robdylan

The choices of Master Plumtree


Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 25 Apr 2011 at 12:50
Tagged with : , , , , ,

Who would want to be in John Plumtree’s shoes this week, as he selects his Sharks team for Saturdays’ showdown against the Stormers in Cape Town – one that is already shaping up as a key decider in the race for top spot in the South African conference.

How matters have changed in just a few short weeks! After suffering a bad loss to the self-same Stormers at Kings Park a month ago, the Sharks have picked up as many points as they could have (14) over the last three weeks, while the Cape side have lost ground thanks to a pointless loss against the Reds and a lacklustre win over the Lions, without a bonus point. Their 8-point lead over the Sharks has been reduced to just three and should the Durban boys manage any sort of a result in Cape Town, they’d set themselves up nicely to end the group stages in semi-final contention, given that the Stormers still have to tour.

The flip side, of course, is that another loss would give the Stormers a nice buffer again and also knock the Sharks even further back than the sixth position they currently hold on the log – and well out of knockout contention altogether. In short, there’s a hell of a lot at stake at Newlands this weekend and with a fair few positional disputes to settle, Plumtree has his work cut out for him. In a talented squad of players, there are precious few positions that can be considered completely sewn up.

At loosehead prop, Tendai Mtawarira should be a guaranteed starter, while Willem Alberts and Ryan Kankowski should also be assured of retaining the 7 and 8 jerseys respectively. Pat Lambie, Meyer Bosman and Louis Ludik are the other guys who will be there, and rightly so, but in virtually every other position, Plum and his fellow coaches are going to have to make a pretty tough call. The coach spoke of having words with players who weren’t performing and the prime candidate at this stage must, unfortunately, be Stefan Terblanche. The Sharks seem to value Adi Jacobs most highly for his impact play later in the game though, making it unlikely that the stand-in skipper will miss out in the number 13 jersey, particularly if Bismarck du Plessis is picked to start at hooker. After his awesome game against the Hurricanes, John Smit should have the inside line to continue in the middle of the scrum, but Bissie is so valuable all over the park that he’s hard to leave out if fit. Jannie du Plessis should be a fairly straightforward pick at tight head too, but Eugene van Staden has also been in impressive form.

Assuming that JP Pietersen and Lwazi Mvovo continue at wing (although the thought of leaving Odwa Ndungane out for such a big game boggles the mind) then it’s only the second row, loose forwards and scrumhalf position that need to be settled. I don’t feel that this weekend’s lock combination did the business and Steven Sykes is another player who may just find himself getting his fire back from the bench this week. Gerhard Mostert could well come in for a start at 4, with Alistair Hargreaves hopefully fit to replace Ross Skeate next to him. The race for the number 6 jersey is wide open, with Jean Deysel just possibly a dark horse to come in there. Should that be the case, expect both Keegan Daniel and Jacques Botes to be included on the bench, with only two back reserves picked.

Scrummie is anyone’s guess, with Conradd Hoffmann due a start and Charl McLeod’s form a little patchy. My feeling is that it would be better to start Hoffies in a slightly lower-pressure game – his versatility in being able to cover flyhalf as well makes him an indispensable option on a 5-2 bench.

If I were picking the team for this weekend, it would look like this:
15 Ludik, 14 Pietersen, 13 Jacobs, 12 Bosman, 11 Mvovo, 10 Lambie, 9 McLeod, 8 Kankowski, 7 Alberts, 6 Deysel, 5 Hargreaves, 4 Mostert, 3 J du Plessis, 2 Smit (capt), 1 Mtawarira
16 B du Plessis, 17 van Staden, 18 Sykes, 19 Daniel, 20 Botes, 21 Hoffmann, 22 Ndungane


87 Comments

  • I would definitely agree with you on this selection. Question marks over the fitness of Hargreaves and the match fitness of Deysel would be my only concern. This is, however, not the team Plum will select.

  • Comment 1, posted at 25.04.11 12:56:05 by war1 Reply
    Author
    war1
     
  • @war1 (Comment 1) : I know!

