Nonu



  • Probably don't really need a new thread for this but I need to announce my Man love for him.
    He is the complete second five now and he has had a extended time at the peak.
    I used to be a bit of a hater earlier in his career but now he has matured to having the Smarts of Conrad Smith, the skill of Dan Carter and the power of a bloody powerful thing.
    Epitomized when he set up that try on the weekend. Looked to straighten after going across field and then held on for that extra split second before offloading. He wouldn't have set that up 6+ years ago.
    So so much vision and is easily my favorite back at the moment.



  • Agree. I wondered when he was subbed so early on that there was an element of 'saving him for the final' going on or if it is more a case of giving him the mandate to go full tit for 60 minutes and drain the tank before bringing on SBW. 
     
    You'd have to think that the 10/12 avenue for Australia will be a part of the plans this week. If Australia try the same rush defence that they did against Argentina then running Nonu or Savea straight at the shoulders with backup for an offload could reap linebreaks.



  • Agree. I wondered when he was subbed so early on that there was an element of 'saving him for the final' going on or if it is more a case of giving him the mandate to go full tit for 60 minutes and drain the tank before bringing on SBW. 
     
    You'd have to think that the 10/12 avenue for Australia will be a part of the plans this week. If Australia try the same rush defence that they did against Argentina then running Nonu or Savea straight at the shoulders with backup for an offload could reap linebreaks.

    We missed Nonu hugely in the Sydney test. SBW was terrible, albeit he was apparently injured early on. Nonu is key against Aus for getting us over the gainline.



  • It's pretty easy to pidgeon hole him as a hard runner with limited subtlety but that's doing him a massive disservice particularly in his later years.
    Having seen him running up some of Wellys nastiest hills and looking like he's about to keel over at any moment I can assure the fern he must work his arse off to get in the shape that he does and the work he has done on his skills in the last few years is clearly evident.



  • Yeah Nonu is one of a kind - who quite easily can get overlooked with the focus on Carter and McCaw. Nonu is right up there as the best All Black number 12 of all time.
     
    The transformation and growth from 2007 missing the RWC squad to the player he is today is quite something - I'm not sure I can pinpoint another player who has developed their skills during their career and grown as a player as much as Nonu has. It is almost hard to believe it is the same player.



  • one thing about him this year is he's certainly looking in good nick body wise - looks trim as fark. got a little more edge around him.
     
    Certainly not on the decline like you'd say Conrad is



  • If you ever doubt how much the jersey means to the guy well watch this (probably all seen it before)....shows how much he's matured imo.
     



  • one thing about him this year is he's certainly looking in good nick body wise - looks trim as fark. got a little more edge around him.
    Certainly not on the decline like you'd say Conrad is

    Yeah agree. I think it was the year he played for the Blues or Landers he looked a little chunky and his quick acceleration that he has always relied on was down.
    He's in great nick now.
    In the lead up to the France game, I said him and Dan were the keys. If they play well we win big. Both had stand out games.
    I think it will be the same against OZ.
    On him being subbed, I just thought it was about providing something different. Against France Snakey went off and against Boks it was Rock. There definitely was no "saving him" thoughts I'd suggest. The game was in the balance.


  • Banned

    Saw Nonu play live for first time this year. I was blown away. The guy is a BEAST. He's a ridiculous combination of size, strength, agility and skill. His passing is arguably the best in the game.
    The best 12 I've ever seen.



  • Serious question: Will he go down in AB folklore as a better player than his hero Tana Umaga?
    Tana obviously had the captaincy in his favour but as a player the argument can be made than Ma'a edges him.



  • Tana was a wing/13...
     
    Nonu, Nonu, Nonu, BOOM!
     
    Says it all really! Legend!



  • Agree with all the above comments. I remember when he first came onto the scene, complete with eyeliner and everything.
    He was quite one dimenstional back then, crash and bash and not much else from recollection.
    I remember when he started kicking the ball and we were all like "hey what gives? Nonu can kick?". It wasnt all good to begin with, but it got better and better. 
    And then he honed his ability to straighten, draw players and create space for those outside him.
    I never would have thought he would become the player he is today, so dramatic has his transformation been.
    Big boots to fill.



  • Serious question: Will he go down in AB folklore as a better player than his hero Tana Umaga?
    Tana obviously had the captaincy in his favour but as a player the argument can be made than Ma'a edges him.In my book yes.
    Captaincy aside, onfield influence is a push. Nonu edges him in terms of wider skill set, one (hopefully soon to be two) RWC winners medals and his durability. Tana dropped off badly and would have been dropped if he didn't quit imho. You could argue Nonu has never played better than right now



  • Tana was a wing/13...
     
    Nonu, Nonu, Nonu, BOOM!
     
    Says it all really! Legend!

    You'll go a long way to find analysis that's more insightful and erudite than that.....



  • Serious question: Will he go down in AB folklore as a better player than his hero Tana Umaga?
    Tana obviously had the captaincy in his favour but as a player the argument can be made than Ma'a edges him.

    I think Tana retired about two years too early which may have hindered his greatness credentials (I didn't notice a marked drop off in form from Tana, not at test level at least). It is worth noting though that they did a book of 100 greatest ABs when Tana was still playing and I think he made the top 25.
     
    Ma'a has definitely secured his place in history though. Although, after watching some 2003 RWC highlights I do wonder if his late development as a 'rounded' player was due to coaching styles etc than Nonu himself. On a number of occasions in the highlights of his few minutes on the field he'd make a break and then throw a good pass. Maybe it was always there but he spent too much time as a battering ram wing and centre which didn't allow full use of his skills.
     
    Ma'a and SBW are funny together at the end of that AB/Adidas doco.



  • You'll go a long way to find analysis that's more insightful and erudite than that.....

    here, check these out and let the big kids talk



  • Smoney Bill Who?



  • Smoney Bill Who?He's Subbie Bill Williams to you 😉



  • If you had have told me when Mauger and McAlister announced they were leaving during the RWC that their replacement was already a fixture in NZ rugby, would play 100 tests and would be better than both of them combined I would have had no idea who it was. Certainly wouldn't have guessed Nonu.



  • here, check these out and let the big kids talk
    How many ABs you seen running round Whangarei lately ?
    Those chin ups have really paid off though bro


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