Rugby Championship Round 4 Review

The Rugby Championship travelling roadshow moves to North Queensland this weekend where the much anticipated test match between the All Blacks and Springboks is played, the 100th time these two great rugby rivals have met.

All Blacks vs Argentina
The All Blacks, now ranked number one in the world, are travelling very well having opened up a 10 point lead at the top of the Championship table after a much changed and very inexperienced side easily accounted for Argentina 36-13 at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane last Saturday.

But for four botched try scoring opportunities, the scoreline would have better reflected the outstanding effort of the new look team in which several newcomers to test rugby this season seized their opportunity to impress, none more so than star loose-forward Ethan Blackadder. His phenomenal work rate is matched by his skill set and toughness and he just keeps going at full speed until the finish.

Lock Tupou Vaa’i is a skilful young athlete and showcased those skills at lock where he scored two tries. Number eight Hoskins Sotutu was another standout until what looked like a minor leg injury slowed him down later before he was subbed, and what about hooker Samisoni Taukei’aho. A young player with pace and power and seemingly at home in the All Blacks front row where at this rate of development he’ll be our number one starter by next year.

Coach Ian Foster took a calculated risk changing the entire forward pack for this game and made 11 changes in total but to a man, every player stood up and showed there’s something a bit special developing in this squad.

Jordie Barrett did a top job at fullback and kicked superbly for goal and Damian McKenzie showed again what a class player he is and in whatever position he plays, gives the All Blacks another dimension. Welcome back to top form to halfback TJ Perenara, he had a cracking game, showing his class and experience.

Coach Ian Foster took a calculated risk changing the entire forward pack for this game and made 11 changes in total but to a man, every player stood up and showed there’s something a bit special developing in this squad.

Of course the big test comes in the next two weeks, firstly at Townsville on Saturday then on the Gold Coast on October 2 when the two great rivals meet again.

The Springboks will surely be better than they have been in their two defeats to the resurgent Wallabies and with so much on the line you would expect them to be a different beast. Then again the All Blacks will be a different beast two with mass changes expected again to accommodate the best team available.

Wallabies vs Springboks
What a week for Australian rugby as the resurgent Wallabies beat the Springboks for the second successive week, this time 30-17 in even more convincing fashion than the previous week’s last gasp victory.

The Wallabies superior speed, skill and much more ambitious game plan, had a strangely lethargic Springboks side scrambling for much of the match.

While the Springboks occasionally tried to move the ball more than they had in the previous test, they looked clumsy doing so and there was just no venom either in the forwards or in any of their attacking play. First five Handre Pollard, such a class player in previous season’s is only a shadow of himself at present and likewise halfback Faf de Klerk. The forwards were ponderous and mostly offered very little in the way of speed and skills in open play. Not surprisingly their only try came from a kick and they’ll need more than a kicking game to beat the All Blacks.

The Aussies ran in four brilliant tries and what a performance from the man who should have started every test against the All Blacks, block-busting prop Taniela Tupou. What a player, what a skill set for a giant prop who has pretty much redefined how props can play. He scrummaged strongly and was so dynamic in general play setting up two tries, one with an outrageous no look pass.

The Wallabies superior speed, skill and much more ambitious game plan, had a strangely lethargic Springboks side scrambling for much of the match.

While Quade Cooper wasn’t quite as influential at first five, he still guided his team with a steady hand, kicked well for goal again and along with Samu Kerevi and up and commer Len Ikitau was another standout with two tries.

What can you say about captain fantastic Micheal Hooper. He’s the best flanker in world rugby right now and just continues to enhance his reputation each time he runs out in the Wallabies jumper.

The Wallabies have obviously learnt from their mistakes against the All Blacks and those results show just how well the All Blacks played.

Brilliantly led by Hooper and a very good coaching team under Dave Rennie, the Wallabies have quickly climbed to number three in the world rankings, they are building and developing depth and they’ve finally given their long suffering fans something to cheer about and be really proud of.

Story by John Alexander | Supporting Images sourced by Absolutely Famous.

Share:

Comments are closed.

Search

Social Media

THE LATEST

Categories

Related Posts

Shopping Basket