    Plum will go with

    Beast, Bissie, Jannie, Sykes, Skeate, Daniel, Alberts, Hoff, McLeod, Pat, JP, Meyer, Stef, Oddy, Louis

  • Comment 2, posted at 25.04.11 13:01:36 by robdylan Reply
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  • anyone know which book inspired the headline?

  • Comment 3, posted at 25.04.11 13:01:58 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 3) : Plum’s new biography? πŸ˜‰ sorry don’t know.

  • Comment 4, posted at 25.04.11 13:04:12 by war1 Reply
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    war1
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 2) : It’s a little sad how predictable it is.

  • Comment 5, posted at 25.04.11 13:05:45 by war1 Reply
    Author
    war1
     
  • Anyone see the other Kiwi coach blowing his top?

    http://www.rugby365.com/tournaments/super14/news/2725801.htm

    :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

  • Comment 6, posted at 25.04.11 13:07:19 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • Would dearly love to see that team you picked play. Its a bit of a bugger up having 2 captains in the team and in both their positions we have a better player.

  • Comment 7, posted at 25.04.11 13:09:34 by Ben Reply
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    Ben
     
  • Plum really needs to start looking at a new captain for next season. And it better not be Marius Joubert! πŸ™‚

  • Comment 8, posted at 25.04.11 13:13:14 by Ben Reply
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    Ben
     
  • @Ben (Comment 8) : Don’t be too surprised if it’s Willem Alberts.

  • Comment 9, posted at 25.04.11 13:18:15 by war1 Reply
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    war1
     
  • @klempie (Comment 6) : Shame man… it was bound to happen.

    I’m still feeling full of goodwill to all men and that stuff, so don’t want to pie the misery on with an article of my own

  • Comment 10, posted at 25.04.11 13:19:21 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 2) : I’d be suprised to see skeato start again

  • Comment 11, posted at 25.04.11 13:21:15 by franshark Reply
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    Franshark
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 10) : I like Mitch, and do feel for him. But it’s still vrek snaaks. Lions are trying to set the Super Rugby record for most number of losing BP’s in a season (that is if they haven’t already achieved it). :mrgreen:

  • Comment 12, posted at 25.04.11 13:21:15 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 3) : Lord of the Rings. πŸ™‚

  • Comment 13, posted at 25.04.11 13:22:19 by McLovin Reply

    McLovin
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 13) : You’re right. πŸ™‚

  • Comment 14, posted at 25.04.11 13:23:42 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • Or is it The Hobbit? 😐

  • Comment 15, posted at 25.04.11 13:24:09 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • I’m leaning towards The Hobbit at this point.

  • Comment 16, posted at 25.04.11 13:24:53 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • @klempie (Comment 15) : All the same to me.

  • Comment 17, posted at 25.04.11 13:26:24 by McLovin Reply

    McLovin
     
  • @klempie (Comment 16) : 10th chapter in the second book of The Two Towers.

  • Comment 18, posted at 25.04.11 13:27:50 by McLovin Reply

    McLovin
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 18) : Ah.

  • Comment 19, posted at 25.04.11 13:30:51 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 18) : spot on… “The Choices of Master Samwise”… when Sam Gamgee has to decide whether to stay with Frodo’s (seemingly) dead body, or take the ring and go destroy it himself.

    Powerful stuff.

    Plum has it easy by comparison πŸ™‚

  • Comment 20, posted at 25.04.11 13:31:34 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 20) : Ah yes. Pity they put that scene in the wrong movie though. Samwise is the real hero of that story imho.

  • Comment 21, posted at 25.04.11 13:42:17 by war1 Reply
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    war1
     
  • @war1 (Comment 21) : spot on!

  • Comment 22, posted at 25.04.11 14:02:13 by robdylan Reply
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  • Rob,

    I would go with your selections. Spot on. Hope Plum reads this site. πŸ˜›

    I know this has been said plenty. But really hope we get our lineouts right this week. Bekker will punish is if we do not.

    Go Sharks. 😎 This is gonna be a massive game for both teams.

