459. From The Gym: Match #31

South Africa 64 – 0 USA

Just what, exactly, are the USA doing at this tournament?

I mean, what are they trying to do, and what are they adding to the tournament?

Their tactics seem to be major-lite. That is, they try to play like a major team, but without the skills, experience or nous. Not so much lite, then, as sugar-free fat-free protein-free zero-calorie pure hot air.

Compare that to Japan, who have figured out a game plan that is about being different and unpredictable. Playing to their own strengths and away from those of other teams.

Team USA’s contribution to the tournament has been to be the worst team. The worst. Somebody has to be, of course, but they seem to have sought it out with relish.

The first team to be held to zero. The highest losing margin. The worst – positively the worst – defensive screen you’ve ever seen. Terrible ball security at the break down, allied with aimless kicking.

Against such opposition it is difficult to assess the Springboks’ performance. Their first half was poor, but they totally owned the second. Let’s just celebrate the great Bryan Habana collecting the easiest hat-trick of his wonderful career, taking him equal with Jonah Lomu for RWC tries.

Two words for USA Rugby: kiwi coach.

 

About Ned Davy

By hokey, the big fella’s tipped into his 50s. A rangy loose forward in his prime, good with the ball in hand, but rarely up with the play any more.
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