There were a few positives in the win over Namibia. Photo: Issei Kato/Reuters
The Springboks were always going to be too strong for Namibia in Toyota on Saturday and they duly won their second Rugby World Cup Pool B match 57-3.

There was some good stuff and some not so good stuff from the Boks and here rugby writer Jacques van der Westhuyzen lists his three positives and three negatives to come out of the game:

POSITIVES

Frans Steyn

The veteran utility back started his first game for the Boks this year and played a full 80 minutes. He looked hungry for action and got stuck in from the start. He carried the ball regularly, and strongly, over the gain-line and was always difficult to bring down, while there was nothing wrong with his defence as he made several tackles. He’s now shown he’s good enough to sit on the bench for the first team and may even be considered for the No 12 jersey going forward.

Lood de Jager

There was a time a few months ago that the towering lock was in doubt for the tournament because of an injury, but he proved his fitness and he showed on Saturday that when he’s good, he’s excellent. De Jager dominated the match in many departments: he controlled the line-outs, he won every restart that came his way (and there were many) and he carried the ball as well as anyone in the Bok team.

Set-pieces

Led by De Jager in the line-outs and the quality throwing-in by Bongi Mbonambi, and then the strong scrummaging by the Bok “back-up” in props Beast Mtawarira and Vincent Koch, Rassie Erasmus’ team gave the Namibians no chance. The Boks won their three scrum feeds comfortably and they also won four scrums on Namibian ball. Added to that, the Boks won all 14 of their line-out throws ... a dominant showing if ever there was one.

NEGATIVES

Too easy

As good as the Boks were, it was all a little too easy for the two-time champions, and one’s got to wonder what Erasmus and his coaching team would have taken out of the game. Namibia were no match for their physically stronger and more skilled opponents and they never challenged the Boks in the set-pieces, they hardly asked questions of the defence and they allowed the Boks to dictate matters throughout.

Elton Jantjies

The Lions man had a great opportunity to push Handre Pollard for a starting spot later in the competition, but he failed to make the most of his chance. He fluffed a few shots at goal and also kicked the ball dead when the Boks were looking to set up a line-out five metres out. Sadly Jantjies also made a few handling errors in a match he won’t want to remember.

Killer instinct

While the Boks scored nine tries they lacked a cutting edge, a killer-instinct - a ruthlessness. Straight from the kick-off they set up camp inside the Namibians’ 22m area and dominated play, yet it took them nine minutes to cross the tryline. They also gave up possession at times too easily and considering they bossed every area of the game, including the possession stats (60 percent) and enjoyed 71 percent of the territorial battle, they should have scored more tries.

@jacq_west


The Star

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