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3380 Topic: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
Ek

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1464
Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 11, 2013, 12:34:13

Really nice and informative piece on Etzebeth. a Must read for all the people that believe him to be a bully :)

Eben's schooldays

Fri, 11 Jan 2013 09:45

Paul Dobson - Rugby365

And nobody asks Eben who? He is only just turned 21 and already he is a household name - Eben Etzebeth.

There are players who need no name - Morné, Naas and Bismarck. They had substantial careers, not just one season of top rugby, but what a season! He had several firsts - first Super Rugby match, first Test match and first match for Western Province, and they were in that order.

He had played eight Tests before he played his first match for Western Province. He played only three matches for the Province but still received awards as Western Province Forward of the Year and Western Province Players' Player of the Year even though Western Province had the Springbok captain and South Africa's Player of the Year, Bryan Habana. Eben was South Africa's Young Player of the year.

And he was young, and could still have played for Western Province Under-21 along with four other of their tight forwards - Steven Kitshoff, Frans Malherbe, Skarra Ntubeni and Wilhelm van der Sluys who was on the bench.

The young giant is just three years out of school and his school remembers him well. There are some questions, like was he always a star, did he lag behind academically, was he a naughty boy?

And so we asked Gavin Beresford who had been at Hoërskool Tygerberg for some years and has been heavily involved in the school's highly successful rugby. He was there throughout Eben's high school career.

Eben was a late developer. When he arrived in Grade 8 (Std 6) at Tygerberg from Goodwood Park Primary School in 2005, he was small - 1,5m tall and weighing 56kg, a long way from 2.03m and 117kg of 2012. Between Grade 8 and Grade 11 Eben grew half a metre and 50kg!

He did not play in A teams at Under-14, Under-15 and Under-16. He played in B teams on the wing, at centre, flyhalf and fullback. He was better known as a sprinter and highjumper. As a sprinter he won in the big Interschools athletics meet for Northern Suburbs Schools and being a highjumper suggests that his explosive power in line-outs is unsurprising, as are his sudden turns of speed.

Beresford said, he started growing in Grade 10 and when he came back to school in Grade 11 he had become, according to Beresford, a monster. He was no more a backline player and it did not take a genius to plonk the giant in the lock, though he was not used as a jumper in the line-out because he was too big to lift but was great at lifting teammates. In his last year at school, 2009 he was even taller and heavier at 125kg, in fact heavier than when he played for South Africa by which time his body fat was down to 7%.

In 2009, Eben went to the Craven Week for Western Province and, though he was not selected for SA Schools, he was chosen for SA Under-18 against France and Namibia, a team which included Johan Goosen, Siya Kolisi and Frans Malherbe. Beresford says Eben came back from that experience a better player. He said: "We saw it in his first match back at school when we played Bishops at Bishops and beat them 15-14 and the next week we beat Paarl Gim 12-10." And Tygerberg ended ranked in the FNB Top 20.

Of course, Eben did not reach the heights he has reached just by growing. First he had the desire. He came from a family where rugby was important, especially in the Western Province where his uncles Cliffie, one of the world's wittiest men, and Skattie had been great personalities in their playing days. Secondly, he had the determination, working hard, overcoming the ankle injury after the Junior World Championship, by working even harder. His success was no accident.

So his body and his rugby developed, but what about the rest of his school life?

It is easy to make a stereotype out of the big muscular young man from Epping who is being talked into being an 'enforcer' on the rugby field. But if you tried, you would be sure to get your stereotype wrong.

Beresford talked about his school career. He was throughout his school career in the top academic classes, well above average, and matriculated with a B aggregate, which would have got him into almost all university faculties, had he so chosen. Beresford said: "Eben was highly intelligent."

Eben was not a prefect at school, always well mannered and respectful - 'a very nice chap with a great sense of humour.' His biggest misdemeanour was eating in class which he did as much as possible - understandable for a rapidly growing lad who was physically active in a demanding way.

Big head? No.

