Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.10

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Ali's Choice
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Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.10

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Otere Black in danger of losing spot in Blues team because Beauden Barrett's under performing
David Long
15:43, Jul 14 2020

Blues first-five Otere Black says he’s willing to do whatever it takes to help his team, even if that means being dropped, so Beauden Barrett can switch to 10.

Barrett, the Blues’ marquee signing for the season has been copping criticism recently for under-performing for the club, with pundits questioning whether he should move back to first-five.

Former British and Irish Lions first-five Stuart Barnes wrote in a column for the Times on Monday that Barrett should switch back to the position which helped him get voted as a two-time World Rugby player of the year.

"New Zealand rugby is in danger of turning one of the most original talents in the history of the sort into a liability,'' wrote Barnes, who slated Barrett's performance in the Blues’ 26-15 loss to the Crusaders on Saturday, claiming "his most significant contribution [a crucial kick out on the full] played a part in his team's demise.”

But if Blues coach Leon MacDonald does put Barrett to first-five for Saturday’s game against the Hurricanes in Wellington, that would be tough on Black, who has been playing well, as he’ll pay the price of losing his place in the team because of Barrett’s poor performances.

“I feel like I’m playing some pretty good footy at the moment. But it’s not always down to that, it’s what has got to be the best for the team,” Black told Stuff.

“That’s all out of my control, it’s up to me to perform well, week in, week out. Whatever is best for the team, I’ll do that.”

While some may feel it’s not working to have Black at 10 and Barrett at 15, the Maori All Black believes it’s a setup that can work.

“Beauden and I have got a really good combination going,” he said.

“Just because it was a bit quiet on the weekend, doesn’t mean we have to change a few things.

“People were saying good things about him not that long ago. So we’re going to keep working hard and keep finding areas in our game to put the boys in better areas to attack from.

“It was a good learning for Beauden and I, but for the team as well.”

Of course, the situation could change again soon once Dan Carter is ready to play, with the veteran taking part in training on Tuesday, during the rain soaked session.

Last weekend’s game against the Crusaders was one of the highlights of the Super Rugby Aotearoa season. The win to the Crusaders felt like a test match at times and for a while it looked as if the Blues would win in Christchurch for the first time in 16 years.

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But the game turned when Black’s conversion after Rieko Ioane’s second half try was charged down by Braydon Ennor.

Not that this was what cost the Blues the game, but the Crusaders got on a roll after that and ended up winning comfortably.

“To be honest, I didn’t see him at all,” Black said of Ennor’s charge down.

“I was just going through my process and he’s a quick fella and got there.

“It’s just one of those things that happens and it’s a good learning for me moving forward, to speed it up a bit. There are some pretty quick guys like Braydon out there.

“It doesn’t worry me too much, it’s part of the game really.”
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Ali's Choice
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Ali's Choice »

Stuart Barnes reckons Beauden Barrett is being wasted at 15, and should nbe moved back to first five for the Blues asap.

Personally I think Black has been one of the key reasons for the Blues revival in 2020, and moving him from 10 would be a stupid move, especially given that BB will not be playing for the Blues next season, and so has just 4 matches left for the Blues until the 2022 season. The Blues have been looking for a game-managing no.10 with a good temperament and all-round skill set for many years.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Anonymous 1 »

The team would probably improve if they just dropped Battett for someone else. He was that shit against The Canterbury Crusaders
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Wilderbeast »

BB has played well by taking a backseat but that’s not what made him famous. If he played at 10 and recaptured some form from earlier in his career the decision is a no brainer. However, his later games at 10 prove that is far from a given.

He played very well at 15 for the all blacks last year too. It feels like he has made a decision to hold back this year. I wish he wouldn’t.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Ali's Choice »

I just think it would be crazy for Macdonald to move BB.

The Blues have been searching for a structured and composed first five since Grant Fox. With respect to Carlos Spencer, there is a reason why the Blues were not as successful under him as they could have been. Otere Black has been one of their best players of the season, and to move him now would be very unwise. Especially as BB is not playing next season anyway. I also think BB offers the experience, calmness and composure from 15, that the Blues need. He just needs to back himself more and rediscover his running game. Maybe BB is injured?
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by trapper »

I’m not sure that Rangi is going to take selection advice from Stuart fcuking Barnes.

