Blues win percentage against NZ teams



  • There's been some comments in the media that the current situation is similar to all the other Blues coaches. I thought I would check out the win percentages vs other NZ sides

    Yes, the form of the NZ teams has ebbed and flowed but they are generally strong. Also, they are the one constant across the various number of teams, competition structure etc


    Umaga 6.7%

    15 games 1 win

    The one win was the first game vs the Highlanders (33-31)

    If his team the next 5 NZ games (2 vs Crusaders, 2 vs Hurricanes, 1 vs Highlanders) he can just edge in front of Kirwan


    Kirwan 29%

    24 games 7 wins
    (3 Hurricanes, 2 Highlanders, 2 Crusaders)

    Crap


    Lam 37.5%

    24 games 9 wins
    (4 Highlanders, 2 Chiefs, 2 Hurricanes, 1 Crusaders)

    I think there has to be a note about the injury crisis in Lams fourth season. Crazy number of injuries, players with no NPC experience starting... locks in particular, we were starting our 7th choice lock with a loosie next to him etc

    First three seasons prior to that injury crisis:
    9/16 56.3%

    This included the best streak since Henry: 6 in a row versus NZ teams. The streak Included all other NZ sides. That season was the last time the Blues made the playoffs


    Nucifora 50%

    6/12
    (2 Chiefs, 2 Highlanders, 1 Hurricanes, 1 Crusaders)

    A bad first season cemented reputation then his team went ok (0-4 in that first year)


    Sloane 52.9%

    9/17
    (3 Crusaders, 2 Chiefs, 2 Hurricanes, 2 Highlanders)


    Various 1 season coaches all got 50%

    Yes, even Jed Rowlands


    Henry 92.9%

    13/14

    13 in a row before losing the final in 98


    Clearly Henry belongs in his own category.

    From 1999-2011 all of these coaches had a minimum of 50% success rate against NZ teams:
    Rowlands 50%
    Hunter 50%
    Oliver 50%
    Sloane 52.9%
    Nucifora 50%
    Lam 56.3%

    Sure, thats not good enough, but they were competitive. They all got a lot of criticism in the press compared to the current coach.

    Then came the injury crisis in Lam’s fourth season. I have never been convinced the right action was to sack Lam after that amount of injuries. He had very little support in the media and from the board so he had no chance.

    The new normal of shittness has settled in under Kirwan/Umaga



  • That's a great post.

    Lets be honest, I can't see us winning any of the five remaining games against NZ opponents. The pattern is they get stronger and we get weaker.

    So it's probable, likely even, that after three years Tana's record against NZ teams will be 3.4%

    Fucking hell.



  • That's the sort of shit I come on here to read about. Great Post.

    Incredible that those numbers haven't been discussed in the NZ press. Wonder why?

    It's really hard to even give the blues the injury card anymore, given the difficulties of the Chiefs and others. It has to be recruiting (or not recruiting in some cases). Lots of choices that didn't work out well.

    If we plotted that on a graph, it pretty much looks like this:

    alt text

    Think Tana can get a dead cat bounce this year? It must be coming, which could be disastrous if that gets interpreted as the turn of the tide. Or, was the bounce that win against the Lions and (to continue to metaphor), now they're a penny stock?



  • @Duluth

    Great analysis.

    Any idea on the average score in the Blues' NZ derbies since Lam's tenure? While I acknowledge "a loss is a loss" the winning/losing margin might add to the overall picture. Anecdotally, it seems the Blues have had a lot of close losses under Umaga.



  • easy to say that about Lam with the benefit of hindsight though, but there was large sections of the media and public who couldn't see past the W/L column (which is seen as the only indicator) as many know, I am not really invested in the Blues, but know at the time I felt the sackings were a bit harsh, not least because anyone associated with Lam was tarred with the same brush of 'failure', which at the time one of them was Bryce Woodward.

    Although will those previous results also be skewed by the more recent change of competition where you play more derby matches than in previous competitions?



  • @bovidae

    Don't have time for that sorry.

    Yes there has been a number of close losses, but that was true under Kirwan too. A quick glance shows Kirwan had 5 losses in a row where they were within a try.. the loss before that was by 8

    I find the close loss thing gets rolled out for Umaga but not Kirwan



  • @taniwharugby said in Blues win percentage against NZ teams:

    easy to say that about Lam with the benefit of hindsight though, but there was large sections of the media and public who couldn't see past the W/L column (which is seen as the only indicator) as many know, I am not really invested in the Blues, but know at the time I felt the sackings were a bit harsh, not least because anyone associated with Lam was tarred with the same brush of 'failure', which at the time one of them was Bryce Woodward.

    Although will those previous results also be skewed by the more recent change of competition where you play more derby matches than in previous competitions?

