Welcome to Episode 21 of the Chewsday Chew. ‘They said you’d never make it…’
Ok, so after philosophising for a few weeks due to having sweet bugger all else in the way of real rugby to talk about, I’ll be taking a different approach for the next few weeks. We are going to pick a Best Match Day 23 from the Wobblies, Desperados, Catholics and Grandes Aterradores based on the previous weekend performance in isolation. Then we will compile the results week on week and finish up with the Southern Hemisphere best out of the players who took the field across the Championship.
The selection criteria is simple; selection is head to head and based on the jersey number they wore versus the other guys wearing the same jersey number. Number on number. No swapsies. No iterations or variations of 2 versus 16, 12 versus 13s or 1 versus 18. A starting No3 tighthead is not a No18 reserve tighthead, or a loosehead in disguise. And if you started at 10, I don’t care if tactically you played 15 for most of the night. It’s straight up de hombre a hombre.
Each selection will get points for the strength of their selection. And I have five types of pick attracting points and an extra point for the Man of the Round;
- 5pts – Must Pick – pretty self-explanatory. Took the jersey for themselves. Standout selection.
- 4pts – Bear Pick – Not a ‘must’, but was better than the peers (‘Better than the average bear’)
- 3pts – Combo Pick – performance as a unit with partner/s means if you take one, you take all
- 2pts – Dunno Pick – no discernible reason, but there was just something about you (ya freak)
- 1pt – Survivor Pick – the others all sucked. AKA last man standing.
- 1pt – Man of the Round. An extra point for the absolute standout.
Each week I’ll propose a team of the tourny for the week just gone here in the Chewsday Chew. I’ll take any comments into consideration, compile the scores over the weeks and see what our Southern Hemisphere team of the tourny is at the end.
So, without further ado, the weekend just gone saw the Catholics kick seven shades out of the Desperados and the hot blood and guts of the Grandes Aterradores getting cooled down by a 2nd half 30pt fast-finishing Wobblies. And here were the team sheets leading into the fixtures:
Now my initial picks for this week;
- 5pt Must Pick. Jimmy Slipper. It was very difficult to go past the Catholics front rows across the board both as individual contributors and as units. The carnage they visited on the Deperados was quite something. However, the all-round strength of Slippy’s game was too good to ignore.
- 5pt Must Pick. Malcolm Marx. He was a force of nature. Montoya also played well for the FISMs, but it was Big Karl’s day.
- 5pt Must Pick. Frans Malherbe. The most important selection in a team is the tighthead. And for meat and potatoes game-building stuff, he wins hands down. 7As had a strong game for the Wobbs, but Herbey was too good to ignore.
- 3pt Combo Pick. Eben Etzebeth. I can’t split the impact of the Catholics 4&5&20 here.
- 3pt Combo Pick. Lood de Jager. See above. Arguably a Must-pick.
- 4pt Bear Pick. Siya Kolisi. Could arguably have been Holloway, but the Tahs suck, so no.
- 2pt Dunno Pick. Fraser McReight. I still recall the first time I watched McAwe and Smith play. I may eat my words, but the kid gave me chills. Cane was gutsy, but that wee red skull cap got the nod.
- 5pt Must Pick. Rob Valetini. Owned it.
- 4pt Bear Pick. Aaron Smith. Didn’t own it. But did enough compared to Tomas Cubelli. Faf was a no-show and White was almost a liability with that ref.
- 4pt Bear Pick. Handre Pollard. Knew his role and nailed it. Quade was truckin’ well, and touches like his inside ball to Petaia were great. But for me, Pollard was the pick for his reliability.
- 4pt Bear Pick. Makazole Mapimpi nudged out Boffelli and Koroibete.
- 4pt Bear Pick. David Havili did enough to edge out Paisami and Jerry Dela Fuente IMO.
- 5pt Must Pick. Len Ikitau. Now this was the hardest pick because Lukhan Am also had a standout game I thought. But Sticky was silk.
- 4pt Bear Pick. Santiago Cordero did enough to nudge out Petiaia who scored a nice try and didn’t make any real errors.
- 4pt Bear Pick. Jordie Barrett. Did enough to outshine the rivals. Had a torrid time under Catholic highballs and came through.
- 5pt Must Pick. Mbingeni Mbonambi. The human bowling ball. Too strong.
- 5pt Must Pick. Getcha Kitshoff is currently my 2nd favourite red head behind Karen Gillan.
- 5pt Must Pick. Vinnie ‘Mr Incredible’ Koch. Luv ya work Big Man.
- 2pt Dunno Pick. Nick Frost. Freakish ability. I was devo’d he didn’t finish that galloping giraffe try.
- 3pt Combo Pick. Along with Etzy and Loody, Mostie Motzy makes for a killer lineout/scrum and general physicality combo.
- 2pt Dunno Pick. Pistol Pete Samu. The Real Shooter McGavin. Just a dangerous guy to bring on late.
- 5pt Must Pick. Jaden Hendrikse. Owned it under very challenging circumstances. But it also helped having such a dominant pack to play behind.
- 5pt Must Pick. Reece Hodge. If the guy never plays a test again, he can retire happy with that game. Grand effort in bloody challenging circumstances that certainly washed away the bitterness of his last run for him (at least).
MOTM of the Must Picks – had to go to the MadMan Malcolm Marx. He is seriously good and getting better coming towards Bill I reckon.
So the Southern best after week one looks like this…
12 Catholics including the MOTM which is fair given their dominance of proceedings, 7 Wobblies including 4 ‘Must’, 3 Desperados who look to have real issues 1yr out from the Bill and a lone Grandes Aterradores which may seem harsh initially, but getting 30pts put on you by the current Wobblies is a bit embarrassing frankly.
So there you go cobbers. Out with your knives and tell me why I’m right or terribly wrong…