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Thread: Force hunt Springboks playmaker Derick Hougaard

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    Veteran mudskipper's Avatar
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    Arrow Force hunt Springboks playmaker Derick Hougaard

    Springboks playmaker Derick Hougaard in line to be Matt Giteau's replacement
    Bret Harris | April 29, 2009

    DERICK Hougaard made his Test debut for South Africa against Uruguay at Subiaco Oval during the 2003 World Cup and, if Western Force has its way, the ground could become his permanent base next year.

    The Force is believed to be chasing Hougaard as a marquee import to replace Canberra-bound Matt Giteau next year.

    Hougaard, who played 43 Super rugby games for the Bulls and eight Tests for the Springboks, is playing for English club Leicester.

    Apart from his playmaking skills, Hougaard is also an excellent goal-kicker, having scored 161 points in 14 matches in the Bulls' Super 14 title-winning season in 2007.

    The Force had previously talked to another South African five-eighth, Stormers No10 Peter Grant, as part of its search for a replacement for Giteau.

    It is imperative the Force recruits a dominant five-eighth, particularly if utility back James O'Connor follows Giteau to the Brumbies.

    Even if O'Connor stayed in Perth, the Force would rather play him at inside centre or fullback than five-eighth at this early stage of his career.

    The Force is expected to receive a boost with the re-signing of Wallabies number eight Richard Brown, who had been chased by the other three Australian teams - Brumbies, NSW Waratahs and Queensland Reds.

    And the Force looks set to be boosted by the recruitment of NSW halfback Brett Sheehan and second-rower Will Caldwell, who are seriously considering competitive offers from the west.

    Sheehan is the type of physical halfback that Force coach John Mitchell likes, while Caldwell, a quiet achiever at the Waratahs, would add experience to the tight five.

    The arrival of Sheehan in Perth would most likely see the departure of Josh Valentine, who may attract interest in Canberra.

    The Force needs to rebuild its roster following the impending departure of Giteau, fullback Drew Mitchell, winger Scott Staniforth, inside centre Junior Pelesasa, tighthead prop Ben Castle and backrower Taimati Horua.

    There are fears a mass exodus of players could cause the Force to fall apart.

    But if it can sign players such as Brown, Sheehan and Caldwell, it will give the Force confidence.

    Mitchell and the starting XV flew out of Perth yesterday for the Force's two-game tour of South Africa where it will look to continue its unlikley bid for a place in the play-offs.

    A round of upsets last weekend has left the Force in sixth place on the table with 28 points, just three fewer than the fourth-placed Sharks.

    The Reds' upset win against the Blues and the Cheetahs' surprise victory over the Crusaders has certainly helped the Force's play-off chances.

    The Force has won three of its past four games, including a record 55-14 win against the Lions in Perth last Friday.

    If the Force can maintain its momentum in South Africa against the Bulls and Stormers, it could potentially secure a semi-final spot with a home win against the Highlanders in the last round.

    "The rugby gods were pretty good to us on the weekend, which is unusual," Mitchell said.

    "But nothing has changed for us. We've just got to keep ourselves alive.

    "I guess it is very much a must-win scenario from now on. That's just the way the competition has panned out and I guess we are not the only team in that situation.

    "We've got to win. It's as simple as that. Nothing changes.

    "We'll continue to be attack-focused in our approach. We've enjoyed seeing the guys play some super rugby over the last few weeks."

    Brown, who missed the Force's win against the Lions with an ankle injury, has been included in the 26-man party.

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au...015656,00.html

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    Legend Contributor blueandblack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mudskipper View Post
    ...

    if Western Force has its way, the ground could become his permanent base next year.
    ...

    I donut think so. Try MES.

    Stupid writer.

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    It will be interesting to see what future personnel changes will affect Brett Harris' ability to write on inside leaks.

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    Champion Rex Messup's Avatar
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    Hougard is the King of 10 man rugby. He will bring us the hoist and the droppie. Keep looking

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    Apprentice Homer's Avatar
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    Valo over Sheehan any day, better pass and kick. Will Caldwell would be a good addition to Sharpie and Kockings with Wykes given good time at Blindside. Pack is starting to look big.

    Fairbrother/Dunning
    ????
    Cowan/hardy
    Sharpe
    Caldwell
    Wykes/Hodgson
    Brown
    Pocock

    Agree about Hougard being 10 man rugby personality. Even th Bulls punted him so they could pay expansive rugby. However if JOC is at inside centre then we have good options to mix it up.

    OUtside depth is looking thin with Spanna and Mitchell leaving. Cummins and Shep are good but no real top shelf replacements.

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    Immortal GIGS20's Avatar
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    If we can retain O'Connor, Hougaard wouldn't be so bad, There's plenty of running option with Rabbit.

