How good was Kieran Read...?,actually thought he should have been the MOTM..!
Best posts made by Steven Harris
RE: Blues vs Crusaders
Walked away from Eden Park on Saturday night asking myself one question..have the Blues got the right skipper..?
Being down 3-12 and with a man in the bin,I thought the Blues did extremely well to keep the Saders scoreless during that time.
However the decision not to take 3 points from a very kickable position on the stroke of halftime had many of us in the west stand shaking our heads..On 2 other occasions points on offer were turned down..
You often wonder why the Blues never quite get across the line in this local derby games..much of it you can put down to poor leadership and decision making on field.
Sure you can heap blame on individuals but despite that in many cases poor options when coming to terms of what’s required and understanding game situations is something they need to fix and in a hurry..
I was often told,when your playing a good team,stay in the fight and when it gets down to the wire anything can happen,for that to happen you have to keep accumulating points.
There was a lot to like,talking to a good friend in Christchurch who caught up with Matt Todd earlier today..Todd had told him the Blues were definitely a different beast from previous years ,very tough up front and more structure to their game.but they also knew whom to pressure in the last 15 minutes and get maximum value..interesting coms..
Just from my own point of view,I think the Blues would have Brocken their duck against any other franchise ,but after all we are playing a team that’s got everybody else’s number in NZ.
Just on a man of the match..if Ardie and Sam are considered the best 7s in the country ,Matt Todd must the unluckiest player running around..watched his running lines from the top of the west stand always in the right place at the right time..not far behind the young Ennor ,but I have always known how good this kid was gonna be from his St Kent’s and NZ 20s days.
For the Blues,if Akira can keep this form up,who knows I am sure Hansen will no choice but to have him involved with the Blacks.
Nonu surprised me,did most things right and more ,got gassed by Ennor,but at the end of the day just up against younger faster legs.
Like the look of Tom Robinson,would love to see him used more running off a short pass from a prop channel 1 or 2..
Disappointed with the loss,but will be back for the next home game..loved the banter from the supporters up on the West Stand,never laughed so much at a game.
RE: Crusaders v Blues
As much as I have wanted the Blues to get across the line this evening ..I have got to question how much some really do know about the game of rugby ...the one area where the Crusaders have dominated has been in the high kick stakes..the Blues have been completely overshadowed in this aspect...the much maligned George Bridge has put so much pressure on the receiver from high kicks ...the Blues have failed to negate this area..and their own high kick when it really mattered , unfortunately fell by the wayside ..both Christie and Barrett at crucial times put kicks out on the full...to me the turning point was the charge down of Blacks kick ..and the subsequent short kick off from Mo’unga , the Blues had fallen asleep and you could see the momentum change ,some great individual performances , but big match players come up with big moments ..on that aspect ..The Crusaders Take the chocolates ..it was great to watch a game that I really feel the Blues are now relevant again..you know when a Canterbury crowd goes silent for long periods means you have them under the pump..to blame this evenings official is joke..game management when it really mattered was the difference..
RE: Blues 2018
Interesting listening to Murray Mexted this morning on Radio Sport,touched on both the Blues & Auckland and the issues both have had over the last decade.
I was delighted to hear Mexted speak both frankly about the failure to identify or scout talent,which has been a big bug bear I have had for a least 10 years..
Even the current Auckland Mitre 10 cup is classic,having watched quite a bit of Auckland club rugby,I have been highly impressed with the 3 argentine Costa brothers that play for Eden,I was told by someone on the AK coaching staff,that they were not up to mitre 10 level.
yet Nico comes on for Auckland v Canterbury at halfback and almost changes the game,a position Auckland have struggled at in the last few seasons,and I would imagine all 3 x Brothers would have a great understanding of each other's game..just saying..!
I also question the Blues ability to select a player required for their roster,I see the Blues signed the boy Ruru from Otago,with the greatest respect I reckon Jack Stratton from Canterbury looks a much better prospect,can think right back to the Lions first game against the NZ Babas,he was awesome against quality opposition.
Even the selection of Otere Black bothers me,he was targeted by the Blues a couple of seasons ago and declined,
Personally when the Blues were chasing Beauden Barrett,I would gave gone after Richie Mo'unga,at the time he was the 3rd choice 10 at the crusaders,but having seen him at NZ 20s level,one could see he had the goods.
Even in recent times,best young first five at the NZ under 19s tournament a couple seasons back was Brett Cameron from Canterbury,..will probably be the 3rd choice at the saders in 2018 behind Mo'unga and Hunt.
