Ben Flower red card for vicious punches


Prop lays into fullback with big shot


Sam Burgess breaks cheekbone, plays on


Benito Masilevu's huge side-steps


Tameifuna's huge hit on Michael Hooper


WIN Rugby Speaker of the Year tickets!


Why you should always tackle low


Female Streaker has no regrets


Ludovic Mercier crazy reverse pass

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Canterbury's Nasi Manu demolishes Benson Stanley in the ITM Cup

Canterbury's Nasi Manu demolishes Benson Stanley in the ITM Cup

The ITM Cup is ticking along nicely in New Zealand, as a shortened tournament has meant less break between games, and that we're already into week five. Here's a quick clip from the first round of action that was requested by a regular.

Canterbury got their campaign off to a good start with a 40-33 win over Auckland at Eden Park. To compound matters for the home side, center Benson Stanley had to exit the field early in the second half after taking this massive knock from hard running number eight Nasi Manu.

Stanley, who over the years has smashed his fair share of bigger players, took the full brunt of Manu's power as the big guy built up a head of steam and took on the Auckland defense. Stanley suffered a concussion, putting him out of rugby for three to four weeks.

He was knocked out recently too, during the Blues' match against the Reds in Super Rugby, and has had a history of concussion problems. Similarly to the situation with Berrick Barnes, he will be monitored closely to avoid any serious issues coming into play.

On a not so serious note, the clip below starts with a pretty funny case of the commentators curse, as Tony Johnson totally puts the mockers on goal kicker Tom Taylor. Taylor, son of 1987 World Cup winning Warwick Taylor, was good overall though, kicking 20 points in total.

Another good bit was that referee Chris Pollock realised the seriousness of the knock right away, and also that some of the players come to Stanley's aid to help out, particularly opposition scrumhalf Willie Heinz, who removed Stanley's gumguard asap.

If you've watched a lot of ITM Cup this season, or you still will, please keep an eye out for great moments of play or any other interesting things that take place. Get in touch, and hopefully we can then share them here on the site for others to enjoy too. Cheers

Time: 02:16

Posted at 3:42 pm | 48 comments

Posted in Big Hits & Dirty Play

Viewing 48 comments

JM July 28, 2011 3:56 pm

BOOMFA! :)

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Irish Ref July 28, 2011 4:05 pm

you have to say the 'victim' brought it all on himself, trying a shoulder challenge on a massive guy who's built up a head of steam!

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Pelling July 28, 2011 4:24 pm

Great Sportsmanship from the Canterbury player!!!

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wow-jiffy-lube July 28, 2011 4:25 pm

Always great to see concern for fellow players.

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 4:43 pm

While I admire his guts, I worry for a guy like Stanley's quality of life once his career ends. He obviously doesn't avoid confrontations, and playing at 12 you can't. But concussions ain't no joke. I was suceptible to them when I played and had to throw in the towel when I was 20. I started playing again 10 years later, my 1st game back a samoan 12 that eats babies for breakfast ran down my channel, I hit him as hard as I could. Guess what, no concussion. I got fucking whiplash instead, way more painful, 6 weeks of utter fucking disgust.

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 5:02 pm

'Benson Stanley had to exit the field early in the first half after taking this massive knock from hard running number eight Nasi Manu.'
Clock says 45mins

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 5:17 pm

"you have to say the 'victim' brought it all on himself, trying a shoulder challenge on a massive guy who's built up a head of steam!"

I don't think that's fair. Most players lead with the shoulder, you have to, it's completely sane and within the laws of the game.

The problem is there is no way around these situations. If you're tackling someone head on, it's much safer to go high than low. You go low on a big bloke who's running directly at you, you're going to cop a knee or a hip and be far more likely to see yourself concussed.

The textbook low tackle just doesn't work in the professional game against big boppers who are as big and explosive and fast as they are.

It's more sensible to go high, try to stop your man(or atleast seriously slow his momentum) and wait for your team mates to come in and put him on his back.

I'm wholly convinced while going low and wrapping might be more effective in bringing someone down, it's far more dangerous for the tackler.