    Hougaard has a killer boot, and tactical kicking has been the biggest disappointment of 2009.

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    C'mon the

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    Veteran zimeric's Avatar
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    Cummins will be more than adequate... and Sheps IS Top Shelf at least better than Mitchell.
    We also have DHP who has been CHOMPING to get onto the park this year! he played really well in the warm ups, just bitter sweet that we have had relatively few injuries that may have created an opening for him to break into the side. (touch wood)


    Hougaard is handy... its my humble opinion that the kick chase and drop kick ( so called 10 man rugby) is a product of the coaching and game plan and not the individual skillsets of the players...
    Ive seen the Force do it all too often in the past and ive also seen the Wallabies try it last year to their detriment!.. to say he cannot play our style of rugby is a bit premature...
    I suspect your true feelings are that we should be recruiting Dan Carter or MCallister etc ... guys its not going to happen, Perth is considered a backwater and untill we lift that trophy none of those big names will want to come here to play.

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    Player stejwill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mudskipper View Post
    Springboks playmaker Derick Hougaard in line to be Matt Giteau's replacement
    Bret Harris | April 29, 2009

    The Force is expected to receive a boost with the re-signing of Wallabies number eight Richard Brown, who had been chased by the other three Australian teams - Brumbies, NSW Waratahs and Queensland Reds.

    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au...015656,00.html
    Does he know something I don't or have I been on another planet recently. Has Richard Brown re-signed?

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    Veteran Swee_82's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stejwill View Post
    Does he know something I don't or have I been on another planet recently. Has Richard Brown re-signed?
    The key word in that sentence is 'expected' I think, allows a degree of plausible deniability, but if he 'expects' that with good reason, then Woo!

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    Champion Contributor sandgroperrugby's Avatar
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    Expected being the operative word in that statement.
    I was hoping for some good news before the team flew out to the republic this week on the back of the good win at home.

    But alas no I remain disillusioned and becoming annoyed at reading ambiguous articles on the retention and recruitment of Force players. What is there, only three weeks remaining before the contracts have to be finalised or can they extend into the finals. This does not take into account the outside super 14 recruitment that could happen (Castle for example).

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    Don't hold your breath - when the organisation itself is saying it will be running in the red for the next three years and may even be going tits up, I wouldn't be rushing pen to paper either...

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    Player The Ethicist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zimeric View Post

    Hougaard is handy... its my humble opinion that the kick chase and drop kick ( so called 10 man rugby) is a product of the coaching and game plan and not the individual skillsets of the players...
    Ive seen the Force do it all too often in the past and ive also seen the Wallabies try it last year to their detriment!.. to say he cannot play our style of rugby is a bit premature...
    I suspect your true feelings are that we should be recruiting Dan Carter or MCallister etc ... guys its not going to happen, Perth is considered a backwater and untill we lift that trophy none of those big names will want to come here to play.
    Coaching does have a lot to do with style. A rugby player is partly a product of rugby instinct. Hougard isn't particularly robust. His first option is and always will be to kick it when under pressure. I always felt he was a weakness for the Bulls

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    Champion lara93's Avatar
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    hougaard was a good player until he went to the bulls
    they made him kick everything but if he comes here he could become a good ten but i dunno i wouldnt want to risk it, could be a complete flop or it could be a winner

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    ďLet me put it this way, A Springbok team contains Afrikaners, Englishmen, coloureds and blacks. It has parochial foes in Bulls, Sharks, Stormers, Cheetahs and Lions. It is a recipe for war! Yet in all the years of John Smitís captaincy, there has never been one unhappy customer, not one voice of rebellion against his leadership. He is the glue that holds the Springboks together. The man is a legend!Ē- Jake White

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    Champion Contributor sandgroperrugby's Avatar
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    Has anyone seen how he has performed whilst playing for Leicester Tigers?? This may provide a better and more current indication of his current playing style.

    On the Leicester Tigers web site it shows that he has scored 98 points from 13 games whilst only playing 671 minutes out of a possible 1040 minutes as he has shared the 10 poisiton with Toby Flood. That score sheet is pretty good but doesnt show anything other than he is good with the boot!!

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    The club has made approaches to some of the highest-profile five-eighths in world rugby in recent weeks, all to no avail.

    Leicester-based Springboks No.10 Derick Hougaard knocked them back, as did All Blacks playmaker Nick Evans, now playing with Harlequins, while dual US World Cup five-eighth Mike Hercus - now playing with the Sunshine Coast Stingrays in the QRU's Premier Rugby competition - and Australian-born former Scotland five-eighth Dan Parks, dropped by Glasgow this week after he was arrested on suspicion of drink-driving, were considered but rejected.
    It's not happening.....thank God for that

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