On the night of the 2011 Varsity Cup Final, where he played a starring role for the victorious UCT side, he asked Howard Kahn, the Western Province media man, to put in a good word with Dobbo, John Dobson, the Vodacom and Under-21 coach at Western Province, because he wanted to get into Dobbo's Under-21 squad. He did not play much Under-21 rugby in 2011 and none at all in 2012!

When he was chosen for the Stormers early in 2012 he phoned Beresford, astonished that he had been chosen to start for the Stormers. He was sitting in the Stormers dressing room at Loftus Versfeld after they had beaten the Bulls and was told that he had been selected for the Springbok team to play England. He, big, tough enforcer, burst out crying. Would it not be sensible and a boon for the player to drop this enforcer, Bakkies-esque tag and let the young man play.

His summary of what has just passed: "This year was pretty amazing for me.”

Eben lives at home with his mom and dad and has just bought a house in Plattekloof in the Northern Suburbs, and his parents will move in there with him.

Eben often comes back to Tygerberg, especially to see Beresford.

He is a special player and a special man. Beresford said it: "As good a lock as he is, he remains a far better person than he is a rugby player."


clevermike

Status: Hall Of Fame
Posts: 13013
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 11, 2013, 12:47:52

Ek

Thank you.  Etzebeth is obviously a well-brought-up,  nice and intelligent youngster    I think he is showing a lot of players that it pays to be loyal to his parents and teachers - as well as to be humble and friendly.   I cannot ever imagine him crying - so lets leave that one.

He hs all the potential of being one of the best locks ever - and one can only hope that he contunes in present vein. 


Ek

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1464
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 11, 2013, 12:52:03

Seems to be a really nice down to earth type guy. He could become a great role model for kids, Depending on how he takes the fame into the future...

 


Beeno1

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Posts: 12022
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 11, 2013, 13:28:15

Thanks for a great read EK. You could see the quality of Etzebeth when the English thugs, in a premeditated plan, collectively jumped him. He got up unruffled listened quietly to the ref - who got it completely wrong - and got on with the game.

As for ou rooitwt's uncalled for and nonsensical comments one trusts he now has a proper picture of Etzebeth the person and will desist in future from making scandalous allegations about this superb player. What a cretin ou rooitwit is!


Jalapeno!

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 602
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 11, 2013, 13:50:59

Suggested eyewear for anyone who actually meets Eben Etzebeth:

 

 

Good player. Pity he's a thug!


oimatey

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1243
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 11, 2013, 16:37:24

 Thanks Ek for the article - really informative. His late development is even more reason for some type of management. If he plays a season this year like last year you can't help but think he'll breakdown physically.

 

 


ntanga

Status: Squad member
Posts: 333
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 12, 2013, 00:19:38

That's a great story guys, the lad is destined for greatness. 

 I did meet Eben in person, including most of the Boks' players who played against Ireland on the 10th of Nov last year.  He was very generous with his time, chatting and taking photos with Boks suppoters,.

He's got the X-Factor  


clevermike

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Posts: 13013
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 12, 2013, 00:35:37

ntamga

Welcome to the forum - just one question - is he in reality as big as his photo;s seems to make him?  I mean he looks like he is not the slim tall guy - but is his built is proportionate to his height. 


Saffex

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Posts: 9340
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 12, 2013, 01:03:41

Mike just google image him - there is nothing slim about him.

I reckon he will be weighing in at 130kg soon - the lad is a gym freak by all accounts, spends hours in the gym. Bob Skinstad before the England test at Twickers was saying that he curls 140kg and that the WP gym had to get in biigger dumbells for him


polyboy

Status: Squad member
Posts: 507
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 12, 2013, 17:41:40

Informative piece. Looks like he has all the goods for super stardom. These are the times I envy the SA locking factory. NZ produces "satisfactory" locks but locks like Ali Williams (who at his prime rivalled Matfield) are few and far between.


Sharkbok

Status: Senior player
Posts: 3724
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 12, 2013, 21:49:45

 A giant, but debatable if he is gentle.

This is him enforcing. 


clevermike

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Posts: 13013
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 12, 2013, 22:49:43

I looked at a video interview Eben, his mother and his brother gave.   He stays with his parents still and his mother said he is as gentle as a lamb at home.   However, he is extremely competitive and in playing rugby he gives 100%.

