Opinion: The new Graeme Bachop?
Wed, 13 Jun 2012 4:23p.m.
Opinion by Hamish McKay
Don't know about you but following the All Blacks 42-10 win over Ireland I've had a most refreshing week as I basked in the notion there may after all be life after Brad and Jerome.
Filling their gigantic boots was arguably the greatest challenge faced by new head gaffer Steve Hansen. Don't get me wrong - we're a long way from finding a new Kaino or the next Thorn.
But I think we've found the new Graeme Bachop. And what about Dan "Steve Austin" Carter? Have they rebuilt him better than he was before? The potential of this inside back combo could more than compensate for what we've lost in other areas of the team. In Smiths case I feel most satisfied - especially having tipped him to be the All Black halfback in round 3 of Super Rugby.
And that was last year. But as my good friend John "Matho" Matheson often reminds me - nobody likes a smart-arse!
In Carter’s case we don't dwell on these things - but had he been around late last October the World cup final would have been a one horse race. No Doubt.
But before I require a tissue to wipe the dribbling at the salivating thought of the Smith and Carter partnership two words come to mind. South and Africa. Let's not forget this mighty rugby nation now has a coach. Previously the Sprinkboks were hamstrung by a dysfunctional coaching structure and a broken down Captain. SA 2012 under Heyneke Meyer will be a whole new proposition. If you disagree - just remind when we ever managed to really dominate them under Peter De Villiers? I remember Isreal Dagg and Rene Ranger toying with them one cold night in the capital.
But I also remember the magic of Ma'a Nonu getting the AB's out of jail in the Republic.
Let’s not get carried away by a win over one of the worst Irish sides I've seen.
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