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Old Mutual International Men’s Premiership Round 6 Highlights

The game of the week in the Old Mutual International Men’s Premiership saw Bloomberg HK Scottish put on a clinic in a 68-17 win over Herbert Smith FreehillsHKCC.

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After the Borrelli Walsh USRC Tigers defeated SocieteGeneraleValley 28-10 on Thursday night, Natixis HKFC rounded out the week with a 19-12 win over Kowloon.

The 51-point victory was Scottish’s biggest in their history and it came on the back of 10 tries and some solid defence.

“I think so, I’ve been here five-and-a-half seasons and the club was only a year old when I got here and the first year they had a lot of hidings,” coach Craig Hammond said.

“They’re a good team, too, Cricket Club, when you look at them on paper. I just think we didn’t let them play.

“Our mindset was defensively to keep working, we can score tries but we have to work hard on defence and I think today we did that.

“We did a bit of homework during the week and we knew that if we could keep hold of the ball and build on those phases we would be okay. It was not perfect by any means but it’s a lot better going into a little bit of a break.”

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Scottish exploded out of the blocks to take a 31-0 lead thanks to two tries to Conor Hartley and singles to Josh Dowsing, Kane Boucautand Ben Tyler.

Tyler was in on the act again soon after as Scottish built their lead, while Jack Parfitt, Shae Turner, Ashton Hyde and Harris Grant all found the line in the second half.

“We’ve had a big week, to be 28-10 up at half-time last week and lose [against Tigers], the boys needed a bit of a redirection this week and I think they took a lot on themselves, which is really good from a coaching side of things,” Hammond said.

“It was a lot more player led and I think it showed out there today. It was good to see at half-time the mentality that it was nil-nil and we start again.”

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Jack Delaforce, Seb Brien and Gair Currie were the try scorers for HKCC but it was little consolation for coach Brett Wilkinson.

“It’s pretty disappointing, we missed tackles and at crucial times we made crucial mistakes,” he said.

“We’ll have to come up with an answer pretty quick. We’ve got two weeks off so we will look to work hard and fix the things that we made mistakes on. It just wasn’t good enough today.”

Football Club were forced to work extra hard for their victory after a torrid first half saw them trailing 9-7 at the break.

Fullback Michael Hanning banged over all of Kowloon’s first-half points from the tee, while his counterpart Glyn Hughes converted his own try to get HKFC on the scoreboard.

HKFC hit the lead early in the second half through a try to Jamie Hood before Scott Sneddon brought ‘Loon back level with a penalty.

It was a try to winger Jamie Lauder in the 65th minute that broke the deadlock and ensured HKFC returned to the winner’s list.

Thursday night’s game was a see-sawing affair, with Tigers jumping out of the blocks to build a commanding 15-0 lead by the break.

After fly half Robbie Keith got things underway for the visitors with a successful penalty attempt in the opening minutes, scrum half Josh Walden found the try line to make it 8-0 after the first quarter.

No 8 Josh Hrstich got in on the action on 22 minutes and Keith converted to ensure his side had all the momentum.

But it was a rejuvenated Valley side that emerged after the break and, as they so often do, they hit back with a vengeance, with back-rower Thomas Lamboley crossing in the second minute of the second half to breath life into the match.

Ben Rimene then went to work from the tee, first landing the conversion and then slotting a penalty to bring it back to 15-10 on 50 minutes.

But the Tigers settled and eventually pulled away, with a try to winger SalomYiuKam-shing and a further eight points from the boot of Keith sealing the deal.

In Saturday’s action in the Old Mutual International Championship, University Wizards saw off Disciplined Services 52-0 to retain the Old Mutual International Championship Challenge Cup for a fourth week and hold on to second place in the league, behind Vistra Typhoons. Next week, Discovery Bay Pirates take on the Wizards, in their second shot at this season’s new trophy.

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Shaylen 6 hours ago
Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma

These guys will be utility players Nick it cannot be helped because coaches cannot help themselves. Rassie looks at players like these and sees the ability to cover multiple positions without losing much. It allows the 6-2 or 7-1. He wont change his coaching style or strategy for one player. At provincial level players like these are indispensable. If there is an injury to your starting 12 but your back up 12 is a bit iffy then a coach is going to go with the back up 10 who is gold and who can play a good 12. Damian Willemse for the Springboks is an obvious case, for the Stormers its the same. Dobson plays him at 12 or 15, with Gelant in the team he plays 12 but if Gelant goes down he doesnt go for his back up 15, he just puts Willemse there. With Frawley its the same at international and provincial level. He just slots in wherever. Frans Steyn made a career out of it. He was much maligned though as a youngster as he never fully developed into any role. He then went to Japan and France to decide for himself what kind of player he was, put on muscle and retained his big boot, ran over players and booted the ball long and came back into the Springboks after about 3 years away and was then certain about how he wanted to play the game no matter what position. Coaches cannot help themselves because they only want what is best for their teams and that means putting your most talented players on even if it means you cause them some discomfort. Sometimes players need to decide how they want to play the game and then adapt that to every position and let the coach decide how they want to use them.

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J
Jon 11 hours ago
Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma

I think the main problem here is the structure of both countries make up. They are going to have very similar.. obstacles(not problems). It will just be part of the evolution of their rugby and they’ll need to find a way to make this versatility more advantageous than specialization. I think South Africa are well on the way to that end already, but Ireland are more likely to have a hierarchical approach and move players around the provinces. Ioane is going to be more than good enough to lock up one of those available positions for more than a few years I believe though. Morgan would definitely be a more long term outlook. Sacha to me has the natural footwork of a second five. Not everything is about winning, if a team has 3 players that want to play 10s just give them all a good go even if its to the detriment of everyone, this is also about dreams of the players, not just the fans. This is exactly how it would be in an amateur club setting. Ultimately some players just aren’t suited to any one position. The example was of a guy that had size and speed, enough pace to burn, power to drive, and speed to kick and pass long, but just not much else when it came to actual rugby (that matched it). New Zealand has it’s own example with Jordie Barrett and probably shows what Reece Hodge could have been if the game in Australia had any administration. Despite the bigger abundance of talent in NZ, Jordie was provided with consistent time as a fullback, before being ushered in as a second five. Possibly this was due to his blood, and another might not have been as fortunate, but it is what it was, a complete contrast to how Hodge was used in Australia, were he could have had any position he wanted. When it comes down to it though, much like these young fellas, it will be about what they want, and I think you’ll find they’ll be like Hodge and just want to be as valuable to the team as they can and play wherever. It’s not like 63 International Cap is a hard thing to live with as a result of that decision!

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