The latter can be the reason why on a rugby field you will be ill-advised to get on his wrong side or -especially since he is still very young - to try and intimidate him.   In view of his competitive nature he is likely to give more than he receives.   Hew is a gym freak  - and is ass strong as an ox - Bismarck would verify that as well.

Be it as it may - there were two allegations made against him over the past year - one was for headbutting - but the video evidence was actually unconvincing and there was no sign of injury to the complainant - giving rise to an impression that it was probably to remove him from the team by hook or by crook.   The second complaint of eye gouging was dismissed out of hand.   I would say Eben is a very good enforcer without any malice being in evidence.  


ntanga

Status: Squad member
Posts: 333
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 13, 2013, 23:42:52

@ CleverMike, Eben is super-fit, and seriously tall too, mascular body, well proportionate, well built for his hight, he looks really tough.  He does show a lot of respect for people too.  I'm 1.79m (5'11"), but I did look like a dwarf next to him.  He is a class player.

 

Its a pity the NH media are giving him a bad name, i.e. he's darty player or a thug; I think they are afraid of his toughness seeing that there is very few guys who can take him on, especial in the NH. 

And yes, he's a true gentleman outside the field, a real role model for the young guys. 

 

 


clevermike

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Posts: 13013
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 14, 2013, 07:25:58

ntanga

I did considerably more checking ups on Etzebeth since this thread was started and came to the conclusion that everything that is being said about him is 100% correct.

The opposing teams propaganda machines will always be in full swing when it comes to really top class players.   Their ideas are two-fold, namely -

*   to use as intimidation to limit the effectiveness of the player; and even 

*   to try and write him out of the opposing team completely by creating a very negative image about the player concerned.

The England press is a very real example of that and they normally goes flat out to degrade performers from other countries - especially if those players in any code of sport is a threat to English teams or sportsmen.

This is not only the case in respect of rugby.   I wish to remind you of the recent tour by the SA cricket team and the story about Pietersen and the so-called sms messages he sent to and receive from SA players.   It really was a storm in the teacup to try and mask the poor performances by the POMS in the series.   The so-called scandal was started in the media by players inside the POM team who under-performed and hate Pietersen and regard him as an outsider and taken from their through there press connections.  The POMS cricket set-up afterwards had to apologize for their allegations to SA Cricket - the press never did.

In conclusion Etzebeth is really a super star,  but  the opposing press will always suffer from the bad behaviour syndrome to try and get rid of him - so I am not at all worried about that issue.

 

 

 


Ek

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1464
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 14, 2013, 08:06:55

I was thinking about something, What arr the odds that they can convert Eben to a number 5 lock. It seems he has the ability to become the perfect lock. He just needs some experience in learning how to manage the lineouts. Then he could play both roles as it seems from all I have heard and seen that he aint that stupid either, so might be that he could be strategically inclined to run a lineout...

Just thinking, this could turn him into the perfect lock.


clevermike

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Posts: 13013
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 14, 2013, 10:26:11

Ek

It all depends on development of players and  especially future locks.   If Steph Du Toit develop as expected he woul also be a very good 4 or 5 - so it might happen that Eben ends up at 5.   The future is so bright I have to wear sunscreen as a result.

 

 


Saffex

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RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 14, 2013, 11:38:15

That depends on who comes through as his ideal partner. Etzebeth has played at 5 at times during a match so the option is to move him there if the best lock coming through happens to be a No4.

Etzebeth will stay at 4 if Steph du Toit proves to be the best of the rest. Etzebeth should move to 5 if say Willemse proved to be the best of the rest.


Boklogic

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Posts: 1971
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 14, 2013, 12:07:39

 Im not a fan of this "accommodating" bull[removed]...If Etzebeth is the best no 4, he needs to play and Willemse needs to get better and knock Etzebeth off his perch..Why turn a specialist no 4 into a number 5? We need specialists in their positions, not makeshift players..A great number 4 doesnt automatically mean he will make a great number 5! If we have two number 4's, who play a natural number 4 game, who is doing the job of a 5?


