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Springboks RWC 2023

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Post by Old Man Wed 6 Sep - 11:32

I thought I will be the lone voice for South Africa during the RWC.

A quick history lesson about the Boks when Rassie took over. Yes I know Jacques Nienaber is now the head coach, but listening to the players (in specific Faf de Klerk during an interview this week) The roles of Rassie and Jacques has not really altered. Rassie still has the same input and influence over the team and Jacques is still mainly focused on the defence.

When they took over they always targeted the 2023 RWC as the one they aimed to win. The 2019 win was an unexpected bonus. Remember the back line then has a host of players with less than 10 test caps to their names and were for the most part inexperienced.

The goal was to bring SA back to their traditional strengths and play waht most see as boring rugby. Set piece, breakdown, defence, discipline and exploiting errors from the team in possession.

Whilst that has not changed, Rassie always said once the building blocks are in place the game plan will be expanded on, and with that the manner in which they attack.

THE PACK

South Africa arguably are the envy of every rugby nation when it comes to the depth they have created and it goes without saying they have debatably two of the best packs in the business.

whilst the forwards may be very physical it is a misnomer to call them huge, on numerous occasions in the past four years they were outweighed by the oppsosition packs or were very slighty heavier.

Thus the mindset of running the Bok pack ragged to tire them is a false assumption. In my view two major reasons for that. When you change six or more players in your pack during halftime it means you have a fresh pack for the next forty minutes. Secondly, I dare anyone to tell me players such as Koch, RG Snyman, Kwagga Smith, etc are not fit or mobile.

BACKLINE

This is the major change or should I suggest improvement in the Springbok set up. Quite a number of new talent has been unearthed in the past three seasons.

Scrum half: Jayden Hedrickse and Grant Williams
Fly Half: Manie Libbok
Midfield: Andre Esterhuizen has become more prominant
Back Three/Utility Backs: Kurtley Arendse, Canan Moodey and Damian Willemse.

Whilst the exclusion of Handre Pollard means South Africa is going into the World Cup without their best kicker and match controller, it forces the Boks hand in that they play more creatively, more running rugby and therefor more attractive rugby.

In the last three season the Springboks have score royghly two thirds of the tries via their backs, and even their set piece maul tries have come with good variation. I don't believe they are reliant on only the maul, or kicking three pointers to score points.

AGE
Some have commented on the age of the squad, and whilst the average age is in thelow 30's, there are really only three players that might be considered past their prime.

Duane Vermeulen, Deon Fourie and Willie le Roux.

I think it is imprtant to understand the roles of these three players. Willie le Roux is the best try assist player in South Africs, he has a hand in so many tries scored by South Africa it seems illogical, but yet true.

Deon Fourie is likelyto play a similar role as Schalk Brits did in 2019. Duane is there for his leadership for 40 minutes a game.

CAN THE BOKS WIN BACK TO BACK WORLD CUPS?

I suppose anything is possible, however I think when considering all factors from their group, it is unlikely to be SA, Ireland or Scotland, regardless of their potential or class.

Normally you would play one tough group match, then three knockout matches to win.

South Africa, Scotland and Ireland essentially play five of their seven matches against quality and physical opponents. The attrition rate is likely to impact their squad depth severely.

One also needs to consider picking yourself up mentally for three knockout matches in a row is hard. Doing it continuously for seven weeks, nigh on impossible.

Other than that, also consider the fact that their half of the World Cup draw will eliminate three of the top five teams.

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Post by Rugby Fan Wed 6 Sep - 11:40

Nice to hear from you, OM.

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Post by mikey_dragon Wed 6 Sep - 11:59

On form, I'm finding it difficult to look past SA retaining the cup. The depth is probably the best it's ever been.

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Post by Old Man Wed 6 Sep - 19:12

Springbok team to face Scotland in Marseille:
15 – Damian Willemse (DHL Stormers) – 33 caps, 41 points (3t, 4c, 4pg, 2dg)
14 – Kurt-Lee Arendse (Vodacom Bulls) – 10 caps, 55 points (11t)
13 – Jesse Kriel (Canon Eagles) – 62 caps, 70 points (14t)
12 – Damian de Allende (Wild Knights) – 73 caps, 50 points (10t)
11 – Cheslin Kolbe (Suntory Sungoliath) – 26 caps, 81 points (12t, 3c, 5pg)
10 – Manie Libbok (DHL Stormers) – 9 caps, 65 points (1t, 21c, 6pg)
9 – Faf de Klerk (Canon Eagles) – 49 caps, 44 points (5t, 2c, 5pg)

