I wouldn't be too down if I was an Auckland supporter. Having finally watched the replay I thought Auckland were looking the better team right up to when the half back was binned. Even after that Auckland were not far off. On any other day Auckland might have won that.
Maybe,But Canterbury have started slowly this season every game and have played their best rugby in the second half.
It was a good change Canterbury not always winning. But this team must be close to favourites this year
Pretty stacked team already and Ennor to come back?
Still not convinced by the Canterbury backs. Strangely, despite the scoreline and the long-range tries, I didn't think the backs were all that impressive. Not terrible, but good enough I suppose. They will be tested when Canterbury come up against a pack that can hold their own.
Being the Head Coach of the Canterbury Men’s NPC side isn’t a role I take lightly. It’s a role I’m extremely honoured to have accepted and one I’ve taken with the full knowledge of the expectations that go with it.
No matter where you go in New Zealand people know about Canterbury Rugby, the history, the success it’s had, the players and coaches it’s produced. Just the thought of playing against Canterbury, especially here at home, left a lump in their gut.
Some of that success was down to you. You helped create an atmosphere that made it hard for our opposition. One that also inspired our guys to dig deeper than they ever had before, because they weren’t just playing for themselves, they were playing for you.
Images of the 80’s and 90’s on the embankment of Lancaster Park, shoulder to shoulder draped in red and black, screaming yourself horse show me the pride and connection you’ve had to the team in the past.
As a man not from Canterbury, it’s these sorts of images that inspires me each and every day.
Because I believe my role is far greater than just to inspire our boys to win on Saturday. A key part of my role, one that I’m extremely passionate about, is to make you proud, to inspire you to be there on Saturday, screaming for Canterbury, to connect you with the team, and for you to be proud of your team. Therefore, I wanted to ask you a question.
How do we recreate those scenes and what can I do to encourage you to be there?
Canterbury NPC Head Coach
P.s We’ve got the team to excite you and to inspire you, but rather than me tell you about it, our intention is to show you.
On the positive side, we must reckon the Magpies are a very well coached team. Kudos for Ozich and his assistants. They have done a great job with underrated players such as Parsons, Toala, Enari and Kaifa, just to name a few.
They are definitely no underrated by HB supporters at least. We know a thing or two about how to rate players properly given the torment of some of those thrust upon us in the past.
Another thing. Chay Fihaki looked really good last night, which is great. But it annoys the living fuck out of me that Canterbury retain Fihaki, an Auckland kid out of Sacred Heart, and allow local lad Sam Gilbert to go to Otago. Both were in NZ U20 last year, and sure, Gilbert is a 15-cum-10 who can cover wing as he did last year for Canterbury, while Fihaki is a wing-cum-centre, but they're near enough postionally that it looks like Canterbury (and the Crusaders) made a choice and the local kid lost.
@stargazer I must be well over triple figures for the Wellington game by now. I am seriously considering buying another HB jersey to ensure I have enough left to last the entire club season down here as I'm sure some sort of sabotage/theft will occur to my sole jersey left given it is worn most Saturdays!
I thought the most interesting selection in this game was Grace at 8. I wonder if that's a decree from above (Razor and/or the All Black selectors)? There's definitely an opportunity there for the Crusaders as we have better cover on the blindside in Blackadder and Sanders (Roots also) and really fuck all behind Douglas at 8. Given the MOTM award went to a debutant on the blindside, maybe he'll stay there for the season.