Boks end the year at 8 won/5 lost…..

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Nov 21, 2021, 03:22

….and 4 of the wins were against teams we expect to beat with ease, Scotland, Argentina and Georgia. Meaning we were really 4/5 against meaningful opponents….and 3 of these 4 wins were by 5 points  or less.

We are making heavy weather of every meaningful test, despite what could only be described as dominance in scrums and mauls. Partly I think because our defence has dropped a few notches as Nienaber has had to expand his focus in the top job.

But one can’t help but feel it is our complete inability to use the ball that leaves us at a 61.5% win ratio. 

We need a backline coach….big time. But we also need players who can express themselves. Faf, Pollard and Dud Allende look like robots out there. Willie looks half the player he was. These players could probably do better with more enlightened coaching. But they themselves should be pushing the boundaries.

We see opposition forwards offload tellingly. Why can’t our centres do so much more often vs dying with the ball. Is it the player or the coaching. I suspect the latter.

There has been some progress. Our scrum is now a weapon and the threat our tight forwards present at the breakdown is unique. No need to lose these skills. But we have to be able to use the ball and the tired old excuse that there is no space to do so has been blown up in 7 days by Ireland, England and France.

What role Harrassmiss can play in all this is unclear. The lack of growth in our skills suggests he has shot his bolt, deployed everything he knows. Eddie is a coach who grows with adversity. My guess is Harrassmiss will just double down on what got us in this fix.

No doubt last year’s chicken run hurt our efforts this year and Berrygate distracted the team and marginalized Nienaber. But this coaching team needs a breath of fresh air….let Nienaber fly on his own and get us the best backline coach we can find. Otherwise France may be another off WC for the Boks.

Nov 21, 2021, 08:16


In essense there are problems in the Springbok team that was exposed yesterday when they ere beaten by the better team on the day and some needs to be dealt with or it will get worse in future:-

So lets start from the beginning:-

*    There was a real problem in the defensive line-up in the case of the first English try.    The reason was  that Kriel moved in to tackle the inside player and left the outside one with a clear run to the corner.

*     The last England try confirmed the  defense issue again.   Frans Steyn looked like a prop chasing a wing and was absent in defense.   His pace-deficiency at full bac is a very real problem.

*     Reinach was a weak link in the scrumhalf  position  - his ki9cking game was poor. and his passing game - especially top forwards without ball skills were bad.

*      Nyakanae is a nice guy - but his scrumming was not really up to standard.

*      Vermeulen looked tired and did not repeat this year his performances in 2019.

*      The total number of tackles made by the four loosies used by the Springboks were as follows:-

            Tackles made           =      11

            Tackles missed         =        3

         Look at the English loosies - 22  tackles made - 7 missed


Nov 21, 2021, 09:52

Common denominator is the absence of Rassie and losing 4 of those tests after being ahead in the 78th minute

We dominated England and should have won that comfortably but for missed kicks and great attacking opportunities squandered

But the team without Rassie present is clearly a handicapped one

Nov 21, 2021, 13:07

When the Boks have long periods of forward domination, they should be scoring more points to put the game away. Their backline attack is less potent than the other top 5 teams in world rugby. 

Pollard's form has been average the whole year, and the Boks have looked more dangerous on attack with Jantjies at 10. 

Delande and AM can play a running game, but they need to be following more practised moves on attack. It looks too spontaneous, and not coached rehearsed moves- whether it is phase play or counter attacks. The supporting runners are often too flat to catch the ball at pace, by running onto the ball at full speed. 

Bok defence is certainly not as good as it was, but teams are using the skip pass to get the ball wide where there is the most space against the Bok defence, with more numbers out wide than the Boks. 

Jessica Kriel has been poor on defence, often rushing out of the line, making it easier for the opposition to create space and overlaps.  

The Boks are too dependent on certain facets of the game.

1. Winning the ariel battle. (Other than Faff, the other scrum-halves have been too inconsistent here with the up and under placement). Tall fullbacks are also troubling the Boks.