8 – Jasper Wiese (Leicester Tigers) – 23 caps, 5 points (1t)
7 – Pieter-Steph du Toit (Toyota Verblitz) – 71 caps, 35 points (7t)
6 – Siya Kolisi (captain, Racing 92) – 77 caps, 50 points (10t)
5 – Franco Mostert (Honda Heat) – 67 caps, 15 points (3t)
4 – Eben Etzebeth (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 113 caps, 25 points (5t)
3 – Frans Malherbe (DHL Stormers) – 63 caps, 5 points (1t)
2 – Malcolm Marx (Kubota Spears) – 63 caps, 85 points (17t)
1 – Steven Kitshoff (Ulster) – 76 caps, 10 points (2t)

Replacements:
16 – Bongi Mbonambi (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 62 caps, 65 points (13t)
17 – Ox Nche (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 21 caps, 0 points
18 – Trevor Nyakane (Racing 92) – 62 caps, 5 points (1t)
19 – RG Snyman (Munster) – 28 caps, 5 points (1t)
20 – Marco van Staden (Vodacom Bulls) – 14 caps, 0 points
21 – Duane Vermeulen (SA Rugby) – 70 caps, 15 points (3t)
22 – Grant Williams (Hollywoodbets Sharks) – 5 caps, 0 points
23 – Willie le Roux (Vodacom Bulls) – 87 caps, 65 points (13t)

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Post by Collapse2005 Thu 7 Sep - 13:52

mikey_dragon wrote:On form, I'm finding it difficult to look past SA retaining the cup. The depth is probably the best it's ever been.

Time will tell, if the Boks do win the RWC its likely that this will be their hardest run of games ever at a RWC including Ireland, Scotland, Fra/NZ and then probably one of England/Arg/Aus and they likely one of Ireland/France and NZ again.

Compare that to previous world cup wins in all three of their QFs for their previous RWC wins they have played 2nd tier opponents, W Samoa, Fiji and Japan, with semis against Fra, Arg and Wales.


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Post by lostinwales Thu 7 Sep - 14:01

Despite the depression over England's chances this does look like a very interesting RWC. It would be great to see a new name on the cup but think SA are very narrow favourites ahead of France and Ireland with NZ back in 4th. The pressure of being at home and Injury problems may well hold France back.

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Post by Rugby Fan Thu 7 Sep - 16:00

Old Man,

Are any South African fans worried about not getting to the quarter final? Pundits generally see Scotland going out, or Ireland on a bad day, but few, if any, see the Boks losing two group matches.

Which is strange, in a way. The Boks can certainly beat Ireland but it would not be a shock for the Irish to beat South Africa, as they did so recently, and currently rank above them. Similarly, Scotland beating the Boks is surely a higher chance than Japan beating them in a pool match, and we know that happened.

And yet, the Boks failing to get out of their pool seems such a seismic event, it isn't really being publicly considered. Even though game-changing red cards are a feature of our sport these days.

Do you think it is being privately considered a possibility by some Bok supporters?

In 2015, the equivalent group was probably the one with Australia (2) England (4) and Wales (5). Just because England screwed up from that position doesn't mean others will but it has happened.


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Post by Old Man Thu 7 Sep - 17:16

I cannot speak for other South Africans as I keep to myself mostly since Covid. Now live on a smallholding and most of my business is done electronically, also been building myself over the last year so my exposure to rugby fans have been limited.

Having said that I have been concerned about not making it through the pool since the announcement of the fixtures.

The interesting thing is for most matches you lose you can find simple reasons, a kick here, a decision there, a yellow card somewhere else.

Take SA vs Australia for example since 2021. Every match we played against them was in Aus.

One match we lost outscoring them three tries to noe, yet lost the match via a plethora of log distance penalty kicks.

Another we lost inthe final minute. By recollection of the four in OZ we only won one match.

Reverse the situation and we pummeled them in Pretoria this year.

Our last two November tours were close losses to England, Ireland and France.

The reality is no matter how good a team is, it takes a very small margin to lose these days.

An untimely card, a rush of blood, one poor decision and you can lose.

Or simply a poor start.

At the 2019 RWC NZ beat us 23-13, they got of to a fantastic start and scored 14 points early.