Saffex

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RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 14, 2013, 12:43:06

And Boklogic that is why you would not make a good coach - far too conservative and insular thinking here. The only major difference for a 4 and 5 is at line-out time, so if you have a player like Etzebeth who can jump as a 5 then why not play your next best lock at 4 if he happens to be a 4 who cant adapt to playing as a 5.

We know Etzebeth is a dead cert as a selection and therefore if a player like Willemse proves to be the next best, then the logical thing to do is play Willemse at 4 and move Etzebeth to 5, only because Etzebeth can play there.

I can assure you if Etzebeth moved to 5, he would not be a makeshift - nothing in his game would change other than where he jumped in the line-out - big bloody deal.

So what you would do is retain Etzebeth at 4 and play an inferior player at 5, knowing that you had another player in the country who was better than the 5 you have selected - talk about short sighted and a sure means to continuing winning only 57% of your games.

The art of a great coach is getting the best out of the players you have at your disposal. If you have an athlete like Etzebeth who can play 4 or 5, then you look for your next best lock be it a 4 or 5 to partner him. If you have a utility player like Lambie and a player like Goosen who only plays 10, then you look to play Lambie in one of his utility positions and ask him to specialise in that spot.

If we are to challenge the AB's we have to get our selections spot on and that means ensuring we have our best 15 on the park.

What I dont agree with is playing a flanker who is not physical enough at lock for the sake of having that flanker in the team. For example moving Alberts or Juan Smith to lock would be wrong. Prop is a specialist position so one cant just ask a tighthead to play loosehead. A player like Lambie can play 10 or 15, a player like Taute can play 13 or 15 - there is room for movement with players like these. But what a coach should not do is have these players playing in a different position each week. If Taute is to play 13 for instance then he has to stay there with the option of him helping out at 15 if needs dictate


clevermike

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RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 14, 2013, 13:28:30

A girl

I fully agree with what you said above and especially as to the following:-

"A player like Lambie can play 10 or 15, a player like Taute can play 13 or 15 - there is room for movement with players like these. But what a coach should not do is have these players playing in a different position each week."

This is exactly where the problem of player managment comes in.   Lambie - styarted off as a flyhalf and was then moved to full back - when Michalak came onto the scene as a contracted flyhalf.   He was then moved to full back - but really still preferred to play at flyhalf and that is where the coach in line with yout thinking  he is going to concentrate in future at playing at flyhalf and the chances of hi playing at full back is near to zero.  So problem solved.

In th case of Taute - he was placed in an even more difficult position.   After playing for the Lions for two years at full back - he was moved to centr by the Lions as a result of injuries to their centers - he played there for 3 matches and was injured seriously and only thereafter played 3 full test matches as a center.   What happened is that in reality he never really adjusted to play at center and his performances were less effective than he was at full back.   He is now going to play in his preferred position as full back and his future chances to play at center is zero as well.

In essence your statement is corret and the danger of moving players around is confirmed by the lesser performances by the two players mentioned.   We are lucky that your maxim will be applied as to temporary movement of players from their accustomed positions will in fure really be limited.


Boklogic

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1971
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 14, 2013, 22:04:02

I dont agree. We need depth. If Lambie is a specialist flyhalf but only second best behind Goosen, he must bench. What is wrong with having two great flyhalves instead of 1 and another one who can play 10 if need be. Andre Taylor for the Hurricanes would walk into the SA team with his eyes closed at 15 but he is not better than Dagg so he doesn't get a spot. You dont see them shifting him to wing because he is just too good to leave out. Thats when you start turning brilliant players into average  players ala Ruan Pienaar, Hougaard and the rest.

 

If Etzebeth is good enough to play 5 and make the transition easily, then that would be alright by why switch him when he is playing that well at 4? Why shake it up when he is settling in nicely there. This is international rugby, not an u15 school team where the biggest must play. This is the pinnacle of rugby and we have thousands of players to choose from, not 50! SA has a number of good number 5's that can do the job if given time in the position. If they are hell bent on playing Willemse at 4, then Etzebeth needs to specialise at 5 for the Stormers and then we are shooting ourselves in the foot re. Bekker...

