Lambie impresses Meyer

2014-11-17 00:00

HEYNEKE Meyer’s decision to give Sharks halfbacks Pat Lambie and Cobus Reinach a starting berth proved to be the crucial element in the Boks’ 31-28 win over England at Twickenham on Saturday.

Although the first half was uneventful, both Lambie and Reinach gave the Boks direction with some accurate kicking from hand, while marshalling the Bok pack around the park.

Northern Hemisphere conditions proved a thorn in the South African’s side just a week ago, but the Boks must be lauded for their dogged defence in the first half, as well as their ability to come back in the second stanza, when England scored two quick-fire tries after Victor Matfield was shown a yellow card.

The driving maul was a huge part of the game, with the Boks scoring two tries from their lineout drives, while the English also managed two push over tries while the visitors were down to 14 men.

However, questions were raised about the fairness of the maul and Steve Walsh’s officiating, as Schalk Burger’s try could have easily been blown up as a truck and trailer after he peeled away with Marcel Coetzee, effectively blocking the way for him to score. Nevertheless, the Boks produced a better defensive effort compared to their outing against Ireland last week. Besides England’s final try of the game, which saw Brad Barritt in the corner, South Africa’s defence was much improved.

At the final whistle, the game was decided by the performances of both teams’ halfbacks. While Lambie and Reinach produced quality performances despite a couple of charged down kicks, England’s Owen Farrell and Danny Care had an evening to forget.

The English enjoyed the bulk of the possession yesterday, but neither Farrell nor Care could spark up any imaginative attacks and their kicking was uncharacteristically poor — especially in Farrell’s case. His replacement, George Ford, immediately made an impression when he came on and helped England regain some sort of structure.

“I’m very proud of the guys. We really adjusted the game plan to the conditions. I thought we were tactically astute, we asked them for physicality, a lot of discipline and to execute,” Meyer said after the game.

Looking to his halfbacks, Meyer was impressed with Lambie’s directional play and the impact the Reinach made in a number of instances.

“We’ve worked hard on the drop goals in the past two weeks and those little kicks, and Pat is very good with that. I thought Cobus was superb, he had two charged downs but England are probably the best team in the world at putting pressure on nine.”

“Cobus is still a youngster; it was his first Test start in difficult wet conditions and he really turned them with the boot, made some great tackles and got us some quick ball, so he was a revelation at nine,” Meyer said.

The Boks are set to face Italy this weekend in Padova. Kickoff is at 4 pm.


England 28 — Tries: David Wilson, Ben Morgan, Brad Barritt; conversions: Owen Farrell (2);

penalties: Owen Farrell (2), George Ford.

South Africa 31 — Tries: Jan Serfontein, Cobus Reinach, Schalk Burger; conversions: Pat Lambie(2);

penalties: Pat Lambie(3). Drop goal: Pat Lambie.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.