Not for the first time this year a New Zealand coach has slammed the Stormers for their ‘lack of ambition’.
Scott Hansen, the Sunwolves assistant coach (defence), suggested the Stormers’ ponderous approach to the game will prevent them from making real progress.
The Stormers, minus the services of several injured Springboks, defeated the Tokyo-based Sunwolves 31-18 in front of a record low 8337 spectators at Newlands.
However, the Sunwolves denied their hosts an additional point – a late try by electric fullback Semisi Masirewa robbing the Stormers of a much-needed try-scoring bonus point.
Stormers coach Robbie Fleck suggested that winning was all that mattered and the lost bonus point is not a train smash.
However, just like Crusaders coach Scott Robertson did earlier in the season, Hansen suggested the Stormers need to revise their approach.
“I challenge the Stormers, to be honest,” Hansen said in his post-match media review.
“They will not achieve bonus points if they are going to slow the game up and lie on the ground.
“[That way] they won’t go forward in the competition.”
He inferred that the Stormers lacked the ambition to be more adventurous.
“When the tempo of the game was raised, at times, we felt the game was slowed down,” the Sunwolves coach said.
“We felt, at times, they had a chance to speed it up and they didn’t.”
Asked if the tactics would cost the Stormers down the road, his answer was blunt: “We will see!
“I am not saying they are not a good side.
“It was pretty obvious, at times, the game was being slowed down.”
Hansen added that in the last few games, when the Stormers desperately needed bonus points, didn’t get them.
The Stormers, who have just one try-scoring bonus point in 15 matches, host the Sharks at Newlands this coming Saturday – in a straight shootout for a play-off place.
The Sunwolves’ New Zealand-born flyhalf and skipper Hayden Parker was full of praise for his team, despite the defeat.
“We never gave up and played some good footy,” Parker said.
“I thought Semisi [Masirewa] was brilliant.”