Stormers

Ruhan Nel of DHL Stormers scores his side’s second try
BKT United Rugby Championship, Cardiff Arms Park, Wales – 24 Nov 2023. Photo: Ashley Crowden/INPHO/Shutterstock via Backpagepix

Dobbo stunned by Stormers shocking choices

The Stormers perplexed in their self-destructive performance in the United Rugby Championship in Cardiff on Friday evening.

Stormers

Ruhan Nel of DHL Stormers scores his side’s second try
BKT United Rugby Championship, Cardiff Arms Park, Wales – 24 Nov 2023. Photo: Ashley Crowden/INPHO/Shutterstock via Backpagepix

Even coach John Dobson couldn’t account for some of the decisions his team and players made in their 31-24 URC loss to Cardiff on Friday.

Dobson gave Cardiff credit for their fight but laid into his own side for an abysmal performance.

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Stormers shock their own coach

The Stormers led 14-0 early in the first half but Cardiff pounced on their numerous errors to get back into the game.

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“Cardiff played with real fight and zip. They are busy with a rebuild and we saw some of ourselves in them, but we were extremely poor,” Dobson told reporters after the match.

“We were absolutely dominant with a certain style of play and we were 14-0 up.

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“I might be one out, but to get seven scrum put-ins in the second half just for us to lose the ball in contact is not good enough at URC level.

“It’s a very disappointing way to finish the tour. It’s a disappointing tour.”

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Perplexing effort

Dobson was left utterly stunned by the effort and he wasn’t even exposed to the utterly perplexing English commentary on the SuperSport broadcast which came from the local Welsh broadcaster and featured remarks about the amount of cigarette smoke one has to endure in Italy and a fairly brief but thoroughly misleading Xhosa lesson which descended into two Welshmen clicking their tongues for no good reason.

As much as whatever the commentators were trying to convey wasn’t getting through neither did Dobson’s message to his team.

“I didn’t expect us to play like that. It was by far our worst performance on tour, which is disappointing,” he added.

“I don’t know why we needed to do that. Just take the ball through the phases and eventually, they will crack and we will get a penalty and we go into the corner and have a go.

“But we seem to just want to make hail marys all the time and it is a really poor performance by us in that respect.”

Deep breath moments for the Stormers

Dobson will likely be taking a few players aside this week but the team will be bolstered by returning playmakers Manie Libbok and Damian Willemse.

“That’s probably another element to it and probably the piece that is missing. I suppose certain guys need to smarten up some elements of their game.

“We will have Manie {Libbok] and Damian [Willemse] back this week.

“Flyhalf is an area we struggled with and that will give us a few more options.

“As a collective, we haven’t done ourselves any favours on tour.

“I don’t think the competition thinks more of us. I don’t think some of the players or staff feel good about themselves.

“It has been a poor tour. We all need to have a look at ourselves on what we could have done better. ”