Jake: Smith 'greatest ever'

2013-07-30 10:00

Sydney - Rugby World Cup-winning coach Jake White says champion Brumbies player George Smith is ''one of the greatest ever'' as the veteran prepares for his third Super Rugby final.

According to the website, the Brumbies will fly to New Zealand on Thursday in preparation for their grand final against the Chiefs in Hamilton on Saturday.

Smith, 33, won championships with the Brumbies in 2001 and 2004.

He was man of the match in the Brumbies' semi-final win last weekend and is aiming to become the first Brumby to claim three Super Rugby titles.

''I know George is such a humble guy and he doesn't like all the razzamatazz or the talk, but now that I've coached against him and coached him, I can tell you he's one of the greatest ever,'' White said.

''He's got to be right up there. But George, by his own admission, says it's not just about what he does.''

The Brumbies had a recovery session at Canberra Grammar School on Tuesday morning after arriving back in the capital on Monday night.

They will have two training sessions on Wednesday before flying to New Zealand.

Smith is hoping for a fairytale end to his Super Rugby career.

He made a shock comeback to Australian rugby earlier this year when the Brumbies signed him on a short-term deal to be David Pocock's back up in the No7 role.

But Pocock ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament in their first game together and Smith extended his return to the Brumbies.

Smith also earned his 111th Test cap in the Wallabies series-deciding clash with the British and Irish Lions earlier this month.

He has played 140 Super Rugby games for the Brumbies.

But even if he wins a third grand final, he will immediately return to Japan to rejoin his club, Suntory, for its season.

White will name his team on Friday.

The Brumbies have played the defending champion Chiefs just once in the past two seasons and lost that encounter 29-22 in Tauranga last year.

White led South Africa to a World Cup triumph in 2007 and said that experience would help him as he prepares for his first Super Rugby final.

''What I really want to do now is just win this championship,'' White said.

''We don't do anything differently [to what a team does to win the World Cup]. Where I can help these Brumbies players is that I've been there.

''I said to the boys, 'just enjoy this and I can help you through this'. The guys must not have distractions ... Laurie Fisher has won it, Bernie [Stephen Larkham] has won it and George [Smith] has won it.

''The thing that is going to make us win on Saturday is doing the things right and not worrying about everything else. The lesson I've learnt from playing in high profile games is doing your job first.''


  • Dirk Du Plessis - 2013-07-30 10:11

    He said the same about Schalk Burger and Juan Smith his book. Now who is really the BEST?

      Foc Us - 2013-07-30 10:42

      George Smith!! are you DEAF Dirk???

      Raymond Huxley - 2013-07-30 10:54

      Deaf the dumb Dirk. LOL What a Saffa moron! Brumbies, the Aussie Champs of Super Rugby are going to win the tournament again on Saturday!!! BRUMBIES BY 40!

      Foc Us - 2013-07-30 11:01

      Raymond I was not aware that you ALSO drink at work .... get sober and type something sensible next time ....

      Chrono Man - 2013-07-30 11:43

      Remember last week when the Aussies were supposedly more intelligent players than SA players? This is all psycho war. Of course Smith IS one of the greatest but the message has its specific purpose.

      Boetjan Van der Merwe - 2013-07-30 12:12

      Wow, talk about terrible journalism News24. Jake said that George Smith is ''one of the greatest ever''. The title implies that Jake is claiming that he is the "greatest ever". That makes a huge difference. Because he certainly is "one of the greatest ever". Up there with the likes of Burger and McCaw. Sadly, too many people just read the title and then jump to conclusions. And you know that!

      Omge Klits - 2013-07-30 12:31

      Definitely George Smith - never in history of all competitions has a player gotten away with more coming in from the side in a semi-final than George Smith.

      frederik - 2013-07-30 13:15

      kudus to SA rugby on letting Jake White go!!!!

      Paul Moal - 2013-07-31 10:39

      ''one of the greatest ever''

  • Dave74 - 2013-07-30 10:12

    Big words from Jake. I think it's just mindgames ahead of the final. I have a sneaky feeling that the Brumbies will take the title this year...

  • Franklyn Davies - 2013-07-30 10:13

    no worries Jake...youre up there with the greatest coaches as well.

  • Louis Ferreira - 2013-07-30 10:19

    The Brumbies had a recovery session at Canberra Grammar School on Tuesday morning At least they touched up on their grammar and spelling

  • Handgrenaat Nel - 2013-07-30 10:22

    Why did these guys not fly directly to New Zealand? Surely it would have helped with the travelling time and fatigue..?

      Foc Us - 2013-07-30 10:43

      Travelling is not such an issue.... its only a few hours flight and both at sea level so no real climatisation required .... and it is good for the guys to sleep at home instead of a crummy hotel room ....

      Handgrenaat Nel - 2013-07-30 10:51

      Guess that makes sense, thanks!

  • Sean Bagley - 2013-07-30 10:32

    And to think Jake White didn't quite like the fetcher role when he first became Bok coach way back,and then as recent as to the build up to this game at Loftus,said that even centres out become "fetchers" in a match. George Smith had a great game at Loftus and few could ever begrudge him that.

  • Sandile van Heerden - 2013-07-30 10:47

    This story appeared in nuff said.

      Raymond Huxley - 2013-07-30 10:55

      You sound like an 'unintelligent' Saffa rugby supporter. nuff said

      Sandile van Heerden - 2013-07-30 11:19

      and you just sound like an Aussie.

  • Daniel Verwoerd - 2013-07-30 11:51

    No, Jake said George is "one of the greatest ever". Please try your best to report accurately.

  • Wilma Renney Botts - 2013-07-30 12:33

    Go Brumbies and Jake White hoping you guys win on Saturday will shut up a few critics (and remember the best team will win on the day) Wonder what happend to the 2 rude people that had a lot to say when i put my money on the Brumbies (eating humble pie) lol

  • Werner Schyns - 2013-07-30 13:26

    Wilmington the SA critics have already been shut up they are out of the comp

  • Ben van Heerden - 2013-07-30 13:42

    Ja en Mr en Ms Smith is the best movie ever hey Jake

  • Gavin Long - 2013-07-31 09:09

    Jake White coaches the springboks to world cup victory - coaches the brumbies to a final and has clearly shown he can do the job - yet SA chose to dump him for de villiers - I`m always amazed at that. Isn't it a tad weird?

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