The Imblackables

In the French rugby stronghold of Lyon, the All Blacks demolished the home side and second-ranked team in the world 47-3. Dubbed “The Imblackables” by Le Midi Olympique, as a defensive unit the All Blacks were flawless. Their physicality in the tackle and at the breakdown, turning brutal defence into seventy metre, seven point offence. France’s veteran captain Fabien Pelous summed up the French frustration: “They were on top of us physically so we couldn’t go forward. We would put together three phases of play and go backwards in each one so we couldn’t do much.” For the All Blacks, the game again suggested that Henry, Smith and Hansen have got it right, and that the much debated “rotation policy” is beginning to demonstrate its worth. Only a year out from the World Cup, the All Blacks now have the luxury of 32 blooded and match-fit veterans to call upon, and a spirit of competition within the team that is resulting in stand out performances, whatever the combination. Forward coach Steve Hansen said: “You hear a lot about rotation; it’s just an All Black team that’s a bloody good one.”


Tags: All Blacks  Fabien Pelous  French rugby  Graham Henry  Independent (The)  Le Midi Olympique  Rugby World Cup  Steve Hansen  

What Makes Super Coach Noelene Taurua Tick?

What Makes Super Coach Noelene Taurua Tick?

English netballer Geva Mentor is happy to nominate Noeline Taurua as easily the best coach she has played under, but finds it a little harder to articulate the secret to the…