that the only player that could possibly challenge Smit for the role of Springbok captain for the 2011 season and World Cup, Victor Matfield, is not covering himself in glory either at the moment.

Whether it is a question of EITHER Smit or Matfield as captain, or EITHER Smit or Bismarck as hooker, I go back to what I said last year – ‘Why should it be a case of either, if we can have both?’

Peter de Villiers will arguably make the most difficult, and single most important decision on May 2nd, and if I can leave him with one thought, or one example, it would be the decision taken by Nick Mallet months prior to the Rugby World Cup in 1999, where he decided to drop his long-standing captain Gary Teichmann, mainly thanks to public and media pressure similar to what we see now.

He would be well served to look beyond what is said now about a player like Smit right now, and rather concentrate on knowing what he brings to the team and his importance if we are to retain the Rugby World Cup.


  • pick smit at 3 against the stormers…

  • Comment 1, posted at 31.03.11 10:37:36 by Megatron Reply
  • I would agree that they rotate Smit and Bismarck at HOOKER and nowhere else.

  • Comment 2, posted at 31.03.11 10:39:19 by Pokkel Reply
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  • I still believe he should go to the world cup, but I don’t believe he can make the starting 15, can you have your captain coming off the bench??

  • Comment 3, posted at 31.03.11 10:52:08 by Whindy Reply
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  • Div has a roadmap for the RWC??? 😯 😯 😯

  • Comment 4, posted at 31.03.11 10:52:33 by rhineshark Reply
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  • I see he has 4 consultants in mind, wonder if Muir and Gold are still in the running, just hope he gets Eddie Jones that was still Jake whites masterpiece. I see he is up for Brumbies, wonder how long they will put up with his crap before they oust him.

  • Comment 5, posted at 31.03.11 10:59:02 by Whindy Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 2) : Agreed.

    Also JS needs to take some responsibility for all this. He needs to tell them this is out now and he is playing hooker.
    That is and will always be his best position.
    Rotate both Bissie and JS, to keep both of them fresh.

    I don’t believe Matfield will be the correct captain for us to go to the WC.

    Who knows, with Div there he might just make Chilli Boy the captain……

  • Comment 6, posted at 31.03.11 11:10:49 by Uli Reply
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  • BTW thanks for reminding us what happened 1999….

    As we do have the correct tools to keep our hands on the Trophy, we just need the correct trades men to use these tools and make something decent out of it.

  • Comment 7, posted at 31.03.11 11:13:17 by Uli Reply
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  • Good article – hope PdeV does the right thing and let JS carry on as captain, if he changes he will make a very big mistake for SA in so far as the world cup is concerned.

  • Comment 8, posted at 31.03.11 11:13:56 by Ardent Shark Reply

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  • Maybe I have a.d.d. but I dont think Ive ever been able to finish a Morne article. Dropping Teichmann = Suicide. Dropping Po the Teletubbie = Too little, too late

  • Comment 9, posted at 31.03.11 11:15:56 by GeneralSpecific Reply
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  • @Ardent Shark (Comment 8) : Yes, although I think JS needs to pull up his socks on the field of play, I recon we most definitely will lose the WC if he is not captain.

  • Comment 10, posted at 31.03.11 11:16:40 by Uli Reply
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  • Po the Tele tubbie – Bwaaaahahaha 😆 😆 😆 😀

  • Comment 11, posted at 31.03.11 11:22:57 by Caratacus Reply

  • Firstly I think naming your captain many months before the world cup is foolish as injury and loss of form can happen very easily in rugby!
    John Smit has done a fantastic job as capatain and hooker for the Boks but the fact remains that the best 15 players should be selected for the Boks in every game! Whether Smit is part of that 15 should only be judged when the actual team is selected. I mean its like saying the Crusaders are a has been and rubbish team because they lost their first game this year. Personally id prefer the Boks and Smit to be peaking just before the WC rather than in March!!

  • Comment 12, posted at 31.03.11 11:28:49 by SheldonK Reply

  • really good arti, Morne… glad you write it because it needed to be written.

  • Comment 13, posted at 31.03.11 11:35:10 by robdylan Reply
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  • I like the idea of Squad Captain. I reckon John HAS to go to the World Cup, he would fill a similar role within the squad to what Morne Du Plessis did in 95, plus he could play off the bench. The team captain would have to be someone from the starting 15 then.

