Lood de Jager during a training session as: Arcs Urayasu Park on Tuesday. Photo: Steve Haag Sports / Hollywoodbets

DURBAN – Durban-based rugby scribe Mike Greenaway highlights his five steps for the Springboks to overcome the challenge from the 'ol enemy' the All Blacks on Saturday.



1. Respect, but do not fear the All Blacks

The New Zealanders’ track record in World Cups over recent years is daunting. The Boks need to tell themselves that the Kiwis are mere mortals that have been beaten by the Boks lately. Yes the Kiwis are good, but the scoreboard recently has highlighted that the Boks are better.

2. Turn their lights out

Smash to smithereens anything in black especially those with the numbers 1 to 8 on their backs. The Boks have arguably the best two packs of forwards in Japan.

Yes, two. Our forwards are exceptionally strong and the coach can interchange his packs as the game demands. The All Blacks forwards will not be able to live with the Boks up front.

The Springboks will look to create momentum for Handre Pollard and Faf de Klerk when they open their World Cup campaign against New Zealand in Japan tomorrow. Photo: Steve Haag Sports / Hollywoodbets
The Springboks will look to create momentum for Handre Pollard and Faf de Klerk when they open their World Cup campaign against New Zealand in Japan tomorrow. Photo: Steve Haag Sports / Hollywoodbets

3. Tackle them into the stands

It has taken defence coach Jacques Nienaber 18 months to get the players to understand his defensive strategy. Last year we saw the back three players rushing out of line to get exploited by the English attackers but those teething problems are behind the Boks, and now they must concentrate and ensure that the All Blacks remain in front of the green and gold line and are indecisive because they know the Boks’ line speed has got them covered

4. Smash them over the advantage line

The Boks have big, tough men, lining up to crash the ball over the gain line and if they are watchful in how they go about this, momentum will soon be generated for halfbacks Faf De Klerk and Handre Pollard. The lifeline to that momentum is the clear-out has to be neat and efficient for that ball to pop up like a cherry for Faf to pluck; the arriving forwards have to be powerful, slick and careful in their approach.

Assistant coach Matt Proudfoot shares a lighter moment during a Springboks training session. Photo: Steve Haag Sports / Hollywoodbets

5. Discipline is the key

The thing with France’s Mr Bean look-alike referees is that anything can happen. Jerome Garces (tomorrow’s referee) sent off an All Blacks for a shoulder charge in a recent match against the Wallabies but at the same time so much was left to go in that match.

The Boks can leave nothing to chance with these Frenchmen.

A priority has to be channelling the rampant aggression that will be coursing through their veins while keeping in line with how Mr Bean might react.


@MikeGreenaway67


The Mercury

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