NZ team of the 1st round



  • No Hurricane player in my team of the week !

    1. Tu'ungafasi
    2. Coltman
    3. Faumuina
    4. Tuipolutu
    5. Retallick
    6. Edwards
    7. Gibson
    8. Luatua
    9. Smith
    10. Cruden
    11. Lowe
    12. Ngatai
    13. Temanivalu
    14. Macilai
    15. Smith / McKenzie


  • No Hurricane player in my team of the week !

    1. Tu'ungafasi
    2. Coltman
    3. Faumuina
    4. Tuipolutu
    5. Retallick
    6. Edwards
    7. Gibson
    8. Luatua
    9. Smith
    10. Cruden
    11. Lowe
    12. Ngatai
    13. Temanivalu
    14. Macilai
    15. Smith / McKenzie

    McKenzie and Gibson, both 20, both so exciting to watch.



  • Do players have to play in NZ for the NZ team of the week? If it is about NZ players, I would put Guildford instead of Lowe at 11. He had a really good game, and none of the left wings in the NZ teams impressed me.
    If it has to be a player from a NZ team, do you have to put them in the position they played? If not, I'd put NMS instead of Lowe at 11.
     
    Ben Smith wouldn't make my team of the week; definitely McKenzie.
     
    I'd put Liam Squire at 8; he played very well until he got injured. Also not sure about the props.



  • none of the left wings in the NZ teams impressed me.

    Tevita Li annoyed me.  At the ground he seemed to have no vision or offload.  Hopefully this was just a one-off, and who better to coach quality wing play than Lord Tana.
     
    (Yes, I'm getting carried away.  no I don't care.  It's a brief blip of enthusiasm before the hard grind of a full professional rugby season takes its toll on our young players conditioning)



  • Do players have to play in NZ for the NZ team of the week? If it is about NZ players, I would put Guildford instead of Lowe at 11. He had a really good game, and none of the left wings in the NZ teams impressed me.
    If it has to be a player from a NZ team, do you have to put them in the position they played? If not, I'd put NMS instead of Lowe at 11.

    All good questions, but we kinda just make shit up as we go along, so nominate who you like really



  • I think the Crusader front row might be feeling a bit left out? Moody was excellent.
    I'm not so sure about giving Taimanivalu the best 13 jersey either. He did some good things, but I think Fekitoa went better (apart from 1 bad early miss).
    Should Luatua at 8. He didn't stick out, but got through heaps of work - and didn't go off injured 30 minutes in. Not enough from Squire to give him the best 8 around (yet) on that effort.
    Agree about Li. He looks like he has relied on pace for so long that doesn't have any other skills to use in traffic or for support.



  • For what it's worth Li was a heck of a lot better in this game than any game last year. He took a good high ball, ran hard and showed good commitment on defence. Certainly a step in the right direction. 
     
    On the team - consideration could be given to Seu at 6? Edwards was rock solid but Seu had some impressive 'wow' moments.



  • I didn't that Taimanivalu looked good at all.



  • Fekitoa at 13 for me.. loved it when Ranger came on and he smashed him straight away, knows who his competition is.
     
    I'd maybe put Hall at 9, his running game really sparked the blues attack.



  • For what it's worth Li was a heck of a lot better in this game than any game last year. He took a good high ball, ran hard and showed good commitment on defence. Certainly a step in the right direction. 
     
    On the team - consideration could be given to Seu at 6? Edwards was rock solid but Seu had some impressive 'wow' moments.

    Thought Dan Pryor looked bloody good when he came on for Squire, think he played a bit of 6 and 8.



  • Agree with whoever said Seu and Ranger.
    And Hall.
    And I'd bracket Moody woth Ofa.
    Haven't watched the Canes yet.



  • Would be an interesting exercise to do after each round, basing it purely on that round and ignoring all other matches before hand. See who ends up being in the 'team of the round' on the most regular basis.
     
    We'd need a poll with all NZ players after every round to do that though.



  • +1 for Fekitoa at 13

    1. Tu'ungafasi
    2. Taylor
    3. Faumuina
    4. Tuipolutu
    5. Retallick
    6. Seu
    7. Gibson
    8. Luatua
    9. Smith
    10. Cruden
    11. Lowe
    12. Ngatai
    13. Fekitoa
    14. NMS
    15. McKenzie
       
      Yes, there is a Hurricane in there. NMS did bloody well especially considering the shit ball he was getting and the lack of go forward from his team.


