Someone once said something about a game of two halves (and then they said it again..).
This was that.
First half, Tasman seemed a mix of casual, butter-fingered, overly-anxious hunguses determined to keep Southland in the game.
Second half they came out much more focused, accurate and playing for each-other and eventually broke the Southland shackles.
Not sure whether playing with the wind was responsible for some pretty dire catching and passing. Tbh Southland played the first half like there was a heavy mid-afternoon dew , as well.
Anyway, ended up pretty comfortable.
Much better from just about everyone compared to last week's debacle - at least in the 2nd half. David Havili back to being a talisman. Fox-Matamua went well at 8. Ross improved the lineout. Renton probably had his best game of the season.
Once we stopped dropping the ball Big Leicester and Fetu Paea started to look good. Fonotia was decent and Mark Talea had his moments.
Nice cameo from Segner with one blockbusting run and a little catch and pass to set up a try. Worth another run next week, IMO.
Biggest problem was Isaac Salmon at tighthead - we went from having a dominant scrum with Matenga, to getting beaten up. That suggest that Matenga might be worth a look from a Super team.
Pleasing effort in the loose from Sam Moli. I'm not sure whether he threw to the linout, but I'd stick with him for next week as well.
Much better effort from Tasman this week, with everyone contributing.
Christie especially looked like he'd shaken off some rust and things flowed better from there.
However, as above, the forward packs seemed reasonably evenly matched. The Tasman backs just had more firepower and played with more adventure.
I think it will be a lot better for TTT to stay in NZ and play some rugby rather than sitting in an Australian grandstand watching the ABs. On that performance, I wouldn't want Otere Black very near an AB jersey either.
Read has some conditions from his Japanese club around playing time. He was only allowed to play 40 mins last night and won't be playing against Hawke's next round, along with missing some other away games.
Ah stink, it would have been good to have him start in the kind of form he was in last year. 😉
Although, to be serious, it would have been goof for Flanders to have had a run against him.
Tough loss. Watched the game again and the team put in a great effort, especially the starters. It's too bad that our subs came on and added very little. Outside of Adams, most of the subs had a negative impact on the game, especially Abel. If you watch the last 20 minutes, almost all the missed tackles and mistakes during that time were by our bench players. Their bench was much better and made key plays at the end of the game, which was probably the difference.
I think both packs canceled each other out for the most part. I think our pack struggled to get much go forward for most of the game, but despite that, our backs were pretty dangerous throughout the match. We definitely made a mistake not having Sotutu somewhere in the 23 though.
The way we corrected things in the last few weeks, I'm hopeful of next season. We were just a totally different team late in the season.
The irony there is he seemed to be made of glass in Super rugby haha!
Yeah I mentioned the players we are missing above being a factor, and maybe the expectation has been the newbies will be able to execute plans they had when they were anticipating our 'best' players would have been available.
I think the coaches need to take some of the heat, they provide the gameplans, conditioning (coaching group) culture etc...seems there is a bit wrong at present.
Yes he was very bad. He's put on some weight hasn't he. I couldn;t believe how easily Havili ran around him in that first half. Ha two players share the same non-AB selection disappointment but couldn't be more different in their attitude.
Oh and I'm also in the camp that doesn't move Goodhue to accommodate Ennor, but should attrition or lack of other options dictate that move - and there's no clear 12 for the Saders at the moment - then so be it.
I had a re-watch yesterday. Pari Pari Parkinson was the best player on the field. Great first half at the lineout and with ball in hand, excellent second half in defense. This guy is more powerful than his lean frame might let it think. Good games from Aumua, Havili, Strange and Makalio as well. Jordan was a bit disappointing but the game did not go his way.
Canterbury had less individual brilliance (with the notable exceptions of Drummond and Bridge) but their collective play in the second half was just awsome.
Haha Auckland are never favourites against Canterbury especially down there. I'd back even the weakest of Canterbury teams to beat us in Chch. Oh well I suppose I''ll go along and watch and hope that this could be the one time we win haha.
@shark I doubt Havili will go anywhere after the RWC. He's only 23, still developing as a player and - the last two years - the first choice fullback for the Crusaders (keeping both Dagg and Bridge out of the 15 jersey). He's is test capped and - presumably - he'll still be on the ABs radar. I have no doubt that's what his ambitions are; to get another shot at the ABs. He's not that far off. One or two more good seasons at SR level, and he may get another call-up, esp in case of a BFA departure. Sooner, in case of injury. Hansen & co have said they like his versatility. Getting the Tasman captaincy may give him some confidence, which he seemed to lack a bit at the beginning of the 2018 SR season.
I actually think he reached peak form in 2017 and might struggle to get back there. Sure, Smith will be goneski after the RWC but he's still behind Barrett and McKenzie with the chance someone else could emerge (Jordan possibly). His versatility and potential issues in the Crusaders midfield going forward (ie Crotty injuries) could see him shifted around a bit as well, opening up opportunities for others in the Crusaders 15 jumper. All combined, I think he will find it difficult to get back into black and if he becomes frustrated due to any of the aforementioned factors, he could be off.
Sopoaga will be having nightmares about Mo'unga. Breathing right down his neck for that backup 10 spot at the moment.
Not suggesting he should be an AB, and probably doesn't have enough "x-factor" but a more hardworking loose forward than Luke Whitelock is hard to find.
Correct whitelock has really impressed me and I personally think with kaino nearing the end whitelock and ioane are the next best 2
I hope he doesn't go overseas just yet. But him and Brad Shields must be attractive targets for overseas clubs. I'm not sure what else Whitelock could do TBH, other than find a bit of x-factor. I thought he was a bit of a donkey when he made that ABs wider training squad a few years back, but his last couple of seasons have been very good.
Jordan, Lowe, Nankivell, Hunt, Frizell, Halakonuka and Makalio the standouts for the winning team.
Tamanivalu, Perofeta and Sowakula were very good for Taranaki.
TTT did a replay of his game for the Canes against the BIL. He has a lot of qualities but his decision making is something that has to be fixed.
Below is a list of the 2017 CMRFU award winners -
Counties Manukau PIC Steelers player of the year – Sam Henwood
Counties Manukau PIC Steelers defence player of the year – Sam Henwood
Counties Manukau PIC Steelers player’s player of the year (chosen by the PIC Steelers players) – Sam Henwood
Counties Manukau PIC Steelers Rookie of the year – Orbyn Leger
Counties Manukau PIC Steelers most improved player of the year – Jonathan Kawau
Men’s 7’s player of the year – Liam Daniela
Bayleys B’s most improved player – Feta Luamanu
Bayleys B’s player of the year – Penitoa Finau
Don Ha B’s most improved player -Jimmy Conaglen
Don Ha B’s player of the year – Faafouina Loau
U19 most improved – Toti Nginingini
U19 player of the year – Joshua Baverstock
George Bell Memorial Trophy (services to rugby) – Dawn Newton
Volunteer of the year – Karyn Adams
Supporters Club – player of the year – Sam Henwood
Referee of the year – John Wright
AS Wilcox Premier Club player of the year – Joe Reynolds