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Stormers Coach Reveals How To Exploit Tactics Of Irish Provinces

Stormers Coach Reveals How To Exploit Tactics Of Irish Provinces
By Colman Stanley Updated

The Stormers' head coach John Dobson was a guest on The Rugby Pod this week, and brought up interesting points about the tactics and structures of some of the Northern Hemisphere sides and the Irish provinces.

When chatting about his team's expansive style of play, which is contrary to the atypical South African way, he brought up a good half of rugby his side had against Munster early in the season.

The Stormers scored two wonderful early tries in that match and lead 15-0, but would end up 'getting pumped' 34-18. However, the good start was enough to show Dobson that if they could disrupt or 'create chaos' against these 'system based multi-phase' teams, then there were points to be had.

"I think we went on tour last year with and all the South African teams struggled," said the Stormers coach. "But we actually played a really good half against Munster when they were well-loaded in the second game on tour and we ended up getting pumped.

"We sort of saw as we started off-loading land I just feel like these teams, and I mean this with respect because they do vary within in the teams, but a lot of these teams are system based multi-phase teams, and we can't get our hands on the ball. But if we can get them to exit and create chaos, and we've got natural talent whether that's Warrick Gelant with us.

2 October 2021; Evan Roos of DHL Stormers in action against Rory Scannell and Ben Healy of Munster during the United Rugby Championship match between Munster and DHL Stormers at Thomond Park in Limerick. Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

"But just seeing in the URC, they are very very very system based, both on defence which is passive but really organised and in attack they are multi-phase. And if you can turn it over or get them into an exit cycle there's real opportunity to create magic."

It is an interesting take from Dobson, who after guiding his side to the URC final, is definitely a voice to be taken seriously when it relates to such matters.

Leinster also employ multi-phase tactics, and their recent losses to La Rochelle and the Bulls showed that they had been 'figured out' to some extent, after both sides successfully disrupted their structures. Given this, it certainly looks like Irish sides need to find ways to adapt when this 'chaos', as Dobson puts it, is created.

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