The same happened in New Zealand this year, they got off to a quick start, led 17-0.

In both those matches we fought back and essentially own the last 60 minutes.

So a poor start can also put you back enough that you can't get back npinto the game.

I believe preparation and mental frtitude will be as crucial as discipline and injuries this RWC.

You suffer at the hands of either of those and you pack your bags.

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Post by Galted Fri 8 Sep - 12:23

PJ is running an in-house prediction competition for the world cup if anyone's interested:

https://www.606v2.com/t71211-2023-rugby-world-cup-tipping-competition

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Post by Pal Joey Fri 8 Sep - 13:17

Galted wrote:PJ is running an in-house prediction competition for the world cup if anyone's interested:

https://www.606v2.com/t71211-2023-rugby-world-cup-tipping-competition

Thanks Galted.

Hi C!
It's great to hear things are going well at the farm.

It would be nice to have you join us for the tipping comp. You can simply post up the first block of matches and your predictions as Galted has done.


Galted's Predictions:

Just add/edit an N (1-4 points winning margin), C (5-14 points), E (15-29 points) T (30+ points) or a D for Draw.
Copy and paste your selections into the tipping thread. Would be great to see you there.

Pool A
France v NZ - Fra C
Italy v Namibia - Ita T

Pool B
Ireland v Romania - Ire T
South Africa v Scotland - SA C

Pool C
Australia v Georgia - Aus T
Wales v Fiji - Wal E

Pool D
England v Argentina - D
Japan v Chile - Jap T

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Post by doctor_grey Sat 9 Sep - 15:39

Old Man wrote:The goal was to bring SA back to their traditional strengths and play waht most see as boring rugby. Set piece, breakdown, defence, discipline and exploiting errors from the team in possession.
I know I have said this previously, winning ain't boring.

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Post by George Carlin Mon 11 Sep - 7:55

OM - you surely are more confident than every now that you have found a 10 with a passing and kicking game and your monster forwards are now at the peak of their maturity (or able to hang in there as a quality veteran like Vermuelen)?
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Post by Old Man Mon 11 Sep - 8:18

Yes, Libbok provides us more options on attack, however two major concerns will be finishing in the opposition 22 (which is also about decision making and option taking) and goal kicking. Can't miss 11 points against Ireland and New Zealand

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Post by Rugby Fan Thu 14 Sep - 6:46

Very little information about the injury Malcolm Marx picked up in training. We don't even know for sure which part of his body. He has gone for scans.

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Post by George Carlin Thu 14 Sep - 7:17

Kriel avoids a citation for the head clash in the Scotland game. Essentially an admission from World Rugby that it happened so fast absolutely everyone missed it and they aren't really sure what to do about it. The problem with the pool stages is that banning any player now benefits the opposition of the team that suffered the incident.

Did I read that Estebeth has an injury?

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Post by Old Man Thu 14 Sep - 7:49

Yes Eben has a 10-14 day recovery, he injured his shoulder.

Marx not sure.

As for Kriel's head collision, I keep out of these things mostly because it is controversial, people agree and disagree and each sees it they way they want to. Even blaming Rassie's previous antics for the non citing.

However if you watch the video clip that show the initial contact was tackling onto the ball, whilst clearly visible some say it is not true.

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Post by Collapse2005 Thu 14 Sep - 8:18

Old Man wrote:Yes Eben has a 10-14 day recovery, he injured his shoulder.

Marx not sure.

As for Kriel's head collision, I keep out of these things mostly because it is controversial, people agree and disagree and each sees it they way they want to. Even blaming Rassie's previous antics for the non citing.

However if you watch the video clip that show the initial contact was tackling onto the ball, whilst clearly visible some say it is not true.

If initial contact was on the ball that would just be a mitigation as there is still head contact. Should at least have been a yellow and then bunker review. I think from the angles I’ve seen the head contact was around the same time as contact with the ball. Very odd that they choose to completely ignore it.

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Post by Collapse2005 Thu 14 Sep - 8:20

I expect Marx and Ezebeth to start v Ireland. Pollard probably won’t at this stage as he is back training with Leicester.

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Post by mikey_dragon Thu 14 Sep - 10:00

Marx is ruled out of the tournament due to a knee injury.

Interestingly, behind Mbonambi the other two hookers are Fourie and van Staden (both flankers).

