Edwards: How to beat ABs

2011-10-21 12:34

Cape Town – Wales assistant coach, Shaun Edwards may have provided France with some sage advice before their Rugby World Cup final against hosts, New Zealand.

With Wales having to lick their wounds after officially bowing out of the tournament at the expense of their Six Nations rivals, Edwards no longer has the prospect of preparing Warren Gatland’s charges for an onslaught against the much fancied All Blacks.

However, in his recent column on the Guardian’s website, he shares his views on how he thinks the All Blacks can be beaten.

“It's an odd feeling. In less controversial circumstances these notes would have been used preparing for a World Cup final.

“After the quarter-final against Ireland, I sat down and started jotting down everything I knew about Graham Henry's 2011 All Blacks; how they play and how to play them.

“Most of the notes came from the New Zealand quarter-final against Argentina, who exposed a few nerves for 60 minutes, but the remainder were compulsive additions from the Australia semi-final when we already knew we were out of the competition and that the Wallabies would be our opposition for the third-place shoot-out,” wrote Edwards.

Edwards proceeded to mention that after further study, involving chats with his All Blacks counterparts, he honed in on what they call “claustrophobic intensity” as to why the have become so hard to beat.

He questioned whether France has that sort of intensity in their play to match the All Blacks before saying that the All Blacks first size up their opposition’s weaknesses and try to expose them.

Edwards referred to Wales’ last meeting with New Zealand at the Millennium Stadium a year ago as an example.

“They (the All Blacks) suspected we were not as fit as was needed and set about running our forwards - particularly the tight five - off their legs. When that was done and something close to exhaustion exposed, they then set about putting the points on the board.”

He then revealed that because of that very match, the coaches then set about whipping the Wales squad into better shape leading into the World Cup, something which has been clearly evident in New Zealand as - even when with a man short - they looked up to the challenge in the semi-final against France and looked the stronger side at the end.

Edwards also made mention of the relentless nature with which the All Blacks play and laments France’s lack of commitment at the breakdown areas, whether it be tackling or trying to turn over possession.

“Any professional sportsman can jog around for 80 minutes, but it's something else to be collision conditioned, as it's called. The captain and flank Thierry Dusautoir can do it, as can William Servat, the hooker, but France are not exactly overburdened with jackals - those guys who not only tackle, but get over the breakdown, scavenging for the ball or making ball slow for the opposition.”

Edwards points out that for France to have any chance of winning, they have to defend admirably and have to make the most out of their possession and points to the history books again to back up his thoughts.

“Can France hold back and beat this remorseless Black tide? Well they have done in the past: twice at Eden Park in their past nine visits. But they will have to repeat their performance of 2007 and that Cardiff quarter-final if they are to have a chance. France have to find half a dozen Dusautoirs and even then this All Black side are probably better than that of 2007. And they are at home.”


  • poulie1323 - 2011-10-21 12:39

    he should have keep the advice - "how to beat Australia should be fitted" ... LMAO..

  • Fatu - 2011-10-21 13:20

    This story should be retitled: "How the All Blacks Will Beat France".

      sam.kaitawa - 2011-10-21 13:36

      Too true, nothings over till the fat lady sings.....complacency is a killer Go the AB's

      Fatu - 2011-10-21 13:44

      There is no way in the world the All Blacks will be complacent. The coach and team have got it right, and are peaking at the right time. Learn from mistakes. Once the ABs win this world cup i predict a long run of successes. While playing at home certainly has its advantages, it's gonna be hard to beat an All Black team who uses the model of this campaign to do it again in 2015, 2019......... Arise Sir Graham and Sir Ritchie.

      Theprodigy - 2011-10-21 13:48

      thats the 1st sensible thing you have said Sam(oan), keep it up,there is hope for you. Ill even give you thumbs up.

      Fatu - 2011-10-21 14:17

      @theprodigy, What's with the Sam(oan) jokes? Don't you realise Kaitawa is a Maori name? Ignorance is bliss, aye?

      Theprodigy - 2011-10-21 17:02

      @ Fatu, thanks for the cultural lesson, but you seem to be the ignorant one, maoris are from Eastern Polynesia, & if my geography is correct that would include Samoa, yes?? Get some sleep, good luck for Sunday, because if you don't win (which is highly unlikely, I won't lie) you guys will not hear the end of it....this is a fact!!

      Klark - 2011-10-21 22:11

      The All Blacks would put at least 20 points on Wales or South Africa if they were in the final. To much pace to much skill, players selected on ability not race, and very well coached Enjoy the game on Sunday guys wil lbe breaking out the bevies here are the true champions of world rugby for years&years&years are crowned

  • Riaan - 2011-10-21 13:38

    How do you beat the All Blacks? You get in their heads. You show them no respect starting by turning your back on the Haka and taking up your position for kick-off while they are performing the Haka. (You are there to win the World Cup-not to compete for second place!!!) Then you run the ball all over the field and keep them on the backfoot and in their half. Lastly you defend like mad men (The services of Chabal would have been handy by then) and hope they choke!!!

