JOHANNESBURG – In-form centre Damian de Allende reckons all the Springboks need is a bit of patience when they’re on the attack and the tries will follow.
The Boks dominated most departments against England at Twickenham last Saturday and spent several minutes camped in England territory, but all they managed was one lone try in the first half.
Their poor finishing would come back to bite them as England fought back in a strong second half showing to pip the Boks 12-11 in the South Africans’ first match of their northern hemisphere tour this month.
De Allende, who was one of the Boks’ strongest performers last weekend, said the team had worked hard this week on correcting their mistakes and ensuring they finish better when they come up against France in Paris on Saturday.
“We need a bit of patience … especially when we’re in the opposition 22m area,” said De Allende ahead of this weekend’s match.
“It felt like whenever we were on the attack and in their 22m area we moved away from what we wanted to do. A few lineouts also didn’t go to hand, so we have to improve our execution as well.”
De Allende said he was looking forward to another physical battle against the French this Saturday, and coming up against the bulky Matthieu Bastareaud in the centres.
“We’re expecting a similar sort of game to the one last week. They’re going to be strong in the midfield, with a great player like Matthieu there, who’s big and physical. They will use him to get over the advantage line, so it’s going to be up to us to try stop him. It should be a good challenge, one we’re looking forward to.”
De Allende is likely to again lineup with Jesse Kriel outside him, a combination that is now functioning well. “We understand each other better each time we play, but it’s going well. There’s always stuff to work and improve.”
Erasmus will name his team for Saturday evening’s match on Thursday.