TOKYO – Playing a warm-up fixture against Japan had been deliberate in order to try and dampen down any talk of the Brighton Miracle if the Springboks met the tournament hosts during the World Cup, South Africa coach Rassie Erasmus said on Monday.
South Africa comfortably accounted for the Brave Blossoms 41-7 in Kumagaya on Sept. 6 but the pre-match buildup had been dominated by Japan's shock 34-32 victory over the Springboks in Brighton at the 2015 World Cup.
“In all honesty, the reason for that warm-up game was to erase the Brighton game, so that if we do play them in play-off games, that game hopefully doesn't get mentioned again,” Erasmus told reporters ahead of their quarter-final on Sunday.
“It's 1-1, and now we go into a quarter-final game against a really tough team. That (Brighton) game is in the past now.”
Erasmus also acknowledged that their pre-tournament clash would have absolutely no bearing on how both sides played at Tokyo Stadium on Sunday.