      Theprodigy - 2011-10-21 14:00

      Riaan, unfortunately the IRB has made rules for the Haka (special treatment again), you may not look them in the eyes, you may not move, you may not turn your back on them, etc etc etc.....Its laughable really, over the years there has been much debate about the Haka, with many arguing that it should be banned, Aus has disagreed with it many times (throat slitting etc). I agree ban it !!!!!!!

      Riaan - 2011-10-21 14:34

      I would not totally ban it,but for this final match I would flatly ignore them. Is the IRB going to ban the French of the field if they don't face the Haka? I don't think so.

      poulie1323 - 2011-10-21 15:58

      no team could do it - why you think the French will be able to do it? uhm ... I'm watching this space on Sunday... Al die grootbek Bok-ondersteuners? Nowhere! Hul bekke was te groot nes die Bokke se koppe!

  • Theprodigy - 2011-10-21 13:45

    How to beat the All Blacks....step 1 - make sure your ref is not biased in their favor, step 2 - make sure the ref penalizes Richie McCheat when he slows the ball down, plays the ball off his feet or enters the ruck from the side, step 3 - make sure that Brad Thorn plays a clean game, Step 4 - play well , don't miss tackles & don't kick the possession away, France is totally not up to the job, but hey, anything can happen, ask Wales.

      Gungets - 2011-10-21 14:09

      Do what NZ did to Pocock - run straight at McCaw and force HIM to make the tackle. Then he is neutralised as a fetcher. He has to get up, release, then attack the ball. 90% of the threat gone.

      John - 2011-10-21 14:56

      I was starting to get depressed when the the irrepressible P Divvy Show was finally that was entertainment, but the show on here is just about on a par. Go the All Blacks and show 'em how real rugby men play the game.

      Klark - 2011-10-21 22:28

      @Gungets That comment shows me you have neve coached or played senior Rugby. If you tried that with the All Blacks you will Fail. They have Kaino who will probably be named player of the tournament or year for his super human efforts. They have reid who unlike spies he loves to tackle they have the best lose forward combiantion in the world who feed of each other ,and compliment each other. No other team that came to NZ has that luxury

      Thomas - 2011-10-22 01:20

      John you fool, the P Divvy Show has been taken over by the Lourie Mains Show!!! This is a proud Kiwi coach and former player, trying to tell you fools with your heads in the sand exactly what we have been saying all along!!!!!!! He rightly points out that the three teams who should have been fighting it out for the finals are SA, Wales and the ABs!! His position stops his attack on the refs just short from saying the true reason why the ABs were never tested in their run to the final!!!! Like a true New Zealander he wanted and most rugby lovers around the world wanted an epic battle for the cup!!!! Now he knows this will be a hollow victory with the stigma of the No1 team not needing to be, but protected from any contenders to the cup!!!! If the unthinkable happens and you lose, I predict John that you will jump off that boat with the anchor and laptop around your neck bacause don't want to read the blogs on any website!!!

      Klark - 2011-10-22 02:33

      John Laurie is mainly talking about the scrum law. How many Scrum penalties did you get against Aussie. How many did they get against you right next point move on.This is not justification for your loss you clearly arent good enough, and as has been stated South African rugby has been going backwards since 2007.When did you last win an under 20 or under 21 title? Right lets move on again.You will not become a great team again untill race based selection in both players ,and coaches is stopped. When both are selected only on ability your rugby will improve your team will be less divided. Everyone knows it but is to afraid ti say it. Unfortunately for your team this agenda does not line up with the ANC agenda

  • Odavids24 - 2011-10-21 13:48

    Edwards: How to beat ABs (FAIL)

  • Rob - 2011-10-21 14:01

    The All Blacks are popping the corks too early.

      Fatu - 2011-10-21 14:09

      You confuse the media with the team camp. No way in the world they are complacent going into this game. Lessons learnt in '99 and '07. Is this just wishful thinking on your part, Rob?

      Theprodigy - 2011-10-21 17:05

      well if they lose, it will be the worst defeat for NZ ever, I don't think they are taking this lightly, besides its not like they can afford to be complacent, they really need the win, don't they.

  • EJ - 2011-10-21 14:13

    "Wales assistant coach, Shaun Edwards may have provided France". Wales hasnt beaten NZ since 1953. It should be the French advising the Welsh

  • John - 2011-10-21 14:34

    The only way France have any chance is to move the ball around in or before contact when they have possesion. Argentina showed tries can also be scored out wide when they got quick ball. If they want to get into a bum fight at ruck time they are going to come 2nd.

      Theprodigy - 2011-10-21 17:09

      @ John ..well in all honesty, I wish you guys luck for Sunday, may the best team (on the day) win, I still stand by all that I have said about the IRB & the officiation of the game.

  • vd.idc - 2011-10-21 18:34

    Go to bed.. have a good nap. dream like defeating allblacks by atslt 15+ points.. that is the only way france can win the worldcup :) go Abs cheers..

  • mammin - 2011-10-22 04:07

    NZers are already celebrating, but not the AB's. At their fortress Eden Park they will once again demolish le Francais and shake the chokers tag forever. Thats the only way France can beat them. If the AB's choke.

  • Barry - 2011-10-22 19:25

    France by 1 !! Go France

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