Nothing wrong with having too great number 4's in Etzebeth and Willemse. Keeps competition strong and allows our boys to be managed correctly and not played into the ground. Keep opposition guessing as after a while NZL and other teams will know what to expect from a player..

 


steinlager1

Status: Baby Bok
Posts: 236
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 01:14:21

This kid reminds me of my heydays as a rugby adonis but all that muscle eventually turns into fat.

 Sad but true.  


Ek

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1464
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 07:54:12

That is only dirctly proportionate to the couch you decide to sit on and the size of the donuts you indulge in...


Ek

Status: Bok regular
Posts: 1464
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 07:54:26

That is only dirctly proportionate to the couch you decide to sit on and the size of the donuts you indulge in...


Saffex

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Posts: 9340
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 12:38:24

And Boklogic that is why I say you would make a coach who would produce poor results as you would have too many first choice candidates wasted on the bench.

You are wrong about what the Kiwi's do - Dagg has played a good number of tests on the wing as has their new centre Smith. For Oz, Beale has played many at 10, Ashley-Cooper has played 13, 15 and wing, O'Connor all over the backline, England are playing Brown on the wing, who is a fullback.

The art is getting your best 15 on the park, not wasting some of them on the bench. If you want to beat the best, you have to challenge with the best players you have at your disposal. Your method sells us short.

What I fail to comprehend is the fact that you seem to imply that Lambie cant play fullback, that by me wanting him to play 15 because we have Goosen at 10, I am asking him to play completly out of position at 15? It makes no sense at all. If there is a better option than Lambie at 15, then fair enough, let Lambie challenge Goosen for 10, but Lambie is our best option at 15, he is better than Kirchner and therefore should be our 15.

None of this is set in stone. Same applies to Taute who can play 15 or 13. Of all the 13's we have at our disposal, I think Taute might be our best option, but that is yet to be confirmed. If he is not the best 13, then he would challenge Lambie at 15, who in turn would challenge Goosen for 10.

As a coach, once you have worked out who the best players are in each position, then you should stick to those players specialising in their respective positions.

If I was the Bok coach, my starting point would be 15. Lambie 14. JP 13. Taute 12. Frans 11. Habana 10. Goosen 9. Hougaard for these represent the best 7 backs we have in SA. However this is not a closed book by any stretch - Habana is getting on so Rhule, v/d Heever, Jordaan or JJ might prove a better option. Taute might not prove to be the best 13, maybe JJ, JP, Jordaan or Howard prove to be better.

One certainty is that I would not be short sighted enough to say that Lambie is only to be considered at 10, knowing full well that he has a history of playing both 10 and 15 and being damn good at both. Once the equation is settled and Lambie proves to be the best option at say 15, then dont mess him around and have him play in a different position each week. He can however help out when needed in his alternate position.


clevermike

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RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 14:49:56

A girl

I agree with you about the issue of best options - and assume that you mean the best options should be based on performances and not theory.   The problem is to my mind that the Super 15 series will have to provide an indication which best options are the most appropriate.  

This is where there may be some problems though.   How many backline players are going to get playing time and in what positions are they going to play?    There are already indications that the Sharks will use Lambie exclusively at flyhalf and the Stormers will play Taute at full back.   That will mean that for the next six months they will have virtually no opportunities to play at 15 and 13 respectively and how can there performances be then evaluated?

A further problem is that the Sharks has other option to play at full back - so they are unlikely to move Lambie there since the are not very strong in the flyhalf position.   Insofar as the Stormers are concerned - we all know that the Coach is stuck on the useless two - De Villiers and De Jongh - and in the absence of one of them is likelyto play De Allende.    It is unlikely that Howard would get much playing time at all - he may be on the bench at times.   Engelbrecht will get playing time and Jordaan is a certainty to play at 13 - But Pietersen is likely to have zero exposure at 13.

