Archive for November, 2010

Hong Kong and the All Blacks Loss

No AB fan wanted to see us lose on Saturday. We were all hoping that the poor Wallaby record of 10 straight defeats would continue and the Green and Gold would have to keep wondering about how to put this All Black team away.

Alas, it was not to be. From the 60th minute when we were up 24 – 12 and Dan Carter walked off the pitch, it all headed down-hill. Stephen Donald and Isaia Toeava have been villianised in most articles and blogs and it’s hard not to agree. But was the loss really that bad?

Although disappointed that we lost the opportunity to keep the Australian public second-guessing Robbie Deans and this young team, I’m not as gutted by this defeat as I thought I would be.¬† Here’s why I’m feeling OK with it:

1. 11 straight wins against the Wallabies and 16 all-up can’t help but breed even a little bit of complacency. A loss had to come sometime didn’t it and if there was a game to lose in the next 12 months, surely this was the one.

2. Dan Carter, Kevin Mealamu and Isaia Toeava were all coming off injuries and for Kevin and Dan, it was there first game since the last Test in Sydney.

3. Look at who made the crucial mistakes – Stephen Donald and Ice. If Donald is still our 2nd choice 1st-five at the RWC then I will start having serious worries.

4. Hosea Gear, SBW, Israel Dagg, Situveni Sivivatu, Piri Weepu, Ali Williams, Rene Ranger, Anthony Boric – all either unavailable due to injury or sitting in the stands. There’s a bit of fire power in there and I think a few of the incumbents will have to watch their backs over the next 12 months.

5.¬† Although¬† I don’t think we were up to some of the standards we set in the Tri-Nations, I think we still out-played the Wallabies in a number of areas. We arguably played better in this game than we did in Sydney and we won that one.

Chris Rattue’s article in the NZ Herald this morning was again another opportunity for him to bag Henry & Co. and declare his on-going crush on Robbie Deans stating

Deans is threatening to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.

The irritating part of the Henry v Deans debate was the attempt by Henry supporters to denigrate Deans.

Somehow, they claimed, all those titles and finals appearances with the Crusaders, all those fantastic All Blacks produced, were a giant fluke.

Ironically though, Deans’ All Black snubbing has been good for rugby because maybe no other coach could have saved the Wallabies.

Saved the Wallabies? If 2 wins in 12 Tests and 3 yrs is considered ‘saving’ the Wallabies, then long may the salvation continue! They lost a game they probably should have won in Sydney and just sneaked in on Saturday night against a fairly average All Black performance. I think they are still a fair way off being a really good team yet.

Finally, I hope the next time they play, Jerome Kaino or Owen Franks or Kevin Mealamu smashes that poofta running around at No. 10. Over-rated and easily the worst tackler at international rugby, I’d personally love the opportunity to run over Quade Cooper.