  • Comment 14, posted at 31.03.11 11:47:58 by Guppyonroids Reply
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  • phew! i finally finished it. Good article in the end. Still, I’m just wondering why Smit is so highly regarded. What has he won? a 3N on points difference. A world cup engineered by france and england beating the favourites against all odds. Another 3N won by Fourie du Preez, and the 2009 B&I Lions. Come on guys. thats like celebrating a sharks victory over a composite of EP, SWD, Valke and Griffons.
    No currie cups and no Super rugbys. Dont get me wrong I am a black and white blooded sharkie, but the only constant in all his victories is Victor Matfield. Plus Victor’s got loads of CC and Super trophies. The one time these two came up against each other was in ’07, and lets leave it at that.
    This John Smit infatuation reminds me of The Emperors new clothes. Everyone is too shit scared to say it out loud… The bastard, my friends, is naked.

  • Comment 15, posted at 31.03.11 12:01:45 by GeneralSpecific Reply
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  • @GeneralSpecific (Comment 15) : If PDiv appoints Matfield as Captain it will be the biggest mistake of his already disastrous Bok-coaching career.

    Matfield is a whinger of note these days… and succeeds in pissing off every ref he plays “against”. This will be our undoing in the WC.. plus it’ll guarantee favourtism for dingbats like Stegmann and an out-of-form Spies!

  • Comment 16, posted at 31.03.11 12:07:58 by CS Reply

  • The difference being is that Victor’s winning squads play together day in and day out. John has to pull together arch enemies at a provincial level and keep them together as a squad. Plus he is a great ambassador. With all the politics and rivalries within the Bok squad, not to mention ego’s – you need someone like John there to pull them all together.

  • Comment 17, posted at 31.03.11 12:08:19 by Guppyonroids Reply
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  • Well hope PdV has a chat to Mallett for advice. Mallett admitted his greatest mistake was dropping Teich for wc 1999.

    Read in the paper today. PdV said that John MUST only play hooker for the Sharks. Kinda like it is us messing him about. Saying John done everything asked of him at the time to put ON weight for th. Then THEY from the Boks ask him to lose the weight to play hooker again. Man can you believe PdV? I read just before the S15 started Plum saying that Sharks never ever gave John advice to put on weight to play th, as that was the worst advice John ever got. Now PdV says it was them from Boks management that told John to lose weight to play hooker again? I read it was the Sharks and mostly Plum that asked him to lose weight and got John back into shape. IT was the SHARKS getting John back to shape not the Boks. How can the Boks managment take credit for that? Also PdV says it is up to the Sharks to play John now at hooker cause is not a prop? What a load of hogwash. It was PdV that wanted him to play th to start with and messed it up for John. He says if John don’t play some games at hooker for Sharks how can’t select him cause he wont know what John can do? PdV has lost my respect. He messed John up by making him play th. Now demands from the Sharks we must sort it out and play John at hooker.

    Anyhow hope at some point John gets to start at Hooker as we will need to rest Bissie sometime. Otherwise he could end up with injury from far too much rugby. We need to keep Bissie fresh for this tourney and injury free for the world cup. John is very capable of playing hooker and for me he is still the best scrummaging hooker in world rugby. He scrums better than Bissie when he is at hooker. His throw-ins are better. BUT Bissie is phenomenal in the loose.

    I would never go to the world cup without John. Even if they make him squad captain. He has to go. Think his knowledge alone is better than all three Bok coaches. Victor afraid is not a good captain at all. If we have to have another captain. Let it be JdV from Stormers.

  • Comment 18, posted at 31.03.11 12:12:53 by Puma Reply

  • @GeneralSpecific (Comment 15) : Still beta than Graeme Smith….

    @CS (Comment 16) : 100% behind you.

  • Comment 19, posted at 31.03.11 12:14:23 by Uli Reply
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  • @Guppyonroids (Comment 17) : Good post. Agree.

  • Comment 20, posted at 31.03.11 12:15:50 by Puma Reply

  • @GeneralSpecific (Comment 15) :

    Is it that long? 😉

    It is much easier to captain a provincial team, than a national one. The time, family environment, and pressures at provincial level is much easier to deal with compared to the diversity, minimum preparation time and provincialism you find at national level.

    I also look at how this team (Boks) does with Smit present, or without him.

