Friday, March 31, 2006

TAHS news from Down under- and next door


Waratahs to scrum the Cheetahs
30/03/2006 21:53 - (SA)

Hendrik Cronje , Die Volksblad

Bloemfontein - The Waratahs front row, spearheaded by Al Baxter, will want to impress the new Wallaby coach, John Connolly in their Super 14 match against the Cheetahs on Friday.

The Cheetahs know the remarks made by the Wallaby tighthead earlier this week were not just idle talk. The Cheetahs are preparing for a fierce onslaught by Baxter and company when they play in the Aussie stadium in Sydney at 11:00 (SA time).

Baxter said earlier this week that the problems the Wallaby pack encountered last year were now something of the past. He said the Wallaby front row could even trounce the mighty All Blacks this year. Connolly will watch the match with interest and Baxter and his team-mates would like to show it was not just idle talk.

The Cheetahs scrum specialist, Naka Drotske, said: "We're expecting a huge onslaught by Al and company. Any team playing against us and seeing the names of Os (du Randt) and Ollie (le Roux) on the team list know that they will have to improve their scrumming by at least 50% against us."

Du Randt and Le Roux are playing extremely well this year. Baxter and company will also encounter the devastating scrumming power of Wian du Preez (replacement loosehead).

Props a potential trump-card

Apart from the lineouts, where the Cheetahs have impressed, their props are another potential trump-card. They do their work up front and coach Rassie Erasmus has honed their skills in the rucks and mauls.

It is with these driving mauls that Du Randt and his fellow frontrowers set up numerous attacks.

It seems as if the Waratahs have done their homework and the decision to choose Phil Waugh (flank) and Rocky Elsom (flank) as replacements does not augur well for the Cheetahs.

Waugh and Elsom could be used to counter Erasmus' tactic with his impact players.

Even though the Cheetahs backline have been very steady in the series their best chance to pull off a win is depended on the forwards and the educated boot of Willem de Waal (flyhalf).

The teams are:

Cheetahs: Bevin Fortuin, Giscard Pieters, Ronnie Cooke, Keith Lowen, Sinethemba Zweni, Willem de Waal, Michael Claassens, Frans Viljoen, Ockie van Zyl, Ryno van der Merwe (c), Barend Pieterse, Corniel van Zyl, Jannie du Plessis, Tiaan Liebenberg, Os du Randt.

Replacements: Ollie le Roux, Wian du Preez, Cobus Grobler, Gareth Krause, Kabamba Floors, Falie Oelschig, Eddie Fredericks.

Waratahs: Peter Hewat, Wendell Sailor, Morgan Turinui, Shaun Berne, Lote Tuqiri, Daniel Halangahu, Chris Whitaker (c), David Lyons, Stephen Hoiles, Wycliff Palu, Daniel Vickerman (v-c), Alex Kanaar, Al Baxter, Adam Freier, Benn Robinson.

Replacements: Tatafu Polota-Nau, Matt Dunning, Will Caldwell, Rocky Elsom, Phil Waugh, Brett Sheehan, Sam Norton-Knight.

Referee: Chris Pollock (New Zealand)

Kick-off: 11:05

TV: 11:00 - MNet and SS1.

From the Australian

De Waal to sink boot into Waratahs
Bret Harris
March 31, 2006

THE Cheetahs will take a leaf out of the book of the only team to beat NSW this season when they meet the ladder leader in the Super 14 game at Sydney's Aussie Stadium tonight.

The Waratahs' only loss this campaign was to the Bulls in Pretoria in round three. And like the Bulls, the Cheetahs base their game around a big, powerful forward pack and the tactical kicking of their five-eighth.

Cheetahs coach Rassie Erasmus is regarded as the most astute in South Africa.

At altitude, the Cheetahs have played with width, moving the ball from one side of the field to the other to tire their opponents. But at sea-level in Sydney, the Cheetahs will play for field position and rely on their pack to overpower the Waratahs.

Erasmus has made six changes and one positional switch to the starting line-up that beat Queensland Reds 10-6 in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

From ABC Sports

Waratahs not underestimating Cheetahs

New South Wales full-back Peter Hewat says his side's formidable record at home does not guarantee a victory against the Cheetahs in tonight's Super 14 match at the Sydney Football Stadium.

The Waratahs are undefeated so far this season at home, having beaten the Sharks (31-16), the Cats (50-3) and the Blues (43-9).

They sit on top of the Super 14 ladder with 28 points while the Cheetahs hold down sixth position on 18 points.

New South Wales has been given a boost prior to the Cheetahs clash with lock Dan Vickerman cleared to play after being in doubt with a groin injury.

Hewat said although the Sydney Football Stadium had been a graveyard for other teams this season, the well-rounded Cheetahs could not be underestimated.

"They are going to be a very tough team," he said.

"They have a very big pack and they've got an elusive backline, so it is going to be a tough game because they like to play a wide game.

"They'll definitely have a go and they are one of the best South African teams around at the moment."

Hewat said the Waratahs' defensive ability had come to the fore this season.

"It's something that we have worked on hard over the off-season and we feel that if we can stop teams from scoring points then we've got enough potency that we can score enough points," he said.

Comments: Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to Posts [Atom]