Spandau Ballet and the 9th day of Christmas…

Probably says it all…

Communication let me down
And I’m left here
Communication let me down
And I’m left here, I’m left here

Telex or tell me but it’s always second-hand
I’m incognito but no rendezvous been planned
Dictate or relate I could send it to your home
“Return to sender” I could sing it down the phone

Communication let me down
And I’m left here
Communication let me down
And I’m left here, I’m left here, I, I, I

Dictate, relate
Dictate, relate

Communication – Spandau Ballet


Day 9 of the ‘Coventry’s Most Valuable Player’ poll results and this time it’s the 4th place that’s published.

And you voted for:

Dan Rundle. Congratulations, Dan.

Forgive me for choosing to use a video clip of Dan as opposed to a still photo, it’s just that it’s something I’ve watched several times recently, especially during some of the darker moments this season. It’s a fantastic reminder of just what a talent this lad is.

To come fourth in the poll when Dan hasn’t played a game for six months and potentially some of those voting won’t have even have seen him play, is no mean achievement. If he’d been playing regularly and scoring tries, as he does, then I think he’d have been even higher up the poll, and that’s not to take anything away from those who have still to make their appearance.

And actually, the clip is very telling in many ways, especially when you look at how Coventry played with Dan last season (and of course Will Hurrell) and how they’ve played  this season without him.

Interesting too, that the first few seconds of the clip isn’t of Dan scoring one of his characteristic 40-50m sprints, beating several of the opposition on the way. No, it’s of him chasing back to tackle a player who looked to be about to score what would have been a certain try – and this side of his game is worth remembering.

Defensively, he worried the opposition and took away some options from their attack. At the moment, teams that strike from deep and have some pace out wide will damage us, but that’s not necessarily the case when Dan plays. Would Spencer Sutherland have scored 4 tries against us had Dan been in the team when we played Esher earlier in the season…probably not? Esher might have won, but they would have won differently.

A classic example of this can also be found early on in the clip.

Fylde, doing what they do best and doing what makes them the most enjoyable team to watch in National 1 (if not the most frustrating at times), start a move in their own goaline. This season they probably would have scored against us, but the move is over by the time they break into our 40m line as Dan not only catches his man (if you look closely, the other Coventry defenders seem to have been outrun), but also wins the ball back for Coventry.

Dan is something of a talisman…unique in many ways, still learning his trade, but someone whom the opposition fear, even without the ball. And the Coventry crowds…well, they love him.

A buzz goes through the main stand when he gets the ball, the hairs on the back of your neck tingle when he gets the ball in space…time momentarily slows down as he speeds up and you know that there’s no one going to get near him, let alone tackle him. Kurt Johnson, in his heyday, had a little of that magical ability to energise a crowd just by receiving the ball, let alone beating his man.

The only other player who I can recall having that effect on me was David Duckham who mesmerised not only the opposition with his swerve and sidestep, but the Coundon faithful, too.

And let’s face it, if you’re going to be compared to anyone, you’d settle for Duckham, wouldn’t you?

A fit and healthy Dan Rundle will make a difference to Coventry, even a Coventry low on confidence and underperforming with almost monotonous regularity.  He’ll enable the backs to use the ball differently and will have the opposition having to double or even triple mark him, potentially making space for others.

Cov need to wrap him in cotton wool though. An early return, before he’s really ready, would be the worst thing to do. Given his enthusiasm for the game and for Coventry, he’ll want to get back on the pitch as soon as possible, just as the supporters will want him to.

But there’s no rush, this season now is about consolidation, not promotion, so let’s get him match fit and build the backs around him ready for next September…


Tomorrow will see 3rd place in the MVP poll announced.



2 thoughts on “Spandau Ballet and the 9th day of Christmas…

  1. Thanks to the people from cov from a very proud dad. did not expect dan to even be in the running as he has not played this season. I know dan will appreciate this and will boost his low confidence at the moment.this freak injurie has halted alot of the things dan wanted to achieve this season. so will enjoy the fact that the cov supporters are still backing him as a valued player. I’m sure he will come back a stronger player with the determination he has.

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