Bad day at the office for Luke

2010-09-20 15:53

Rob Houwing, Sport24 chief writer

Cape Town – A bad day at the office for Luke Watson-led Bath, but all smiles for another Springbok in Northampton’s tighthead prop Brian Mujati.

That was perhaps the most noteworthy South African angle to the weekend’s activity in the English Premiership.

The eagerly-awaited, top-of-table clash between unbeaten sides Northampton and Bath at Franklin’s Gardens ended in a surprisingly emphatic 31-10 win for the home side on Friday night.

They managed the four-try bonus point as well, in a performance reportedly marked by quick scrum ball – presumably a good reflection on former Bok and Stormers tighthead prop Brian Mujati, who played the full 80 minutes for Northants.

Watson’s troops, missing a few regulars through injury, slipped to third on the table after three rounds of matches.

Moving up into second were London Irish, who beat Gloucester 23-16 with another former Bok and Newlands-based No 3, Faan Rautenbach, having his customary 50-odd minutes for the winning outfit.

The imposing 132-kg Rautenbach, now 34 and sometimes boasting more facial hair than French forward icon Sebastien Chabal, played the last of 14 Tests for South Africa against the All Blacks in 2004.

Also making a bit of progress, and easing into fourth place on eight points – five behind the leaders – were the heavily South African-flavoured Saracens.

Sarries ousted strugglers Leeds 26-14 in soggy conditions away from home, with no fewer than nine South Africans in the starting line-up.

“Our set-piece won it for us,” director of rugby Brendan Venter said afterwards.

Interestingly, run-around hooker Schalk Brits, who was one of the toasts of the Premiership last season, started on the bench as the beefier Ethienne Reynecke, a former Lions No 2, got a run-on appearance.

But Brits did get on the score-sheet with a late try, former Blue Bulls idol Derick Hougaard banging over 16 points with the boot.

Sarries’ loose trio was made up entirely of southern African expats – Ernst Joubert (ex-Lions), Justin Melck (ex-Stormers/WP) and the Nambian international and former Bulls hard man Jacques Burger.


  • Kotzie - 2010-09-20 16:36

    Beautiful smile you got there Luke.

  • Emile - 2010-09-20 16:50

    Sounds like a report about a South African competition. What are the English doing to their own rugby?

  • willie meyer - 2010-09-20 16:55

    luke watson is a fantastic, world-class rugby player, regardless what JJ Harmse and others have to say about him.

  • SA Abroad - 2010-09-21 06:30

    Guys. the fact of the matter is that South Africans everywhere as a nation is becomming an international icon. They travel everywhere, and everywhere they go, they succeed. Some succeed better than others yes, but I bet you there is no mention of how many Frenchmen or Indians or whetever is being made promoted everywhere. I did hear that there is a Springbok Jacket for sale somewhere. Apparently it landed in the Bath and has a bit of p*** on it. . .

  • Michael - 2010-09-21 06:43

    @ Greg. What a great thought, SA expats playing Boks at Soccer City. Then pick best team for next RWC. It would be interesting to see. Regarding Watson, I dont know if SA rugby is ready for him yet. Maybe after the 2011 RWC when the whole squad is reshuffeled due to retirements and forced droppings then maybe the new look SA political side could include Watson.

  • Paulie - 2010-09-21 07:26

    If there's something that pisses me off no end, it is someone purporting to speak on my behalf. This again became clear in some of the indignant remarks about Luke Watson. "Stay away, SA doesn't need you." Who the hell are these holier than thou poops to speak on behalf of "South Africa"? I think Luke made a huge mistake with his "vomit" remark, but then I see it as something that has been rectified. That Luke is a charismatic player goes without saying. What a pity that he had to make a "forced" appearance in a Springbok jersey; he could have achieved that on merit alone. You may not like him, but he's a bloody good player - and has leadership qualities. This hairyback would like to see him back. Our Boks are without oomph at present. I was very disappointed with John Smit's remarks that Luke was "a disruptive influence". I believe Smit talked out of school. So chaps, disagree as much as you want to, but do not pretend you are talking on my behalf.

  • Murt_On - 2010-09-21 07:29

    @Emile: The English are doing exactly the same to their rugby as they have done to their football.....great domestic leagues, but when it comes to internationals they have no local players good enough to represent them. Witness their problems with chosing a suitable goal-keeper!

  • Laurie - 2010-09-21 07:46

    To all the Luke Lovers out there. Explain to me why is W.Province Rugby so much better this year. Could it be the fact that Puke is no more? Rugby is much better off without him.

  • Boerseun - 2010-09-21 08:52

    Bly maar net daar ou kotskoppie. Ons hier in SA soek jou en jou soort nie hier nie! Kry jou pappa om ook daar te gaan bly by jou!

  • bad news - 2010-09-21 09:29

    Luke Watson is bad news... ...Please stay there.... ...and good riddance... ....poooophole...

  • @Paulie - 2010-09-21 12:05

    are you a girl or what? Go visit Luke there, just don't bring him back here. (Like you will know better than Jon Smit??? Helooooo

  • Staalburgher - 2010-09-21 13:23

    Luke is one of those stereotypical South African white English speakers that hide their hate for the Afrikaners behind the excuse that the Dutchmen are racist. I have seen a pretty even spread of bile across all languages and races in this country, but only the English bile is particularly shallow and two-faced. I can completely believe he was a disruptive influence. How can he not be with his beliefs. He judges individuals based on their group; which is one of the hallmarks of racism. I will be laughing in another decade or two once the BEE shambles has been proven to be crap once and for all and those people will pretend they never called others racists just because of their opposition to it. Hypocrits.

  • Abi - 2010-10-07 08:23

    LUKE WATSON SUPPORTER, GOT THE T-SHIRT. Het respek vir hom, hoekom??? Het een aand van sy medespelers ('n springbok inkluis) aangespreek omdat hulle ons vroue rugby spelers uitgekryt het as gays en 'n klomp sleg vroue tydens 'n oefen sessie. Een van die bliksems het selfs gesê " julle makeer gerape word deur 'n regte man". En wie het ons eer verdedig. Ek is vandag gelukkig met my man en 2 kinders. En kuier lekker Hoera vir Luke Watson, ek laaiks jou. Jy's cool en collective en ek kies jou enige tyd in my span. Weet van te veel ouens wat net vir die geld hier in SA speel maar in hul harte haat hul die hele opset.

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