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Post by Collapse2005 Thu 14 Sep - 10:14

Wasnt expecting that, thats harsh on the Boks as he is one of their best players. Think that might give Ireland a bit of an advantage.

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Post by Maine man Thu 14 Sep - 10:20

Gutted for Marx. Probably my favourite Springbok player

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Post by Collapse2005 Thu 14 Sep - 10:26

I wonder will the Boks call up Pollard for Marx? Marx is one of the Boks most experienced players and given Rassie doesnt trust his players to make their own decisions on the pitch (traffic lights) perhaps he will see Pollard as a necessary addition to add to the on field leadership. Not ideal when he has been out of the side for so long.

Interesting that Nienaber said Marx wont be replaced in the squad.

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Post by Rugby Fan Thu 14 Sep - 11:20

Collapse2005 wrote:I wonder will the Boks call up Pollard for Marx?
Very difficult to run with two hookers, especially when the original third choice is already a class below the other two, and not full time in the position.

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Post by sensisball Thu 14 Sep - 12:35

Collapse2005 wrote:Interesting that Nienaber said Marx wont be replaced in the squad.

I find it hard to believe that the Boks would move forward with only 1 actual hooker in the squad to play Ireland. The two backs up are back rowers with some club, but no international experience (I think), seems awfully risky as scrum and lineout are the bread and butter of all Boks game plans.

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Post by Collapse2005 Thu 14 Sep - 12:48

Maybe he meant that he wont be replaced for before the Romania game not sure. Id expect a replacement to be called up for sure.

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Post by George Carlin Thu 14 Sep - 12:52

Don't you formally need a full set of front row replacements in your 23?
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Post by Rugby Fan Thu 14 Sep - 13:16

George Carlin wrote:Don't you formally need a full set of front row replacements in your 23?
The Boks have that at the weekend, with Deon Fourie on the bench.

In several tournaments, some teams have elected to go with only two hookers in their World Cup squads. This seems to mean that, if one gets a small niggle, which would usually mean that player just missing a match, you'd actually have to send him home, and call up a replacement.

Given some of the travel logisitics, a replacement might conceivably not arrive in time. In theory, a team not able to field a full set of front row substitutes should forfeit the match.

This scenario has never happened, so there's been no need for a ruling. Presumably, one of the props might also agree to be named as a hooker just to fulfill the legal requirement, though this would be reckless if the player has no history with the position.



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Post by Poorfour Thu 14 Sep - 14:13

That last one is usually the approach: front row replacements only need to be comfortable playing in the front row, and not necessarily in a specific position. In 2019, England spent some time training Joe Marler as their third tighthead (though fortunately they didn't have to play him there in anger).

But it surprises me that Neinaber and Erasmus aren't replacing Marx, unless the plan is to replace him after the weekend. An injury or a card could leave the Boks very exposed.
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Post by Collapse2005 Tue 19 Sep - 18:11

South Africa: Damian Willemse; Kurt-Lee Arendse, Jesse Kriel, Damian de Allende, Cheslin Kolbe; Manie Libbok, Faf de Klerk; Steven Kitshoff, Bongi Mbonambi, Frans Malherbe; Eben Etzebeth, Franco Mostert; Siya Kolisi (capt), Pieter-Steph du Toit, Jasper Wiese.

Replacements: Deon Fourie, Ox Nche, Trevor Nyakane, Jean Kleyn, RG Snyman, Marco van Staden, Kwagga Smith, Conus Reinach.

Team to face Ireland 7 forwards on the bench

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Post by Old Man Tue 19 Sep - 19:41

Rassienaber is playing the long game here.

This is an experiment. They knwo either NZ or France is waiting for the QF. So the only real risk they are taking is if Scotland beat Ireland, then it becomes a toss up.

Of course they need to score plenty of points vs Tonga to ensure points difference.

But this game is abiut experimenting and gathering more data on the 7-1 split.

There is of ciurse also the possibility of trying to play mindgames with Ireland, trying to force a 6-2 split, and then moments before the match, Fourie pulls out and Pollard comes in.

Oh, the games oeople play.

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Post by formerly known as Sam Tue 19 Sep - 21:32

The 7-1 split makes sense in a way. Ireland are one of, if not the, best all court team in the world. Ditto Leinster at club rugby. Where have Leinster fallen a cropper. Against La Rochelle where the opposition pack is just so big and mobile that the Leinster pack can't hold on for the full 80. The forwards tire and performance dips.