  • Comment 23, posted at 25.04.11 14:29:12 by Puma Reply

    Puma
     
  • @Puma (Comment 23) : punish is = punish us. πŸ™„

  • Comment 24, posted at 25.04.11 14:29:56 by Puma Reply

    Puma
     
  • Will be nice sending the Stormers on tour at least 1 point behind us. 😎

  • Comment 25, posted at 25.04.11 14:35:15 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • @klempie (Comment 25) : With our 4 points for the bye still to come. πŸ˜›

  • Comment 26, posted at 25.04.11 14:39:44 by Danman110 Reply

    Danman110
     
  • @Danman110 (Comment 26) : 😎

  • Comment 27, posted at 25.04.11 14:43:23 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • @Puma (Comment 23) : plum told me he’s a ‘newspapers man’. πŸ™‚

  • Comment 28, posted at 25.04.11 14:47:51 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 28) : Okay, Newspapers are fine, but hope he never reads voldy, cause the stuff there from some is utter nonsense. πŸ‘Ώ

    You selections would have been mine as well. Agree too that Hoffman needs to start a game, but this one he can’t just too big a game this one. So hope McLeod is back to playing great rugby. Cause I think Hoffman is knocking on that door now. Good that we have that depth, that keeps players hungry.

    You think Deysel could start? My feeling if he is in the squad, he will come from the bench. But heck really want to see him with Alberts again. They were devastating last year together. So too was John against Liebenberg.

    Anyhow. Just have to hope we can. Cause we win this one it puts us in a nice position. We still have Bulls twice, that not gonna be easy, with the Bulls hurting. They will want to beat both Sharks and Stormers to prove something, I think.

  • Comment 29, posted at 25.04.11 14:56:09 by Puma Reply

    Puma
     
  • Okay Braai time. πŸ™‚

    Cheers everyone.

  • Comment 30, posted at 25.04.11 14:57:48 by Puma Reply

    Puma
     
  • @klempie (Comment 25) :
    @Danman110 (Comment 26) :

    They have 3 gimme’s on tour though. They play Chiefs, Blues, Brumbies and Chiefs.

    But have no fear!!!!!!! They Play the crusaders after they lose to us, so they should go on tour with a little more than just a 1 point defecit. πŸ˜‰

  • Comment 31, posted at 25.04.11 15:03:12 by KSA Shark Β© Reply

    KSA Shark Β©
     
  • @KSA Shark Β© (Comment 31) : They play Chiefs, Blues, Brumbies and Rebels.

  • Comment 32, posted at 25.04.11 15:11:15 by KSA Shark Β© Reply

    KSA Shark Β©
     
  • @KSA Shark Β© (Comment 31) : We are gonna soften them up for the Saders. 😈

    I see the Canes picked up 3 injuries.

  • Comment 33, posted at 25.04.11 15:15:07 by Danman110 Reply

    Danman110
     
  • @war1 (Comment 9) : Has he captained a team in his past?

  • Comment 34, posted at 25.04.11 15:30:39 by Ben Reply
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    Ben
     
  • @KSA Shark Β© (Comment 31) : Chiefs a gimme? πŸ˜†

    Neither will the Brumbies be with new coach Jake White. πŸ˜‰

    So only one ‘gimme’ then. 😈

  • Comment 35, posted at 25.04.11 15:44:26 by McLovin Reply

    McLovin
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 35) : assuming Jake gets the job, it will only start next year, afaik

  • Comment 36, posted at 25.04.11 16:05:55 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 36) : Shows how good he is. Brumbies will be better just knowing Jake is on the way. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 37, posted at 25.04.11 16:08:26 by McLovin Reply

    McLovin
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 2) : You reckon the 2 big boys will be able to cope with Flow? Maybe Keegan should start at 8?

  • Comment 38, posted at 25.04.11 16:39:30 by catfish Reply
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    catfish
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 37) : he’s a lot easier to get on with when he’s not actually anywhere near πŸ™‚

  • Comment 39, posted at 25.04.11 16:40:23 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Ben (Comment 34) : He captained the Lions a couple of times before you guys lured him to durban :lol:?seriously though, he did a pretty decent job, you could do a lot worse than make him captain. I honestly can’t understand how one can give the captaincy to a player who you know you are going to substitute later in the game. Think S14 final 2007, you had no captain for the last 20 minutes, the overriding reason for losing that one.

