The drinks are on the city of Cape Town Dane Coles…

Hurricane hooker Dane Coles’ match winning try against the Chiefs  has set-up a potential Super 15 home final for the Stormers.

This is assuming the Stormers can avoid choking in front of their home fans by defeating the Rebels, something that Stirling ‘Hurt Locker’ Mortlock will be trying his very best to avoid in his last match before retiring and having himself  cryogenically frozen.

Following the match, Coles is said to have received news that he is to be presented with the ‘Keys to the City’ by the Mayor of Cape Town, though it was later confirmed by the Mayor’s Office that it is in fact the keys to his daughter’s Citi Golf, who recently had her licence suspended for driving through a shopping mall at over 30mph.

In addition to this, the Hurricane player has apparently been gifted an open bar tab at pubs across the city as well as an offer of a home cooked sit-down meal at Stormer’s coach Allister Coetzee’s house.

Coles commented:  “I’m stoked with the news…Citi Golf’s are solid pieces of machinery and I look forward to taking the boys out for a free round next time we’re in Cape Town…though I may pass on the dinner offer!”

Dane Coles waves goodbye to his Ford sponsorship deal following his open praise of the Citi Golf range.

Julius Malema – a contender for Bok coach?

With the news that Nick Mallet’s contract to coach Italy will not be renewed after the World Cup, it is only natural to begin the piñata bashing festival known as the debate over and selection process of picking the new Bok coach.

So here are some early thoughts on names that are sure to be thrown into the hat for speculation:

Heyneke Meyer

Heyneke is certainly due his turn. After starting with a Bulls team that began as the laughing stock of the Super rugby tournament (they went winless for an entire season) he turned the franchise’s fortunes around to the point of becoming the first Saffer coach to lift the Super Rugby trophy. In 2007 under his guidance the Bulls played a brand of rugby more akin to the kind of force of nature you see in movies about Mayan apocalypses. His reward? In true SA rugby style the man with buckets of coaching talent got shafted and left for colder shores up north. Despite his credentials I fear if he does get picked we may see a return of Liefling and a strategy built on two principles – eff em up front and non-stop drop kicks.

Allister Coetzee

Certainly the cuddliest coaching option out there. I can see a whole range of stuffed toys made in Coetzee’s likeness selling like hot-cakes at the local Engen. A solid candidate but until his WP/Stormers team actually lift silverware questions around delivery in big games will remain. Unfortunately winning a world cup as an assistant coach doesn’t get you over the finish line.

John Mitchell

With possibly the angriest looking face he is certainly physically qualified to be a test rugby coach. Although he started off well with coaching the Lions, the Ellis Park shambles that has been the Lions 2011 Super 15 season so far must have seriously dented his chances. SA Rugby’s love affair with anything Ozzie or Kiwi since Eddie Jones’ stint with the Boks might count in his favour.

Jake White

Impressive coaching record (who among us can wear a World Cup winner’s medal out on a first date?), but famously burned some bridges with top brass at SA Rugby. Taking up a position at the Brumbies most likely puts him out of the running. Those Aussie dollars have strengthened mightily since the financial crisis began.

Nick Mallett

Given that Nick will be out of a job post-World Cup he could be in theory be in the running. I suspect neither party will be keen on renewing the tortured marriage given that he has given the middle finger to South African rugby administrators not once, but twice – first as a player during the bad old days than as a coach by criticizing the ticketing prices for games.

Julius Malema

With South African politicians penchant for turning the bok team into a way of dividing rather than uniting the nation what better way for the clowns who call themselves administrators to upset the conservatives? Hell, they could really score some points here with a “political appointment”. After he succeeds in shutting down Twitter he can always move on to trying to shut down those pesky Aussie rugby blogs.

It’s all going 2003-style pear-shaped again

Oh dear.  This is starting to seem all too familiar.

The Bulls got themselves a “to nothing” ass-whooping in Christchurch. The Cheetahs turned up empty handed after a brave but outgunned performance in Kiwiland.  The Stormers looked inept and brainless throughout their match against the Reds. The only SA win of the weekend came from an SA vs SA encounter which nobody from this site could bear to watch.  The Lions and the Cheetahs are firmly dwelling in the basement of the combined Super Rugby log.  I can hear Maroon 5 playing in the background, wait a second… is this 2003?

Make it stop... I can't relive 2003. Please no. The horror... the horror...

Ladies and gents, it’s all going pear-shaped again. And when I say pear-shaped, I don’t mean the kind of “some forgot to record Curb Your Enthusiam” style pear-shaped.  I am talking Nickelback on the radio and Rudolph Straeuli in the Bok coaching blazer kind of pear-shaped.