This never gets old...

https://youtu.be/_XRGJpMJDUk

Yeah, he really knows his shit...
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by kiwinoz »

BB made his name from coming on with 20 to go at fullback/second receiver.

May be he is carrying a niggly injury but he has lost his attacking mojo somewhat. Otere Black is doing well and as AC says Auckland have been looking for someone for years.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Wilderbeast »

kiwinoz wrote:BB made his name from coming on with 20 to go at fullback/second receiver.

May be he is carrying a niggly injury but he has lost his attacking mojo somewhat. Otere Black is doing well and as AC says Auckland have been looking for someone for years.
I’d argue he made his name tearing shit up in 2016 at first five, passing Cruden in the rankings and winning IRB player of the year.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Altazuma »

This is just the usual Blues beat up of anyone with a rep joining their franchise.

If you listened to critics and Blues fans then Nonu was washed up in 2014.

That he was an absolute star in RWC 2015 showed how wrong they were.

BB is fine at 10 or 15. Give him some games to settle and understand the players around him and he will be back to his best.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Kiwias »

Otere Black has been a genuine and positive surprise this year, and a major factor in the Blues resurgence. Rangi would be mad to drop him for BB at 10.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by elcamino »

In no way am I advocating for Black to be dropped but has anyone ever seen him make a line break. I've watched him since he was at the Canes and wished him well in Auckland but he doesn't have an attacking bone in his body.
I'm starting to think Mitch Hunt is the 3rd best 1st 5 in the country.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by mrbrownstone »

I still think the bigger selection mistake was dropping Faiane. He seems to be the glue that holds that backline together, and allows Ioane, Clarke, Telea et al to shine.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by kiwinoz »

mrbrownstone wrote:I still think the bigger selection mistake was dropping Faiane. He seems to be the glue that holds that backline together, and allows Ioane, Clarke, Telea et al to shine.
TJ Faiane is very underrated
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by UncleFB »

Wilderbeast wrote:
kiwinoz wrote:BB made his name from coming on with 20 to go at fullback/second receiver.

May be he is carrying a niggly injury but he has lost his attacking mojo somewhat. Otere Black is doing well and as AC says Auckland have been looking for someone for years.
I’d argue he made his name tearing shit up in 2016 at first five, passing Cruden in the rankings and winning IRB player of the year.
Nah, he had already made his name as the top super sub before that. Then he went stratospheric in 2016, some fans lost the plot calling him better than DC, and then he settled into great rugby player but not great 10 status.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Mr Mike »

trapper wrote:I’m not sure that Rangi is going to take selection advice from Stuart fcuking Barnes.

This never gets old...

https://youtu.be/_XRGJpMJDUk

Yeah, he really knows his shit...
Class.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by booji boy »

trapper wrote:I’m not sure that Rangi is going to take selection advice from Stuart fcuking Barnes.

This never gets old...

https://youtu.be/_XRGJpMJDUk

Yeah, he really knows his shit...
:lol:

I like Barnes generally but yeah, that is gold! :D
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Dan54. »

trapper wrote:I’m not sure that Rangi is going to take selection advice from Stuart fcuking Barnes.

This never gets old...

https://youtu.be/_XRGJpMJDUk

Yeah, he really knows his shit...
But I do think you will find Rangi agrees with him, he said repeatedly at start of season he saw BB as a 10 that could play 15, not really as a 15 that could play 10. Then of course Perofata gets twanged and Otere plays ok, but I still think Otere while a good kid is like Mitch Hunt etc a good super rugby player, but probably not one who will take the world apart. If Blues had a good 15 I really think Rangi would have BB at 10.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by trapper »

Dan54. wrote:
trapper wrote:I’m not sure that Rangi is going to take selection advice from Stuart fcuking Barnes.

