Wednesday Apr 15, 2015

David Pocock's Turnover Masterclass against the Blues

David Pocock's Turnover Masterclass against the Blues
10
Comments

Watching round 9 of Super Rugby must have given Michael Cheika a headache, and not because his Waratahs side was well beaten at home by the Stormers. No, it was the game at Eden Park that will have left the Wallabies coach with the most thinking to do, in particular the performance of Brumbies flanker David Pocock.

Pocock has been magnificent since coming back from a second knee reconstruction operation, reminding fans across the world why before his injuries many regarded him as the finest openside flanker in the world.

Against the Blues he was immovable at the breakdown, turning the ball over on countless occasions and it is this incredible form that will have Cheika reaching for the asprin.

Michael Hooper, Cheika’s current Test captain, unfortunately plays in the same position as Pocock, and is also a menace to the opposition, particularly with his skills at the breakdown.

Few international coaches would complain about having two world-class players fighting for the same position and although Cheika will no doubt find a way to include both men, he will have sleepless nights deciding which one will be first choice for the Wallabies jersey.

One things for sure, if Pocock continues to perform like this, the smart money would be on him and Hooper might find himself doing a bit of bench warming come September.

With both on top form, which Wallaby should be 1st choice? in Rugbydump Polls on LockerDome

10 Comments

  •  finedisregard
    finedisregard

    Pocock will tell on you to the referee.

    Reply
  •  drg
    drg

    Think we're somewhat the odd ones out here.. looked to me like he released in all those situations, he didn't do the little bird flapping thing, but there is no requirement too..

    Reply
  •  drg
    drg

    My that's exactly... If they're both so great (not denying that) then why limit yourself to just one of them?

    Reply
  •  eddie-g
    eddie-g

    The relevant question is: which referees would agree with your interpretation? I'd reckon that some refs would have pinged him on a couple of these. On the other hand, he does have a deserved reputation for being lightning quick on the jackal, so maybe that earns him a bit more leniency than others might get.

    Reply
  •  stroudos
    stroudos

    I don't even agree that he's transgressed enough in any of these situations to merit a penalty. Yeah, he treads a fine line in a few of them, but I think there's a clearly discernible release between tackle and jackal. The faster you can execute both actions and get away with it consistently, the better you are at playing flanker.

    Reply
  •  mattmon10
    mattmon10

    I have to agree - the fact that he wasn't caught and continued to play in the same way (with success) is testament to his abilities as a world class flanker. Lord knows the best flankers of all time did/do exactly the same.

    Reply
  •  mise
    mise

    Great to see him back (not great for Wales or England thou!) and re breakdown: he's playing both the ref and the opposition - I'm sure he would have marginally adjusted his timing if the ref pinged him once...but as the ref didn't he carried on. Simples.

    Reply
  •  eddie-g
    eddie-g

    I'd be surprised if Cheika doesn't play them both. Hooper on the openside, and Pocock - who is good enough to play any position in the back-row - on the blindside. You complete the trio with a ball-carrier like Palu or Higginbotham. As for the arguing here about Pocock not releasing properly etc, that's for the ref to sort out. Any loosie worth his money will tell you, you sail as close to the wind at the breakdown as possible. He's a heckuva player, and he's a damn good bloke too, very pleased he seems to have made such a good recovery from his last knee injury.

    Reply
  •  patrick
    patrick

    Some of them are questionable on the wider viewing...but on the last one especially, the replay clearly shows Pocock letting go as the ball-carrier is tackled by the other player.

    Reply
  •  reality
    reality

    I count two good ones and two bad ones. Half a master-class in turnovers, half a master-class in playing to a crap referee.

    Reply

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