Daniel Carter

It is not easy at all to do this post about Daniel Carter. It is not as easy as to tell the emperor "you are naked". It never is.

Let's start from the beginning: Daniel Carter is probably the most skilled first five eighth in the world. He's also a first-class kicker, he's got the pace, the technique, the strength and the quickness; he's got to be the Roger Federer at the number 10. But unlike tennis, there's more, much more than one person fighting against another in rugby. There's a team to drag to victory.

And now, let's do some evil. Let us speak about what we don't like. Daniel Carter is not the best. Before I develop this unacceptable thought, let's remember some things:
  • October 2007: Carter says he's determined to continue helping the All Blacks.
  • November 2007: Carter says the burden of the World Cup is hard to bear and suggests he would like to taste northern hemisphere rugby.
  • February 2007: Carter says Jonny Wilkinson is better than he is.
  • February 2007: Carter is pondering leaving at the end of the season.

Daniel Carter loves the All Blacks. In 10 years time, he will feel happy if he achieves a win in a RWC with the All Blacks but will otherwise feel a vaccuum somewhere inside if he does not.

Daniel Carter has been labelled as "a star" and that's what has hurt him most ever since the moment he was given the label. Everybody expects him nothing less than perfection. Every once and again.

Daniel Carter can't wear the burden.

There's a lot of injustice with this player. He's good, he's awfully good, but he's not invincible. Pressure put on him can ultimately defeat him. He means it when he says Wilkinson is better. Jonny Wilkinson is not better, but he has won a World Cup! He's saying: "please, release me!!!" The first words you hore from him after the 2007 disaster were that he intended to stick with the team, his genuine intention was to continue trying. He does love the job, he does love the task, he does love the All Blacks. But once back in NZ, the pressure is all around. The national game, the national pride, the national choke.

I wonder who could have stood that. But anyway, as Deans says, World Cup obsession is the main cause of the downfall. Is it also one more reason for NZ players not bearing to stay in NZ?

All in all, the problem with Carter is not with Carter, it is with rugby. The All Blacks have not won the RWC and NZ cannot accept that. Blame Carter, blame Henry, McCaw, Tew, Holy Mary or Bart Simpson. The fact is that Carter has an impressive record with the All Blacks, has played awfully well sometimes, has won the Bledisloe, the Tri Nations... but the problem with him is the Webb Ellis Trophy.

He will lift it.


Anonymous said...

DC is not a God, although sometimes he is treated as such. I am certain that the burden of playing for the All Blacks is a pressure cooker. There are others players and Dan Carter might just feel differently next year just how important the All Blacks are to him. He may let some other guy coming up through the ranks take the pressure and head for the dollars somewhewre else. We'll have to see. Another 3N win , S14, and Bledisoe aren't so bad.

Anonymous said...

If rugby in NZ was like football in spain, i'll say you that Carter is too famous to play well. It´s difficult to be an idol during so much time...

Your girlfriend :*

sesenta y cuatro said...

Well, Carter is certainly not the person to hold under such pressure. I wonder who would.

But NZ (or Spain) ought to think what good are they doing to their players.

cariño, te quiero :*