John Dobson says he and fellow Stormers coaches Dawie Snyman and Norman Laker will benefit from being on the current tour of Australasia. DYLAN JACK reports.
As part of the team’s succession plan for outgoing head coach Robbie Fleck, Dobson, backline assistant Snyman and defence specialist Laker are overseas with the Stormers for the first time.
It is a move that could bear fruit for the team next year as the trio will form part of the coaching staff in 2020, with Vodacom Super Rugby set to revert to 14 teams and possibly become more competitive in 2021.
‘I think this one has been quite well planned. It is very clever,’ Dobson told SARugbymag.co.za ‘We have already learned a lot. We learned a lot from our loss to the Hurricanes.
‘It is well thought out and very important, because this is a tough competition and it’s probably going to get tougher for South African teams if we do end up with a single-round format with the conference system falling away.
‘So the more we can learn in preparation for that, the better. It has worked out quite well. I think it has cost Western Province more because there are one or two people here who weren’t in the budget in terms of travel, but it has been a good idea.’
Dobson, who will replace Fleck as head coach, but currently specialises in breakdown work, added that he would like to continue to focus on that area next year.
‘I will have two responsibilities, one of which will be the whole shape of the team, and the team culture which will be my main responsibility. We are learning a lot about the breakdown on tour, so I will keep doing that. I enjoy the maul and maul defence, but I would expect we would have a forwards coach.
‘Against us, the Hurricanes put the ball into the scrum three times, but there were close to 120 breakdowns. In terms of our training, the breakdown is an area where South African teams are quite traditional. We see the scrums and lineouts firstly, and the breakdown is something you do a bit during the week, but during competitions it tends to fall away. If there are close to 200 breakdowns a game, it is something that I will stay with.’
Photo: Chris Ricco/BackpagePix