Super 14 Semi-Final Review & Springbok Squad for Wales

Well done to the Blitzbokke for their first 7’s series final of the season. They were unlucky not to win it but much better play all-round and another feather in the already impressive cap of Paul Treu. 2 words… Le gend

Onto the semi-finals and superb play by all the teams involved, mostly by the SA teams of course. I am not sure if it was so much the travel or home ground advantage but more that the two best teams won on Saturday and for that, Bulls and Stormers, we salute you.bulls supporter super 14 semi final

The Bulls were personified by that first Spies try, massive, fast and skilful. I see a long illustrious Springbok career ahead of Spies followed by a stint as a superhero. Matfield, De Preez, Olivier, Steyn, Potgieter and Kirchener all lifted their games from two weeks ago and dare I say it looked refreshed and rested. (read: resting 14 players = good idea).

The Crusaders inability to catch the up and under took me by surprise. Surely this would have been one area they would have paid attention to in the week beforehand? Their strategy of head-butting it backwards needs a serious re-think.

See below, around the 1:50 mark for an example of this.

The Bulls never looked like losing and their ability to punish mistakes is second to none.

May I say that although it took a while for the people to fill Orlando Stadium due to a bit of a traffic headache, the atmosphere in the stadium looked faaantastic. How great is it to see big bellied Bulls supporters blowing vuvuzelas?! Bring on the SWC!

The Stormers won the second semi and although only scoring one try, looked world class. Incredible defence, discipline and pressure at the breakdown won them this game.Not to mention awesome death stares by Fourie and Tiebenberg. Juan De Jongh, take a bow. He played with a maturity and composure that took everyone, including possibly himself by surprise, scoring the try that turned the game in the Stormers favour. Grant, Burger, Bekker, Habana, Louw and Fourie all played blinders and next week is going to be huuuge.

After the Stormers game, the squad for the Wales game was announced, and I for one feel it is mostly a good one. There is always going to be some unhappiness as everyone reckons they should be coach (Ricky Januarie… really?) but I see this as a bit of an experimental, “let’s see how some of these other okes do” team and in that regard I am quite excited.

Not happy with the squad send us your thoughts.

Springboks vs Wales – Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, Saturday 5 June, 2010

15 Francois Steyn (Racing Metro) – 36 caps
14 Gio Aplon (Vodacom Stormers) – uncapped
13 Jean de Villiers (Munster) – 55 caps
12 Butch James (Bath) – 35 caps
11 Odwa Ndungane (Sharks) – 6 caps
10 Ruan Pienaar (Sharks) – 36 caps
9 Ricky Januarie (Vodacom Stormers) – 40 caps
8 Joe van Niekerk (Toulon) – 51 caps
7 Dewald Potgieter (Vodacom Bulls) – 1 cap
6 Francois Louw (Vodacom Stormers) – uncapped
5 Andries Bekker (Vodacom Stormers) – 21 caps
4 Danie Rossouw (Vodacom Bulls) – 46 caps
3 BJ Botha (Ulster) – 19 caps
2 John Smit (Sharks, Capt) – 93 caps
1 CJ van der Linde (Leinster) – 58 caps

Reserves:

16 Chiliboy Ralepelle (Vodacom Bulls) – 8 caps
17 Jannie du Plessis (Sharks) – 12 caps
18 Alistair Hargreaves (Sharks) – uncapped
19 Ryan Kankowski (Sharks) – 11 caps
20 Meyer Bosman (Vodacom Cheetahs) – 3 caps
21 Juan de Jongh (Vodacom Stormers) – uncapped
22 Bjorn Basson (Vodacom Cheetahs) – uncapped

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~ by bowlphilosophy on May 24, 2010.

One Response to “Super 14 Semi-Final Review & Springbok Squad for Wales”

  1. The selection seems a bit arbitrary to me. I’m sure they are all there on merit, but this mix of experience, youth, and second-string non-starters seems a bit patchwork for me. What’s the strategy?

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