According to Wikipedia, 2003 was South African rugby’s “lowest point in history”. I had to rely on Wikipedia for this fact, because after 2003’s rugby season I had a medical procedure done to have all my Springbok memories of 2003 erased.  Sh*t.

This is starting to feel very scary in a world cup year.  Maybe I am over-reacting.  But  the performances were dismal this weekend and not the kind of stuff that fills you with hope that having skottle braais at 4 am in the morning will be worth it come World Cup time.

Even the most optimistic Bulls fan would have planned a visit to the optometrist rather than face the music of watching his team play away at Christchurch.  Geez… it was still the 1990s when any Saffer fan last had the courage to watch his team playing away at Christchurch.  And yes, we all expect the Cheetahs to lose overseas (it’s a bit of a rite of passage, like watching the Cubs getting blown out of the post-season or having your matric dance end in tears after you discover Southern Comfort); but even Big Daddy Rugby didn’t expect the load of tripe dished up by the Stormers at Newlands.

Would somebody tell the Stormers that if you launch fifteen up and unders in a row on the Red’s back three and they punishing you each time that it’s probably time to stop kicking the ball away? On Saturday it seemed that Allister Coetzee had taken leave of absence and the top South African team was being coached by Field Marshall Hague from Blackadder Season 4.

Big Daddy is sounding the alarm bells.  We had better get this train wreck sorted out in a hurry. There is too much talent in South African rugby for us to have a repeat of 2003.

Allister Coetzee gets a rough deal

If you live in Cape Town you’ve probably been subjected to the intolerable whinging this week on radio stations and newspapers about the fact that the Stormers have gone two games at home without scoring a try. I am exempting Supersport from this old media smackdown, only through ignorance – I’ve been unwilling to suffer through the tripe that Supersport dishes up as post match “expert opinion” this year. One can only imagine Kobus Wiese and Bobby Skinstad making frequent mention of the phrases “who wanted it the most out there” and “a lack of passion”.

Well as a moderately loyal and appropriately jaded Stormers supporter I will not stand for the media bashing a coach who has gone three matches undefeated. What do these journos want? A bloody primary school game where everyone in the team gets to score a try so as not to feel left out? A 55-50 humdinger?

People seem to forget that try-fests devalue the significance of moments of brilliance. This the reason why no-one gives a crap about the NBA. It is boring as hell to watch a team score at one end followed by the opposing team scoring at the other end ten seconds later (please don’t point out the success of T20 cricket – I can’t explain it either).

Poor old Allister Coetzee is merely grinding home the lesson we all should have learned in our first year of rugby. Namely, that a win is a win is a win. And win ugly if you have to (for the moment let’s leave out that second SA rugby rule, i.e. if you can’t win the game, at least win the fight). The Stormers have won ugly and Coetzee deserves praise for drawing blood out of stones in his first three matches.

My advice to Allister is to shrug off the media criticism and start doing your best Jack Nicholson impersonation for the next time you are in front of a mic. I’d love to see Allister channeling Jack in A Few Good Men the next time he is on Boots and All:

I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very sporting victories I provide, then questions the manner in which I provide it! I’d rather you just said thank you and went on your way. Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a rugby ball and get on the field. Either way, I don’t give a damn what you think you’re entitled to!

The Tao of Kitch Christie

Kitch Christie, who coached a ragtag Bok team in the mid 1990s will always be remembered as a legend in Springbok history.  He  was the only modern Bok coach to retire undefeated, he maintained a 100% win record which included the 1995 World Cup.  This tale of an encounter between a young Stormers coach and the sage Kitch Christie, comes to us from Chuang Tzu, who famously coached the Wu Wei sevens rugby team under the Chou dynasty.

Allister Coetzee spoke to Kitch Christie saying “I have a big tree, which people call useless. Its trunk is so knotted, no carpenter could work on it, while its branches are too twisted to use a square or a compass upon. So although it is close to the road, no carpenter would look at it. Now Kitch your words are like this, too big and no use, therefore everyone ignores them.”

Kitch Christie replied, “Allister, have you never seen a wild cat or a weasel?. It lies there crouching and waiting, east and west it leaps out not afraid of going high or low, until it is caught in a trap and dies in a net. Yet again there is the yak, vast like a cloud in heaven. It is big, but cannot use this fact to catch rats. Now you Allister, have a large tree and don’t know how to use it, so why not plant it in the middle of nowhere, where you can go to wander or fall asleep under its shade? No axe under heaven will attack it, nor shorten its days, for something useless will never be disturbed.”

Theres a lesson in there somewhere for the Stormers this weekend.