Craig Barry of Western Province slides in to score a try during their Currie Cup match against the Blue Bulls at Newlands Stadium on Saturday. Photo: BackpagePix

CAPE TOWN – Western Province coach John Dobson says he wants to see more fluidity and opportunities created on attack following their Currie Cup win over the Blue Bulls.

WP opened their campaign with a 20-5 win at Newlands on Saturday, scoring three tries to the Bulls’ one.

Province managed to outscore their rivals in terms of tries, but Dobson was quick to admit they would have to work on their attack.

The Bulls, on the other hand, created a few decent opportunities and their backline threatened with a number of attacking spells, but the finishing wasn’t there.

“On attack, even though we went through phases, we didn’t seem to create opportunities. We always felt like there was a wall,” Dobson said after the game.

“One of our plans was the attacking kicks, and I think when we did them they worked well. That’s good, but we have to create more opportunities. I don’t feel that we’re putting defences under pressure.

“We have to create more fluidity and opportunities on attack.”

Western Province players celebrate Craig Barry’s try against the Blue Bulls on Saturday. Photo: Phando Jikelo / African News Agency (ANA)
Western Province players celebrate Craig Barry’s try against the Blue Bulls on Saturday. Photo: Phando Jikelo / African News Agency (ANA)

Wings Seabelo Senatla and Edwill van der Merwe are just two of the guys who would flourish under those increased opportunities, and both are players Dobson is excited about.

“He’s superb (Van der Merwe). We know him as a striker and we know him for all the crazy Varsity Cup celebrations, machine guns and all that stuff. But his defensive work, his aerial work, his work rate this is a guy we’re really excited about for the future.

“Seabelo wasn’t meant to play, he did his ankle and came in with a walking stick yesterday and we planned our whole thing thinking he wasn’t going to play.

“But then he came. I think he got some muti or something, he had this funny shaped walking stick,” Dobson quipped.

“He’s also coming on great in Fifteens, so it’s exciting.”

Bulls coach Pote Human praised WP’s defence after the game, and while he said they would have to do better against the Cheetahs this weekend, he was pleased with the path his team are on.

“They defended well but we’ll have to look at ourselves and come back harder. We play a positive brand of rugby. We want to look for space and attack it.

“I think someone like Embrose Papier (who scored their only try) showed that when he gets a bit of space he’s very, very good.

“I’m very positive about the way we want to play and the players are buying into it, we just have to make sure that our forwards get things right up front.

“This weekend is going to be tough. The Cheetahs are one of the favourites because their side is full of Pro14 players, so it’s going to be tough.”



Cape Times