    In 2007 we were well on our way to joining NZ and Oz from a early World Cup exit, on came John and some other blokes and we closed out the game quite comfortably.

    IN 2008, most of the Tri-Nations series was played without John – the spear tackle of Thorne in 2008 ended his season just about. We were horrible in that tournament.

    In 2009 against the B&I Lions John got subbed in the second half when we led comfortably.

    A (very suspicious imo) front row injury got him back onto the field in Durban when the Lions staged a massive comeback and looked to take the game away from us. We closed out the game.

    We continued to klap NZ and Oz that same year in the 3N.

    2010 was a disaster not only in the 3N while John was there, but we lost against Scotland of all bloody teams under Matfield.

    John Smit is not the Springboks, we have loads of players who are crucial for a title defence in NZ later this year, amongst them guys you mentioned like Fourie and Matfield.

    Throughout watching the Boks however in the last 6 years, the team seems poorer without him.

    Never underestimate the importance of captaincy, it is an absolute art and gift to have 22 guys pull in the same direction – an art which becomes even more important at national level and at a world cup where the pressure is 10-fold that to what you find in domestic, or Super rugby.

  • Comment 21, posted at 31.03.11 12:17:05 by Morné Reply
  • @Puma (Comment 18) : dude, the list goes on, how many Sharks players had divvy messed up? JS, RP, FS

  • Comment 22, posted at 31.03.11 12:17:06 by Uli Reply
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  • I’d definately subscribe to the idea of JS as squad captain.

    Wrt to field captain, on current form you’d have to say its Bekker over Matfield, and what does Matfield bring in terms of lineouts – when there are so few these days – that Bekker doesn’t lately.

    So my field captain would be JDV, he has proved himself and that would also make sure that the ball maybe gets past 10 more often than not…put it this way he definately wouldn’t ask Steyn to kick an up-and-under against Scotland with 2mins to go! That was brain-dead.

  • Comment 23, posted at 31.03.11 12:19:06 by neilster Reply

  • @Morné (Comment 21) : Great post Morne. Agree 100%.

  • Comment 24, posted at 31.03.11 12:20:58 by Puma Reply

  • What is going on here.
    2 days ago you guys were dissing Smit. Today you want him as captain.

  • Comment 25, posted at 31.03.11 12:25:00 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 25) :

    You guys?

  • Comment 26, posted at 31.03.11 12:26:09 by Morné Reply
  • @Uli (Comment 22) : Plenty. But reading this absolute drivel in the paper what he had to say was really disappointed in PdV. Cause it is blatant lying. It was Boks that asked him to gain weight. Which was not necessary to play th at all. Plum said so in a very good article in the Tribune a few months back. Also it was us that got John back into shape not the Bok Management. Now he says John will only get selected for wc if he playes hooker and has to do so at the Sharks. Indicating it is us making the mistake and if Sharks don’t do it, he probably won’t select John cause he can’t see what he is capable of. What nonsense.

  • Comment 27, posted at 31.03.11 12:26:44 by Puma Reply

  • Also how did Stegmann get selected for eoyt last year? He had been injured for such a long time, had not game time at all. But blow me away, there he was on tour? Don’t take much in my mind who made sure he was on tour. He never played well for the Boks either. Does Victor hold plenty cards who gets selected? Cause how come W. Olivier is there? When we have far better centres?

    Makes me wonder who is pulling the strings there.

  • Comment 28, posted at 31.03.11 12:31:17 by Puma Reply

  • @Morné (Comment 26) :
    Sorry Morne, not you and also not Puma.

  • Comment 29, posted at 31.03.11 12:36:14 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Puma (Comment 27) : Dude he is the biggest liar ever, I had hoped he learned something when he went to mighty men, must have been another road show for him just to buy over fans…

  • Comment 30, posted at 31.03.11 12:37:47 by Uli Reply
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  • @Uli (Comment 30) : I know. I put my support behind the coach cause it was the right thing to do. But not anymore.

  • Comment 31, posted at 31.03.11 12:41:41 by Puma Reply

  • @Morne. You do make some excellent points. And it probably is worth noting that keeping the Boks together as a team is a much bigger achievement than a Prov side.

