Tri Nations Game 1
Boks v Wallabies
Saturday, July 12, 2003
Boks 26 def Wallabies 22
Halftime Boks 20 Wallabies 10
Well arenít I a stupid bastard. I decided that due to my daughters habit of waking up bright and early that I would watch Foxtelís first replay of the game at 7am rather than staying up having a few drinks; getting pissed; having sweet #### all sleep; and still having to get up bright and early. The other benefit of doing that is I didnít have to run the risk of being stuck listening to my award for the ďworst rugby commentary team in the worldĒ the Channel 7 gurus.
So yep Iím thinking that Iím a smart cookie, as I have already been up for a fair while, I switch the TV on and start watching the game. By god I have never seen such a highly edited game that every now and then would change shots and the ball was suddenly in the oppositions hands. So this was really beginning to shit me along with the SA habit of not having a clock and score visible somewhere on the TV screen as the game progressed towards its climax. However, this was not the worst of it! No it gets far better! Two minutes from the end, Foxtel puts one of its annoying information boxes on the bottom third of the replay stating the final score of the game. Now excuse me but WTF.
At this stage I was totally ropeable as its 2 minutes from the end, the game has only 4 points in it and the Wallabies are on attack. And I let go with a verbal tirade that makes Andrew Dice Clay look like a clergyman just as my wife walks in, as I am expanding my daughters vocabulary. Big big mistake.
Consequently I am writing the match report now and keeping my head down low for a bit.
So whatís the bet that Chucky will be looking for a job at the end of the RWC? And is anyone stupid enough to employ him?
Hats off to Jaco van der Westhuyzen who decided that Brent Russell should really be in the starting side and he really needed a rest for three months. Why Russell canít get a start is beyond me as he always makes an impact for the Boks. Russell along with De Wet Barry were superb for the Boks. Russell provided the flair that has been missing for the Boks, while Barry provided the muscle and had fun smashing into S. Kefu in particular and spoiling tries (T.Kefuís).
S. Kefu had a tough game and was continually smashed all night. You know at one stage I was hoping someone would just use him as the dummy runner and not just the crash test dummy. The dropped ball in front of the tryline was tough after Sailor put him into a great gap. But he did at least take Krige out with his offensive running and did make a couple of great breaks like his brother. T. Kefu kept breaking the first line of defense but then the ball just wasnít being recycled quickly enough to take full advantage of the situation.
I felt sorry for Sailor though, all that beautiful work he did throughout the game was marred by the kick in field that resulted in the Boks second try. I again must state again that Sailor has proven me wrong and he can definitely play rugby. Yet again he played very well and is no doubt, the best Wallaby back at the moment. He scored a try and set up a couple of opportunities that were not capitailsed upon by other Wallaby players.
While should I mention Burkeís efforts in the game? You bet I will, as I am a pathetic and pedantic little individual, did anyone notice how many ####ups he did? And not one report I have seen to date has mentioned his error rate. Yes I know, I am biased towards Burke but for #### sake I expect a fullback to be able to catch a football and not do impressions of Percy Montgomeryís catching ability, nor put his winger into a no win situation. While his up and under in the first half was rewarded with plenty of laughs and not only from the SA commentators. However, I will be totally shocked if Burke gets dropped as he must do the kicking (no penalty shots this game)!
While Iím on the subject of poor selection choices can someone please explain to me, what Finegan is doing in the side apart from pissing off the referee? Good work their Finegan, (in the edited highlights I saw) stand behind the breakdown for ages having a breather, then cause a stupid penalty; and then get the team marched another 10 for back chatting. One Gregan is enough on any team! Chucky if you arenít going to bring through Heenan before the RWC bring back Cockbain as Finegan is playing his best.
The wallabies game plan shocked me and I thought I must have been drinking Irish coffee as they continually went for the tryline. I donít know about anyone else but I was stunned. Thankfully they scored tries on a few occasions but they blew many more opportunities with poor lineouts again (or missed touch finding kicks, hey Burke). First Paul and now Cannon is revisiting his 2002 season with NSW. Here can anybody catch this one?
Arrgh 3 tries to 2 but can that Koen boy kick or what? Thatís enough of a break Iíll go see how much a 20 month old child can remember?
And for those wondering, yes the replay did at least include the imagery of those two little SA flags on the chest of that SA supporter.