As a manager of a www.testrugby.com fantasy rugby team, I have experienced plenty of agony over the last fortnight. I was in the top 100 not very long ago, but now find myself struggling to make the top 500, how can this be?
My main problem has been juggling the trades, this has been ridiculous in Super Rugby 2014 with the number of injuries and rounds where three teams have had byes.
Usual iron men of Super Rugby like Kieran Read, Aaron Cruden and Jean de Villiers have been injured, and these guys are examples of consistent points scorers from previous competitions.
For those playing Super Rugby, you don’t get any more trades until the lock for Round 13. I can’t speak for everyone, but this means some conservative long term selections are required along with plenty of crossing fingers.
I foolishly keep picking Kieran Read which hasn’t been wise in 2014. The other problems have existed with juggling the salary cap with the low number of trades left. Last weekend I had to replace my Highlanders, Reds and Brumbies while this weekend I ditch my Crusaders, Rebels and Lions.
My problem was finding some cheap outside backs and a loose forward so I could buy Beauden Barrett from the Hurricanes. Knowing the Rebels have a bye in Super Rugby 11, I thought this would be a chance to get rid of my two Rebels, Jason Woodward and Scott Higginbotham a week before they have the bye, and as Murphy’s Law would suggest, they play well as the Rebels beat the Force. I also got rid of Chiefs utility Tom Marshall who has been disappointing in the three previous weeks including only scoring 40 points last week. He seemed to enjoy having more space from fullback against the Crusaders.
I replaced these guys with some South Africans, including two Sharks. The Sharks didn’t completely humiliate the Cheetahs in a try scoring spree as predicted and so Lwazi Mvovo only got me 150 points. Isn’t that frustrating!
The problem now is that I don’t have many trades left, which restricts me to purchasing only players who won’t have the bye for the next few weeks. This limits selections and players. It is also difficult to know if I can even risk buying Israel Folau since the Waratahs have the bye in Round 13.
It is now time for Super Rugby fantasy rugby managers to pick players who they can get at least enough games from to get through to the next lot of trades.
In the past you could buy some quality five eighths, loose forwards and tight forwards and get most of the season out of them, but these days teams have two byes and there seem to be so many injuries. Guys like Cruden and Kieran Read are no longer the obvious choices.
How are you handling Super Rugby fantasy rugby? Who has been your best buy in Super Rugby 2014?