Unfortunately the fact that player will play in certain positions over the next six months will inevitablyy lead to limitation of the selection senarioand thus have an impact on what will happen in subsequent selections - the key issue being that selection should in all cases be based on meritorous performances, nothing else.


sasuke uchiha

Status: Rugby Legend
Posts: 5844
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 15:26:11

that was a ver nice read indeed, i really rate ezebeth as a player, but i think when he plays his competitve aggression gets the better of him and that warps some of his decision making abilities, which can negate all the good he does or have negative side effects case in point (special note to mikey with this point) when he attempted to headbutt nathan sharpe, only to have himslef cited and miss out on the All Blacks test the following week where the rest of his forward teammates shed blood sweat and tears to push the ABs, only for them to eventually fail. who knows, maybe ezebeths presence might have been the one thing to have helped the Boks the edge, but alas, his ill discipline meant he let the team down.
we all saw the headbutt did no damage, but th LAWS of the game say if there was an intent to strike, then u are deemed to have striked, so the time was fitting the crime, even if the crime could have done more damagae if committed on a nitendo wii.

and just incase folks here are saying that ezebeth would have made a differenc in dunedin, let me point out that in sowetto, all three NZ locks out played ezebeth on the feild that day, including romano who came on the 60th minute, while ezebeth was subbed by meyer for playing hide and go seek when he should have been playing rugby, -_o

but it is a very nice read, they say that only real men cry, so i applaud ezebeth for not being shy in sharing his more sensative side, it almost brings tears to my eyes hearing how he cried, but then again im not a woman,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,LMAO!!! just kidding boys, nothing wrong with seeing a grown man cry and letting go of a few emotions, especially after all the hard work he has done to get to where he is at, :o)


sasuke uchiha

Status: Rugby Legend
Posts: 5844
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 15:27:08

theres nothing wrong at all with playing players out of their preferred positions, israel dagg is a prime example, but the main reason for daggs move to the wing in recent times was due to his in jury levels and the thinking of coaches (mainly blackadder) that he wouldnt be in so much contact with oppoisition at at FB, which is a valid reason.
if andre taylor continues where he left off in 2012, then its going to be harder and harder for hansen and fozzie to ignore him and All Blacks could find a very suitable replacment for corey jane who has been on of NZs best in recent years.

but could ezebeth move to 5??? IMO theres no real difference between 4 or 5 except in the scrums. weve all heard many times before how the locks are the engine power of the scrums, so it should be logical to put ur strongest lock behind ur weakest prop of the two playing, thus giving the tight 5 grunt at the scrums a balanced work of art.
what i do notice is that coaches ber rarely take this line of thinking into consideration, which prob means im wrong, LMAO. but there have been many a time i see one side of a scrum being dominated and the firt thing i look for is who is the lock behind him. if the other lock is bigger and stronger like say romano over whitlock or ezebeth over bekker, then i would swap them round and give the struggling prop a little boost.
ezebth is already a world class lock physically, he still needs to prove the mental side of things IMO, but that can come right, unlike bakkies who was a wondeful contributor to AB success over the Boks thanks on NZs ability to be able to cash in his penlaty cheques. but ezebth can make the transition to 5 easily if that is what meyer wants to do.
the real question is finding someone to partner up with him on a long term basis. bekker would be a logical choice, but one of many saffa brus struggling to get his body to keep up with the physical demands of the game we all love.


Saffex

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RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 16:15:09

Sas with all due respect none of the AB locks outplayed Etzebeth - not even close and what makes you conclude that is beyond me. As for Etzebeth and his perceived over the mark aggression - that to is a load of rubbish, fact is he never head butted Sharpe, the old boy milked that.

Etzebeth is probably already the best lock in the game and will only get better. The only difference between a 4 and 5 is where they jump in the line-outs, its more diificult to take the ball at 4 in the line-out than at 2.

Mike, if I was Bok coach, where the S15 coaches select various players, would have no impact at all on where I selected them. If Lambie played the whole S15 at 10 and I needed him at 15 then that is where I would select him. I would request that the S15 coaches select the players in the positions I would select them for the Boks, but cir[removed]stances may dictate that this is not possible.

