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Forsyth Barr Stadium's Kicking Woes What to Blame? 4 views 1 Comments
18 September 2012 by The Swede Eaters
 
Connected with: Wiki Player Morne Steyn, Aaron Cruden

Goalkicing woes at Dunedin's Forsyth Barr Stadium have got me wondering if there really is a problem with aerodynamics, technique, ventilation, the ball or are these just excuses? Scotty Donaldson looks at the issue.

The statistics don't lie, top level rugby goal kickers struggle to kick goals at the indoor Forsyth Barr Stadium, with world class goalkickers like Jonny Wilkinson and Morne Steyn struggling in recent times, but what is to blame? How did Morne Steyn, Francois Steyn and Aaron Cruden missed ten kicks between them when the All Blacks hosted the Springboks at Forsyth Barr Stadium in the Rugby Championship 2012 on Saturday? Why did kickers only convert 54 percent of their shots during the Rugby World Cup 2011 games at the stadium and only 65 percent during the Super Rugby 2012 season?

Wellington scientist, Brian Wilkins who is an expert in the effects a swinging cricket ball, thinks it is technique which combined with the strange ventilation breezes at floor and roof level of the stadium causing a problem rather than the ball.

Do you remember the Adidas pig or lemon which All Blacks goalkicker Andrew Mehrtens complained about in 2002? Adidas make great footballs, but have always struggled with rugby balls. In my opinion, the reason for the ball being a problem would more be that overseas kickers are used to the Gilbert ball, although the Rugby World Cup balls were made by Gilbert and they were also prone to swinging for Jonny Wilkinson last year where he missed five goals in a row against Argentina, so there goes that theory, although the ball is only to blame in the sense that it is a different ball to what the kickers are used to. In my view, both the Gilbert and Adidas appear to swing unusually through the air, so changing the ball wouldn't fix the problem, although one may swing more than the other, but this is unproven.

I think that Brian Wilkins has a great point with his Magnus/Robins theory. The more effective goalkickers who succeed at Forsyth Barr Stadium like Otago's Hayden Parker, have a more front on action kicking straight and low through the middle of the ball compared with the more traditional round the corner kickers like Morne Steyn and Jonny Wilkinson. I wonder how rugby league star Johnathan Thurston would go at Forsyth Barr Stadium, given how he really kicks around the ball to hook it most of the time. I wonder if there is almost a need to return to the toe hacking days where kickers kicked the ball front on using their toe? This would prevent the ball swinging so much.

I also think the strange breezes caused by a necessity to grow grass at the Forsyth Barr Stadium and ventilation could affect the ball trajectory, but only when it reaches a certain height and this affect on the ball could be nullified by improved technique. Kicking the ball low and hard is probably the way to go as it avoides being blown or swinging off course.

What do you blame for the poor goalkicking at Forsyth Barr Stadium? Is it technique, the ball, ventilation breezes or are these goalkickers just making excuses?  Good goalkickers should be able to adjust!

Read the full story here

http://www.superrugbytips.com/2012/09/whats-to-blame-for-forsyth-barr-stadium.html

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1 . stefdawg101 25 Sep 2012 07:48 PM
here is a fact in the itm cup forseyth bar stadium has the 3rd highest kicking percentage the boys from otago have no proplem kicking here the likes of steyn and wilikson r just loseing there touch and the threw out the super rugby it wasnt an issue either. the south affricans making excuses after claming the condtions would suit there game better which it failed to

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