  • Comment 40, posted at 25.04.11 16:40:28 by Greg Reply

    Greg
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 37) : P.S. Stormers have never beaten the Brumbies in Aus. 😐

  • Comment 41, posted at 25.04.11 16:40:45 by McLovin Reply

    McLovin
     
  • @catfish (Comment 38) : get two big okes to push him over on to his backside the moment he even thinks of touching that ball. Fetching is over-rated. The good teams rely on the counter ruck this season.

  • Comment 42, posted at 25.04.11 16:46:58 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Greg (Comment 40) : we had AJ Venter… Ok, good point πŸ™‚

  • Comment 43, posted at 25.04.11 16:50:26 by robdylan Reply
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  • Alberts or Bismarck for captain after Steph’s and Smit’s time.

  • Comment 44, posted at 25.04.11 16:50:34 by GreatSharksays Reply

     
  • @GreatSharksays (Comment 44) : Bismarck???! Surely not.

  • Comment 45, posted at 25.04.11 16:59:34 by war1 Reply
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    war1
     
  • This team is sort of a given, not any problems with it. My question is how will the Sharks 15 look like? They are suppose to tackle the WP in the curtain raiser in the one quarterfinal.

  • Comment 46, posted at 25.04.11 17:03:39 by snoestaxi Reply

    snoestaxi
     
  • @war1 (Comment 45) : With you on that one! making the bad boy captain, doesn’t always work.

  • Comment 47, posted at 25.04.11 17:17:04 by catfish Reply
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    catfish
     
  • @robdylan (Comment 42) : See your point, but still concerned that Flow will be there first and counter rucking will be too late. Noticed how deep Alberts played against the Canes? looked like the 8th-man role…

  • Comment 48, posted at 25.04.11 17:20:11 by catfish Reply
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    catfish
     
  • @snoestaxi (Comment 46) : Peter Grant might still have an injury. So the WP team will be without Lionel Cronje and maybe even Kurt Coleman. And Lionel was their go to guy in the team.

  • Comment 49, posted at 25.04.11 17:21:29 by Danman110 Reply

    Danman110
     
  • @catfish (Comment 47) : Not necessarily bad boy but a little bit of a loose cannon sometimes. He is an important and influential player but I just don’t think he is captaincy material.

  • Comment 50, posted at 25.04.11 17:35:23 by war1 Reply
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    war1
     
  • @war1 (Comment 50) : I agree with you Warren.

  • Comment 51, posted at 25.04.11 17:39:44 by Ben Reply
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  • @war1 (Comment 50) : πŸ˜€ You got it, then again have never dealt with him personally, so who am I to judge? Maybe he’s got it…

  • Comment 52, posted at 25.04.11 17:42:49 by catfish Reply
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    catfish
     
  • John Smit had a pretty good game except for all those lineouts going pear shaped. I feel we really missed Bissie at the Breakdowns on Saturday. Could have stolen a few more balls if he was there and like we know so many tries are scored from turnover ball. Bissie still our best bet at hooker by a long way imo.

  • Comment 53, posted at 25.04.11 17:46:43 by Ben Reply
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    Ben
     
  • I’m convinced this KSA Shark chap is on some strong meds.
    Dude. Since round 2 you predicted a Stormers loss every single week and how did that turn out?? Only one loss thus far… I suppose even a blind squirrel finds a nut sometimes! 😈 πŸ˜†

  • Comment 54, posted at 25.04.11 17:49:07 by wpw Reply
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    wpw
     
  • @Ben (Comment 53) : Yeah I also felt we missed Bissie at the breakdowns. But you never know with the refs nowadays, sometimes going for the turnover will cost you a penalty. In the 2nd half we had more aggressive defense which drove the ‘Canes back behind the advantage line and put them on the back foot and that made the difference I believe. Defense is mostly attitude and we need that against the Stormers this weekend.