For the record Steph du Toit is a No 5 lock


clevermike

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RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 16:31:42

Sasue

I think Etzebeth is in for some real problems - and that is that the older and ften enough less competent players would try and needle him to get a reaction.   That definitely was the case in the Sharpe incident - but there was no clear evidence that there was in fact any contact between Etzebeth's head and the face of Sharpe.   If there really was evidence Sharpe would have gone down to ground or some injury shown - neither was th case and I think the whole episode was blown out of proportion.

A girl

How do you evaluate player performances like in the case of Lambie?   If he plays the full Super 15 at flyhalf - how would you be able to determine that he is the best performing full back available?   Certainly there is only one real norm to use and that is proven performances.   No coach of stature will say - ok he played for the whole season at flyhalf and did exceptionally well in that position  - but lets try him out by selecting him at full back.   That is just not on because it  would be based on unproven perceptions and not reality.

My original standpoint is that PERFORMANCES only should be the key to selection.   No player is above that requirement.   If  any player fails in respect of that requirement - even be they Jean De Villiers,  Francois Steyn or even Etzebeth - they must take a hike out of the team.


Beeno1

Status: Hall Of Fame
Posts: 12022
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 16:32:43

Whil eone can accep ta fe wpalyer smay be tried in different postions the reality is tha tthe sooner the yfin dtheri be stposition and specialise the better. The jack of all trades eventyually los eout. So with lambie h eha sand yes he can play fullback. Its i slooking increasingly tha the i sa beter flyhalf. and will specialise there. Taute looks to be a better fullback and given the number of centers coming through it makes sense for him to specialise at 15.

I see no problm at all in having two top flyhalves available nationally.  The amount of rugby playe ddemands you have this of of depth. Ideally we need at least two players in each position. The days when Bok players are flogged to death must end. This is a major issue which many simply do not grasp the seriousness of.

Ou saSUE is smoking something very strong if he thinks [removed]lick or any othe kiwi lock outplayed Etzebeth.  I will be watching the 127 kg Willemse with interest along with Du Toit and Elstadt. 


Saffex

Status: Hall Of Fame
Posts: 9340
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 17:20:31

Add the Marais brothers from the Sharks as ones to watch - JA and Peet. Bresler had a great season last year as well.

Our top young locks are Etzebeth, Steph du Toit, Willemse, Roux, Elstadt and JA Marais............we do have young locks to burn if you add Bresler, Ruan Botha, Roodt, Bulbring, Peet Marais, Carl Wegner and Baby Bok to be Jaques du Plessis


sasuke uchiha

Status: Rugby Legend
Posts: 5844
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 18:35:15

@clevermike & A girl,

the official ruling is there was contact with that headbutt,,,
 

The citing commisioner deemed the incident to be worthy of a red card, and SANZAR Duty Judicial Officer Nigel Hampton QC suspended Etzebeth for two weeks after ruling the following:

"I was satisfied that this was not an attempt just to push the opposing player away by using his head without contact being made. The player brought his forehead forward and downward with a degree of speed and force into the nose area of the opposing player making contact with that player.

"This was a deliberate act done as a part of an episode of escalating “tit for tat” pushing and shoving between the two players. As to sanction, intentional striking with the head into the face of another is not to be countenanced under any cir[removed]stances."



and i agree with that statement big time.
i not only say there was contact, but my main argument is his intent and thats why he deserved his two week suspension, though i would have just banned him for a week.

mikey u raise a very good point about players egging ezebeth on, but sharpes a class player and im surprised more people dont realise that nathan sharp is the master of getting under peoples skin, hes been doing it his whole career as the All Blacks who have faced him can testify too.
but smarts and discipline is the ultimate antidote to that and ezebeth has no one to blame but himself for letting his teammates and country down for being unavailable when he was needed the most.
does this mean players shouldnt egg him on, hell no, he will be targated by players who will do their best to get under his skin and its up to ezebeth to rise to the challenge, as good a players as he is, ihavent seen one drop of rugby smarts from the dude and the spot light hes now under from both officials and players is no ones fault but his own.
if he can stop trying to get into scuffles, regardless of who started it, it will serve him well career wise, otherwise he could be exactly like his hero bakkies, who the All Blacks loved playing against, thanks to the flow of penalties that was bound to come their way.


sasuke uchiha

Status: Rugby Legend
Posts: 5844
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 18:40:01

@A girl,

bro the same disbeleief u have when i saythat all 3 AB locks outplayed ezebeth in sowetto, is the same disbelief i have in anyone thinking anything else.
blogging on NZ forums during that test, one comment a kiwi made was why wasnt ezebeth not playing??? and he wasnt being a funny guy, he legitimately thought that ezebteh wasnt playing.
i had to quickly scour through the replay to see ezebeth had indeed run on to the field, but subsquently did a houdini and disappeared for the entire 60 mins he was alleged to have been playing.

