Rugby Championship

Is Elton's goal kicking really that bad?

2016-08-29 22:25
Elton Jantjies (Gallo)

Cape Town - Springbok flyhalf Elton Jantjies has come under renewed fire since his shaky display against Argentina in Salta on Saturday.

The Bok pivot was not as his best as he continues the struggle to transfer his Super Rugby form on to the international stage. 

There has never been any doubt over Jantjies' raw skill, and his ability to spark attacks through precision passing and a naturally dynamic approach makes him an attractive playmaker as the Boks look to evolve. 

But it is in executing the basics where there are concerns over Jantjies, with his kicking game both out of hand and for goal coming into question. 

Jantjies missed a crucial, and relatively simple, penalty just before half-time in Saturday's clash as the Boks (Morne Steyn was also to blame) left 11 points out on the field through missed kicks. 

But just how bad are Jantjies' kicking stats in a Bok jersey under coach Allister Coetzee? 

The 26-year-old has featured in all five of the Springboks' matches since Coetzee took over, starting four of them.

In that time, Jantjies has been successful with 20 of his 28 kicks at goal - a success rate of 71.4%.

That probably isn't quite high enough for an international goal-kicker, but it isn't as bad as some might think. 

What is perhaps of more concern is that there remains doubt over Jantjies' ability to kick goals from difficult positions and in pressure situations. 

His range is limited, while he has been error-prone kicking out of hand too.

Jantjies carded a similar success ratio in Super Rugby 2016. 

From 98 attempts at goal, he slotted 71, leaving him with a success rate of 72.4%.

The benchmark for a successful goal-kicker in international rugby is considered to be in the upper-70s. 

Jantjies is not quite on that level at the moment, but he is also not far off. 

So, is his goal kicking really bad enough to cost him his place in the Bok set-up? 

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