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Sonny Bill Williams puts the shoulder in against the Highlanders

I think it looked bad because he threw him. The left arm was high in my opinion, if it had been the front of the guys neck it would have been more evident. Not much to it though.

1 Year, 9 Months ago

Sonny Bill Williams puts the shoulder in against the Highlanders

I wouldn't go so far as to say SBW is a joke, he's achieved more than most, and to be honest I don't find him as arrogant as people are pointing out. Maybe I've only seen the good interviews. He gets noticed on the pitch, stands out and so yeah, if he has an off day it gets blown out of proportion, but I've seen worse.
I think (the Beast aside) most Saffer forwards would think it over a bit before trying to land a punch on Sonny.
Watch the Ireland game (the 22-19 one) and see how he calmy catches Healy's hand and lets the huff blow over. Level headed in my opinion.
Nobody's criticising the #5 who runs in looking for trouble by the way...is he just a really nice bloke who's never played league? ;)

1 Year, 9 Months ago

Sonny Bill Williams puts the shoulder in against the Highlanders

I don't know what level you play at and maybe it's irrelevant. The technique you describe is more or less the schoolboy technique, correct but ineffective if you go up against a 100kg+ players (I'm open to correction, maybe your arms are huge). If you watch Ronan O'Gara you'll see numerous examples of how, even when a player gets his shoulder down low he can get steamrolled. (mostly he's just positioned badly but not always)
The aggressive tackling technique being coached by most at the moment is closer to what Jon describes. You start with your elbows close to your sides, you point your shoulder to the spot you want to hit and you bend your knees in order to drive into the tackle, at the point of impact you punch forward with your arms and pull them back towards yourself while still (hopefully) driving forward off your legs, resulting in a sort of bear hug. (Getting your thumbs involved could result in arthritis at an early age due to numerous breaks and dislocations :) )
There's also the fact that alot of players get away with not wrapping because they barge their shoulder in under the ball and straighten up with their hand between the ball and the player, (preferably) keeping him on his feet at the same time. It's all well and good, I enjoy skillful defence, but technically it's not wrapping!
I agree on the ball skills argument, too many variables in order to judge it correctly. I have difficulty in believing that league players have more ball skills than Rocokoko, Carter, O'Driscoll, Nonu, Contepomi and company. They may have more skills than the forwards but it's hardly a fair comparison to make. When you narrow it down to the backs the picture changes somewhat.

1 Year, 9 Months ago

Sonny Bill Williams puts the shoulder in against the Highlanders

So the solution would be what? If a fight breaks out stop the game? I don't agree, you'd have punches thrown to slow up the play all over the shop if you start that. I thought it wise to let the game flow as long as it was flowing. He stopped it at the appropriate time in my opinion.
In any case I was referring more to his calm way of dealing with the players, not going all card happy on them and getting on with the game. I don't see why he would be out of his depth but I guess we're all entitled to our opinions

1 Year, 9 Months ago

Sonny Bill Williams puts the shoulder in against the Highlanders

Good refereeing in my opinion, bit of a warning no need for cards. Thought the commentators remark was a bit daft "we see that every week", we see off-sides and off your feet at the ruck every week as well, it doesn't mean it stops being a penalty.

As for SBW move to league, he only young once, he's right to do exactly what he wants. I don't imagine the All Blacks will be stuck for centres to take his place.

1 Year, 9 Months ago

Highlights of All Blacks vs Ireland - Third Test - June 2012

what more can one say? SBW must of felt like he was back in a club game with Paddy "barndoor" Wallace in front of him!

1 Year, 9 Months ago

Dan Carter breaks Irish hearts as the All Blacks take series win

I agree with you, them's the breaks. Was an evenly matched game, which after the previous weeks drubbing translated for many as Ireland being dominant. Had the kick at the end gone in then we could be here talking about an historic win for Ireland which would of been as deserved as the AB's win was and you guys would have some embaressing fans coming on to forums whinging about the ref. As an Irishman I can say I find the article above to be annoyingly biased, even though he's clearly trying to hide it by pointing out the "fair enough" decisions.
I'm glad it was a freeflowing game, I'd like to see the rucks reffed a bit better for both sides sakes and I really hope we can come out and cause an upset in Hamilton. My biggest fear is that after playing so well and losing, it will be too difficult mentally for our guys to pull-off.
Tommy Bowe and Stephan Ferris were sorely missed, we have less depth than you guys at this level. Our U20's had a promising campaign though, maybe the tables will turn come RWC 2015 ;)

1 Year, 10 Months ago

Dan Carter breaks Irish hearts as the All Blacks take series win

What do you reckon Reality, chance missed or can they bring it to them again? I have a horrible feeling that the next one will be painful, hope I'm wrong but RWC final aside, I don't think I've seen that many errors from an AB side in the last 15yrs.
I know how the Italians felt after Rome 2011 now!

1 Year, 10 Months ago

Dan Carter breaks Irish hearts as the All Blacks take series win

I don't want to whinge, I don't think the ref is to blame for the outcome, BUT...I agree with Cluainoir on the scrum, odd decision to say the least and I think it's a bit rich to point out Ireland's spoiling of the ball( I agree with you btw) when the AB's got away with clearing out the fringes of the rucks(completely illegal) as well as the rucks themselves(usually off their feet). At one stage a penalty was given against Ireland while Carter (unusual for him) was clinging on to 2 jerseys while standing in an offside position.
That said I prefer seeing the game flow rather than nit-picking reffing and so when that's the case you just have to take the good with the bad. I'm a big fan of All Blacks rugby and just hope we make as good a game of it in Hamilton!
Some odd decisions, definitely, biased refereeing? Definitely not.

1 Year, 10 Months ago

The All Blacks turn it on at Eden Park with big win over Ireland

It is getting embarrassing, I keep hoping we're going to make a leap ahead and it seems like we're going backwards.
I don't like the way Kidney manages our backline, it's basically all Leinster and yet plays boring rugby at Int level. I'm starting to see him as the Jack Charlton of rugby, he won his grand slam so now he can feel free to waste a wealth of talent.
Even though I'm an Irish fan, a part of me is happy we got trounced, maybe Schmidt will be considered before the next 6nations, or at least in time to prepare properly for the RWC2015.
On top of the fact that the All Blacks are superior in almost all areas, of course it didn't help that we're missing Bowe and Ross, and it certainly doesn't help when Kidney breaks up a 9/10 partnership like Reddan and Sexton to put in Murray. On top of all that it can't be easy playing against talented players who are peaking when you have a full season in your legs.
We looked good for the first 20 mins, then once we had been sized up and despite some decent play never looked like scoring a try, we got hammered. Painful to watch, lets hope the silver lining (Schmidt) is on the way!

1 Year, 10 Months ago

 
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