 

im not a big stats man as my posts here my atest too, but look at the numbers from the sowetto test and look at ezebeths work vs anyone of the All Blacks locks,,,,
 

Pos   T/A Pts K/P/R MR CB DB OL TO Tack LO Pen Y/R
L Etzebeth 0/0 0 0/0/2 4 0 0 0 0 1/1 3/0 0 0/0

 

Pos   T/A Pts K/P/R MR CB DB OL TO Tack LO Pen Y/R
L Retallick 0/0 0 0/2/1 3 0 0 0 0 6/0 2/0 1 0/0
L Whitelock 1/0 5 0/5/2 23 1 0 0 1 5/0 2/1 0 0/0
(L) Romano 0/0 0 0/0/2 2 0 0 0 0 5/0 0/0 0 0/0


here are the important things of note, in 60mins of rugby, ezebeths work included,,,,
2 ball carries for 4 meters
1 tackle and one mistackle
3 lineout takes

NZs worst lock romano who played only 20 mins of rugby,,,
2 ball carries for 2 meters
5 tackles

these numbers reflect how i remember the game as well, especially in regards to ezebeth and the All Blacks locks, but i will watch that replay again tomorrow with the intent of only watching the above mentioned players, but at the ned of the day, each to their own, :o)

ps. i only used those players cos it was relevant to the topic at hand, but FYI, ezebth was still the best Bok lock that day, :oP


Saffex

Status: Hall Of Fame
Posts: 9340
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 15, 2013, 18:41:30

I am not concerned with what the commision found, having seen the incident that could not be classified as a head-butt, Etzebeth hardly made contact and Sharpe milked it big time


hakwa

Status: Senior player
Posts: 2494
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 16, 2013, 09:04:59

 Eben is a good player - he needs to have someone else as his role model instead of Bakkies!

Sasu's "bakkies who was a wondeful contributor to AB success over the Boks thanks on NZs ability to be able to cash in his penlaty cheques" sums it up! 


Beeno1

Status: Hall Of Fame
Posts: 12022
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 16, 2013, 09:15:27

Bwahahahahahaha who are you trying to fool hahahakwa! Of course you nz oaks praise 106 kg wee matfield to the heavens and trash a great lock like Bakkies.

Well my hope is that its the last we ever see of show pony locks that decimate your tight 5. I am looking for another Etzebeth type lock. No mucking about. Lets have the wee abs for breakfast. 

Please note also how good Etzebeth is in the lineouts. The idea that you need a 106 kg stringbean lock is dismissed with horror. They complement each other was the bleat. Well how ou matfield complimented Bakkies when playing in the backline is a mystery. Backline players are backline players and tight forwards are tight forwards - its that simple.

The future lock pairing looks to be possibly Etzebeth  and one of Willemse, Du Toit or even Elstadt. In the immediate future is probably Etzebeth and Bekker.

 


clevermike

Status: Hall Of Fame
Posts: 13013
RE: Meet Eben, the Gentle Giant
January 16, 2013, 09:26:06

hakwa

There always was one element of the game of Bakkies Botha I had serious reserations about and that is the one identifie by you - too many penalties given away.   However, SA contributors to thuis Board will skin me alive for saying that.   Bakkies towards the end of his Springbok career did slow down slightly on the penalty issue - but he never really made the grade in the relevant regard.

My problem with New Zealand lock forwards are that there are too many Matffields amongst them - they do sstand around as loosies in backlines and not do the hard work up front - that often leads to penalties against new Zealand and can cost them dearly. 


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