Ireland are stronger than Leinster but they will opt for the traditional 5-3 split. The Boks have a great forward pack and a great reserve forward pack. 7-1 means the intensity up front will be brutal. See if the Irish pack can last the full 80.

The Irish will be trying to run the legs off the Boks backline. If those guys are tired or hurting there's no respite.

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Post by Collapse2005 Tue 19 Sep - 21:42

Good thing Ireland has a week off after this game

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Post by Old Man Sun 24 Sep - 10:28

I keep eondering whether Rassienaber is still experimenting, whilst the game yesterday was a thriller, there are some questions to be asked.

Was yesterday just another experiment?

From the get go we ran the ball from our 22, in finals rugby you don't do that, well at least South Africa doesn't.

When is Pollard coming, at the QF? We left 11 points on the table yesterday with missed kicks and by memory the same vs Scotland.

Getting the feeling Rassie doesn't care who we meet in the QF, surely if New Zealand was the target then a goalkicker would have made a difference?

Also what are they trying to achieve with the 7-1 split? I would understand if De Jager and Marx were available, as they bring same quality, but if you take a step down then what?

They areobviously there to try to win the RWC, I assume they would have plans in place for coming second in the pool, lot to ponder over the next weeks to come.

Wedefinitely miss Am as well.

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Post by king_carlos Sun 24 Sep - 13:36

I'd certainly expect SA to get Dweba into the squad at the next opportunity if there is an injury. Which the odds are there will be before the KOs at this stage. The attrition rate is so high.

I think Smith and van Staden justified their inclusion in the same bench. They both had big impacts. Snyman was once again impressive. Kleyn realistically didn't have much impact though. With Lood injured I don't think having 4 locks in the matchday 23 has the same oomph. I'd prefer to have Etzebeth play the 80.

I'd expect them to get Pollard back into the side as soon as possible too.

1.Kitshoff 2.Mbonambi 3.Malherbe 4.Etzebeth 5.Mostert 6.Kolisi 7.PSdT 8.Wiese
9.Faf 10.Pollard 11.Kolbe 12.de Allende 13.Kriel 14.Arendse 15.Willemse

16.Dweba 17.Ox 18.Nyakane 19.Snyman 20.van Staden 21.Smith 22.Reinach 23.Libbok

The Boks maybe moving towards that?

One thing I take from this game is that I really wouldn't want to play either side in the QFs! Ireland vs NZ and France vs SA would be colossal matchups.

That was my thoughts on the Ireland thread, Bilt. Ended up posting there as it'd been used as a match thread. Posted shortly after full time.

Agreed that Am is a big loss. Kriel has actually be really impressive in defence, especially cover defence. Am is also brilliantly defensively and links better with the outside backs though.

My overwhelming feeling with the bench is that van Staden and Kwagga proved that two back rows on the bench is worthwhile with flying colours. They added a ton with their carrying later in the game. I'd be surprised if even Vermuelen returned ahead of either. I think Kleyn had little impact though and Fourie at hooker feels like an unnecessary gamble.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 2 Oct - 10:29

Mapimpi out with a fractured eye socket. Tough for Mapimpi of course but with the Boks wing depth being so strong I'd presume that could be the opportunity to call up Joseph Dweba?

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Post by Galted Mon 2 Oct - 10:33

king_carlos wrote:Mapimpi out with a fractured eye socket. Tough for Mapimpi of course but with the Boks wing depth being so strong I'd presume that could be the opportunity to call up Joseph Dweba?

Rumours are that it could be Am.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 2 Oct - 15:47

Am confirmed. He's world class and will add a lot in attack at 13. Though Kriel has been strong defensively.

I still think Fourie as sub hooker has a big negative impact on the bomb squad. Dweba's lineout throwing isn't the best either but his scrummaging is a fair way better than Fourie.

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Post by Poorfour Mon 2 Oct - 15:50

Losing Mapimpi is a big blow, but if Am is anywhere near his best form he could add another dimension in attack.
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Post by Old Man Mon 2 Oct - 16:30

Kriel isn't a distributor, where Am is world class in that sense, whilst Kriel is a good defender, Am's ability to organise the backline defence is much more effective than Kriel.

I do not rate Dweba at all, whilst Deon Fourie may not be in the league of Marx or even Dweba, I prefer him as a sub over Dweba as a sub. I suspect Mbonambi will play as starter in the knockouts with Fourie and Marco van Staden on the bench.