It will be interesting to see how the professional game develops with more and more teams letting their big boppers take League style "hit-ups" on kick returns. With Union players being much bigger and arguebly faster, the potential for injury on impact is massive.

Long response. Hope Benson pulls up alright.

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Guy July 28, 2011 5:55 pm

'...,you wouldn't expect him to miss from right in front......and he has'

Classic!

I feel sorry for Benson. Hope he will recover but the more you get concussed, the more unlikely that will be.

As someone allready said: great sportmanship from the Canterbury player, helping out his opponent immediately.

God I love rugby.

And RD too!!!

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 6:04 pm

@irish ref
thats why youre a referee and stanley is a rugby player. The only way youre going to stop a bloke running that fast is by leading with the shoulder, not telegraphing it will help too. High was really the only safe option to slow him down. It doesnt help when Manu is driving to the left and stanley has planted his feet as he always does for those big tackles. I feel for Stanley, he hasnt been the same since he was concussed during the reds game in the S15 season. His tackling has been off and i think this is his 3rd headknock since that game against the reds. I hope he can make a full recovery.

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 6:52 pm

There was an Irish guy that used to play rugby league for Uni of Liverpool who ran with the ball like this every time he took the ball in every match! Nutter!

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 7:39 pm

^ Most people run the ball back like that in League, just because of the different nature of the game. If you watch professional League the kick-returns are always amazing to watch,

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zJJMvhb5qg

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bGC6MhY0VtU

The NRL delete most stuff on Youtube so can't find more, but you see that sort of direct running at the line on almost every kick return. Even the star fullbacks and wingers run it up the middle and try to crash through.

The only way to stop such commited running is to put a couple of men in the tackle, leaving yourself open to offloads

View Videos

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 7:49 pm

should have gone for the legs

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Phil July 28, 2011 9:04 pm

^^ crazy league impacts. thanks for the links.

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 9:50 pm

"should have gone for the legs"

If you're playing Z level park rugby maybe, lmfao. Pros are taught to go high. Any decent level of rugby you're taught to go high.

Going low is RETARDED. To such an extent that anyone teaching kids to go low should be banned from coaching for putting their player health at serious risk.

Teaching players to go low is as bad as telling boxers to keep their hands by their waste. IT's INSANE. This isn't 1940

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 10:07 pm

Teaching boxers to keep their hands by their waste? That's one way of masking the smell of sweaty gloves I suppose...

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 10:18 pm

I broke my collarbone making a video to win a trip to see a real game!! please help us win by watching:) http://youtu.be/KNAwvvBJgJc

View Video

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Bdizzle July 28, 2011 10:39 pm

Savage hit up!!! I know its already been said by a few but great to see the sportsmanship from cantebury player...

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 10:47 pm

Great sportmanship from the Canterbury player, helping out, highlights how serious this can be.

To everyone saying go low, well great idea but apart from having no chance of stopping a big guy at full pace you seem to be forgetting the obvious. The chance of catch a knee in the head. There are probably as many cases of that if not more. Really go low, of course because the legs are nice soft and not moving at pace at all... that's sarcasm in case you are not sure...

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Canadian Content July 28, 2011 10:50 pm

This was a big collision that happened at top speed, I don't see much that Stanley did wrong there, other than maybe squaring up to the runner a little too much (which we were all taught to do).

Players are getting bigger and faster, concussions maybe inevitable, unless we can take the emphasis off the big hit and onto the tackle.

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Anonymous July 28, 2011 11:13 pm

It;s just rugby at the highest level.
These hits happen.
It was league like that hit up and tackle.
You see that kind of thing fairly frequently in league.
It's part and parcel of the game.

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Luxi July 28, 2011 11:15 pm

OUCH !!!!!! that gotta hurt. ;)
massive collision

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Anonymous July 29, 2011 12:40 am

Reminds me of Jerry Collins when he would run the ball straight up after a kick off, Manu for the AB's in 2012 if he tidys his game up.

