CAPE TOWN – Stormers assistant coach Paul Treu says they’re going to have to be smart against a confident Sunwolves team in Hong Kong on Saturday.
The Sunwolves secured their first Super Rugby win of the season with a 63-28 triumph over the Reds in an entertaining spectacle in Tokyo at the weekend. Treu says being smart in the Stormers' approach, particularly in terms of their general attack, is going to be important as they head into yet another must-win game.
“They’ve been playing well the whole season and I think they were unlucky at times. They’re confident after that win. They play a hard, physical and intense game and I think we’re going to see a lot of rugby being played out there.
We need to be smart with regards to how we’re going to approach the game and how we’re going to play it,” Treu said.
Treu also mentioned the Sunwolves’ attacking kicks in behind opposition defences as something they’re going to have to watch out for at the Mong Kok Stadium.
Those kicks in behind also played a role at Newlands at the weekend, with the Chiefs scoring their first try from one of those tactical kicks by Damian McKenzie that resulted in quite a bounce before it was scooped up by Solomon Alaimalo and offloaded to Anton Lienert-Brown to score.
The fact that they couldn’t cross the try line against the Chiefs was the most disappointing part of last Saturday’s event for the Stormers, according to the coach in charge of their structured attack and defence, while he also added that they aren’t keen on focusing too much on New Zealand referee Mike Fraser’s performances (who favoured the Chiefs), but rather on their failure to make use of their chances.
“The fact that we couldn’t score against a quality team was disappointing. The Sunwolves are quite smart in how they approach the game and how they put those attacking kicks in behind you, so it’s something we’re going to have to work on.”
“It’s a tough one (commenting on Fraser) because there are always so many factors that come into play, and I think that’s probably the last thing we want to get involved in, in terms of the outcome of the game. We created so many opportunities but in the end our execution let us down, we just made too many mistakes,” he said.
“The fact that we were leading up until the 60th minute and then gave it away in the last 20, I think that’s probably the most disappointing part for us.”