Another player I would be all over is Jackson Hemapo from Manawatu,the man is a beast,and from the time Stephen Luatua signed with Bristol,they should have been all over it.
I realise in the scheme of things there are agents and money to deal with,but man alive,open your eyes..!
RE: Ireland vs All Blacks (2018)
Outplayed and out coached by the Irish on the day,no real complaints from me.
Not the end of the world, but I have seen plenty of evidence to suggest signs of staleness within this coaching group.
No question it was a points decision to Joe Schmidt after this mornings match and that what’s worrying me
We have the players,but is this coaching group getting the best of out of this group..?
I have often believed if you have several players at their best in a team of 15 there’s a good chance you go on an win.
That’s been a real concern not just in this mornings game,but also last weeks performance against England ,just the lack of our so called world class players standing up and when you consider the All Black coaches pulled out all the stops by taking away 51 players on this tour to protect many of our big guns..
Was it the right strategy..?,based on what we have seen you would have to say no..
Also our discipline when don’t have the ball has been terrible,some of our senior players the real culprits.
What’s that all about..?
Which leads me on to why all the penalties,when you give up ball with a poor kick game against a team like Ireland who can hold on to the ball no matter where they are on the paddock..you have got to ask questions abou strategy and dare I say it captaincy..
My apologies if I am sounding like Watto,but I would like to think I have outlined my argument with a degree of thought.
RE: Hurricanes 2020
2017 NZ under 20 & NZ Maori Prop Pouri Rakete Stones has signed a 2 year deal with the Hurricanes which he penned last Friday ..
Rakete Stones switched from Tighthead to loosehead and was selected for the NZ Maori in the 2nd test against against Fiji this year..
Rakete Stones is a former NZ Junior powerlifting champion..
He shocked many in the NZ Maori squad when training at the Blues facility in Auckland earlier this year when he squatted 300Kg, Ofa Tu’ungafasi has the record at the Blues of 265Kg..
Rakete Stones is 118Kg 1.82
At 22 ,has a massive future in front of him..
Latest posts made by Steven Harris
RE: Mitre 10 Cup - news, injuries etc
@Yeetyaah for a Union that is cash strapped , I am staggered how they can acquire such large squad.. ...All Blacks I have been told are 55k alone ..Super Players range from anything from 35k to 50k..can only imagine that the non super rugby guys will be taking what their given..
RE: Blues 2020
@Tim Patty T when receiving his award payed homage to both Tom Robinson and Josh Goodhue as part of the senior leadership who keep the players striving both on and off the field with their work ethic especially in an around training and keeping the spirt strong within the group..Goodhue has re signed with the Blues..
RE: Northland 2020
@kev Wiseguy has been playing for Waipu and playing the house down, seems to have had a change in mindset and is a good chance of signing with the Taniwha..a tad surprised they signed Hawkins to be fair..
I was hoping they might have a quick look at Zarn Sullivan ..plays for College Rifles in Auckland ..played for the NZ Maori colts last year and has played NZ Secondary schools .
RE: Mitre 10 Cup - news, injuries etc
Promising first five Zarn Sullivan is being chased by two provinces ,Tasman and Waikato are chasing Sullivan who has not been signed by Auckland at this stage ..Sullivan who is currently playing for College Rifles in the Auckland Club comp would be a very good pick up ..to be brutally honest, this is where the Blues should be working with Auckland, Harbour and Northland to at least keep him at the Franchise
Would be very frustrating if he he ends up at Tasman or Waikato ..I have no doubt the Magpies would jump at the opportunity of taking Zarn back to the Bay ..but the already have to quality 10s in Falcon & McClutchie.
RE: Are Akira Ioane and Jackson Hemopo the answer?
@African-Monkey the good news from insiders , he’s had big change of mind fix, which he needed to change , nobody else , if you had’nt noticed even the Auckland coaches were not starting Akira in the playing XV, he was behind Soututu..when your sitting on the pine watching someone else playing the house down you can either keep feeling sorry for yourself or you can do something about it and that’s what he’s done taken opportunity with injuries to both Robinson and Soututu..the blaming of Hansen is a load of nonsense in my opinion I think your the Lone Ranger on that one.
Hansen’s frustration only echoed what many thought at the time.
Credit to Akira for finding himself and playing at the level we know he can play at..
RE: Highlanders v Blues
First half thoughts ...I think the Blues have kept the Highlanders in this game with their own indiscipline...2nd thing is which I find weird ..The TMO has got the official to check every try the Blues have scored ...and yet is happy with Barrett getting taken out when a kick is popped through, now it may not have been a try but the opportunity was taken away..almost get that niggly feeling your up against more that the 15 on the paddock...