485. Winning Against The Boks

Last week in my anxious I provided some free advice to Shag about how to beat the French. I’m grateful that he followed it to the letter:

  • A Quick Start
  • Kicking Accuracy
  • Discipline
  • Contest
  • Pull The Trigger

Now that we know the All Blacks can do all those things, and the question therefore is only whether they will do all those things tomorrow morning, I have only one more sage piece of advice:


The Boks are going to be a much bigger challenge than the Frogs. It is unlikely that the score line will ever get to comfortable. Indeed, we might be behind as we go into the final quarter. There’s a high possibility of rain, which will upset stratagems, increase mistakes, introduce chaos.

This is where aerobic fitness, experience and desire can make the critical difference to the mental battle. Deciding what to do  in clutch situations, and the sequence of how to do it, will be the winning and losing: just ask Chris Robshaw or Greig Laidlaw.

And it is where the bench players make their impact.

The Boks over the last two years have had a habit of fading in the last quarter, and their bench can disrupt rather than reinforce patterns. I wouldn’t be waiting for that to happen in a World Cup semi-final, but I’d be working to make it happen.

And in the contest of the minds we maybe have one not so secret advantage: A. Smith. He is by a long margin the best halfback in the world at the moment. And his opposite, Fourie du Preez, is the South African captain. If there’s a good way to put a captain off their thinking duties, it is to expose them in their own position. Make his head drop, make him have to say sorry to his own mates for a miss, and there’s an edge.

Over to you Aaron.

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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2 Responses to 485. Winning Against The Boks

  1. Cpt. Tinarse says:

    We are going to have to push them to beyond their fitness level by spreading it wide and multiple phases, forcing their bigger pack to run all day, so we can own the last 20 mins and unleash the quick tries. And look to exploit some indiscipline in that Boer mind, a punch or high tackle slip up to get them down to 14 for a spell. The first 30 mins are going to be brutal. Playing in their half as much as we can and avoiding scrums. Milner Skudder will need to watch Habana like a hawk, he’s fast and smart, and MS is a bit on the light side for a winger these days. I expect lots of drop goals, high pocket kicks and lineout mauls from the boks.

    Big day for the boys.

    And here’s to an Argentina win too. They deserve it, and Girt by Sea look fragile.

  2. Chazza says:

    By hokey Ned, you are smart! A VERY handy Right Hand Man to Shag. And he’s smart too so … Breathe. Get some sleep. Relax …

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