  • Comment 32, posted at 31.03.11 12:48:46 by GeneralSpecific Reply
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  • My thoughts are that John no longer holds down a starting place in a provincial team based on form.
    The choice between him and Bismarck isnt really a choice, it’s Bismarck everytime. The sharks need Bismarck and so do the Boks. He gives both sides a bit of vooma and that Uli Schmidt factor simply becuase of his aggression and him liking to get stuck in.

    That said, the mistake was made last year already by PDiddy not grooming a successor for John.
    Its too late now, we’re all in and we havent even yet seen the flop.

    Whilst I no longer think John is the man for the job, heaven forbid it falls to Victor Matfield.Its been a long time sicne I’ve seen a less inspiring captain.

    I think the best solution for all concerned is for John to captain the squad but to do it from the side-lines or the bench for the majority of the games. He can be inspirational and a great leader without taking the field.

    The question we all need to ask is: its the final of the World Cup. We’re playing New Zealand in Eden Park and they’re in scintillating form.
    Who would you rather have: Bismarck or John at hooker? Wold you want John anywhere near the side of the scrum after watching him get dismantled by the Saders front row?
    Thats the rub because I think a lot of people revere John because he’s been a fantastic servant of SA and Sharks rugby and by all accounts is one helluva nice guy.
    When the chips are down though – is he the one you want hooking or Bismarck?

  • Comment 33, posted at 31.03.11 12:52:36 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • @Puma (Comment 28) :

    Definitely the Victor card that wa splayed.
    The biggest reason I dont want him named captain.
    Well, that and his constant whining at the referee.
    Big Vic needs to stick to one thing – line-outs.

  • Comment 34, posted at 31.03.11 12:54:03 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • My choice – John Smit for squad captain and Juan to take voer the reins when he’s on the bench.

  • Comment 35, posted at 31.03.11 12:54:57 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • OK lets forget about this year, who will take over next year as captain?

  • Comment 36, posted at 31.03.11 12:59:52 by Uli Reply
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  • Thank goodness for this article — seems like all the Keo writers want him out. Again. We should keep him as hooker, rotate him and Bismarck. Victor shouldn’t be Bok captain — look what happend in the 2008 Tri Nations!

  • Comment 37, posted at 31.03.11 13:07:25 by Atom07 Reply

  • So here’s a thought; John Smit *has* to be in the squad for his leadership and motivational abilities, BUT it would be hard to argue that his form warrants him playing a full 80 minutes. However, what everyone is missing is that this is not a problem; should we hypothetically find ourselves in a tough situation, where the chips are down, the light at the end of the tunnel is flickering, and John is not there to lift the guys’ spirit and steel their resolve with some sage words of wisdom, there is still a solution – take off Andries Bekker’s jersey and get the guys to read that motivational poster he had tattooed across his back… 😈

  • Comment 38, posted at 31.03.11 13:10:10 by Culling Song Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 33) :
    Makes sense. In that same crunch game you mentioned, New Zealand at Eden Park, lineout on our 5 metre line, who would we prefer throwing the ball in. This is still one part of Bismarks game that is not always up to scratch. Mind you Smit has also had his days with bad lineouts.

  • Comment 39, posted at 31.03.11 13:17:51 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Culling Song (Comment 38) :
    Good call, but dont you have to stand on a a park bench to be able to read them.

  • Comment 40, posted at 31.03.11 13:18:57 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Culling Song (Comment 38) :

    Lol. Had to go look it up.

    “I will conquer what has not been conquered; I will believe what others doubt; I have trained my mind and my body will follow; No one will deny me; No one will define me; No one will tell me who I am or who I can be; Belief will change my world; History will remember me; I will define myself; I can write my own pages; No one will tell me what I can or cannot be.”

    Just wonder if it was written in Ambulance writing as he will have to look in the mirror in order to motivate himself.

  • Comment 41, posted at 31.03.11 13:25:51 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 41) : he is a stormer, maybe the guy standing behind him reads to him.. 😈

  • Comment 42, posted at 31.03.11 13:30:45 by Ice Reply
    Competition Winner Ice
  • @neilster, I agree with you re Victor Matfield, on current form, there are better players than both John and Victor. Let’s hope that these guys will peak later in the year, when its needed!

  • Comment 43, posted at 31.03.11 13:41:43 by Crock Reply

  • 😆 😈

  • Comment 44, posted at 31.03.11 13:42:07 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Ice (Comment 42) : Ouch! That’s as cold as …er… Ice!