2. Turnovers to end opposition attacking movements and win more penalties. England and Australia was able to able to protect their ruck ball better than any other teams

3. Lineouts: The opposition is kicking the ball out less to avoid this facet of play. Bongi's throwing has been poor all year, and when Marx gets onto the pitch suddenly the lineouts improve. Marx only playing half a game is allowing the opposition to win the 1st half and set the tempo of the match. 

4. Rolling Maul: Usually setup from the lineout. If the lineout throws are not good or there are not enough lineouts in the opposition half, this facet of play can be negated. 

5. Scrums: If the opposition is not making many knock-ons or going backwards in the tackle, this facet of dominance can largely be avoided. 

6. Defence: While very effective, it seems the skip pass is becoming more effective at getting around the Bok Defence.  

Nov 21, 2021, 13:34

Kriel went to the right school, has the look, has the hype, has the pace, has the experience…

And that’s where it ends.

Off the top of my head I can think of at least 5 others that could replace him.

Nov 21, 2021, 15:04

Plum you really are clueless

Nov 21, 2021, 17:48

Oh yeah?

Kriel ran VD Merwe down in open field last week. That’s literally the best thing he did in two games.

It’s not me that’s clueless. What is clueless is to assume a player belongs simply because he has a name, experience and doesn’t single handedly lose you a game.

What exactly did he do that was of any note in these last two games?

Even old steroid boy Dyanti build a better highlight reel in his short time at the Boks than what botox Jessie has in…OMG it’s been about seven years already!!!

I’d rather have Specman out wide for the Boks. Ismael, Hendricks, Green or Even Majosh Tambwe FFS.

I’ll ask again…what does Kriel have to show for the years and years of faith put in him?

Nov 21, 2021, 18:20

Kriel is about the 20th best choice for Bok wing. 

Nov 21, 2021, 20:03

He's in the system...

Nov 22, 2021, 15:24

I think we need to figure out how to get our back line to break the line. We rely to much on our defence and counter attack rugby. 

England shredded us with their backline and so did Australia. This time our defence did not hold and we were chasing down 21 points with 1 laboured try and the rest of penalties. 

With our forward dominance we should have ripped all the teams a new one, but we have problems at 9, 10 and 12. Doesn't help our full back is not firing. 

Nov 22, 2021, 15:32

Mozzz is of course being deceitful as usual. He mentions our close wins but doesn't say much about our many close loses. 

One test against the Lions and one against Oz were as a consequence of poor reffing. 

Against Engald how come the Poms were allowed to infringe again and again for so long before the yellow card happened. No ho rst person can possibly thing England deserved to win. 

No ether does Mozzz mention we played Oz and nz twice away from home. We then went on to play  Three NH tour matches away from home.

Mozz and his Org still go on about Allende who had an outstanding test and was surely a candidate for MOM.

At forward we have some issues at loose forward. 

Among the backs I would like to see other players getting test exposure to endure depth. We need to find another full back as well and give him a chance at test level. 

I am happy with our wing resources as Nkosi and Kolbe will be back. The trashing of Kriel smacks of scapegoat nonsense. 

Our half back resources are fine as well. 

The return of Snyman and Du Toit greatly boosts our forwards. 

So a few issue to solve including keeping Rassie as involved as possible. 

Nov 22, 2021, 15:50

We played 13 tests…. 6 at home 7 away.

In our great year in 2014, where we were 10/2 we played  6 at home  and 6 away.

The only difference this year from a normal year was  playing Oz twice away. But they were supposedly so poor it hardly mattered, being slaughtered by everybody  except the Boks. Hell even Wales been them…not the Boks because they unlocked our limited game plan.

Nov 22, 2021, 18:24


Be partial here. 4 out our 5 losses were also by less than 5 points!

Nov 22, 2021, 19:13

Read the article by Ben Smith I posted on ‘The Boks are exactly a 61.5% team’. He points out 3 out of 8 wins are by 5 points or less.

Our playing style promotes close games.

In all fairness 4 of our games….Georgia, Bargies (x2) and Scotland are pretty much automatics. That means our record against proper opponents is really 4 out of 9.  Perhaps  even 3 out of 8, because Wales was so diminished.

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