News24

Jannie's impact felt in defence

2010-09-01 22:31

Jóhann Thormählen

Bloemfontein – Most props want to scrum their way to glory, but Springbok tighthead Jannie du Plessis has made an impact with his performances on defence this year.

Du Plessis will start his sixth Test of the year in the Boks’ Tri-Nations match against Australia and will not be intimidated by the prospect of facing the Wallabies’ quick backs.

While the tighthead prop has featured in 19 Tests since making his debut, he has not had much game time. Last year

John Smit kept him out of the starting line-up at tighthead prop and previously he was stuck behind CJ van der Linde and BJ Botha.

Du Plessis, Smit and Gurthrö Steenkamp are a tight unit and want to build on a good scrumming performance against the Aussies in Pretoria.

Du Plessis believes his improved defence definitely has something to do with his improvement.

“Most rugby players know what their strengths and weaknesses are. I don’t think defence was one of my strengths. I went to speak to the Sharks’ biokineticist and fitness coaches about the areas I wanted to work on and defence was one of them,” he said.

“You can’t pick someone if you doubt his defensive ability because you defend for half the game. It’s something I have focused on.

“It’s nice to be able to feel comfortable in the defensive line. When those quick backs run at you it’s not that scary anymore.”

The prop believes he has benefited from a longer pre-season thanks to the hand injury that he suffered on the European tour in 2009, while more game time at the Sharks in the Super 14 has also helped.

While the Boks leaked tries against the Aussies at Loftus Versfeld, Du Plessis does not believe there is anything wrong with their tackling.

“Some of the Wallabies’ tries was down to individual brilliance. The try that they scored from their own 22m area came after Kurtley Beale had sidestepped four players. Not one of those guys missed him deliberately,” said Du Plessis.

“We also have players like Jaque Fourie and Bryan Habana that can do that.”

He added that the team had defended well later in the game.

Du Plessis is also satisfied with the Boks’ scrumming, especially after Wallaby loosehead prop Benn Robinson had given them a hard time in 2009.

He believes Robinson is a gifted player, but that he did not experience too many problems with him.

“We were solid most of the time in Pretoria. I never felt under pressure in the scrums and think we did well.”

Sport24

Comments
  • bulawayo-based-bok - 2010-09-01 23:40

    Jannie and Gurthro are about as Solid all-round as Front Rankers come these days.....and with guys like Werner Kruger and Coenie Oosthuizen waiting in line we have some serious depth there!!

  • Jon - 2010-09-02 02:43

    Has his defence really improved or has everyone else's got much worse? After all,the ABs put ten tries against them and the Wallabies got another four in only 30 minutes a week ago.

  • Marius - 2010-09-02 05:54

    If he did his primary job better, he would not have had to make a single tackle, because we would be running with the ball, not the opposition.

  • Ethanamok - 2010-09-02 07:53

    Whats the point. He cant catch a ball and always knocks it on for Sharks and country. He is the epitomy of T-REX!

  • Dwain Gravett - 2010-09-02 07:57

    What crap! He made a total of 1 tackle on Saturday. Compare that to the 13 the old man Matfield made! Matfield also attended more rucks on attack and in defence than any other Springbok player. Not bad for an old man! Mr Habana made no tackles, but missed one. Interesting!

  • BCC - 2010-09-02 08:20

    He didn't make any impression against the ABs. Kind of a stupid article with the boks being as bad as they are at the moment.

  • MM - 2010-09-02 08:20

    Guthro maak baie meer hits as hy - maar CJ hoort daar - die skrywer teiken net die verkeerde ou vir 'n tiepe kompliment wat nie pas nie. Op 'n ander noot, Guthro het op stut al 4 toets driee gedruk - indrukwekkend as jy dink JP op wing net 6...4 vir 'n stut is baie - dink aan John Smit het net 3 driee in sy hele loopbaan van oor die 100 games gedruk....

  • Bulls fan forever - 2010-09-02 09:12

    Well, I decided to check the stats myself...Jannie is making the same number of tackles per game as Guthro (14). Only Schalk (16) and Victor (15) is doing better. BUT....Jannie and Schalk misses 15% of their tackles, compared to Guthro (9%) and Victor (7%). Jannie also gave away 4 penalties (second most after Schalk: 5) and is making the second most errors in handling per game (3) with Schalk after Juan Smith (5). Still some work to be done there. Jannie is hitting 27 rucks per game, compared to 26 of Guthro, 30 of Victor (most) and 22 of Schalk. Jannie also has handled the ball second most per game (14) after Schalk (17), plus is equal first with metres gained per game (45) with Schalk. Well done Jannie, you are certainly making a difference up front!

  • D the M - 2010-09-02 09:24

    Dont know what game this guy was watching. Jannie made alot fewer tackles than Smit and Guthro, and our scrum was possibly the worst its been this trinations

  • Bulls fan forever - 2010-09-02 09:39

    Uhm ignore my previous posting. Had a glitch in the system. ------------------------------------------------------- Well, I decided to check the stats myself...Jannie is making only 6 tackles per game compared to Guthro (14). Jannie misses 24% of his tackles, with John missing 34% compared to Guthro (9%). Still some work to be done there. Jannie is hitting 20 rucks per game (same as John), compared to 26 of Guthro, 30 of Victor (most) and 22 of Schalk. Jannie also has handled the ball only 3 times per game compared to Guthro and Brendon (6) and John (10), plus only gains 3 metres per game compared to Guthro (10) and John (22) and even Brendon (7). Only place Jannie is featuring is the breakdown. Defence my backside !!!

  • IZ IT - 2010-09-02 09:57

    JANNIE HAS BEEN A MACHINE.IM A GURTHRO FAN BUT HE NEEDS TO LOSE ABOUT 10KG TO BECOME MORE MOBILE AROUND THE PARK...YES HE PUTS IN THE HARD YARDS BUT IS FINISHED COME THE LAST 20 MIN.IM STILL A FAN OF JANNIE,BISMAARK,BEAST(OR GURTHRO IF HE SHEDS THE WEIGHT) AS OUR FRONT ROW.

  • douglas - 2010-09-02 10:17

    I,WHAT DEFENCE IS JANNIE DUP TALKING ABOUT? HE WAS SUPPRESSED IN ALL THE ALL BLACKS TRI NATIONS SCRUMS AND HE CANT SCRUM SQUARE AGAINST A WEAKER WALLABY SCRUM. EACH TIME HE SCRUMMED INWARD. ID ALSO LIKE SOMEONE TO TELL ME INTHE LAST 3 GAMES WHERE HES GOT INVOLVED IN HELPING TO BIND AT A BREAKDOWN. HE DOES NOT TACKLE EITHER. THERE ARE AT LEAST 3 OTHER PROPS WHO WORK HARDER THAN HIM AVAILABLE. DOES HE THINK DEFENCE MEANS PUTTNG HIS HAND ON A LOCK ON THE OUTSIDE OF A RUCK AND STARING THE OPPONENTS DOWN RERUN SOME OF THE VIDEO OF THE LAST GAMES.HE RICKY AND CILLIBOY(ALBEIT THE LATTER TWO WERE ON THE BENCH) WERE THE ONLY MISTAKES OF LAST WEEKS SELECTORS.DEFINETELY THE STRONGEST BACKLINE CHOSEN AND APART FROM JANNIE ONE OF THE BEST TEAMS THIS SEASON.

  • pages:
  • 1
Report Comment