What a week. Sunwolves with their first away win, and the SA conference producing all sorts of weird results. Plus the anticipated resting of the big name all blacks with some studs only getting 50 or less minutes.
Not a bad outing for our picks last week, DMck a little disappointing, but still a safe pick raking up 37 points. After we published team sheets came out, so hopefully you got a little bit of Etene Nanai-Seturo action, who really saved his weekend with that try literally just before he got yanked. Stevenson was mighty disappointing though, along with a few chiefs. Also point to note, Hemopo came good in a great way last week, here’s hoping Holloway does the same for the Tahs this week.
As ever, another week, another round of injuries. Keep your eyes on the casualty ward and on the #casualtyward hashtag on twitter for the lastest. As ever we’ll look at some of this injury replacements, as well as the upcoming games and who you want to be looking at moving on, and who you want to get into your squad.
Teams on a BYE: Stormers.
Teams with Tough Match-ups: Chiefs, Highlanders
Teams with Easy Match-ups: Blues (?), Waratahs, Sunwolves
The above is based on the strength of schedule from last season, so take it with a pinch of salt. As soon as we’ve finished round 4 and all teams have played at least 3 games we’ll update it for this season.
***Disclaimer: we put this together before all the team news is out, so of course, watch those starting line-ups***
1. BUY BEAST MODE – Laumape (Feastjuice & Wildcard)
2. BUY Feastjuice – Julian Montoya Wildcard – Hanro Liebenberg
3. Feastjuice – SELL Pieter-Steph Wildcard – BUY Richie Mo’Unga
SELL (DON’T TOUCH): So, we’re flipping it round this week, because we think the most important thing to get ahead of, is not the fact the Stormers are on a BYE this week, but that next week the Blues, Bulls AND Sharks are all going to be on bye. That’s a big week, and if you’ve found anything in the first 3 weeks it’s that it’s a squad game. Whilst I find it frustrating that I keep getting my bench and starters round the wrong way, at least if I’ve got a full bench I’m picking up points for the likes of Willemse and Gelant when they finally do something, even if it’s only half. So, we’ll focus on who to ditch and replace, with a view to covering the bye in 2 weeks. Obviously if you’ve got long term injured players sat there you need to get rid of, it goes without saying you ditch them first.
Bulls – Lood, clearly as the big guy is done for the season, see if you can switch him out now. $298k is a nice wedge in the bank, and 12% of you need to find some cover. Outside of that Gelant is the most owned Bulls player at 18%, but as he’s only $159k I’m not sure it’s prioritising getting rid of him as you probably can’t get any decent in to replace him.
Sharks – The top 3 owned Sharks players – Dan Du Preez (34%), Rob Du Preez (31%) and Angry Warthog (Akker 24%) – are too good in terms of their season potential to replace. However, I would look to ship out Beast (Mtawairira) who’s 8% owned and at $318k – that can basically let you buy two good props. The other’s are all single digit ownership and below $200k. The exception being Am, who at $213k is probably worth shipping on as well.
Blues – see the HOLD section below.
Stormers– right, I’m calling it, I think if you have options, the 37% of us that own Pieter-Steph can look at shipping him on. He did ok this week, but topping out at 25 is nothing special and I just feel the Stormers are playing above themselves, and his $268k salary could be better reinvested elsewhere
Others – I’m worried about those Lions. I think that that 22% that own Dyantyi would be better placed spending that $255k elsewhere. The forwards should still be in the points, but without the same go forward ball it’s hurting the backs, and also hurting Marx’s points.
I’m also a bit worried about the big man, Naholo. 3rd most expensive winger at $345k, benched this week, and only ticking over at 12 points a game. He’s probably not our priority to get rid of, but over the next 4 weeks he’s got 2 tough games and a bye, so he’s on the eject list right now.
Luke Jones is also on the sell watchlist. 11% of us liked the fact he was starting lock, but has some big play potential, however, he’s been coming off early, and with Coleman back is on the bench now. That’s a worry.
Injuries of note – Creevy and Petaia are done for some time. Only 4% of you own Petaia (I was looking at bringing him in this week), but 10% of you need to find someone to replace Creevy, who’s been ok so far this year.
HOLD (PAUSE): Blues – if you’ve held them this long, then hold onto those Blues players, despite them going into their BYE. There is potential for two of the poorer teams in super rugby to run up some points. Either that or it will descend into some sort of competition as to who can have the most handling errors, but either way keep hold of the under performing Reiko.
The other players I’m holding, despite pretty poor starts to Super Rugby, are Tupou. Don’t lose faith yet. He only needs one or two 25 yard scampers and he’ll blow the top off the prop market. Granted there are some good prop options out there, but his upside is too good to ignore.
BUY (ENGAGE): So as we mentioned at the top, it’s hard to play the match-up this week, with the Blues of next week as you’ll just stuff yourself, so I’m looking at swapping in players who’ll help me all season. I’d love to be recommending Hodgman here for the Blues, but it’s too short term unless you’ve got some sort of 32 man squad – if you have, we’d love to hear about it.
PR/HK – Montoya – this guy was getting great points from the bench, and exploded last week for 33 points. With Creevy gone you’ve got to think Montoya’s going to get some great game time, and I’m thinking this guy could be this years Riccitelli. Ship him in $188k, as a player that can cover two positions that you don’t really want to be wasting transfers on.
Flanker – There’s two standout guys here, Frizzell at 12% owned, and Schoeman at 6% owned. Now Frizzell is being rested this week, so you might want to hold fire, but I like the fact that Schoeman is involved in those lions rolling mauls. Whilst I don’t like the fact they can only cover one position, they’re too good not to try to get in. Schoeman at $149k is particularly appealing as you can get him in easier, without having to make two subs. The other man to keep an eye on is Hanro Liebenberg for the Bulls. Versatile playing, getting ok points, but starting at lock this week, so if he pops another 57 run metres like he did against the Jags in week 2, that’s worth 23 points on their own.
Lock – for those needing a Lood replacement, Dickson is back in the team this week, and has been a points machine. 1% owned at $142k but with 71 points in two games. Again I don’t like that he can only play lock, but if you have plenty of cover I’m liking him if you don’t already have Hemopo. Highlanders forwards are always good for plenty of tackles, and plenty of set-piece ball. Helu is also interesting because he’s a starting lock, but can cover flanker. Now I’m not jumping on him straight away as I’m a little more risk averse, but I’d recommend some of our more adventurous readers to add to the 7% that already have him, because if he has anymore games like he did against the Chiefs he’ll be dynamite.
SH – is a pretty well covered positions, with the big owned SHs – TJ, Genia, Weber – performing well so far. However, I like Sorovoi for the Reds, who’s only 2% owned, but if you need to make a change at SH this guy has plenty of upside and was great at the end of last season. Likes to make breaks, and more often than not the Reds will be chasing games.
Centre, Wing, Full-Back – the backs haven’t been as hardly hit as some of the big name forwards, but there’s a couple of names to note here. If you can somehow get in Laumape, and he doesn’t harm your squad balance, then I think he’s too dangerous to miss. That’s not an easy task with him being $337k. Most likely you made a call over him vs Pollard / Lam / Reiko etc… However, he’s going to be gunning for that inside centre spot, so I’m frantically trying to work out how I can accommodate him and join the 20% who already have him. The other guy who continues to impress is Gerhard van den Heever. He’s a big strong runner, is playing for a team that spread the ball, often chasing games. He’s at the more risky end of transfers, but the 5% that have taken the risk already have been richly rewarded.