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missed tackle

Shaky defence makes Kiwis look good

Yes the Kiwi sides play a more entertaining brand of rugby, but the stats Tank Lanning has dug say that they are very much aided by their shaky defence.

With most Super Rugby games thus far being in-conference derbies, there has been lots of debate as to which country plays the most attractive rugby.

The Highlanders vs Chiefs game was regarded by most to be the most entertaining of the weekend, while the Bulls vs Stormers was one that will probably not be kept for the rugby union marketing DVD.

With the Kiwi sides seemingly the most keen to play a ball in hand type of game, and defense perhaps not being massive on their priorities come Wednesday night training, and the SA sides accused of a kick and chase game based on industrial defense, I thought it apt to compare the stats of the two games, courtesy of

Highlanders vs Chiefs
99 RUNS 88
8 (232m) KICKS 16 (488m)
161 TACKLES Attempted 174
31 TACKLES Ineffective 17
17 TACKLES Missed 19
16 TURNOVERS coughed up 13

Bulls vs Stormers
66 RUNS 94
26 (1019m) KICKS 15 (494m)
156 TACKLES Attempted 110
7 TACKLES Ineffective 3
19 TACKLES Missed 14
10 TURNOVERS coughed up 24

And there you have it. While the New Zealand sides definitely play a more attractive brand of rugby – one which leads to more line breaks and off-loads in the tackle, they are without doubt aided by the fact that their defence is somewhat frail.

Those ineffective tackle stats tell a tale … Line breaks and offloading in the tackle are made a lot easier when the defender you are up against falls off the tackle for you!

But at the end of the day as our man Naas would say, which of the two games did you prefer watching?

Author: Tank

Ex WP prop with a fair amount of experience in all things media ...

One Comment

  1. Good stats,
    but then i say lets see Highlanders Vs Stormers and see if they have the same amount of offloads and line breaks.

    When they met with a great defence will there attacking stats still be as good?

    Only time will tell!!!