‘Stormers’ defence was too passive’

What former Springbok coach NICK MALLETT had to say on SuperSport about Saturday's matches at Ellis Park and Newlands.


'The Cheetahs started so well. They did everything right. They ran strongly and retained possession well. They put the Chiefs defence under huge pressure.

'It was completely the opposite in the second half and credit to the Chiefs for the way they came back from 34-10 down at half-time.

'There is a view in New Zealand that their sides have the better of us in the last quarter because of our style of play. It was noticeable how much more tired the Cheetahs were in the last quarter. Just like the Bulls a week ago. And also last season when the All Blacks finished so well at Ellis Park against the Springboks.

'[Referee] Marius van der Westhuizen’s decision to revisit the try he awarded [to Ryan Crotty] was a brave one but it was the right one. It was not a try and I don’t know how legal it was, but we at least got the right decision and that’s all you want from the referees.

'The Lions went back to bad habits and played a lot of rugby in their own half. It wasn’t a surprise the tries came from mistakes in their own half. The Lions have got to learn to play territory as well as a good attacking game.

'The lineouts were poor. They lost five or six and at this level it isn’t good enough.'


'It was great to see the Stormers score a backline try from first-phase ball. Fair play to them and to their backline coach Robbie Fleck.

'In the first half the Stormers were patient in their defence but I thought the Waratahs' phase play was good and their kicking game has been good.

'The real problem with Stormers' defensive strategy is there is time on the ball for the attacker. We saw the Tahs holding on to the ball through multiple phases and putting a lot of pressure on the Stormers.

'There needs to be variation. I thought, overall their defence was too passive. They are going through a bad patch at the moment so you have to feel sorry for them.

'The injury issues are definitely there. The question is whether the current players at their disposal are good enough to win games at home at the moment.

'I thought the referee and TMO decision was the right one [on Juan de Jongh's disallowed try]. It wasn’t a bad one.'

Photo: Shaun Roy/Gallo Images

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