  • Comment 55, posted at 25.04.11 17:52:28 by war1 Reply
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    war1
     
  • @ wpw, Nuts ? Just Easter Eggs today 😈

  • Comment 56, posted at 25.04.11 17:53:36 by Charlie Reply

    Charlie
     
  • @war1 (Comment 55) : Yeah I don’t care how many tries the Stormers have or haven’t scored this season. They have a VERY dangerous backline and our defense needs to be up to it. Can’t defend like we did against the Crusaders. Stefan Terblanche will have to have a huge game, needs to deal with Jaque Fourie. Would be nice if Peter Grant isn’t fit to play.

  • Comment 57, posted at 25.04.11 17:56:33 by Ben Reply
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    Ben
     
  • This is going to be such an epic game!

    Rob you joining us?

  • Comment 58, posted at 25.04.11 18:14:49 by MornΓ© Reply
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    MornΓ©
     
  • Ben in the SA Rugby magazine there is an article on Alberts and in it Plum states that Alberts has natural leadership and he will be leading the Sharks at some stage, he sais that Bismarck has same qualities, from that I think on JS and oupa’s departure the armband will go to Alberts and Bissie

  • Comment 59, posted at 25.04.11 18:18:13 by Sharksmad - The Blog's Dudette Reply

    Sharksmad - The Blog's Dudette
     
  • @Sharksmad – The Blog’s Dudette (Comment 59) : Thanks that’s good to know.

  • Comment 60, posted at 25.04.11 18:19:47 by Ben Reply
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    Ben
     
  • @MornΓ© (Comment 58) : I wish mate… I wish!

    I’ll be in Sevenoaks on Saturday

  • Comment 61, posted at 25.04.11 18:32:48 by robdylan Reply
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  • so why does Jake reckon he wouldn’t pick Vic Alberts? I haven’t bothered to read the article

  • Comment 62, posted at 25.04.11 18:33:31 by robdylan Reply
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  • @ Rob, Jake White is 4 years behind in rugby, what would he know πŸ™„

  • Comment 63, posted at 25.04.11 18:37:46 by Charlie Reply

    Charlie
     
  • @Charlie (Comment 63) : ja – I just read it and he is looking at it from such a narrow point of view.

    For one thing, he is trying to figure out how Alberts complements Spies. Who in their right frikken mind would pick Spies?

  • Comment 64, posted at 25.04.11 18:47:22 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 61) :

    Girl! πŸ˜‰

  • Comment 65, posted at 25.04.11 18:51:12 by MornΓ© Reply
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    MornΓ©
     
  • @ Rob, no surprise, he never was a thinker outside the box, until Eddie Jones arrived πŸ˜‰

  • Comment 66, posted at 25.04.11 18:58:42 by Charlie Reply

    Charlie
     
  • @ Rob, how Alberts compliments Spies ? He knows how to do the dirty work and put in the hard yards, Spies prefer to parade on the outskirts 😈

  • Comment 67, posted at 25.04.11 19:03:11 by Charlie Reply

    Charlie
     
  • Still can’t believe Jake admitted he would not choose Brussow ahead of Burger after the season he had in 2009.
    πŸ™„

  • Comment 68, posted at 25.04.11 19:05:46 by wpw Reply
    Author
    wpw
     
  • @wpw (Comment 54) : I have to be right eventually.

    And BTW I’ve predicted no more than 2 MAYBE 3 losses for you guys.

    You’re going to start this weekend, the law of averages and the Sharks are against you. πŸ™‚

  • Comment 69, posted at 25.04.11 19:22:09 by KSA Shark Β© Reply

    KSA Shark Β©
     
  • @wpw (Comment 68) : Is this your token anti-wp comment for the week? πŸ˜›

  • Comment 70, posted at 25.04.11 19:23:00 by KSA Shark Β© Reply

    KSA Shark Β©
     
  • @wpw (Comment 54) : It’s okay dude you don’t have to worry about what I’m on, rather concern yourself with being 6 points off the pace when you start your tour. πŸ˜‰ 😈 πŸ˜›