This never gets old...

https://youtu.be/_XRGJpMJDUk

Yeah, he really knows his shit...
But I do think you will find Rangi agrees with him, he said repeatedly at start of season he saw BB as a 10 that could play 15, not really as a 15 that could play 10. Then of course Perofata gets twanged and Otere plays ok, but I still think Otere while a good kid is like Mitch Hunt etc a good super rugby player, but probably not one who will take the world apart. If Blues had a good 15 I really think Rangi would have BB at 10.
If he does put BB at 10 it’ll be because that’s what he has had planned, not because Barnes thinks he should. They’ve got another pretty good 10 there as well, Dan somebody...
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by fonzeee »

While Black has been good and shouldn't be dropped, I don't see the point of totally giving up on BB as a 10. It seems like many are resigned to the notion that he "just isn't a first five" but how's he going to sort his game out without time there?

I doubt it happens this year, but at some point it needs to happen.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by MungoMan »

What in heaven's name happened to Black in the off-season? IIRC, yer actual Bluesists appeared to have given up on him and were suggesting he be sent back to the Turbos. Yet recently he looks pretty damned good.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Dan54. »

MungoMan wrote:What in heaven's name happened to Black in the off-season? IIRC, yer actual Bluesists appeared to have given up on him and were suggesting he be sent back to the Turbos. Yet recently he looks pretty damned good.
Do you think he has gone better with BB at 15 helping him out and giving another option as second playmaker? Seems the Canes have had the same, both 10s have looked better when JB at 15, and I think because he comes in and takes prssure off as 2nd playmaker the can relax and play? Just a thought!
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Dan54. »

trapper wrote:
Dan54. wrote:
trapper wrote:I’m not sure that Rangi is going to take selection advice from Stuart fcuking Barnes.

This never gets old...

https://youtu.be/_XRGJpMJDUk

Yeah, he really knows his shit...
But I do think you will find Rangi agrees with him, he said repeatedly at start of season he saw BB as a 10 that could play 15, not really as a 15 that could play 10. Then of course Perofata gets twanged and Otere plays ok, but I still think Otere while a good kid is like Mitch Hunt etc a good super rugby player, but probably not one who will take the world apart. If Blues had a good 15 I really think Rangi would have BB at 10.
If he does put BB at 10 it’ll be because that’s what he has had planned, not because Barnes thinks he should. They’ve got another pretty good 10 there as well, Dan somebody...
:thumbup:
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by MungoMan »

Dan54. wrote:
MungoMan wrote:What in heaven's name happened to Black in the off-season? IIRC, yer actual Bluesists appeared to have given up on him and were suggesting he be sent back to the Turbos. Yet recently he looks pretty damned good.
Do you think he has gone better with BB at 15 helping him out and giving another option as second playmaker? Seems the Canes have had the same, both 10s have looked better when JB at 15, and I think because he comes in and takes prssure off as 2nd playmaker the can relax and play? Just a thought!
Well, the arrival of Barrett comma Beauden is one significant change between then and now. And I've noted in RL that fullbacks with genuine linking and playmaking skills can make life easier for their No.9 (i.e. 5/8 in league numbering). Billy Slater was a prime example.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Dan54. »

MungoMan wrote:
Dan54. wrote:
MungoMan wrote:What in heaven's name happened to Black in the off-season? IIRC, yer actual Bluesists appeared to have given up on him and were suggesting he be sent back to the Turbos. Yet recently he looks pretty damned good.
Do you think he has gone better with BB at 15 helping him out and giving another option as second playmaker? Seems the Canes have had the same, both 10s have looked better when JB at 15, and I think because he comes in and takes prssure off as 2nd playmaker the can relax and play? Just a thought!
Well, the arrival of Barrett comma Beauden is one significant change between then and now. And I've noted in RL that fullbacks with genuine linking and playmaking skills can make life easier for their No.9 (i.e. 5/8 in league numbering). Billy Slater was a prime example.
Yep well I thought Black had played ok at beginning of season and thought it was because with Perofata at 15 he had another playmaking option, and I tend to think he stepped up more when BB started playing there.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by jdogscoop »

Merely another good example of why test players don't always make great pundits.