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Anonymous July 29, 2011 1:19 am

mate at uni is cuzzie to manu and had a game of backyard footy withim-came to course the next day with a serious bruise and black eye on the side of his face after trying to tackle him. stanleys got courage!

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Anonymous July 29, 2011 1:33 am

reminds me of when chabal charged into ali williams and broke his jaw!

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Anonymous July 29, 2011 4:53 am

Player needs to tackle low and another tackler high. The ball carrier cant defend both.

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Anonymous July 29, 2011 12:03 pm

benson stanley has a fucking glass jaw, the guy cant take a hit!

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Anonymous July 29, 2011 2:32 pm

Stanleys Shit anyway. Probably play 13 for the Blues next season :( Nonu at 12

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Irish Ref July 29, 2011 3:21 pm

I used to be a player of course, but after 40 you are glad your days of taking punishment like this are over.

I've been in plenty of collisions myself as a player and I'll say it once again, he brings it on himself with bad tackling technique.

Take a look at the hooker who's tackling with him. That's textbook - he gets low, brings his arms out and throws himself with outstretched arms into the tackle from the side. OK, you can say the hooker is fortunate in that the big guy takes a step to his outside so is not running at him head on, but what Benson does is his own fault here. He's not low, he's not assuming the tackling position and he just goes for a cheap shoulder charge.

I'm not saying he deserves a concussion or an injury, but he's done himself some damage by poor technique with a hint of illegality about it.

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Anonymous July 30, 2011 3:29 am

Irish Ref, you don't understand the modern game.
People tackle high now. Its what people are taught.
There are many reasons for this.
This is not school boy rugby.
Stop giving advice on tackling. These guys are pros. They know alot better than you.

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Anonymous July 30, 2011 3:49 am

^^^ As a neutral observer of your little lovers tiff....

If Benson Stanley is a pro that knows a lot better then why did he end up getting smashed as he did?

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Guy July 30, 2011 7:21 am

To all people who say this was the best way to tackle: obviously it was not, otherwise he wouldn't have ended up having to be treated.

I would go with Irish Ref here. Someone needs to tackle him low from the side. The difficult thing here is that it seems to be a bit crowded but otherwise there are plenty ways to make the runner react to the movement of the tackles.

Not saying that going high is bad altogether. In this case the runner seems to have a few pounds on the tackler, a lot of speed and is running straight.

And to the 'anonymous' (obviously) stating that children should not be taught to tackle low altogether: obviously you didn't play rugby yourself but nice to have you on board as a rugby supporter.

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Guy July 30, 2011 7:23 am

and I meant 'movement of the tackler', not tackles.

and I said a lot of obviously. Sorry for that.

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BakkiesIsGod July 30, 2011 10:44 am

"To all people who say this was the best way to tackle: obviously it was not, otherwise he wouldn't have ended up having to be treated."

Obviously you haven't had time to put down the prawn-sandwich and use a bit of common sense reasoning.

The fact Benson was knocked out says NOTHING of his technique. You could take any tackling variable in the world and every single variable would eventually see the tackler concussed at one time or another. These things happen and are unavoidable.

Anyone who coaches to go low is just an elitist who's own arrogance and old boy bollocks is endangering their players health.

The safest way to tackle a man is up-high. This is 2011, I'm sorry to tell you.

And I didn't say not to tackle low all together. The argument was tackling a player head on, and going low, is dangerous. Tackling from the side, behind or as 2nd or 3rd man into the tackle(even from the front) is perfectly fine.

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Isaac Newton! July 30, 2011 6:41 pm

Hey, bakkies if your only reasoning is its 2011, then no wonder you got dicked by the aussies!

THE BASIC TECHNIQUE FOR TACKLING IS GO LOW... would you like to know why?

I'll let you in on a little secret, don't tell anyone now or I might be out of business...the reason for going low is because it is very difficult of a player to run "without any legs". Now genius, i better explain, that phrase does not mean you need to take a saw to the guys legs, it really only means if you wrap round his legs then he cannot move one in front of the other and therefore will topple with his own momentum.

