Deans a big fan of rival flankers - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Deans a big fan of rival flankers

By Darren Walton 04/08/2010 11:38:36 AM Comments (0)

Wallabies coach Robbie Deans says rugby fans should be salivating at the prospect of another head-to-head duel between outstanding Australian flanker David Pocock and New Zealand captain Richie McCaw.

The breakdown battle between two of the premier No.7s in world rugby once again looms as a potentially decisive in Saturday's Bledisloe Cup rematch in Christchurch.

Deans on Wednesday admitted the Wallabies were extremely fortunate to have had Pocock on deck at Etihad Stadium last Saturday, suggesting Australia's 49-28 defeat could have been even worse without the workaholic back-rower.

"His game was immense. It's the only way you could describe it. Quite remarkable," Deans said.

"But he does that every week. He's got a great capacity to give and it's very evident that he deserves the respect that he gets not only from his peers but his opponents now because the awareness is out there."

Just 18 Tests into his international career, 22-year-old, Zimbabwe-born Pocock is already being likened to the great McCaw, the only player ever to have been crowned international player of the year twice.

And having nurtured 29-year-old McCaw from greenhorn forward to All Blacks captain during his successful days as Crusaders coach, Deans is more qualified than anyone to rate the two.

"Poey's probably a little bit more physically advanced at this age than Richie was," Deans said.

"Hence Richie was just held back a little bit so that he wouldn't be physically compromised.

"But both of them, once they entered, thrived."

Deans, though, refused to be drawn when asked if Pocock had the potential to develop into an even greater player than McCaw.

"I don't see any need to compare," he said. "He's a remarkable player. Just enjoy what he does.

"Because you've got one good player doesn't mean you can't have two."

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2023 AAP

0 Comments about this article

Post a comment about this article

Please sign in to leave a comment.
Becoming a member is free and easy, sign up here.

« All sports news