  • Comment 71, posted at 25.04.11 19:24:28 by KSA Shark Β© Reply

    KSA Shark Β©
     
  • @KSA Shark Β© (Comment 69) : Don’t think law of averages applies when there’s skill involved. You seem to be confusing law of averages with wishful thinking. πŸ˜›

  • Comment 72, posted at 25.04.11 19:46:36 by McLovin Reply

    McLovin
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 72) : Hey you have to lose sometime, and it’s probably gonna be two weeks in a row. πŸ˜‰

  • Comment 73, posted at 25.04.11 19:50:37 by KSA Shark Β© Reply

    KSA Shark Β©
     
  • @KSA Shark Β© (Comment 73) : We lost against the Reds. Hopefully it’s now back to winning ways. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 74, posted at 25.04.11 19:52:47 by McLovin Reply

    McLovin
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 74) : Oh damn that’s to recent, Okay so maybe it will be one loss in the near future then….. πŸ˜‰

  • Comment 75, posted at 25.04.11 19:56:36 by KSA Shark Β© Reply

    KSA Shark Β©
     
  • @KSA Shark Β© (Comment 75) : My nerves are all ready pretty frayed and it’s only Monday. 😯 πŸ˜†

  • Comment 76, posted at 25.04.11 20:07:51 by McLovin Reply

    McLovin
     
  • KSA Shark
    Only an idiot would select Schalk ahead of Brussow DURING 2009 after that B&I Lions series!! And that my dear friend was what Jake said he would do when asked at the time.

  • Comment 77, posted at 25.04.11 20:10:37 by wpw Reply
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    wpw
     
  • @McLovin (Comment 76) : πŸ˜›
    Gonna be a good week. Gonna cost me a fortune in 3G from work. πŸ™‚

    @wpw (Comment 77) : Dude you only need to make one anti wp comment a week. No need to put yourself through the extra grief. πŸ˜‰ 😈

  • Comment 78, posted at 25.04.11 20:17:04 by KSA Shark Β© Reply

    KSA Shark Β©
     
  • 😯 πŸ™„

  • Comment 79, posted at 25.04.11 20:20:31 by wpw Reply
    Author
    wpw
     
  • I make atleast 100 anti wp comments a day …
    Kidding closer to 200 πŸ˜‰

    Was just at Kearsney easter festival ,some good rugby being played by those schools.

  • Comment 80, posted at 25.04.11 21:27:32 by Talent Reply
    Author
    Talent
     
  • @KSA Shark Β© (Comment 69) : The Stormers are going to fall flat on their faces on tour, oubaas. Don’t you worry.

  • Comment 81, posted at 25.04.11 22:00:13 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • @wpw (Comment 79) : BAHAHAHAHAAHAHA

  • Comment 82, posted at 25.04.11 22:01:36 by klempie Reply

    klempie
     
  • @wpw (Comment 77) : White only needs someone to “fetch” him a beer…

  • Comment 83, posted at 26.04.11 08:26:25 by catfish Reply
    Author
    catfish
     
  • @ catfish, no wonder he had been unemployed for 4 years, you can’t drink on the job 😈

  • Comment 84, posted at 26.04.11 09:30:41 by Charlie Reply

    Charlie
     
  • The Sharks are looking chockablock with good solid forwards….but that midfield is still woefully useless at times.

  • Comment 85, posted at 26.04.11 10:59:41 by Predawn Reply

    Great White Shark
     
  • @ Predawn…well Plum have got a midfield solution, just stubborn to use it… πŸ˜‰

  • Comment 86, posted at 26.04.11 12:10:00 by Charlie Reply

    Charlie
     
  • It`s a no brainer:
    Ludik, JP, Stefan, Bosman, Mvovo, Lambie, Charl, Alberts, Deysel,Hargreaves, Mosterd, Botes, Jannie, Smit, Beast.

    Then bring Kankow and Bismarck on for Mosterd and Smit respectively at around the 50 minute mark. Alberts moves to lock.
    Bring Keegan on for Deysel in the last ten minutes, if he shows signs of tiring.

    < bows to applause > ! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 87, posted at 26.04.11 15:32:42 by Original Pierre Reply
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    Original Pierre
     

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