‘Like going to cricket without a bat’: Cron discharges over embarrassing boot mistake | Latest Rugby News

Western Force coach Simon Cron has revealed he has given some of his players a rocket for wearing the wrong types of cleats in last week’s 48-13 Super Rugby Pacific loss to the Crusaders.

The Force struggled with crowding issues throughout the game and it wasn’t long before Cron noticed that some of his players were wearing cleats that were unsuitable for a Christchurch game.

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Cron didn’t name names, but said some players in the Forward Pack’s “back five” were to blame.

“It was really obvious that a couple of our guys slipped off the first scrum last week,” Cron told reporters on Wednesday.

“In Christchurch the field was dewy and a bit soft at the top.

“So if you’re putting 14s or 12s – or even plastic in the front of your boots, as we discovered one (player) did – then you’re basically on ice stakes.

“It’s like pushing your socks around on the gym floor.

“About 62-65 percent of your power in the scrum comes from your back five. So if they slip, our front row is in hiding.

“I didn’t miss with my shots and bullets. The guys owned it, fixed it, it won’t happen again.”

Force prop Tom Robertson, who missed the game with a calf injury, was also shocked.

“It was hard to see when a lot of our back five (from the forward) were skating,” he said.

“It’s like going to cricket without a bat – you really have to have the right equipment.

“We’ve talked about how that’s unacceptable at this level and I daresay they won’t let that happen again.”

Robertson and Hooker Folau Fainga’a are the big inclusions for Friday night’s crunch clash with Fijian Drua at HBF Park.

Fainga’a has struggled with an Achilles heel injury all season and has not played since losing to the Blues in the fifth round.

Robertson is back after missing two games with a calf strain.

Their experience and class could prove crucial as the Force (3-7) seek to complete a two-game losing streak that has seen them plummet to 11th in the Super Rugby Pacific rankings.

Fijian Drua sit four points clear of the eighth-place squad, making Friday’s clash a crucial encounter in the race for a top-eight spot.

Force No.8 Rahbni Vosayaco returns to the starting XI following the birth of his son, while recently signed Isi Naisarani has been relegated to the bench.

Prop Angus Wagner is back after recovering from a hamstring injury.

POWER (1-15): Angus Wagner, Folau Fainga’a, Tom Robertson, Jeremy Williams, Ryan McCauley, Michael Wells (Captain), Carlo Tizzano, Rahboni Vosayaco, Issak Fines-Leleiwasa, Max Burey, Manasa Mataele, Hamish Stewart, Sam Spink, Zach Kibirige, Hunt Tiatia.

reserves: Tom Horton, Marley Pearce, Siosifa Amone, Felix Kalapu, Tim Anstee, Isi Naisarani, Ian Prior, George Poolman.


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