South Africa

Johannesburg massacre – Wallaby player ratings

Johannesburg massacre – Wallaby player ratings

This is a pretty depressing job, but you see a very different side of players in such a game. In most matches you get a mix of good and bad performances, but here it was universally crap. Nevertheless, with such a vital game coming up, the lessons to be learned are crucial.

15 Adam Ashley-Cooper Painfully exposed as nothing more than a stand-in at full-back, his lack of kicking game was torture. Had an interesting kick chase technique of running the opposite direction 2

14 Peter Hynes – Was left flapping at ankles all day and conspired with Tuqiri to bomb the try that might have stemmed some Springbok momentum 2

13 Stirling Mortlock (C), A couple of vital bungles in crucial positions that did nothing to enhance a very lack-luster performance. As captain seemed to have no tactical impact on the gameplan 3

12 Timana Tahu, I haven’t seen someone so badly defensively embarrassed as this for a long time. Single handedly responsible for 2, if not 3 Saffa tries. How can you ever give someone with this problem another international start? May well have curtailed his international rugby career. 1

11 Lote Tuqiri, LTs class still managed to glimmer through and together with Giteau was the only guy who could make any inroads through the Saffa backline. Compared to the rest of the team, his kicking actually looked good. 4

10 Matt Giteau, enjoyed passing to thin-air all game and lacked direction in his kicking but was sharp in his running. 3

9 Sam Cordingly, even I can throw a good pass if I sit over the ball for long enough – took an age to pull the ball out of rucks and showed absolutely zero running threat, along with a couple of key bungles 2

8 Wycliff Palu, grafted away but looked like he’d already played two games that day 4

7 Phil Waugh, invisible apart from when he gave away free kicks. Did the Smith/Waugh battle get put to bed forever today? 3

6 Rocky Elsom, read the same as Palu 4

5 Hugh McMenimen, very low impact, including in the line-out. Like to run upright into the defense 3

4 James Horwill, couldn’t impose himself 3

3 Matt Dunning, it’s official, he’s the weak link 2

2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, as useful as a centre who can’t tackle. 2

1 Benn Robinson, seemed to be able to keep his side up 4.

Cross – had spark when he came on and made some yards, also defended solidly 5
Smith – yes, the run set up the only try and he made some trademark turnovers, but he also let through one if not two tries with uncharacteristically flimsy defense 3
Moore – couldn’t fix TPNs throwing yips, although looked good around the park 3
Baxter – managed to shore up the mess Dunning had made 4
– got on the end of the try, but didn’t see enough else to rate
Sheehan – all bustle but very little impact
Mumm – didn’t see enough to rate

Rating system:
10 – A legendary performance to go down in the history books
9 – Man of the match worthy performance
8 – Outstanding
7 – Good game, great in parts
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.

South Africa

Matt started G&GR just before the 2007 Rugby World Cup and has been enslaved ever since. Follow him on twitter: @MattRowley

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