Now ofcourse hitting someone up high can knock them back, so why do we teach to go low? well, hmm when do most people start playing rugby? ah, yes, thats it, at school. Now this is where we differ, because unlike all of you by my first birthday I was 6ft 6in and 118kg's so when i got to school i didnt need to go low. However most "normal" people are not that size when they get to school..yet other people are bigger faster etc...everyones abilities varied. THEREFORE Einstein, it was important to teach people to go low as there is more chance of stopping someone if you weigh less than them.

So 2011 or not dipshit, if you start telling kids not to tackle legs then we'll all end up with shit defences and no idea how to tackle...

Or maybe thats the bok's ideas, get everyone to have a shit defence as its the only way their old men could possibly win a game!

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Anonymous July 30, 2011 6:57 pm

You don't know shit.

I don't feel the need to explain why players tackle chest to chest.

Anyone who plays at any decent level knows already why.

Onl;y an armchair rugby fan would not realise why tackling high is a given in the modern game.

Ignorant fuckers.

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Anonymous July 30, 2011 7:03 pm

^^^ As a neutral observer of your little lovers tiff....

If Benson Stanley is a pro that knows a lot better then why did he end up getting smashed as he did?

It's rugby idiot. Sometime you can execute perfectly and get knocked out. This time Stanley's execution was off. But even if it was perfect, it doesn't garuntee he won't get knocked out.

Jesus, you'd think you guys had never watched rugby,

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BakkiesIsStillGod July 30, 2011 8:37 pm

Issac Newton, I respect your fundamental science but learn to bloody read!

This has nothing to do with what tackle is or isn't effective. The argument is about tackler-safety and health, dipshit.

Of course going low is more likely to stop a bloke, you halfwit! That isn't the argument at all, the argument is that going low leaves you more open to concussion and Stanley was in an ideal position to NOT get KO'd on impact.

You intellectual dwarf, quasi-smart fool. Shame your prawn-sandwich eating parents couldn't buy you some logic and reasoning along with your Oxbridge education.

Buffoon!

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gf July 30, 2011 9:51 pm

Tell Tatafu Polotanau not to go low.. the human missile. Personally I like going low, I'm not a massive 6 but it has been the most effective way. I have to admit that I've had a couple of concussions and nose bleeds but it's my choice. Also being smarter in how you press them.. show them a little gap so they take it rather than running you over (KO-ing you). Press a bit higher up so they try and run around you, then take them side on. I wish I had Stanleys balls in the tackle though, hero!

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Anonymous July 31, 2011 6:33 am

Yeah GF, but look at this season for Tatafu. He WAS knocking himself out almost every game. Some great hits, but he got concussed about 5 times this season and he couldnt play the whole 80 minutes in any game this season.
All cuz of the way he hits.

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Isaac Newton! July 31, 2011 2:37 pm

Incorrect bakkies once again.

I come from a long line of prawn sandwich eaters who wrote the oxford dictionary.

Anyway, that is besides the point...

Right, I will try and bring myself down to your level. You must first understand this is very difficult for me, its much like trying to communicate with the village idiot, I do not tend to do that, I tend to throw him a few pounds as I'm driven past him but not speak to him.

So here we go, If someone is running straight at you then imagine a line going straight through the middle of your legs all the way to the try line. Now position yourself slightly to the side of that line. Lower your body, aim your shoulder at his waste area so that your head will sit right next to his hip. Let him run into you, wrap, and fall backwards, he will go down like a ton of bricks. This is an effective way of stopping a man who is much larger than you and running at speed. Better still drive forward into the player and knock him back.

The year is irrelevant Einstein, tackling is the same. If you go high on a player who is bigger and stronger than you then you will come off second best and most likely get pushed aside.

Personally though Einstein, when your team has a performance like they did against the All Blacks (40-7)? then you really should not comment on tackling techniques.

Send me your paypal account details and I'll have my Butler throw a few shiny pennies in your direction.

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gf July 31, 2011 4:23 pm

Too true anonymous, Tatafu and the horse whispering-esque physio must have quite a bond after all the time she spent on the pitch! ! Wasn't saying it was best for avoiding injury just effective!

