By Lee Stace

MEMO TO Peter de Villiers: stop blaming Bryce Lawrence for your Rugby World Cup failure last year and inability to find a job.

The reasons why you are unemployed at the moment are because you are not all that as a coach, as your record with the Springboks would suggest, and are too controversial.

De Villiers was recently interviewed by the Times Live website and preceded to take another shot at Lawrence, who refereed South Africa during its 11-9 RWC quarter-final loss to Australia in Wellington.

‘P-Divvy’ did not hold back. He described Lawrence as “cocky, arrogant and sly” and refused to accept his apology. He almost implied that had it not been for the Kiwi whistleblower he might still have his job as Springboks coach.

“Bryce Lawrence makes, on average, six mistakes a game, which is a good average for a referee. In that game he made 48 mistakes, six of which were match-costing,” he said.

Granted, Lawrence did have a bad day at the office. He made a couple of questionable decisions that favoured the Wallabies and disadvantaged the Boks. His mistakes did have an influence on the outcome of that match.

But only to a certain degree. He cannot be blamed entirely for the defending champion’s inability to close that game out. Every statistic was heavily in the Boks’ favour and they had ample opportunities to win that game 10 times over. They played dumb rugby, while the Wallabies took their chances and tackled themselves to a standstill.

If De Villiers is looking for someone to blame for his failings as Boks coach, he should start with the man in the mirror.

His record with the Jappies was not flash: played 48, won 30, lost 18. That equates to a 62 percent winning record during his 2008-11 tenure, for all you stats junkies out there. 

While he won a British Lions series and Tri Nations crown in 2009, South Africa propped up the ladder in the latter competition no less than three times during the De Villiers era. In fact, his winning record was just 40 percent in the Tri Nations.

Off the field, De Villiers was also prone to constant foot-in-mouth moments. He was a public relations disaster, and his rhetoric ramblings, while reflecting badly upon him and his employers, always made for a great quote or two on a slow news day.

These factors, not Lawrence, are the reasons why the South African Rugby Union treated him like he had the bubonic plague when he went looking for work recently.

Posted Comments

Mark my mum could have coached that team when he got hold of them, they were a fantastic team and he was blessed to follow Jake White. I was hoping you guys were gonna hire him again so we could all keep laughing about the fool the Jaapies had controlling the Boks. Oh and he does have his name in the history books, for all of the dumb ass stuff he said...
I couldn't agree more. He inherited a good team and relied mostly on their experience, depth, tenacity and cohesiveness as a team, which mostly got them through. When that runs out you soon see the measure of the coach! Time to move on Pete!
Frankly, almost all of us Saffas are all too glad to see the back of him. The right man for the job has now been appointed (finally). P.Divvy will most likely still stick around in SA Rugby somewhere, occasionally rambling on about something, but hopefully some time after the next RWC he will realise just what a fool he made of himself. It's a shame, because he gave us hope after the Lions, but everyone started to realise he was just riding the wave of success created by Jake White. Good luck Divvy, but I'm happy to see you go.
BL made plenty of bad decisions that went against Oz in that game also.
d adams
div was never a coach.he take over by a brillant coach
Att: Lee Stance. Here are some important stats you left out about P Div. Biggest win for any team at Twikenham agaist England '09, 50 pointer against Australia. First Springbok coach to win at the 'house of pain' in 100 years, Clean sweep against the All Blacks in 09 (3-0) - which coach in the world can say that? Tri -Nations 09, British Lions. In '10 he lost the services of Fourie Du Preez and Heinrich Brussow - two key players equivalent to Carter and McCaw. Bryce Lawerence cost him a name in the History Books....
Dave mitchell
South Africa outside South Africa are very inconsistent. To Blame Bryce Lawrence for the teams progression in the W.R.C is pathetic, FACT very bad team selection by a very bad Coach. Win at all costs by South Africa with the final against the All Blacks was shown by the food poisoning saga, obviously this was no accident ,we have good memories. Fancy the Referee be given a Gold watch for services rendered. South African Rugby is at the Crossroads. Even today all touring teams are given very bad and biased rule decisions by very bad South African Referees. Kiwis Rule.
What ball is played with this sport soccer.
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