    Hind sight is 20/20 and all that.

    Back then is was "We suck, sack Lam, we are a proud Auckland union!!"

    Now by comparison it is "So Lam wasn't all bad??"



  • @hooroo

    I said it at the time. I did not want Lam sacked.



  • @duluth said in Blues win percentage against NZ teams:

    @hooroo

    I said it at the time. I did not want Lam sacked.

    You would have been a very lonely voice, I imagine?



  • @taniwharugby said in Blues win percentage against NZ teams:

    Although will those previous results also be skewed by the more recent change of competition where you play more derby matches than in previous competitions?

    It doesn't skew a percentage. But that is why I didn't spend any time on the 1 season coaches.. the sample size of 4 matches is meaningless.
    All the others had a minimum of 12 games vs NZ opposition



  • @hooroo

    Yes, it can be lonely being right



  • @duluth said in Blues win percentage against NZ teams:

    @hooroo

    Yes, it can be lonely being right

    In comparison to the last two choppers but he was hardly burning it up either.



  • @hooroo He took the Blues to the semi final - losing to the eventual champion Reds. Kirwan or Tana have got nowhere near that since.



  • @kiwimurph said in Blues win percentage against NZ teams:

    @hooroo He took the Blues to the semi final - losing to the eventual champion Reds. Kirwan or Tana have got nowhere near that since.

    ... and we coulda shoulda won that game. Every time we kept it tight we smashed them up front and made shedloads of metres. But no, we kept spinning it wide, and wound up losing.

    I still remember it (through blue tinted glasses?)



  • @nzzp

    From memory, Munro and Payne had shockers. Lam made a bad mistake in picking Munro as a winger ahead of Ranger



  • @duluth Yep he put Ranger on the bench and started Munro. Munro was very poor - Ranger carved up off the bench but it was too little too late.



  • @duluth Have you got Lam's results by year? Was his fourth year an aberration or was he on a declining trend?

    Would be interesting to chart the Crusaders results against NZ opposition as a comparison. I'm pretty sure those results would also deteriorate during Toddy's reign - in part, because he wasn't as good a coach as Deans or Robertson - but also because I'm pretty sure the Chiefs, Canes and Highlanders have all become markedly stronger teams (four titles between them since 2011, none before). At various points recruitment rules have become less regionalized which also probably worked against the more recent Blues coaches.

    I daresay someone who was statistically adept and interested enough could adjust the stats to reflect the calibre of the opposition and more accurately reflect the relative calibre of the coaches.

    Unfortunately, I suspect this still won't help Tana that much!



  • @chris-b said in Blues win percentage against NZ teams:

    @duluth Have you got Lam's results by year? Was his fourth year an aberration or was he on a declining trend?

    Upwards trend. Complete collapse in 2012

    2009: 1/4 vs NZ, 5/13 overall
    2010: 2/4 vs NZ, 7/13 overall
    2011 : 6/8 vs NZ, 11/18 overall

    Steady improvement.. then 2012 was a collapse 0/8 vs NZ 4/18 overall

    It all depends on what leeway you give him for the injury crisis



  • For a number of years, the Chiefs and the Highlanders were pretty ropey and the Hurricanes were the Hurricanes. Now all the other 4 franchises seem to be well run which makes the Blues stand out as the poorest.

    I think it is connected to the head coach but goes beyond that. Look at the injuries the Chiefs are currently coping with. We in the Bay were baffled by Ardron's selection for the Chiefs given his lame work at number 8 for us that saw him benched often. Now not only does he look like a class player, he is also doing it as a lock - not just the head coach can be responsible for that transformation, the environment must be a key factor and the coaching team etc must have done some serious work on his game in the past few months.

    And right now all the top 4 franchises seem to be able to bring in guys from anywhere and have them playing well as soon as they walk onto the grass in Super rugby.

    With the Blues, it seems to have the opposite effect. Promising players quickly become a shadow of what they were before. Which suggests that the rot runs deep and shuffling the chairs/recruiting a star or 2 isn't going to change that.



  • @kiwipie said in Blues win percentage against NZ teams:

    And right now all the top 4 franchises seem to be able to bring in guys from anywhere and have them playing well as soon as they walk onto the grass in Super rugby.

    Which suggests that the rot runs deep and shuffling the chairs/recruiting a star or 2 isn't going to change that.

    Yes, which has also being discussed in detail by various Blues fans. Problems with the board have been talked about ad nauseam, as have problems with recruitment (which Umaga has some responsibility for)

    I know you didn't do this, but there is a strawman that the Blues fans only blame the coach which is absolutely not true
    The coach should be judged for what he is control of: initial squad selection, match day selection, coaches he decides to delegate too, game plan, preparation etc etc


 

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