  • I'd maybe put Hall at 9, his running game really sparked the blues attack.

    Good energy, but his passing wasn't flash.  Really showed up by A Smith, who's pass is a thing of beauty.  Still, beats the hell out of the 9's we've put out recently, so I'll take it!



  • I thought parsons at hooker was the best hooker on show
    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk



  • The Aussies have picked their team of the week, with  Guildford on the left wing.



  • well that seals it, he cant make our team!



  • Nigel Yalden's NZ team of the week
     
    1 - Ofa T
    2 - Coltman
    3 - Franks O
    4 - Tuipulotu
    5 - Brodie
    6 - Seu
    7 - Gibson
    8 - Read
    9 - Hall
    10 - West
    11 - Lowe
    12 - Ngatai
    13 - Fekitoa
    14 - Nanai
    15 - McKenzie



  • I'm really surprised to see so much love for Coltman, i thought that Parsons was the better of the two on Friday. Parsons was spot on with his throwing, allowing the Blues a lot of ball. The Highlanders struggled to win their ball, and while that was less Coltman, and more their very strange set up/strategy, i don't know that he did enough to be picked ahead of Parsons (who was also pretty visible around the field)



  • Fekitoa at 13 for me.. loved it when Ranger came on and he smashed him straight away, knows who his competition is.
     
    I'd maybe put Hall at 9, his running game really sparked the blues attack.

    Who smashed who ? it's not clear from your post. But yeah, great to see RR back. Has he had a haircut and shave yet ?



  • Who smashed who ? it's not clear from your post. But yeah, great to see RR back. Has he had a haircut and shave yet ?

    Pretty sure it was Rangers first touch (or if not that then his second) Fekitoa creamed him.
     
    Blues need to find some distributors in a backline full of ball hogs from 12 out I reckon.



  • Pretty sure it was Rangers first touch (or if not that then his second) Fekitoa creamed him.
     
    Blues need to find some distributors in a backline full of ball hogs from 12 out I reckon.

    Yeah Moala and Ranger are definitely tuck the ball under their arms and trample/fend/step whoever is in front of them but Ma'a certainly learnt how to pop a sweet pass so anything is possible.



  • Nigel Yalden's NZ team of the week
     
    9 - Hall
    10 - West

    Bloody hell, that's more one eyed than Canebry.  No way do those two make the list...



  • Good energy, but his passing wasn't flash.  Really showed up by A Smith, who's pass is a thing of beauty.  Still, beats the hell out of the 9's we've put out recently, so I'll take it!

    I agree.



  • Im never a fan of picking guys out of the position they played for these 'team of the week' things. Defeats the purpose i reckon. Thought Macilai was dangerous and was probably the best out of a fairly quiet bunch of right wings.



  • A little surprised to see Luatua in there. I thought he looked slow, particularly on the defensive side of the ball.
     
    Parsons and Taylor the pick of the rakes. Cruds over West.



  • A little surprised to see Luatua in there. I thought he looked slow, particularly on the defensive side of the ball.
     
    Parsons and Taylor the pick of the rakes. Cruds over West.

    The Blues blindside defence had some gaps, and Luatua certainly got caught out. Overall though I thought he covered a lot of ground and looked pretty quick.



  • A little surprised to see Luatua in there. I thought he looked slow, particularly on the defensive side of the ball.
     
    Parsons and Taylor the pick of the rakes. Cruds over West.

    really? I was impressed on Friday. He looked at fault for the Highlanders try by the young 12, but the end-on shot showed one of the Blues midfielders jammed in, leaving Luatua covering 2 guys. He got a lot of shoulders on a lot of guys, and did a heap of shit work. Maybe i was just looking for him, but he seemed to pop up all over the place. 
     
    I have only seen the game once though, so i might be wrong.



  • Nigel Yalden's NZ team of the week
     
    1 - Ofa T
    2 - Coltman
    3 - Franks O
    4 - Tuipulotu
    5 - Brodie
    6 - Seu
    7 - Gibson
    8 - Read
    9 - Hall
    10 - West
    11 - Lowe
    12 - Ngatai
    13 - Fekitoa
    14 - Nanai
    15 - McKenzie

    Thought Moody went well at LH for the Crusdaers - keep this up and he'll leapfrog Crockett.  Still sad that Laulala our for the season 😞
    I'd have A Smith ahead of Hall at 9, thought his passing was sublime.
    Cruden ahead of West.  Cruden looked very good.  All the first-fives went well for the NZ franchises, except Barrett who was a bit meh.



