Perspective....we had 5 losses against Scotland and Ireland
November 19, 2012, 15:49:21
......in the 8 years of NH tests, since 2000. These tests are always a contest, going all the way back to 1951, where we won all the tests, but by close margins except for the famous Murrafield blowout. Again in 1961 the NH tests were desperately close for a great team. Playing away, often in slow and wet conditions, is a great leveller. Forget the fact that we are ranked considerably above these teams.
So we get to this year and Meyer brings a wounded Bok team to the fray. The team and the coach need to right the ship after a disappointing 4N tournament. New injuries abound.....to Fransie, Habana, the Beast, Bekker.....along with earlier injuries to Bismarck and Schalk. These are surely six of our very best.
The team shows great character in coming from behind to win against Ireland. Meyer selects Lambie for these matches, the young talent at flyhalf everybody wanted. But although we never looked like losing against Scotland, voices are raised again because it wasn't pretty. It has to be Meyer's instructions that are nobbling Lambie.....never mind that Goosen was always looking for gaps. As was Lambie on occasion with less success.
What do we think Meyer told Lambie and Pienaar? My guess would be to not take unwarranted chances in their own half, but to attack in the opponents half. But Lambie and Pienaar are pretty serious, conservative, chappies and probably put their own layer of conservatism on all this. Perhaps it was just the players looking after their own credentials as serious internationals. It's certainly true to say the Boks don't tolerate frivolity at 10.
But this side lacks a running spark. You can pass the ball all you like in test rugby. You can pass it all the way to JP, nothing will happen, except perhaps losing the ball, unless someone can beat a tackle. If fans on here think Fury ever did anything from set backline moves, study his highlights.....they all come from broken play.
Stalemate has been with us for a long time and to expect Meyer to suddenly reinvent our back play on this desperate tour is naive.