If you went down to Florence on Saturday, you would have been in for a big surprise. It was the day the Bok teddy bears were in town for what they thought would be a picnic!
If you go down to the woods today you are in for a big surprise … it’s the day the teddy bears have their picnic!
If you went down to Florence on Saturday, you would have been in for an even big surprise. It was the day the Bok teddy bears were in town for what they thought would be a picnic. Instead though, a fired up Italian side surprised them by being brave and physical.
That it took just those two things to unravel the Boks is a sad tale for another day. On Saturday, though, it was enough to deliver 9 turnovers to 1 at the breakdown – the core ingredient in a recipe that set up a famous victory. And have the Bok coach and captain apologising to the nation.
The Boks enjoyed significant domination in both possession and territory, they owned every single attack stat except offloads, and were only asked to make 84 tackles, of which they missed a miserly 3. Yet they still managed to find a way to lose the game.
One area that went wrong again was the kicking out of hand. Instead of looking to improve it, it seems they looked to leave it at Twickenham. Kicking 7 less times than the Azzuri, the Boks found themselves playing the wrong game in the wrong part of the field.
A game that saw the Boks using one off runners coming off static starts, running in unison instead of in pods, and thus not getting over the gain line with any sort of momentum at all. They teddy bears could thus not clear past the ball, resulting in seriously messy ball that was turned over at will.
Asked to make so few tackles, one would have thought these would be bone wrenching. Instead they were passive, allowing the Italians to build momentum. Throw in the fact that scrumhalf Rudy Paige seemed to think it better to run to the man he could have passed to, and this was an inept a performance that we have seen from a team in green and gold.