@nevorian Good recruiting by the Force thanks to Forrester's 💰 ; several of them older players, which shows the importance of experience. Unfortunately to them, they're also going to lose some of their players after this season. For example, IIRC both Cubelli and Miotti have signed in France. But maybe they'll manage to sign some of this year's returnees to take their place.
@kiwimurph A indictment on the Australia education system perhaps? Obviously cultural/sexual sensitivities take just as much presendence over traditional education learning skills over there as they do here.
@nevorian Just a natural phenomenon I think. Officials are human and whoever is at the top gets a negative narrative and the officials, as much as they try, have to be influenced by it all. The ABs in Europe during the end of year tours were subject to extra scrutiny especially around foul play where local players could get away with things the ABs couldn't.
The alternative is losing and the scrutiny (and whinging) transfers to the team that is winning.
@kiwimurph Or some people are just oversensitive when someone says something remotely critical of Akira (I guess that goes hand in hand with hyping up a player over the years 🎣 ). I've seen plenty of people commenting on Sotutu, Clarke and Rieko being lacklustre this season, and being outplayed in this game.
I don't think people care when Akira gets shit when he's playing average, but as this thread clearly shows no matter how well he plays posters will say he's playing shit or he's always shit.
The 2018 season clearly shows us this. He was class all that year yet we have have posters on here that are claiming otherwise.
Mate ,I didn't think he played that well in 2018, but I quite happy to say that is just my opinion, and some like different things in a 6 than me. I like them to have fairly good all round game. Doesn't mean I'm right though, just what I think.
The way both teams dealt with the breakdown seemed completely different. The Crusaders were happy to concede a lot and fan across in defense. The Chiefs put numbers in there and there were numerous hands competing for the ball. I wonder if the Chiefs would have been penalized more with a different ref.
Maybe initially - but you always push the boundaries and see where the line is.
Highlander runners seemed for at least first 60 to back off/slow a tad/change line at last moment going into contact. Result was a bit like when a scrum fakes at hit. Oppo overbalanced and contact ineffective. Whatever it was it really threw Saders momentum at breakdown.
Clan seemed to target running one out and then angling back in behind ruck. Seemed that analysis may have identified space there, and good yards made.
Seemed also to result in Saders not getting the rub of the red and black, as per usual.
If I were Super coaches I’d be pouring over tape!
A bit of actual rugby analysis rather than endless moaning about the refereeing. Awesome stuff!!
Ofa cost the game against the Aussies a few months ago. His bad habits are a problem, but the ABs have only two THPs of international calibre so he should keep on be selected again and again. Lomax is not yet ready, Angus T and Fidow cannot scrum while Jager is irish and Moli always injured (and seen as a LHP). It's urgent to give Newell and T. Williams some game time.
@chris-b Holy crap 55 contracted players. Were they running a contracted womans and development team as well?
Not sure quite how it was all supposed to work - but, there definitely wasn't a women's team.
My memory is that they retained a Nelson Griffins and a Marlborough Red Devils team and presumably the guys in those were on semi-pro contracts. But, I'm guessing really.
A guy who was big in one of the Nelson clubs told me he'd been talking to a very fringe player who told him how much his contract was and that there were plenty of others like him. I can't remember the figure he mentioned - but, both of were, "Why the hell would they pay him that!"
They definitely got the financial model badly wrong back then, but I think learned some very good lessons. 🙂
Agree. Nock has huge upside I reckon but will need time.
is looking like his time is now, was starting to look good last Super season, until he was dropped, presumably for a off-field incident (breach of team rules form what I heard) but was superb for Northland.
Am thinking Christie will get first chances though, but we know how attritional things are, so he will get his shot.
Beauden was rubbish. One of the worst games i've ever seen him play. He gave away 2 soft penalties - he kicked out on the full - he put in a shit kick before halftime. He was pants. He also looks like he has seriously lost his pace.
He was brilliant about 4-5 years back and before then. But hes been going slowly downhill since. But still good but not great.
I hoped the Blues coaches would get him moving back towards great again. But so far hes moving in the opposite direction. Maybe his time is up. Or the Blues move was a big mistake. Or hes not really a FB.
I'm bored with the Crusaders winning year after year so disappointed with this result. The only team that might have challenged is so far behind now the title is decided after 4 games
So the other teams have got to get better
It can't be done if most of the best players sign for the best team (as their AB chances are much better). And the next level down quality players bugger of overseas.
