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Coaching The Coaches - Australian Rugby league News
globalrugbyleague - Thu, 28 Jun 2007 22:02:00 GMT
When Newcastle and Souths tackle each other on Friday night, this will be the first time coaches Brian Smith and Jason Taylor have opposed each other.

They worked together for several years at Parramatta and Taylor took over in round nine last season after Smith abdicated.



They have no Danny Buderus and Kurt Gidley or Steve Simpson - their three best players this week because of State or Origin duties.

Buderus is the number three player in the game behind Johnathan Thurston and Darren Lockyer and is a proven champion.

The Knights work well in attack with a short passing game on the edges of the field.

This tactic will bother Souths as they have plenty of big men who don't defend well laterally.

Dean Widders, a former Eels backrower and player coached by Smith will be exploited.

In attack Luke Walsh and Jarrod Mullen combine well with a varied passing game - short and long - depending on where the defence is short.


The Knights are missing their big three and will miss their guile around the rucks and to steady the ship when under pressure.

The Knights' young players every few weeks put in one of those games. With so many young players in the NRL these days this one of the main reasons for inconsistent form.

Young players some weeks mentally and physically don't ``back up'' and handle the grind.

This comes with experience


Tough defence, willingness to compete and a never say die attitude.

Jeremy Smith is playing well at half and has taken pressure off the forwards having to do all the hard yakka.

The Smith and Ben Rogers halves combination has proved fluent and resourceful in recent weeks.

Roy Asotasi has hit career best form and his workrate and effort has been outstanding this year.

Nathan Merritt and David Peachey are quality attackers in the backline and Nigel Vagana, while not as sharp as in previous years, is still quick enough to make the half break.


They can often lack variety and inability to score tries.

Souths' lack ball players in the forwards, have a tendency to dive the ball at times and play the ball too slow inside an opposition quarter line when attacking.

Jason Taylor prepares his team well and has found it hard to get the right balance between attack and defence.


Knights by four in a tight game with the experienced mentor Smith to get the nod of his former apprentice Taylor.

Ironically both Smith and Taylor were halfbacks and do think similarly on footy in attack, especially the way they coach the halves. - Read More, Here