All Blacks

Bledisloe I Player Ratings

Bledisloe I Player Ratings

Saturday night was a pretty depressing affair, but after viewing the game again my desire to get stuck right into the Wallabies has diminished somewhat. No-one really had an abject shocker, and if it weren’t for a couple of key lapses then the scoreline would have been much closer. But then again if my aunty had balls she’d be my uncle. So with that in mind here are my ratings:

 

Player Rating Comment
Beale 6 Struggled to get anything happening, and was well contained by the All Black defence. Did run a beautiful line to set up Digby Ioane’s try, but made a big defensive error which let the ABs through for their first try. Overall a solid effort but not his best.
O’Connor 5 Much like Beale JOC was pretty well contained by the AB defence, although he did make one linebreak during the first half and could have scored if not for a brilliant Carter covering tackle. He loses one point for his wayward kicking, which prevented the Wallabies from getting any momentum in the first half.
Ashley- Cooper 5 Once again was fairly anonymous. Fell victim to Cooper’s love of the triple cutout pass, so rarely saw the ball. Needs to take a leaf out of Digby’s book and come in looking for the ball closer to the ruck. Defence was OK and never really did anything wrong.
McCabe 5 Solid but not brilliant. When I first watched the game I thought he did absolutely nothing, but the second time I noticed he actually got through a lot of work. The stats show that: 11 tackles and 8 runs. Pretty well beaten by Nonu though.
Ioane 8 Once again he had a blinder and once again I have to give him the G&GR Wallaby player of the match. Threatened the AB line with every touch, and scored a great try. Got through a lot of defensive work as well, with a couple of bonecrunchers thrown in for good measure. In sensational form at the moment, long may it continue.
Cooper 4 He was poor, but not as poor as some have made out. Most of the work he did was fine. His passing was generally good, his kicking and option-taking was also fine. He was let down by a few key errors though: a poor up and under, an ill-advised cross kick hot on attack, THAT flick pass. Was thoroughly outclassed by Carter.
Genia 8 Put in another great performance in gold. Marshalled the forwards well and took the right option on almost every occasion. Made a couple of linebreaks and threw a beautiful inside ball to set up Ioane’s try. He wasn’t at fault for the Wallabies’ deficiencies.
McCalman 4 We needed more from him. The All Blacks won this test in the back row, and as much as McCalman got through a bit of work he lacked the physicality to get the Wallabies going forward when we most needed it. Too often caught the ball flat footed, and was caught behind the advantage line as a result. Not the wrecking ball we need at 8.
Pocock 6 Was Mr Reliable as always. Topped the tackle count and didn’t miss one. Would like to see him get his hands on the ball a little bit more, especially when we were in the AB 22 and desperately needing solid runners. Was penalised a couple of times as well. I have seen him play better.
Elsom 4 Like McCalman he didn’t make enough impact. He is still not the Rocky of old. Early in the match he was given a cutout in space by Cooper on the touchline, 15m out and with just Sivi to beat. Old Rocky would have charged straight at the line, and would have either scored or been valiantly bundled out on the line. Saturday Rocky took two steps and then ducked meekly inside to be pulverised by the covering defence. That summed up his night, along with 6 missed tackles.
Horwill 8 I was very impressed with Kev’s effort. Played hard for the full 80, and was one of our only forwards to make any headway in tight. Made a couple of key pilfers, one of which lead directly to our first try. Got through a mountain of work and is hitting form at the right time.
Simmons 4 Same story as Rocky and McCalman. Only made two runs and six tackles in his 55 minutes when we really needed more. In my opinion he lacks the physicality and confidence to compete at this level. Think he may be a year or two away from starting Wallaby material.
Alexander 6 The scrum was solid, his workrate was good. Would like to see him with the ball a bit more, but all in all it was a pretty solid game from our tighthead prop.
Moore 7 A typically industrious Squeaky Moore performance. Made ground close to the ruck and made a heap of tackles. Can’t really fault his effort, although he probably should have done more to prevent Mealamu’s try.
Kepu 7 I was pretty impressed by Sekope’s game. With ball in hand he was the closest Wallaby to a wrecking ball, and he made 30m with just 4 runs. He held up his side of the scrum well enough, and didn’t miss a tackle. I love the way he plays and hope he continues on this form against the Boks.

 

And the bench:

 

Player Rating Comment
Faingaa 5 Played 15 minutes and never really stood out.
Vickerman 6 Came on for Simmons and played a solid 25 minutes. Hit a lot of rucks, made a couple of tackles and helped out with a turnover. Didn’t make any huge plays but seems to be getting closer to the Vicks of old.
Higginbotham 7 Had 25 minutes and looked pretty good against an AB side that had turned it down a notch by the time he got on. Ran hard and strong, and did everything you want from a bench loosy. Wish he’d cut out the chip and chase though.

 

10 – A legendary performance to go down in the history books
9 – Outstanding performance: Man of the match shoo-in
8 – Excellent all round game
7 – Good game with a few sparkles
6 – Solid performance
5 – Average – ho hum
4 – Below par
3 – Had a bad game
2 – Tell your story walking pal
1 – A complete joke

 

 

What do you think? Too lenient?

 

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