Besides that I think the starting 15 is mostly decided for the knock out matches from here on out.

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Post by king_carlos Mon 2 Oct - 16:47

Reckon they're moving towards this then, bilt?

1.Kitshoff 2.Mbonambi 3.Malherbe 4.Etzebeth 5.Mostert 6.Kolisi 7.PSdT 8.Wiese
9.Faf 10.Pollard 11.Kolbe 12.de Allende 13.Am 14.Arendse 15.Willemse

16.Fourie 17.Ox 18.Nayakane 19.Snyman 20.van Staden 21.Kwagga 22.Reinach 23.Libbok

Maybe Kriel in the 23 shirt for the versatility?

It's still a phenomenal side. This discussion just shows how good Marx is.

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Post by Old Man Mon 2 Oct - 17:42

king_carlos wrote:Reckon they're moving towards this then, bilt?

1.Kitshoff 2.Mbonambi 3.Malherbe 4.Etzebeth 5.Mostert 6.Kolisi 7.PSdT 8.Wiese
9.Faf 10.Pollard 11.Kolbe 12.de Allende 13.Am 14.Arendse 15.Willemse

16.Fourie 17.Ox 18.Nayakane 19.Snyman 20.van Staden 21.Kwagga 22.Reinach 23.Libbok

Maybe Kriel in the 23 shirt for the versatility?

It's still a phenomenal side. This discussion just shows how good Marx is.

I think that is pretty much spot on, however I suspect there are two other options in accommodating Pollard.

Starting with Libbok and keeping Pollard to close out the match. Alternatively start him at 12 which is less likely.

I am concerned about Willemse though, whilst a superb rugby player his try assist stats aren't anywhere near Willie le Roux

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Post by Collapse2005 Mon 2 Oct - 18:20

Really? Le Roux looks a liability to me. Id rate Willemse as a far better player.

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Post by Galted Mon 2 Oct - 18:26

Old Man wrote:
king_carlos wrote:Reckon they're moving towards this then, bilt?

1.Kitshoff 2.Mbonambi 3.Malherbe 4.Etzebeth 5.Mostert 6.Kolisi 7.PSdT 8.Wiese
9.Faf 10.Pollard 11.Kolbe 12.de Allende 13.Am 14.Arendse 15.Willemse

16.Fourie 17.Ox 18.Nayakane 19.Snyman 20.van Staden 21.Kwagga 22.Reinach 23.Libbok

Maybe Kriel in the 23 shirt for the versatility?

It's still a phenomenal side. This discussion just shows how good Marx is.

I think that is pretty much spot on, however I suspect there are two other options in accommodating Pollard.

Starting with Libbok and keeping Pollard to close out the match. Alternatively start him at 12 which is less likely.

I am concerned about Willemse though, whilst a superb rugby player his try assist stats aren't anywhere near Willie le Roux

Probably a bit late for experimenting but I'd put Pollard at wing/fullback. Flyhalves spend enough time hanging back fielding kicks anyway and, besides le Roux, Kolbe and Arendse are experienced in the position if he's targeted and needs a bit of relaxation time on the wing.

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Post by Old Man Mon 2 Oct - 18:30

Collapse2005 wrote:Really? Le Roux looks a liability to me. Id rate Willemse as a far better player.

He had a poor game against Tonga, but his awareness on attack, when to delay the pass, directing his wings on attack, creating space, delaying the pass etc has scored many tries for the Boks, wheras Willemse might look brilliant he isn't nearly as effective playing with his team mates.

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Post by Old Man Mon 2 Oct - 18:32

Galted wrote:
Old Man wrote:
king_carlos wrote:Reckon they're moving towards this then, bilt?

1.Kitshoff 2.Mbonambi 3.Malherbe 4.Etzebeth 5.Mostert 6.Kolisi 7.PSdT 8.Wiese
9.Faf 10.Pollard 11.Kolbe 12.de Allende 13.Am 14.Arendse 15.Willemse

16.Fourie 17.Ox 18.Nayakane 19.Snyman 20.van Staden 21.Kwagga 22.Reinach 23.Libbok

Maybe Kriel in the 23 shirt for the versatility?

It's still a phenomenal side. This discussion just shows how good Marx is.

I think that is pretty much spot on, however I suspect there are two other options in accommodating Pollard.

Starting with Libbok and keeping Pollard to close out the match. Alternatively start him at 12 which is less likely.

