LIVE

    Naka: Don't write SBW off

    2011-05-17 22:11
    Hendrik Cronjé

    Bloemfontein - The Springboks will be making a huge mistake if they harbour under the impression that professional boxer Sonny Bill Williams is no longer a factor on the rugby field.

    That is the warning from Cheetahs coach Naka Drotské, whose team proved so effective at neutralising Williams that the home team managed to beat the Crusaders 33-20.

    "The other South African teams and the Springboks will be making a huge mistake if they are under the impression that the Sonny Bill Williams-factor no longer exists. He remains a special player capable of breaking through any defence in the blink of an eye," said Drotské.

    Williams was given no space thanks to a master plan devised by the Cheetahs' coaching staff. The team-mate he wanted to off-load to in contact was stopped behind the advantage line.

    Former Springbok centre Brendan Venter had written in his weekly column about how teams could make Williams look ordinary. Williams's play had, in fact, not particularly impressed Venter.

    However, Drotské said that the contribution of Cheetahs defence coach Michael Horak should not be underestimated in the victory over the Crusaders.

    "Brendan is a big friend of mine and today probably the biggest expert on defence in the world. Even so, I feel that the credit for our defence against Williams should go to Michael and our centre pairing of Robert Ebersohn and Barry Geel," said Drotské.

    According to Drotské, Horak had already started devising special plans as a counter for Williams's special skills prior to the publication of Venter's column.

    "The planning of how to defend against the Crusaders was done by Michael and full marks to the players for their execution."

    Horak played Test rugby for England, represented Saracens and also played for Free State earlier in his career.

    Ebersohn's defence has been singled out for praise this year by team-mate and Springbok centre Andries Strauss. Statistics prove Strauss is correct as Wynand Olivier of the Bulls, with 132 tackles, is the only South African centre to have made more tackles than Ebersohn (123) in this year's Super Rugby tournament.

    According to ruggastats.com, Geel's 17 tackles was the second most by a Cheetahs player against the Crusaders. Only replacement flank Kabamba Floors (18) was better.

    Drotské said that while the Cheetahs' defence was good against Williams and the Crusaders, it was not yet perfect.

    "The challenge remains to get the players on the same wavelength for a full 80 minutes and to get them to stick to the same system. We must now forget about the victory over the Crusaders and focus on the Rebels, who have managed a few surprise results this year," said Drotské.
     
    Read More On:  super 15 naka drotské

    Read News24’s Comments Policy

    24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

    Comment on this story
    17 comments
    Add your comment
    Comment 0 characters remaining
    Live Video Streaming
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk
    Most Read
    Commented

    Fixtures

    13 February 2015
    • Crusaders v Melbourne Rebels, Christchurch 08:35
    • Brumbies v Reds, Canberra 10:40
    • Lions v Hurricanes, Johannesburg 19:10
    14 February 2015
    • Blues v Chiefs, Albany 08:35
    • Sharks v Cheetahs, Durban 17:05
    • Bulls v Stormers, Pretoria 19:10
    15 February 2015
    • Waratahs v Western Force, Sydney 07:05

    Results

    24 April 2015
    02 August 2014
    26 July 2014
    19 July 2014
    12 July 2014
    11 July 2014
    06 July 2014
    05 July 2014
    04 July 2014
    28 June 2014
    27 June 2014
    31 May 2014
    30 May 2014
    24 May 2014
    23 May 2014
    18 May 2014
    17 May 2014
    16 May 2014
    11 May 2014
    10 May 2014
    09 May 2014
    03 May 2014
    02 May 2014
    26 April 2014
    25 April 2014
    19 April 2014
    18 April 2014
    12 April 2014
    11 April 2014
    05 April 2014
    04 April 2014
    29 March 2014
    28 March 2014
    22 March 2014
    21 March 2014
    15 March 2014
    14 March 2014
    08 March 2014
    07 March 2014
    01 March 2014
    28 February 2014
    23 February 2014
    22 February 2014
    21 February 2014
    15 February 2014

    Logs

    Rank Team P W Pts

    Opinion Poll

    Does the Waratahs' Super Rugby victory give the Wallabies an edge heading into the Rugby Championship?

    Monday Quiz Madness!

    TAKE THE QUIZ
    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.