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Airlines assist Brumbies in home defence bid against the Chiefs tonight

By 4 April 2008 7

4 April 2008
7:40 pmto9:30 pm

Stuff.co.nz is reporting here that delays out of New Zealand and into Canberra have turned the Waikato Chiefs away trip for their game against the Brumbies tonight from an 11 to a 30 hour journey, tiring them out and denying them of a practice session in Canberra.

The jinxed trip started on Wednesday a 2.30pm flight from Auckland to Sydney was delayed until 4.30pm and then cancelled due to mechanical problems with the plane. The team instead was put up in a Parnell hotel for the night, flying out at 7.30 yesterday morning.

High winds and a problem with a runway then brought three delays to the flight from Sydney to Canberra and instead they were not expected to get to the Australian capital until late Thursday afternoon, taking three separate flights.

Despite this, our good record here in Canberra against the Chiefs and Stirling Mortlock’s return I’m still not counting any chickens.

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7 Responses to Airlines assist Brumbies in home defence bid against the Chiefs tonight
#1
Stump10:00 pm, 04 Apr 08

Lucky the Chiefs suffered so much on the trip over. They managed to scrape away with a win, 42-28. Imagine the result if they were not tired!!!

#2
Joe Canberran10:19 pm, 04 Apr 08

Yeah, sh!t game. We were too slow, too weak and too unco. The only good thing was 1 measly bonus point and a hand full of New Zealand dollars in the ref’s (and possibly a few of our player’s) pockets. Nice to see the waterboy (mortlock) back on the field and the smith brothers played well but but the real stand out was the chief’s speed and support play and the wholes in our defence.

#3
JC3:45 am, 05 Apr 08

Maybe the Brumbies didn’t know what defense was.

#4
Thumper10:34 am, 05 Apr 08

FFS! It is DEFENCE, not defense.

Don’t let Americanisms slip into our spelling as well as our language.

#5
ant11:35 am, 05 Apr 08

Spot-on, Thumper.

#6
VicePope12:30 pm, 05 Apr 08

I agree on the spelling. Saw the game live – snagged someone else’s extra. Even though it had cost me nothing, I still felt like asking for a refund.

It could have happened. At 35-21, the crowd wanted them to score and put some pressure on. 35-28 would have had the place on its feet and screaming – coming back to win would have had them queueing to get in next time and next year. Instead, they lost possession and, moments later, conceded their sixth try.

Mortlock made progress on the rare occasions the ball got to him. Smith, as always, played like a man trying to carry a team (which he often is). Nothing else that was good. They were soft and tentative in defence and completely flatline (in every sense) in attack. Their ball retention was surrender-monkey stuff and their kicking game one-dimensional. Their capacity to implement set plays is a joke. Ashley-Cooper probably needed another week off, but showed guts being there even if his positional sense at times could best be described as random. Despite his innate skills, which had filled me with hope, Lealiifano has simply not got the ball handling capacity for this level yet. Holmes in the second half shaded Phibbs in the first; Salvi was pretty good and Chisholm mostly seemed aware that the tryline was thataway.

The referee was a South African, and nothing more needs to be said.

Would changing the coach make any difference? What happened showed fundamental limitations in vision and performance. I have not got a clue, but I think that they need, in the remaining weeks, to work out whether they try to play boring safe rugby or whether they try to excite the crowd.

#7
JC6:26 pm, 05 Apr 08

Spelling defence as defense (I miss spelt it above as a jibe) and organisation as organization and colour as color are the three things that really get my goat.

As for the game, the Brumbies are not the team of old.

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