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Anonymous August 01, 2011 12:40 am

Isaac Newton, these players are proffesionals, they know better than you.

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Isaac Newton! August 01, 2011 2:55 am

Well clearly not....

How can you say they know better than me when time and time again we see a player go in high against someone heavier and get fucked up.

As someone said, its rugby its not a sure thing. However if you get someone heavy running hard at a stationary person who weighs less, it doesnt take a genius like me to see what will happen.

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Anonymous August 01, 2011 3:10 am

Jesus christ, you are a monumentally arrogent prick aren't you?
The gall of you thinking you have something to teach fully proffesional rugby players about tackling.
I can't even be bothered explaining to you just how wrong you are.
The truth is that if you actually knew anything about the game at the top level you'd already know why tackling high is a given in most situations.
Your opinion is basically worthless.

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Isaac Newton! August 01, 2011 11:09 am

Except Galileo, I don't claim to have something to teach a top professional player. I do however have the joy's of pointing out a monumental fault in Benson Stanley's technique, which left him worse for wear.

Whilst ofcourse I do recognise the reasons for going high, I too generally go high on a lot of people, however being 6ft 6in and weighing 111kg's means I have a bit of weight on most people I play against. If however I was smaller and over 10kg's less than my opponent who was running at speed then I may rethink my tactic.

To all those who keep pointing out how "he is a pro player" would you let him teach you how to tackle like this? I mean the only person I've seen Benson smash is Aaron Cruden, and he weighs 84kg's.....

So again, if he is such a professional who knows how to tackle, why did he end up on his ass without stopping Nasi Manu....

Some heights and weights for you:

Benson 6ft 0in 98kg's
Nasi 6ft 3in 112kg's
Cruden 5ft 10in 84kg's

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Jej August 01, 2011 11:13 am

Anonymous, you're the arrogant one here, people are entitled to their opinions. In the modern game it's probably better to go high to stop offloads but going low isnt a crime and tends to be more effective (cant run with no legs) but allows them to get their hands free.

A rugby league style one high- one low is surely the best way

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nwaber August 03, 2011 12:17 am

It strikes me that a good tackler sill go high or low depending on the individual situation. Going low, wrapping legs and either dragging the runner down or (more likely in a situation like the video) having a teammate help out on the hindered runner has its advantages. It allows the runner to make a metre or two beyond the point of contact, but that's much better than 5 or 10 metres extra if you just bounce off.

Alternatively, going high can have the advantage of driving the runner back, hopefully behind his oncoming support, gaining the defense ground and helping with the turnover. A great clip comes to mind of Jason White wrapping an English player around the chest/shoulders, and taking him back 10+ metres.

The thing is (and I assume that this is why Isaac Newton! picked that moniker), that Jason White can make chest-high tackles that Shane Williams cannot. Both are professionals, but Newton's 1st and 3rd laws favours White because he's a big dude, and Williams less so. He capitalizes on the second law.

Here goes (bear with me- I'm not a physicist, and this model is clearly overly simplified considering all the other factors that are involved in rugby):
1) First law: on object in motion will stay in motion unless a force acts upon it. A running player is using his legs to overcome the gravity/friction combo that would make him stop. Another force (the tackler) must be introduced in order to change his velocity to 0.
2) Third law: Every action has an equal ad opposite reaction. When that player runs into something, the force from his mass and velocity will transfer into whatever he runs into. To stop him dead, you must apply equal force on the opposite trajectory.
3) So if F(orce)=M(ass)*a(cceleration), you need something that is either...
a) the same size, same speed (or faster) going to other way.
b) something smaller but moving proportionately faster going the other way
c) something bigger (can be proportionately slower, but not necessary. Same speed or faster works too) going the other way.


Stanley was none of these things and therefore probably should have gone low. His tackling form is likely better than mine ever will be, so I won't criticize it. He just made a wrong decision (not uncommon- side-steps wouldn't be effective without those) and payed for it.

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