  • Moody scrummed very well but was nowhere in the loose. Ofa T, on the contrary, showed a great workrate during the 2nd half. He did not scrum to badly either. That is why my choice was Ofa.
    Hooker is a rather weak spot for this 1st round. No one stood out. Coltman was powerful, at least in the first few minutes when the Highlanders dominated possession.
    I went for Faumuina because what I said for Moody is the same for Franks. Good scrummaging but low workrate. The Crusaders are slow starters.
    The locks pick by themselves.
    Blindside flank : everything Joe Edwards did was good. Nothing flashy but very solid. Seu did some freaky things but otherwise looked lost at times. Not the finished article yet.
    Nr.8 : Luatua was far better than Read IMO and Squire only played 15 minutes (during which he was excellent).
    Scrum half : Smith's passing and control were world class. Hall's passing gave West a few difficult moments.
    1st Five : Cruden was outstanding for his first outing since his injury. West was OK but not better than Cruden IMO.
    Temanivalu : I named him by default. Fekitoa made a few strong runs but looked like a headless chicken in each one. No composure, no passing game. I was tempted to select Lienert Brown who looked very good and dynamic when he came in.
    Macilai : I think he was the most dangerous player of the whole Crusaders backline.
    McKenzie bracketed with Smith : He was brillant while Smith scored two tries and was class. Two oustanding FB which is good for NZ rugby.



  • Bloody hell, that's more one eyed than Canebry. No way do those two make the list...

    Isn't Nige from the Tron?



  • I've never been completely convinced by Ardie Savea at 15s.  Despite his AB "apprenticeship" ticket to Europe and all the hype.  Cane is a lock for one 7 jersey, but if Gibson (or someone) else can have a good season, I don't think it's certain that Savea will be an AB.



  • Isn't Nige from the Tron?

    He lives here but I think he's originally from Canes country.



  • Bloody hell, that's more one eyed than Canebry.  No way do those two make the list...

    I put it down to over excitement about the Blues actually winning a game than one-eyedness.
     
    They weren't the best on display all weekend.
     
    You could even argue for DMac at 10 given the amount of times in the Chiefs gameplan that he popped up at first receiver.



  • Moody scrummed very well but was nowhere in the loose. Ofa T, on the contrary, showed a great workrate during the 2nd half. He did not scrum to badly either. That is why my choice was Ofa.
    Hooker is a rather weak spot for this 1st round. No one stood out. Coltman was powerful, at least in the first few minutes when the Highlanders dominated possession.
    I went for Faumuina because what I said for Moody is the same for Franks. Good scrummaging but low workrate. The Crusaders are slow starters.
    The locks pick by themselves.

    Agree that Moody's main impact was in the scrum.
     
    However.... Franks made 12 tackles compared with Ofa T (6) and Faumuina (1). So I guess it depends on how you define workrate



  • The Blues had most of the possession in the second spell and Ofa T and Faumuina drove a lot and were very physical in the rucks.
    Manu had a good first half with ball in hand but was monstered in the scrums. He could have made a good hooker IMO.
    Mitch Graham was excellent when he came in : strong scrummaging (against a tired O. Franks however) and strong carries.



  • Ofa seemed like a different player and agreed with those 2 going forward.  Better than seeing Franks going forward ass first.  He was also stopping the go forward of the other team which to me is a more important feature of tackling.  You might have 10 tackles but are you being driven back while doing so or are you stopping momentum and front toot ball.  The Blues have some monsters and with refinement might go close to matching the Brumbies and Waratahs.  Add Kaino to the mix.  Ouch.



  • Agree with what both of you are saying, the Blues props were very good.
     
    However the suggestion that Franks had a low workrate made by cgrant is a bit wrong in my opinion.
     
    12 Tackles in a match is excellent for a tighthead prop. I would like to see a few examples of Faumuina making this many tackles in a match?
     
    Crusaders were very good at the breakdown. This is where both Franks brothers excel. They are ruck hitters rather than ball carriers (the canes definately missed this on the weekend). I don't think the crusaders lost their match in the forwards, rather by giving too much broken field space to Mackenzie/Cruden etc
     
     
    This weekend will be interesting. The blues scrum looked pretty good against the highlanders, but I think the crusaders have the best scrum in the comp. Big test for Ofa and Patrick Tuipolotu who has question marks over his scrummaging. Crusaders will need to win this battle to have a chance of winning, Blues have a lot of dangerous ball runners.


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