Well the semi finals will be upon us in less than 5 days time and the Sharks have only got themselves to blame for not being there. Ten Points would have been more than enough to have ended in 1st place.
The Reds, Cheetahs and Crusaders are all games that the Sharks should have won. But leaving it to the last game and it was the best game of rugby the whole super 14 was too little to late. The Bulls however are in big trouble with both their top centers out of the game for Saturday.
Olivier is injured and JP (Idiot) Nel is banned for 4 weeks. Once again the Bulls show that the only way they know is dirty. To beat a team you need to beat the opposition. The Crusaders will exploit the midfield on Saturday and to say I won’t be sad to see the Bulls out is neither here nor there.
The first semi final is going to be the better of the two games. I think the Chiefs and the Hurricanes are playing the best rugby in the Super 14 and they technically should be playing in the Final. Picking a winner out these two will be hard. The Chiefs have home ground advantage, but the Canes have a better midfield and tight five.
I think however the Canes will pull this one off, for a home final against the Crusaders, to have a repeat of the Air New Zealand Cup last year. The rest of the South African sides ended badly. Stormers ended in 10th, the Lions in 12th and the Cheetahs stone last in 14th.
The fact that SARU wants to pull out of the Super 14 at the end of next year is understandable. There are only two teams that are actually worthy of play in the Super 14 the Bulls and Sharks. SANZA want to include more teams to expand the tournament to bring in more money.
They do however want to change the timing of the tournament and this will not suit SARU as they don’t want to undermine the Currie Cup. The facts are simple; we have a poor record in Super Rugby.
Only the Lions and the Bulls have ever won it since 1996. The Cheetah’s and the Lions just don’t stand up to the competition. The Queensland Reds are in the same boat as they have been very poor over the last 5 seasons. Maybe what we should be doing is reducing the tournament to the top 12 sides in SANZA with the top two teams qualifying for home semi finals and team 3 to 6 play off in a quarter final before the winners take on teams 1 and 2.
This might spice up the competition and give some teams the inspiration they need to play harder for that semi final position. The fact that the top 2 sides get an extra weeks rest will work wonders for resting their tiered bodies for those big semi finals. The soccer season in South Africa is over and congratulations must go to Gavin Hunt’s Super Sort United for clinching their second championship in a row.
Pirates and Chiefs came second and third respectively. In England Manchester United won their 3rd title in a row and have equaled Liverpool’s 18 titles. If anybody had any doubt about whom, the best football side is in the world look no further than the Red Devils. Liverpool will end 2nd with Chelsea 3rd and Arsenal 4th.
Who will be relegated is still close and we will know by this time next week. In F-1 it looks like the idiots that run F-1 is about to through the greatest motorsport championship on the planet into complete turmoil.
They want to cap the testing and operational budget at 40 million pounds. Ferrari and Renault said that they will pull out of F-1, Ferrari is F-1 over 40% off all fans that go to the European race are Ferrari fanatics and the just over 30% in the rest of the world. As it is the gate takings are down because to the world economic climate.
BMW and Toyota and also started to make waves because they recon that reducing research and development at F-1 level will increase it for their normal day to day R&D. Frankly I would not watch a F-1 race without Ferrari, I would not care. It would be like England playing France in a world Cup Rugby Final.
The IPL is moving towards the Finals and the Deli Daredevils, Chennai Super Kings, Royal Challenges and Deccan Charges look like the teams that will make it to the play offs. The final will be played up in Jo’burg and if the weather is anything like it was in Bloemfontein on Sunday then they are going to be in for a though time.
The cricket better be hot. Good luck to all of you that will be running from PMB to Durban on Sunday. I hopefully will be joining you next year in the 2010 Comrades to do my first up run. I will be watching with a cold beer in hand and holding thumbs.
Enjoy it. Cheers till next week. OneTime.