  • Comment 45, posted at 31.03.11 13:54:31 by Culling Song Reply
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  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 41) : Is it just me, or does he repeat himself a lot? 80% of that tattoo could have been summarised to Popeye’s “I yam what I yam!”

  • Comment 46, posted at 31.03.11 13:56:03 by Culling Song Reply
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  • @Culling Song (Comment 46) : The SW meeting you suggested sounds like a grand idea to me! 😎

  • Comment 47, posted at 31.03.11 14:01:48 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @Culling Song (Comment 45) : 😆

  • Comment 48, posted at 31.03.11 14:01:51 by Ice Reply
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  • @Culling Song (Comment 46) :

    He could even have abbreviated it: FJELN!
    Would’ve saved a bit of ink!

  • Comment 49, posted at 31.03.11 14:15:20 by VinChainSaw Reply
  • @VinChainSaw (Comment 49) : FJELN…?

  • Comment 50, posted at 31.03.11 15:25:00 by Culling Song Reply
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  • @Culling Song (Comment 50) : F*k Jou Ek Loop Nou… 😆

  • Comment 51, posted at 31.03.11 15:25:53 by Ice Reply
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  • @Ice (Comment 42) : 😆 😆 😆

  • Comment 52, posted at 31.03.11 15:52:03 by McLovin Reply

  • That is one hell of a tattoo though.

    Suppose he’s got the space.

  • Comment 53, posted at 31.03.11 15:55:40 by McLovin Reply

  • Ah, but remember Victor and PDivvy are “business partners”.

  • Comment 54, posted at 31.03.11 16:08:32 by Crock Reply

  • Ag, it is just easier to take the Bulls team to the RWC, Victor can captain, no provincial issues so no need for John Smit, Gary Botha is better and more experienced than Bissie, Victor can have his choice of open side flankers playing (Stegman) and the coach’s and Victor’s business partnership will not suffer. Seems like a win all around. :mrgreen: 😈

  • Comment 55, posted at 31.03.11 17:07:59 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 55) :

    The way the bulls are playing we wouldnt make it past the group stages… That being said, Id take Smit to the RWC, but in the same capacity as Skinstad in 2007, someone that has experince, can inpart knowledge and motivation. He would play a couple group games, but not the 1/4, semis, final.

    My matchday 22:
    1. Beast
    2. Bismark
    3. CJ
    4 Danie – more disciplined then Bakkies, can play 7/8
    5 Victor (c)
    6 Brussow
    7 Smith
    8 Alberts – Spies no where, Alberts always gets over the advantage line. Perfect No 8
    9 DuPreez
    10 Lambie – Attacking, ball in hand rugby will win the RWC, not up-and-unders…
    11 Hougaard – Habana is no-where
    12 JdV (v/c)
    13 Fourie
    14 Pietersen
    15 F Steyn

    16 Guthro
    17 G Botha
    18 Bekker
    19 Burger
    20 McLeod
    21 Steyn
    22 De Jongh

  • Comment 56, posted at 31.03.11 20:48:18 by Mole Reply

  • @Mole (Comment 56) : On current form I’d take Peter Grant and Lambie to the world cup as the Flyhalves.

  • Comment 57, posted at 31.03.11 21:06:37 by Ben Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • Interesting debate, but aren’t we pontificating WAY too early for any of this to be truly relevant? An awful lot can happen in a few short months. This time last year the idea of Patrick Lambie at flyhalf at this level of rugby would have had most pundits rolling in the aisles and spilling their beer. Who is to say what is going to happen over the next few months?
    PDV could be hit by a bus and get sued for damages to public property as a result, a giant squid could eat New Zealand and choke on Dan Carter’s left sock, Sonny Bill Williams could quit the game to become a drag artist and Victor Matfield could elope with Bakkies to start an ashram in the foothills of Ventersdorp… Jacob Zuma could be taken into protective custody after after being “made” as a CIA operative, Mugabe, Gadaffi and Kim Jong Il could team up to form the Great Dictators – the world’s first political “Boy Band” and Justin Bieber could become the supreme leader of the known world.
    Suffice to say that everyone is just a little ahead of themselves here and that the final stages of SupeRugby and the TriNations will seal the deal, selection-wise. Or we could get invaded by fish people from the planet Cod….

  • Comment 58, posted at 31.03.11 23:19:56 by SharonvanWyk Reply

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