Barnes really doesn't know his ass from his elbow when it comes to the Blues' optimal first five options.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Wilderbeast »

Tbf, BB is a better first five than Black. He doesn’t know the team though so whether he would perform better immediately is questionable.

Edit: Also, you’d think Rangi would want to capture this current purple patch for Black, who needs developing as it’s pretty clear BB isn’t committed to the blues.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Anonymous 1 »

booji boy wrote:
trapper wrote:I’m not sure that Rangi is going to take selection advice from Stuart fcuking Barnes.

This never gets old...

https://youtu.be/_XRGJpMJDUk

Yeah, he really knows his shit...
:lol:

I like Barnes generally but yeah, that is gold! :D
Always thought there was something a bit off about you
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by jdogscoop »

Wilderbeast wrote:Tbf, BB is a better first five than Black. He doesn’t know the team though so whether he would perform better immediately is questionable.

Edit: Also, you’d think Rangi would want to capture this current purple patch for Black, who needs developing as it’s pretty clear BB isn’t committed to the blues.
I think it's questionable to say BB is a better first five than Black. I will say he's definitely a better fullback than Black, which is why I think MacDonald and co have the mix right at the moment.

Since 2017 there have been big question marks about Barrett's distribution and tactical kicking skills at the top level. Put simply, rushed defences have found him out and he's had few answers. That's ignoring his goalkicking, which is and always has been decidedly ropey.

Barrett pipe smokers like to refer to his two rapidly ageing player of the year awards which he received while playing at 10. Frankly they are irrelevant to today's discussion, especially as one was a bad joke. He is not that player, and neither are those who make up today's backline defences.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Zakar »

Worst thing about Covid is having to hear NH types give their opinion on SH rugby. It's neither sought nor valued.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Ali's Choice »

jdogscoop wrote:I think it's questionable to say BB is a better first five than Black. I will say he's definitely a better fullback than Black, which is why I think MacDonald and co have the mix right at the moment.

Since 2017 there have been big question marks about Barrett's distribution and tactical kicking skills at the top level. Put simply, rushed defences have found him out and he's had few answers. That's ignoring his goalkicking, which is and always has been decidedly ropey.

Barrett pipe smokers like to refer to his two rapidly ageing player of the year awards which he received while playing at 10. Frankly they are irrelevant to today's discussion, especially as one was a bad joke. He is not that player, and neither are those who make up today's backline defences.
I'd agree with all this.

I'd also just add the point that even in his pomp, BB's greatest asset was his speed. Sure he had phenomenal anticipation, was great under the high ball and had a brilliant attacking mindset, but his searing pace was what separated him from other players. I could be wrong, but I think it's pretty clear that he has lost pace. Time waits for no man, and the reality is that BB turns thirty next May. It's also a reality that he doesn't have enough other strings to his bow to counter losing his pace. Without his speed he's just another safe, skinny, white backline player who has to turn side-on to pass and has a wonky kicking game. If I was his manager I would be urgently negotiating for a big easy rugby payday.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Wilderbeast »

Questioning BB as a first five is one thing but to say Black is better is mad. Black hasn’t shown nearly enough for those claims yet.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Roadman »

Ali's Choice wrote:
jdogscoop wrote:I think it's questionable to say BB is a better first five than Black. I will say he's definitely a better fullback than Black, which is why I think MacDonald and co have the mix right at the moment.

Since 2017 there have been big question marks about Barrett's distribution and tactical kicking skills at the top level. Put simply, rushed defences have found him out and he's had few answers. That's ignoring his goalkicking, which is and always has been decidedly ropey.

Barrett pipe smokers like to refer to his two rapidly ageing player of the year awards which he received while playing at 10. Frankly they are irrelevant to today's discussion, especially as one was a bad joke. He is not that player, and neither are those who make up today's backline defences.
I'd agree with all this.

