Oh come on. Do I have to? REALLY? Sharpie wasn’t the only one swearing in frustration after that round. The Waratahs can count themselves lucky that they were playing the bottom ranked team, otherwise they could have joined the ranks of the Force and Brumbies in a winless round.
As it was the Tahs got up and now sit somewhat uncomfortably in the top four. And if you listen to Camp Tah, every thing is fine. Other than a little show of emotion from Berrick Barnes, one gets the feeling that Chris Hickey is a little like Kevin Bacon’s, Chip Diller, character at the end of Animal House. “Remain calm: all is well”.
Ok, there. I got that in. Another random movie reference and at least SOME YouTube joy for this article this week. But let’s move on and try to find 15 decent players to put in a team of the week.
Team of the Week:
15 Adam Ashley-Cooper (BRUMBIES)
14 Scott Staniforth (FORCE)
13 Tyrone Smith (BRUMBIES)
12 James O’Connor (FORCE)
11 Drew Mitchell (WARATAHS)
10 Matt Giteau (BRUMBIES)
9 Brett Sheehan (FORCE)
8 Stephen Hoiles (BRUMBIES)
7 Matt Hogdson (FORCE)
6 Rocky Elsom (BRUMBIES)
5 Dean Mumm (WARATAHS)
4 Ben Hand (BRUMBIES)
3 Salesi Ma’afu(BRUMBIES)
2 Tatafu Polata-Nau (WARATAHS)
1 Benn Robinson (WARATAHS)
I am the first the admit that a lot of that team was picked because they were simply the best of a pretty poor lot. Fullback and scrumhalf in particular were two positions where I struggled for genuine options. Even Stani on the wing gets there on the back of pretty much the intercept alone. And once again we have the problem position of outside centre. Tyrone Smith is in the team but he really has no rights to be and I didn’t want to go the way of many pundits in picking reserve Tah Rob Horne there.
Player of the Round:
But let’s not be too harsh. There were some decent performances this week. Drew Mitchell is in the midst of a real purple patch and looks dangerous every time he touches the ball, which he is trying to do a lot. Rocky Elsom for the Brumbies was in the heart of a lot of the best of the Brumbies. Strong running and busy in defense. Meanwhile out west, Matty Hodgson continues on his merry way playing an outstanding open side flanker game. Do the Force now have the best two Wallaby eligible open sides in the comp?
Try of the Round.
Oh come one. Seriously? Talk about going from the penthouse to the shithouse (hey, everyone else is swearing. Why can’t I?). Last week we couldn’t even narrow down our best tries, so plentiful were they. This week we have just five to choose from. An intercept (Stani), one from a dodgy grubber (Drew), one from the softest of defence (Huia) and another from a couple of pick and drives (Salesi). Shees. So I’ll nominate Patrick Phibbs’s try for one thanks to some handy work by Rocky. As for the other? The old prop in me wants to go for the Ma’afu try, but I’ll go Stani’s purely for the opportunism involved. (videos at bottom)
Moment of the Week:
Could I say Lote’s try for the Tigers? No. I will say Christian Lealiifano’s injury. The guy has been playing damn well and is pretty much an unsung hero for the Brumbies. But with Quade Cooper playing so well at fly half for the Reds, the Australian rugby public are almost demanding that Matt Giteau return to the 12 jersey. If he’s to do that for the Wallabies, it’d be great if he could play there for the Brumbies. The positive to come out of Lealiifano’s injury, if there is one, is that it could mean that may happen with young Matty Toomua playing 10. Or Friendy could just decide to return Mortlock to 13 and move Tyrone Smith into 12, keeping Gits at 10. Zzzzzzzzzzzzz.
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