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Thread: New laws to alter destiny: Mitchell

  1. #1
    Immortal Contributor
    travelling_gerry's Avatar
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    Feb 2006
    Perth, Western Australia, Australia

    New laws to alter destiny: Mitchell

    February 08, 2008 AFTER two vastly different experiences with Super 14's new laws, Western Force coach John Mitchell is convinced they will play a major part in the destiny of the 2008 tournament.
    A trial game loss to the Crusaders was followed by an impressive 39-15 rout of Queensland in Perth Thursday night, with the Force on both sides of referee James Leckie's interpretations during a see-sawing first half.

    After conceding four successive infringements at stoppages before they had touched the ball, the Force had more penalties than points to their name before getting a grip on the game late in the first half.

    They then played the referee to perfection to stifle the Reds' ball and notch up six tries in a morale-boosting win ahead of a three-game road trip to South Africa.

    Mitchell said two trial games had brought two sharply differing interpretations by the official - and teams' responses to the ELV’s were clearly going to be vital in this year's competition.

    "It is going to be a key variable how they determine sanctions at the breakdown and the scrum ... we just hope the three countries are very consistent in their approach," Mitchell said.

    "Last week was a very tight contest, and tonight there was no leniency to the tackler off his feet and ruck formed.

    "We gave them the first four possessions and you are under the pump.

    "But when we got some possession, we got our game in order and owned onto the ball for long periods of time."

    Force skipper Nathan Sharpe said the unrelenting pace the new laws were bringing was the main difference being noted by the players.

    "Momentum is pretty big with the new rules, attacking teams certainly have the advantage and any infringement at the breakdown allows teams to get a roll on," Sharpe said.

    "We are one of the teams that have worked pretty hard on our endurance, so whilst we get more and more game fit the better we are going to be with these new rules.

    "It is going to take a little bit of adaptation by referees, players and spectators to get used to them.

    "It is definitely a lot faster."

    Matt Giteau was again the Force's driving Force, controlling the tempo and directly setting up two tries with clever work in front of a massed defence.

    Despite his superstar status in Perth and beyond, Force attacking coach John Mulvihill said the 25-year-old was working diligently to improve his game.

    "For the second time in a row Gits has run the game the way we wanted him to," Mulvihill said.

    "It was quite a mature performance in the ten jersey, we stuck to plan, he did a really good job there - but there are little areas he can get even better."

    Mitchell, however, was more enthused by the performance of his fringe players, with scrumhalf James Stannard chief amongst them with a try after replacing Matt Henjak.

    "This group has got a lot more depth and a lot more competition for places," Mitchell said.

    "The great thing with our program is that young men get a chance, whereas they might not get that in the east."


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  2. #2
    Immortal GIGS20's Avatar
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    Sep 2006
    Yep! I agree with that.

    although I don't think we got the better of the ref through changing our play last night so much as through the Touchie having a quiet word in the ref's ear....something like "can't you tell Blake's pulling the scrum down every chance he gets?"

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    C'mon the

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