Heyneke Meyer has previously spoken of playing ‘Northern Hemisphere rugby’, his description not mine, when playing in the Northern Hemisphere. After losing to Ireland last November, HM pointed to the Springboks not playing the correct rugby in wet conditions. He dropped Handre Pollard and played Pat Lambie for the rest of the tour at fly-half.
In the Rugby Championship after South Africa lost to Argentina, HM again said that South Africa was playing the wrong type of rugby. He blamed the fans for wanting the Springboks to play expansive rugby. Once again he dropped Handre Pollard and replaced him with Pat Lambie.
Then HM started studying weather patterns in the UK. So he must have had in mind that Pat Lambie plays ‘Northern Hemisphere rugby’. HM might have been undone by the weather as the first 3 weeks of the RWC 2015 were mild but dry. So after losing to Japan, Pat Lambie got dropped and Handre Pollard was put back into the team.
South African press have been shouting out that the Springboks are back to their best after beating an under-performing Samoa, having a good first half against Scotland and thrashing a second choice U.S.A team.
I’m not sure HM consulted his metorological analysis when selecting his team for the quarter-final Test against Wales. A quick check online tells me that there will be thick cloud with a probability of showers over London on Saturday 17th October. It has already been raining this week and the temperature is dropping as the UK heads deeper into Autumn and closer to Winter.
Not by my standards but the ones HM has made himself, is the selection of Handre Pollard ahead of Pat Lambie the right one? What happens if it rains? There are no excuses this time HM. If South Africa lose then they are heading home, some may have forgotten about the loss to Japan but that will only last as long as South Africa is winning.