NZR need to come up with a (financial) system were the best players are evenly shared out (at present it almost ensures the opposite). Otherwise a new competition will slowly die. Or will never achieve the following it could have if one team wins ever year. This includes Aust (or SA if still included although this model has done its time). Aust can only support 3 teams at most. So 5 EVEN NZ teams and three QUALITY Aussie teams = success. But NZ need to be ruthless (ignore reasons why it can be done. For example Abs might need to move teams as Barrett did) to ensure an even distribution of players. This new competition must be seen as very important rather than just the ABs. And super rugby almost as an irrelevant feeder for the ABs (the current set up).
I would have thought the best way to do this is actually to ensure that the coaching at all franchises is strong. Despite their poor recent form, one would think having Gats coaching the Chiefs would make that a desirable destination (perhaps he needs to improve his assistants). Similarly, it seems Rangi is leading a strong coaching unit at the Blues and I’m sure the way they’ve played this year will make players consider moving there.
The Crusaders would be lucky to have more than four or five of the best players in NZ at the moment - Taylor, Whitelock, Mo'unga, Goodhue, Jordan with Moody debatable
spot on - which makes their comeback on Saturday night even more remarkable
The issue is not the spread of the best players, contrary to what @Winger says. The issues is rather than evenness of the remaining talent. The difference between the 'Saders' best and worst players, IMO, is significantly less than that at other franchises. This means that they have less glaring weaknesses across the park and, crucially, on their bench. This is to my mind a large part of why they so often pull away from their opposition in the last 20 mins of matches. Similarly, it's what made the ABs so lethal between say 2010 and 2016 and it's where we've been caught up by our major opposition since that time.
You are probably onto something there , they have the best worst players , most teams have a few stars , but its the bottom half of your talent that makes the difference at this level
Ah Kuoi was the best lock on the paddock. His workrate is impressive and he is quite dynamic in the loose. Not a bad LO jumper either.
Disagree, Sam Whitelock and Mitch Brown both made twice the number of tackles as him and hit more rucks. Not a vintage performance from Sam Whitelock, but he was still the best lock on the paddock in that game.
A really good effort by the Reds, who have to be the best 1-5 team I've ever seen. They should have won though.
Their average age is 21 and it showed. They just needed a few cool heads to direct traffic in the Crusaders 22, too often they went the wrong way or let the attack stagnate and the D-line get set.
The goalkicking was abysmal and genuinely affected the game. I've never seen a pro kicker shank as many as Jock Campbell.
Harry Wilson and Lukhan S-Loto were two real standouts, as was Hunter Paisami. Really nice to see the next generation coming through. Combine these Reds youngsters with guys like Harrison and Bell at the Tahs, Lolesio and Valetini at the Brumbies and you've got a few potential Test stars running around.
@WillieTheWaiter it is ridiculous that a prop hooker or anyone other than the guy with 9 on his back are fair game in that situation
At the risk of raking over old coals, isn't it the case that the Laws don't make distinction? I realise that there is an official interpretation which stipulates that the ball is out when halfback picks it.
In the modern real world of refereeing.
If you bump the arm of a halfback about to spin it wide and cause him to drop the ball you could get carded, if you bumped the arm of a prop in the same position but about to pick and go - you would get chess pumps from your teammates for forcing a turnover.
Ruby laws should be interpreted and applied that encourage forwards to congregate at a breakdown (IMO);
The defending team to attempt to win possession and if not then disrupt clean possession.
The attacking team forwards should need to congregate to ensure possession is maintained and is then clean.
At no point should one of the above actions, performed legally (or even just slightly mis-timed) risk incurring a card because refs don't understand the essence of rugby.
In other words
It ain't tiddlywinks mate!!!
Rather it ain't League mate !!!!
What next, illegal strips, and sit in protests blocking Queens Street for a week?
Bloody Landers. Was backing them for the slim chance of a Chiefs home final. First half was great from both teams. Squire ruined the chances. Dunno what was up with Franklin swearing at the ref either. Crusaders too good. Rebuilding time for the Landers. Thanks for the memories Bender.
@Jaguares4real See how I've written slim chance? I'm backing my boys but I know it's going to be a hard slog.