England beating Australia in Rugby World Cup and Creativity

Image Source: Reuters
Last night I, like many people in Australia and around the world, switched off my TV in sadness. England beat my beloved Australian Wallabies 12-10. While I sympathised with the Australia team, I can’t help admire the English team’s game strategy. The English played the game with ‘nads of steel and lots of courage, managing to keep their opponent off balanced using great team work and playing to their strengths. As a result they managed to shut the Australian offence down while still keeping to their own game plan.

By moving the ball round the field, challenging them in all sorts of ways, and then they had the game understanding later, the scrummaging and driving game, to close the game down.
~ Source: Reuters

While I’ll admit I’m no expert in the rules or nuances of this game, I realised that it was creativity that really won the game. As one of the Game Commentators observed at full time, the English players hit the Australian team on all fronts, moving the ball all over the place, in-deep, out-wide, while both wining the scrum and the loose balls. I could see that the Australians were just unprepared, and could not organise an offence while they scrambled in defence.
Also it seems to my simplistic arm chair critic’s mind that the English played a different game, which I liken to their other passion Football (Soccer). Their strategy seems to rely on Jonny Wilkinson goal scoring ability, while perhaps a “one trick pony” proved to be too much for the Wallabies as they just could not re-invent their game to beat that strategy.
Interestingly, this is a fact of life in almost all industries; creative thinking, re-invention, innovation and being able to react fast enough against the competition is the key to stay ahead. Sad to say, just like the Wallabies, many companies like Motorola, Sony, or Netscape, have fallen from their top perch as they were not able to do the above. Again I’m no expert, but could it be that the Wallabies might have needed a dose of strategic thinking along the same lines of of Apple, Nintendo or Nokia to perhaps give them an edge? I don’t know but I hope in 4 years time we might see a difference.

  • olls

    October 12, 2007 at 5:02 pm Reply

    boy oh boy.
    i was sad australia lost.
    i was even more depressed when new zealand fell to france!
    did you watch that game!!!!!!
    the fiji match was filled with flair though. re-invention, creative thinking could be seen in that one.

  • DT

    October 13, 2007 at 3:07 pm Reply

    Yes, I totally enjoyed the Fiji game and I was so rooting for them to win. The final score is not representative in the way they played. Just sheer magic.
    I’m looking forward to the finals this weekend.

  • Andrew

    October 18, 2007 at 2:27 am Reply

    Hiya, England fan here. I think it’s fantastic that the England team won, not just because I’m English, but because of all the hardships and terrible organisational mess that they had to endure over the last couple of years. These are a bunch of guys who’ve taken it upon themselves to pull together and just believe in each other 100%. What an astounding turn around from a 36-0 defeat to South Africa, to beat Australia and then France. It wasn’t pretty, but you’re right it was gritty, gutsy and inventive. It will be very interesting to see what happens this weekend. Is spirit enough to beat the awesome SA teams feature of “the cheetah”?!

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