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Coaching the coaches. - Australian Rugby league News
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globalrugbyleague - Thu, 29 Mar 2007 01:29:00 GMT
The GRL Phantom has tipped ``two winners'' in my coaching assessments so far in coaching the coaches this season.

This week I was inundated with tacticals requests from fans about this weekend’s clash between the Sharks and the new look Rabbitohs at Shark Park on Saturday.

Cronulla lost in controversial circumstances to the Gold Coast 18-16 on Monday night while the rejuvenated red and green machine thrashed a dreadful Eels outfit on Sunday at Telstra Stadium.

For Jason Taylor, this match affords his team the opportunity of becoming the first outfit from Redfern to win three games in a row since 1972. This record will mean a lot to that team.

As for the black, white and blue, this game is about solidifying Shark Park into a place where very few away teams travel back home with a win under their belt.

Strengths:

Cronulla:

I like the look of the Sharks this year.

New coach Ricky Stuart has ``schooled'' the Sharks well in three facets of play. They were the better team against the Titans and deserved to win in a tough game.

Firstly, the Sharks defensive line moves faster and there are few holes in it this year.

They ``multiple'' tackle well and slow down the opposition play the ball. In attack, Brett Kimmorley, Adam Dykes and elusive Brett Kearney, have plenty of room and space to move.

The Sharks are playing ``deeper'' in attack, throwing passes deeper to supports and using decoy runners.

Souths:

SIMPLICITY has been the key approach from Bunnies coach Jason Taylor.

Taylor uses a simple method of the forwards march the ball forward and to one side of the field then Joe Williams and Jeremy Smith in the halves throw long passes to supports with plenty of the field to attack with.

The Souths' defence has been stronger. There have been only a few holes in the line while the communication has been much better.

The club is also ``tightknit'' as the internal mutterings and problems inhouse have been solved .

The team in attack also plays with a freedom of expression eg: Nathan Merritt _ the sign of a happy team.

Weaknesses:

Cronulla:

Cronulla's biggest flaw in recent years has been defence inside their 10m grid. Note the Preston Campbell try for the Titans, he slid through a couple of ordinary tackles, the Sharks defenders have a tendency to ``sit and wait'' on the goal line and defend like statutes with their feet planted together.

Coach Stuart is working on this area.

Souths:

Souths' were a little loose around the play the ball against the Roosters and Parramatta. They do have big men who can be exploited by slick dummy-half runners.

Watch for Brett Kearney to try scooting at retreating defenders around the marker area.


COACHES:

Ricky Stuart:

Ricky Stuart: loves ``chess piece'' footy, he wants every pawn, rook, king and piece on the ``chessboard'' to be in correct alignment at all teams.

He is intense and expects high standard effort each week, both in attack with precision and set plays with the footy and commitment and few missed tackles in defence.

Jason Taylor:

Jason Taylor gets a kick out of letting the skills of his troops shine through, after they have stuck to the game plan.

The rookie NRL guru also encourages freedom of expression in attack and likes the flair players to use their skills he also communicates well with his team.

Verdict:

I like the Sharks at home by 6, Souths' flair versus Cronulla's methodical approach is the contrast to watch in this game. - Read More, Here