Castle Lager Rugby Championship 2014

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MickeyD

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Win, lose or draw. I sincerely believe you should always support your country and be proud of the guys picked to play for them. They don't select themselves and deserve our unreserved backing :)
Sorry, but there's too much going on behind the scenes for me to support Bafana Bafana. I have nothing against the players (my niece is married to an ex-player) but once the rot on top has been removed you'll see a radical improvement in all aspects.
 

Spizz

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Sorry, but there's too much going on behind the scenes for me to support Bafana Bafana. I have nothing against the players (my niece is married to an ex-player) but once the rot on top has been removed you'll see a radical improvement in all aspects.

Nah, I get you. I just find it hard as a Scot to see so many South Africans down on their country in sports. Look at the rough end of the stick I got ffs but I'd NEVER dream of supporting another country :)
 

MickeyD

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Nah, I get you. I just find it hard as a Scot to see so many South Africans down on their country in sports. Look at the rough end of the stick I got ffs but I'd NEVER dream of supporting another country :)
I don't support another country... :p
 

ZCFOutkast

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What the fans at home didn't see...

Fcking heartbreaking seeing him like this.

Yes. Very heartbreaking. I wouldn't wish it on anyone.

Terrible to be in that condition. If only our paparazzi would leave him alone.
 

Spizz

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A NZ angle on the game. Should be quite heartening for the naysayers and doubters among you Bok fans...

A brilliant game. A bad result. But the All Blacks can't feel too down about suffering their first loss in who knows how many games.

The Boks took their win. They fought for everything. They were superb everywhere and maybe they were a bit lucky with the final penalty – but no one could begrudge them their win.

It was yet another epic encounter between these two and what's become clear is that while there is nothing between them – there is a big gap back to everyone else now.

While the All Blacks can take some solace in the fact South Africa had to win with a superb performance – they will still feel a little upset that they didn't quite shut the door after a clawing their way back in front.

To get back into the game when they were 24-13 down at half-time was a huge effort by the All Blacks.

South Africa were running rampant at that point and Ellis Park felt like the scariest place in the world. But the All Blacks, as they have done so often, believed in their game.

They spurned shots for goal and opted to keep the pressure on. And on. They camped in the Bok 22 and eventually the pressure told. Two tries came and the All Blacks were in front 25-24 with seven minutes remaining.

They looked like they had held on when they turned the ball over with two minutes left to win a scrum. But the crowd howled as the big screen showed that Liam Messam had caught Schalk Burger earlier in the move with a head high.

It was accidental but it was a penalty which Pat Lambie nudged over from 55m to win. Well, the Boks had to survive a handy All Blacks attack before they won it.

It was a fittingly dramatic, epic ending for an epic game. The pace of the game was different world. No other teams could have lived with these two. It was at times a little difficult to comprehend how ferocious it was.

The breakdown especially. The Boks were superb at getting numbers and bodies in good positions and it never relented.

Perception about the Boks couldn't be any more wrong. Somehow they have become the world's great entertainers.

They were heading that way a little bit last year with the unearthing of Willie le Roux. But now they have Handré Pollard as well – they are a team with the ability to cut teams up with basic catch-pass and run.

They were easily the more dangerous backline in the first half. Nearly everything they did troubled the All Blacks and perhaps most interesting of all, was their ability to turn defence into attack and launch deadly counter-attacks from deep.

Francois Hougaard's opening try began pretty much on the Springbok goalline and owed everything to awareness, pace and perfect support lines.

Cornal Hendricks would have had another just before the break had it not been for a miracle recovery run by Malakai Fekitoa. He had no business beating the flying wing to smother the loose ball that had been booted downfield. But he got there and at least forced the Boks to make one more play to score the try.

That duly came when Pollard hit the line flat and hard and had the strength to spin over in the tackle.

The Boks looked just about unassailable at that stage until the All Blacks dug deep and pushed back to within a whisker of victory.
 

Arthur

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Man, it was such a delight to see the Boks in that first half! I could scarcely believe my eyes.

We passed the ball, kept it alive, set up and ran through the phases. The ABs were completely flummoxed because we outplayed them at their own game.

Somehow that didn't carry through to the second half.

But, man o man, it's great to beat the All Blacks, because a win never means we gloat. South Africans and New Zealanders like and respect one another too much for this to ever affect our friendship. Besides, we have a common enemy between us. :)
 

Cray

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Man, it was such a delight to see the Boks in that first half! I could scarcely believe my eyes.

We passed the ball, kept it alive, set up and ran through the phases. The ABs were completely flummoxed because we outplayed them at their own game.

Somehow that didn't carry through to the second half.

But, man o man, it's great to beat the All Blacks, because a win never means we gloat. South Africans and New Zealanders like and respect one another too much for this to ever affect our friendship. Besides, we have a common enemy between us. :)

+1 - what a game, win or lose this it what test match rugby is about!
 

OrbitalDawn

Ulysses Everett McGill
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Great shot that last one. Who got that last penalty? Strauss? Who was badmouthing him again...? :p
 

MickeyD

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Last game coming up in around 2,5 hours time.

Hope Argentina beat the Aussies!!
 
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