PRETORIA – The Rugby Championship might be dead and buried, but today’s Test between the Springboks and All Blacks at Loftus Versfeld will be all-out war.
The All Blacks wrapped up their seventh straight title with their win over Argentina in Mendoza last weekend.
But they are still seething from their shock 36-34 loss against the Springboks three weeks ago in Wellington, and will be out for revenge.
Springbok captain Siya Kolisi says they are aware of the threat from the All Blacks, but are equally desperate to record a rare double over their bitter rivals.
The Springboks last did the double over the New Zealanders nine years ago when they won the-then Tri-Nations title.
The All Blacks have won four of their five Tests played against the Springboks at Loftus.
“They are going to take it up a notch. They’ve said it, and made it clear that they are coming to win this game and get revenge,” Kolisi said on the eve of the big showdown.
“We don’t want to be shocked by the intensity, and want to be ready from the word go. It is going to be a good and physical game.”
The Boks will also find motivation in wanting to make today a memorable day for fullback Willie Le Roux, who will play in his 50th Test.
“The most important thing is we want to make sure that the same intensity we had two weeks ago is there, even a bit more,” the Bok skipper added.
“In that game, we weren’t worried about the result, we were playing against the best team in the world, and all we could do was give of our best.
“That is the same mentality we are going in with this week.
“That is what the coach has been driving, not to worry about the score. Just make sure you give everything you can.”
Kickoff is at 5.05pm.
The Springbok team that will play against the All Blacks on Saturday in Pretoria. Good luck boys!!! pic.twitter.com/MssYt1v9ZJ