SANZAAR players coming home



  • So this is NOT suggesting the ABs should pick offshore players.

    We've seen over the past few weeks that players from the NH comps have come down and dominated. I think this is due to a combination of

    1. The standard of rugby in SANZAAR has slipped a bit, and
    2. The standard of NH comps has risen massively

    Just in Perth, Nic White was dominant. JOC was dominant. In the old days, NH backs didn't come down and compete - if you spent a season or two up north, you were cooked for international SH rugby. Now we're seeing players coming back and dominating.

    The SA also had this. Cheslin Kolbe, their loosies - both SA and AUS have been resurgent, and a lot of that is due to players rolling in from the North.

    For NZ, I could only really think of Piutau and Luatua who could be contenders (potentially Victor Vito). The cost of picking from the north, though, is intermittent availability, and the out of cycle seasons... not to mention lowering the importance of the domestic comps.

    Food for thought in any case. The resurgence of England, Wales, Ireland (and even Scotland) is linked to the comps their players are playing in lifting quality and standards. Super is not the benchmark it used to be for that ...



  • @nzzp Or, those players were very good in the first place (isn't that why they got their NH contracts), and the quality of SA and Aus SR teams slipped because they (and others) left en masse (among other reasons)?

    For example, JOC was already a great, talented player (despite his behavioural problems), and of course he developed further overseas and he got his mental act together (I hope), but there's no way of knowing if he'd not been of the same quality if he'd stayed and Australian rugby hadn't slumped (there are obviously more factors that caused the Aussie decline). And maybe the NH competitions have become better because of the influx of SH players?



  • @Stargazer said in SANZAAR players coming home:

    @nzzp Or, those players were very good in the first place (isn't that why they got their NH contracts), and the quality of SA and Aus SR teams slipped because they (and others) left en masse (among other reasons)?

    Possibly - but previously players (even talented players) went north and lost their edge. Mccalister was a good example

    Kaino was one of the few who went north (Japan), and came back in a good state. I can't think of anyone else who went north and came back as good (or better) than when they left ...w ould welcome the Fern's wisdom on that



  • Japan is a holiday compared to club rugby in Europe.



  • @nzzp Not many have come back to NZ, so it's hard to say. Also, players that left NZ in the past were older (some already having lost their edge), so that's another reason for not offering much upon return. Usually they retired after their stint in Europe/Japan.



  • @Stargazer said in SANZAAR players coming home:

    @nzzp Not many have come back to NZ, so it's hard to say. Also, players that left NZ in the past were older, so that's another reason for not offering much upon return. Usually they retired after their stint in Europe/Japan.

    Aus or SA? Renaissance Elsom?

    It was just so noticeable for me over the RC that the NH players were standouts.



  • @nzzp Yeah, but we simply don't know whether they've really become better because they played in Europe, or whether they stand out because the players that stayed in Oz or SA are of less quality (or have less experience) and are/were the reason for the lower quality of their SR teams.



  • I dunno - you could also add Brad Shields and Willi Heinz to the list at this rate...



  • Faf de Klerk?



  • @nzzp said in SANZAAR players coming home:

    @Stargazer said in SANZAAR players coming home:

    @nzzp Or, those players were very good in the first place (isn't that why they got their NH contracts), and the quality of SA and Aus SR teams slipped because they (and others) left en masse (among other reasons)?

    Possibly - but previously players (even talented players) went north and lost their edge. Mccalister was a good example

    Kaino was one of the few who went north (Japan), and came back in a good state. I can't think of anyone else who went north and came back as good (or better) than when they left ...w ould welcome the Fern's wisdom on that

    Rangi came back after a stint overseas following the 2003 WC and was refreshed and I would say a better player.



  • Players I'd like to see back in NZ for Super Rugby :

    Fitzgerald (the Chiefs' stock of locks is rather empty)
    Colin Slade
    Ihia West (he's been good for La Rochelle and there aren't many experienced 1st 5/8 in the country)
    Charles Piutau and Steven Luatua (of course)
    Rory Grice (two years ago, he was rated as the best Nr.8 in the Top 14 - it's a position where the NZ teams are lacking big physical men)
    Michael Fatialofa (he would bring some grunt to the Blues second row)
    Victor Vito (his experience is needed)
    Tawera Kerr-Barlow (for the third halfback spot in the ABs)


  • Banned

    @cgrant said in SANZAAR players coming home:

    Players I'd like to see back in NZ for Super Rugby :

    Fitzgerald (the Chiefs' stock of locks is rather empty)
    Colin Slade
    Ihia West (he's been good for La Rochelle and there aren't many experienced 1st 5/8 in the country)
    Charles Piutau and Steven Luatua (of course)
    Rory Grice (two years ago, he was rated as the best Nr.8 in the Top 14 - it's a position where the NZ teams are lacking big physical men)
    Michael Fatialofa (he would bring some grunt to the Blues second row)
    Victor Vito (his experience is needed)
    Tawera Kerr-Barlow (for the third halfback spot in the ABs)

    Saw West play. Looked bloody sharp. Was carving up. TKB not so much. But he seemed to have a vendetta against the opposing 9. Got himself a yellow.


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