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Friday May 27, 2016

Lima Sopoaga's sensational reverse kick that almost led to a try

Lima Sopoaga's sensational reverse kick that almost led to a try

The Hurricanes hosted the Highlanders today in round 14 of Super Rugby, and shortly before halftime we got treated to this special bit of play by Highlanders number ten Lima Sopoaga, who channelled his inner Carlos Spencer in a move that very nearly led to a try.

Unlike when Spencer did it for Northampton Saints many years back, this looked like a set move, and one that another former All Black flyhalf, Tony Brown, came up with.

In the quick halftime chat Sopoaga said it was a “Tony Brown special”. He also candidly said that he nearly pulled his hamstring doing it, but that it was fun out there.

Someone who knows a little something about flair and talent was watching on:

And injured Nehe Milner Skudder couldn’t quite believe what he was seeing.

When Spencer did this roughly ten years ago it looked more like an off the cuff thing

Then Argentina’s Tomas Cubelli attempted it from a tap penalty for the Barbarians late last year

Sopoaga, who will be hoping to see his name on the All Blacks squad selection list soon, showed another glimpse of his talent two weeks ago when he set up a try for Waisake Naholo with a stunning flat crosskick.

The Hurricanes scored a late converted try through Ardie Savea in this one though, winning the match 27-20 after the scores were tied at 20-20 with a minute left.

If you know of any other similar reverse kicks, let us know in the comments!


  • eddie-g
    4:49 PM 01/06/2016

    Love this comment. I bet your forwards were delighted to have to retreat 25 yards because you thought you could be King Carlos. I agree with you for the most part on the innovation aspect - it's great that kids are inspired by this sort of thing - but I'm a bit old-fashioned in one respect, and if I'm coaching, I'm still teaching kids to carry the ball in two hands. Both for ball-security, and also because defenders can't anticipate your next pass if you're holding it in both hands. And it doesn't preclude offloading, I can still remember my coaches teaching us about getting "arms above the tackle". But the variety of offloads these days is crazy. Flipping a pass out the back of the hand was not part of the coaching manual back when I was learning the game.

  • eddie-g
    4:40 PM 01/06/2016

    For the most part, the NZ teams are light years ahead of the field in the super rugby competition. These two teams were the finalists last year, and despite changes since the WC year, they showed they've still got it.

  • stroudos
    9:38 AM 31/05/2016

    I caught a few minutes of this game, either side of this kick, which seemed to be just one highlight of a really creative approach from both sides. Great variety in running and types of kick being pulled out. Really entertaining stuff. As Sopoaga said, it looked like they were all having fun. Out of this one, Cubelli's and Spencer's featured above, Spencer's has to be my favourite, mostly because it was just another typical piece of off-the-cuff genius from the magician and for the fact he kindly distracted attention from a team-mate's cock-up - I can't remember anyone ever mentioning the shit pass from the tighthead-cum-scrumhalf!

  • 10stonenumber10
    3:20 AM 29/05/2016

    I tried this in a training game after King Carlos did it for Northampton while I was U19. Needless to say as I turned my back, I took a low flying flanker to the kidneys... the ball flew out of my hands and our fullback was squashed fielding my f*ck up 20yds behind the gain line. Videos like this are what drives the next generation. Superhuman acts shift the perspective of "normal"... it is like the offload, 5 years ago it was a rarity, now no player is worth their salt unless they can flick a cheeky pop out the back of the hand with 3 back row attached. Would we be seeing the basketball like handling today if Sonny Bill protected his ribs in the hit after his code swap?

  • 4:10 AM 28/05/2016

    The game needs more of this

  • drg
    5:40 PM 27/05/2016

    I'd have torn a hamstring, hit myself in the face with the ball and no doubt give a try to the opposition in the process..... ...But I'm still game for giving this a go..

  • dancarter
    5:32 PM 27/05/2016

    I can't believe they can show this stuff before the watershed.


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