I'd also just add the point that even in his pomp, BB's greatest asset was his speed. Sure he had phenomenal anticipation, was great under the high ball and had a brilliant attacking mindset, but his searing pace was what separated him from other players. I could be wrong, but I think it's pretty clear that he has lost pace. Time waits for no man, and the reality is that BB turns thirty next May. It's also a reality that he doesn't have enough other strings to his bow to counter losing his pace. Without his speed he's just another safe, skinny, white backline player who has to turn side-on to pass and has a wonky kicking game. If I was his manager I would be urgently negotiating for a big easy rugby payday.
I don’t thing he has lost his speed. Remember he did the Bronco in the Covid lockdown in 4m 10 sec which I think was the quickest a rugby player has ever done it. Sam Wallace then got the current NZ 1500m ? champion to do it and he was only 5 or 6 seconds quicker. Perhaps he’s just missing his Wellington hair stylist.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Ellafan »

Has it occurred to any of you that no-one* gives a shit who is 5/8 for Auckland at this point?

[*excepting NZ internet warriors.]


Here is another topic for you to discuss:

"Has our PM completely fucked this up? Should we have just traded on, accepted there would be some casualties, achieved herd immunity?

Am I a fool for agreeing to the alarmist medical demands & trashing of the NZ economy for the next 15 years?"

Off you go.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Masterji »

So BB is one of the ones world best 10s and he is playing 2nd fiddle to a journeyman 10, albeit a decent journeyman. I am sure i am missing something.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by mr bungle »

Masterji wrote:So BB is one of the ones world best 10s and he is playing 2nd fiddle to a journeyman 10, albeit a decent journeyman. I am sure i am missing something.
You’re usually missing a fair bit when it comes to NZ rugby.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by jdogscoop »

mr bungle wrote:
Masterji wrote:So BB is one of the ones world best 10s and he is playing 2nd fiddle to a journeyman 10, albeit a decent journeyman. I am sure i am missing something.
You’re usually missing a fair bit when it comes to NZ rugby.
:nod:
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by jdogscoop »

Wilderbeast wrote:Questioning BB as a first five is one thing but to say Black is better is mad. Black hasn’t shown nearly enough for those claims yet.
Why waste this searing missive on us, mere PR posters?

You need to inform the Blues coaching staff, stat. Leon MacDonald and his team of highly qualified assistants need to be informed they have the wrong guy playing first five. Be sure to point out to them that the guy they need is currently starting at 15.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by jdogscoop »

Ali's Choice wrote:
jdogscoop wrote:I think it's questionable to say BB is a better first five than Black. I will say he's definitely a better fullback than Black, which is why I think MacDonald and co have the mix right at the moment.

Since 2017 there have been big question marks about Barrett's distribution and tactical kicking skills at the top level. Put simply, rushed defences have found him out and he's had few answers. That's ignoring his goalkicking, which is and always has been decidedly ropey.

Barrett pipe smokers like to refer to his two rapidly ageing player of the year awards which he received while playing at 10. Frankly they are irrelevant to today's discussion, especially as one was a bad joke. He is not that player, and neither are those who make up today's backline defences.
I'd agree with all this.

I'd also just add the point that even in his pomp, BB's greatest asset was his speed. Sure he had phenomenal anticipation, was great under the high ball and had a brilliant attacking mindset, but his searing pace was what separated him from other players. I could be wrong, but I think it's pretty clear that he has lost pace. Time waits for no man, and the reality is that BB turns thirty next May. It's also a reality that he doesn't have enough other strings to his bow to counter losing his pace. Without his speed he's just another safe, skinny, white backline player who has to turn side-on to pass and has a wonky kicking game. If I was his manager I would be urgently negotiating for a big easy rugby payday.
:nod:
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Auckman »

trapper wrote:I’m not sure that Rangi is going to take selection advice from Stuart fcuking Barnes.

This never gets old...

https://youtu.be/_XRGJpMJDUk

Yeah, he really knows his shit...
:lol: :lol: :lol:

I was at Eden Park that night. The crowd roared every time he made a mistake. Such a great night.
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Re: Stuart Barnes: Drop Otere Black and play Barrett at no.1

Post by Auckman »

Otere shouldn't be dropped but maybe Barrett should sub in at 10 earlier in the match. However, if they are going to get the most out of him at 15, they should work in some plays to get him into the game more.
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