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Ma'a Nonu

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O'Rothlain

Guest
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Is anyone else watching this year's Air New Zealand Cup (formerly the NPC)? I've been really impressed with Ma'a Nonu. With Tana Umaga stepping off of the All Blacks/International Scene, and with all the debate of who will fill his shoes, I really see Nonu as the one. He's been really impressive in my mind this season. He's been tutored by Umaga. They share a similar hairstyle (just a joke).
 
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Caledfwlch

Guest
ma'a is extremely explosive and strong, and he also is THE leading linebreaker in NZ rugby at the moment. i think the leading contenders for the 13 jersey would be nonu, conrad smith, muliaina(i hate tt idea), and toeava.

but toeava and smith need some more game time to prove themselves apt at that position
 
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nez

Guest
i think umaga's replacement relies heavily on who is playing inside centre. I would like to think that the centre partnership needs a 'playmaker' and a 'gamebreaker' working together, i.e. inside centres: mcallister = gamebreaker, whereas mauger = playmaker. outside centres: smith = playmaker, whereas nonu = gamebreaker. My point is playing two gamebreakers may lack distributing where two playmakers might lack crashball, linebreaking abilities.

having said this, i don't know what to really classify muliaina and toeava as..
 
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cwans

Guest
Muliana and Toeava I'd probably class as 'versatile'... can do a bit of crash bashing, and distribute, but not extremely good at them.

Nonu is pure power, I don't think he'll ever be a playmaker. He just needs to work on his defence, his line is a bit off at crucial times, especially widening out, which leaks a lot of opposition centre-ish tries.

I for one want to see Mils at centre, he can develop a lethal and also STABLE backline with Mauger there. We need stability with flair, not the OTHER way around.

Umaga got outplayed by Kahui of the Waikato last ANZ cup. Keep an eye out for this 21 yr old. Lol.
 
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AndyMcNabFAN

Guest
Nonu is a great player, but has had many ups and downs in his career thus far. On a good day, he can be the best no.13 in the world, but on a bad day, he can loose games for teams. Thats a risk if you ask me...

BUT, on current form, i think he and Mauger will play bloody well together in the midfield, and will cause alot of problems for any team.
 
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woosaah

Guest
i dont like him in the midfield, he doesnt distribute the ball, ever. he is good on the wing, just needs to work on the defense.

if you are playing against him you should know he doesnt pass and just go for the tackle, he is strong but if you shut him down fast you shouldnt have any problem with him
 
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phoenix

Guest
Nonu has very average defense. Conrad Smith will take the #13 jersey for the AB's i hope
 
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cwans

Guest
Ma'a Nonu got found out in defence against Waikato during the Lions Mooloos game. Coach had to shift him to the wing and put Umaga there for the rest of the match.

This is provincial level, and he was defending a rookie really at center in Kahui. Either Kahui is a great center, or I prefer to think that Nonu is a chocker at defence.
 
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O'Rothlain

Guest
I was wondering why they switched them up. I just assumed it was to get Umaga in the match.
 
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ShowMe

Guest
I thought the switch was injury forced with ellison subbed, cory jane dropped back to cover fullback, nonu shifted out to wing and umaga to centre.

I reckon nonu shouldnt be on the wing at all, he doesnt have the pace for that position especially with the speed merchants running around not just in our country but in world rugby these days....Hes got explosive acceleration over the first 10 metres but after that hes vulnerable and sprinters will track him down easily not to mention when on defence.

Even though this will never happen, I rekon McAllister is the answer at centre. I reckon hes the closest to what weve been used to with umaga at centre with the right balance of explosiveness and playmaker to parter mauger.
But for the short term - as in the world cup next year...muliaina looks to be the most practical option. Hes proven himself more than any other centre-hopeful after umagas departure...
This ofcourse not eventuating if umaga comes out of international retirement answering graham henrys desperate, passionate SOS for one last hurrah! bahaha...dreams are for free!
 
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cwans

Guest
If Gregan, Mortlock, Larkham can hack it into 2007 world cup so can Umaga. So anything's possible Showme. lol.

This is all a big conspiracy for Umaga to play in France this year to SPY on them, figure out the environment before his 'surprise' inclusion next year as our ultimate secret weapon.

He is showing average form now to hide it.

Seriously tho, Mils is still way better at 15. He is 'stable' at centre, but he is so dynamic at fullback cp to gay Macdonald, who is showing his average form atm.

We need a bolter at center. Tuituvake, Kahui, Conrad...

What about Conrad and Luke combination. Luke is definitely playing his best at 12 where he doesn't get the urge to kick aimlessly so much.
 
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Caledfwlch

Guest
i think mils is ok atm becos he hasnt made any mistakes./ just out of curiosity. how would guys feel about rua tipoki putting on the black 13 jumper
 
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nez

Guest
hmmm not to hot on tipoki, not now, i like cwans suggestion of the mcallister/smith combo, mcallister being nice and dynamic and smith being the calming influence. Although that leaves mauger old in the cold.
 
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Caledfwlch

Guest
mauger is still the better 12 overall. why dont the ABs try out mcalister at 13
 
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ShowMe

Guest
If Gregan, Mortlock, Larkham can hack it into 2007 world cup so can Umaga. So anything's possible Showme. lol.

This is all a big conspiracy for Umaga to play in France this year to SPY on them, figure out the environment before his 'surprise' inclusion next year as our ultimate secret weapon.

He is showing average form now to hide it.

Seriously tho, Mils is still way better at 15. He is 'stable' at centre, but he is so dynamic at fullback cp to gay Macdonald, who is showing his average form atm.

We need a bolter at center. Tuituvake, Kahui, Conrad...

What about Conrad and Luke combination. Luke is definitely playing his best at 12 where he doesn't get the urge to kick aimlessly so much.
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Tuitavake was in serious consideration not long ago for higher honours so maybe its just a matter of time for him, havent seen enough of kahui in that position for him to make a serious claim, and ive never been a fan of conrad smith, with that said everytime he gets a chance in black, im always hopeful.

i think mils is ok atm becos he hasnt made any mistakes./ just out of curiosity. how would guys feel about rua tipoki putting on the black 13 jumper
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Yeah continue with mils now that the WC is just around the corner, although i have a feeling henry may just spring a few more surprises before then.
Tipoki AB centre? Hmmm hes never been mentioned by the media, fans or coaches so i dont think he could even be considered as an outside chance. For me, although hes playing some good rugby, been around the scene for a bit so has experience and has some nice touches to his game...i dont think hes what the selectors are looking for in the type of centre they want to fit into the type of game they wanna play.
 
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Ripper

Guest
Tipoki won't get the All Black jersey because he's too old and it's too late to be experimenting, he always gets suspended atleast once a year and he's a ballhog.
 
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