I am concerned about Willemse though, whilst a superb rugby player his try assist stats aren't anywhere near Willie le Roux

Probably a bit late for experimenting but I'd put Pollard at wing/fullback.  Flyhalves spend enough time hanging back fielding kicks anyway and, besides le Roux, Kolbe and Arendse are experienced in the position if he's targeted and needs a bit of relaxation time on the wing.

If Am comes back we can play Pollard at 15, might even be worth him and Libbok alternate as first reciever, gives us the best of both strengths

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Post by formerly known as Sam Mon 2 Oct - 18:44

Old Man wrote:
Galted wrote:
Old Man wrote:
king_carlos wrote:Reckon they're moving towards this then, bilt?

1.Kitshoff 2.Mbonambi 3.Malherbe 4.Etzebeth 5.Mostert 6.Kolisi 7.PSdT 8.Wiese
9.Faf 10.Pollard 11.Kolbe 12.de Allende 13.Am 14.Arendse 15.Willemse

16.Fourie 17.Ox 18.Nayakane 19.Snyman 20.van Staden 21.Kwagga 22.Reinach 23.Libbok

Maybe Kriel in the 23 shirt for the versatility?

It's still a phenomenal side. This discussion just shows how good Marx is.

I think that is pretty much spot on, however I suspect there are two other options in accommodating Pollard.

Starting with Libbok and keeping Pollard to close out the match. Alternatively start him at 12 which is less likely.

I am concerned about Willemse though, whilst a superb rugby player his try assist stats aren't anywhere near Willie le Roux

Probably a bit late for experimenting but I'd put Pollard at wing/fullback.  Flyhalves spend enough time hanging back fielding kicks anyway and, besides le Roux, Kolbe and Arendse are experienced in the position if he's targeted and needs a bit of relaxation time on the wing.

If Am comes back we can play Pollard at 15, might even be worth him and Libbok alternate as first reciever, gives us the best of both strengths

Why would you put Pollard at 15 and not Libbok? Libbok has the better running game so the extra space might suit him whilst Pollard is built like a backrow so keeping him in the line is beneficial.

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Post by Old Man Mon 2 Oct - 19:07

formerly known as Sam wrote:
Old Man wrote:
Galted wrote:
Old Man wrote:
king_carlos wrote:Reckon they're moving towards this then, bilt?

1.Kitshoff 2.Mbonambi 3.Malherbe 4.Etzebeth 5.Mostert 6.Kolisi 7.PSdT 8.Wiese
9.Faf 10.Pollard 11.Kolbe 12.de Allende 13.Am 14.Arendse 15.Willemse

16.Fourie 17.Ox 18.Nayakane 19.Snyman 20.van Staden 21.Kwagga 22.Reinach 23.Libbok

Maybe Kriel in the 23 shirt for the versatility?

It's still a phenomenal side. This discussion just shows how good Marx is.

I think that is pretty much spot on, however I suspect there are two other options in accommodating Pollard.

Starting with Libbok and keeping Pollard to close out the match. Alternatively start him at 12 which is less likely.

I am concerned about Willemse though, whilst a superb rugby player his try assist stats aren't anywhere near Willie le Roux

Probably a bit late for experimenting but I'd put Pollard at wing/fullback.  Flyhalves spend enough time hanging back fielding kicks anyway and, besides le Roux, Kolbe and Arendse are experienced in the position if he's targeted and needs a bit of relaxation time on the wing.

If Am comes back we can play Pollard at 15, might even be worth him and Libbok alternate as first reciever, gives us the best of both strengths

Why would you put Pollard at 15 and not Libbok? Libbok has the better running game so the extra space might suit him whilst Pollard is built like a backrow so keeping him in the line is beneficial.

Libbok in the red zone is a better distributor than Pollard, if you have straight running direct players from 1-13 then having Libbok as the playmaker will be better in my opinion, Pollard better inside our half as his tactical control is better. Hence swapping them depending on field position and whether we are on attack or defence could be beneficial

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Post by mikey_dragon Tue 3 Oct - 16:06

Boks are starting to look a lot better on paper with Pollard and Am in the mix. Maybe Kriel will be shifted to wing, I actually don't think he is as average a player as some South Africans make out. De Allende has been very good before and during the world cup, Esterhuizen also when he has played, so the backs are in a better place. SAs forwards' and defence still appear dominant, but an injury to Mbonambi and they could be in trouble.

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