Wrinkles for Rassie to iron out

Dawie Boonzaaier

The Rugby Championship offer Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus with an opportunity to rub out, or circle, a few names on his whiteboard for Project RWC 2019.

While it would’ve been ideal if all the players had been fit and available after the series win against England in June, Erasmus will see the coming Tests as a chance to trial the replacement players in the style he wants to play, and to potentially eliminate those who don’t adapt from contention for a place in the squad that travels to Japan next year.

Here are five positional wrinkles that Erasmus will want to have ironed out during the Rugby Championship:

Back-row balance
Duane Vermeulen was back with a bang versus England, and offered some much-needed grunt and power to a Bok pack lacking so much the last few seasons. But with a move to Japan, Thor won’t be playing in the 2018 Rugby Championship which means SA’s form No 8, Warren Whiteley, will pack down at the back of the scrum.

And with flanker Siya Kolisi confirmed as captain, the Boks will field a loose-trio much looser than the one that lined up against England.

Vermeulen and Jean-Luc du Preez manhandled England defenders and had to make bone-crunching hits to stop opponents in their tracks. Kolisi had the role of sealing on attack, and linking up in wider channels with other forwards such as Franco Mostert.

With Whiteley and Kolisi as confirmed starters, a real bruiser will be required to start at No 6, and Francois Louw and Marco van Staden are the first two to get a go. Luckily, with Malcolm Marx back at hooker, the Boks may just be able to afford this luxury.

If the new combo doesn’t work, expect Kolisi back at openside sooner rather than later, complemented by two heavies.

Back-up flyhalf, and fullback
On attack it is clear Erasmus likes Handre Pollard taking the ball to the line, and even though he gave sporting talk of Elton Jantjies still being the second-choice flyhalf, Damian Willemse seems a better fit.

It’s why the Stormers pivot starts the first game on the bench ahead of Jantjies.

But Willemse’s attacking exploits, along with his educated boot, is also the reason Erasmus rates him as a possible back-up fullback to Willie le Roux.

Unlike Warrick Gelant, Willemse has a natural kicking game, just like Le Roux. He can also feature more prominently as a second playmaker, just like Le Roux.

But there will be questions. Fullbacks caught out of positioning seldom deserve plaudits, and having not played there this year, it may be too much to expect Willemse to revise in the Test arena.

Who will partner Am?
Damian de Allende was solid against England, but an injury has given Andre Esterhuizen the chance to team up with fellow Sharks centre Lukhanyo Am

Am looks likely to push Jesse Kriel for the No 13 jersey in the long run, especially because of his knack for defensive awareness and ability to get turnovers. And the inside centre berth is also not settled.

Perhaps that’s why Erasmus toyed with the idea of starting Pollard at 12. If Esterhuizen proves his worth at international level, any idea of Pollard at 12 will be shelved. If he doesn’t, expect Pollad to be SA’s version of Owen Farrell sooner rather than later.

Weighing anchors
Who is South Africa’s best tighthead? It’s a question that not even Erasmus seems to know the answer to at the moment.

The coach does like the look of Thomas du Toit off the bench, as the Sharks’ man and back-up loosehead prop Steven Kitshoff make a telling impact in the last 20 minutes.

Stormers big men Frans Malherbe and Wilco Louw are not impact options, and one of the winner of a shootout between the two will probably be Erasmus’ first-choice tighthead come November.

What happens if Faf breaks?
If Faf de Klerk breaks down or has to head back to England, who starts at nine for the Boks? Emrbose Papier warms the bench in the Kings Park opener, but Erasmus chose to start Bulls’ teammate Ivan van Zyl against Wales.

Van Zyl is being praised as the real deal by anyone who has ever attended a Bulls training session, but Papier seems to be the kid with the BMT.

Papier offers everything on attack, but lacks a kicking-game, whilst the more pragmatic Van Zyl probably has the best kicking game among SA’s scrumhalves.

Luckily for Papier, as can be seen with De Klerk, kicking is an art that can be learnt.

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- Dawie Boonzaaier

Let's chat

  • Herman Schroder?

    What has Rassie got in mind for his game plan this afternoon I wonder. Are we going to see a fast paced expansive mindset from the players or an extension of what the Boks have produced these past few years. We should have the answer by 7pm tonight.

    What I do know is that whatever happens Rassie will have to take full responsibility for the result which is fortunately a trait he has embraced during his interviews to date. Apart from a few backline players he can hardly call his squad a ‘young’ experimental side being groomed for the WC. He has his pick of overseas players, has fulfilled his ‘transformation’ criteria for the politicians and has had plenty of time to prepare the squad which has plenty of experience. He is playing a team which is really up and down and one never knows which Argie team will turn up. Over to you Mr Erasmus and good luck.

  • Herman Schroder?

    Well the dust has finally settled and the Boks sit proudly atop the RC log. Never mind that the Lions plonked the same team 40 – 23 in the SR playoffs and the Argies have hardly won a test these past few years and with the Boks dominating up front throughout, one must still give them some credit for ‘winning’ this one. Refreshing however is Rassie’s take on the match that the Boks were pretty poor overall and still had much to do.

    The game plan was obvious from the start with the ball being spread about, albeit without much finesse, reinforcing my theory that some of the chosen players are not natural instinctive expansive rugby players. We may have got away with that against the Argies but for the other two countries coming up it isn’t going to work. Allowing the opposition to get a good first half lead is also going to be suicidal against those fellows.

    On the player front it also gets a bit patchy. Most of our tries were scored mainly through individual brilliance with Faf, Willie and Djantji in particular setting up, creating or scoring most of the points on offer. Mpimpi was favoured with two trot in tries but again showed defensive weaknesses which will be cruelly exposed by the big boys coming up later. The centres did their Sharks defensive based ‘game plan’ with some efficiency but despite the possession were still not creative enough. Willemse in his little cameo again showed that he is being rushed too soon.

    Which brings me to the Pollard conundrum. Recently described on this forum as a ‘genius’ I’m afraid he still flatters to deceive. Imagine if Jantjies had missed FIVE out of seven goal kicks, none of them particularly difficult and the Boks had lost the game or even won it ? The boy would have been hung and quartered from the the nearest rugby posts. Gavin Rich would have highlighted it with Jantjies name mentioned a dozen times in his articles. True story folks I’ve seen it.

    However golden boy hardly gets mentioned in Gavin’s SS report when he points out the one successful conversion from the touchline with no mention of the others. As for Pollards general play he again had very little to do with the creativity around him expressed by Willie, Faf and Djantji and he even had the benefit of a dominant pack. Sticking to his basic duties and trying nothing special and thereby keeping his ‘mistakes’ count down he was his usual predictable self. Again in the tighter games to come that simply won’t be enough.

    And then I doff my cap to the imperious Djantji. The most predictable ‘man of the match’ award of all time. It was not only his creativity or his finishing but also his back up play popping up all around the field to sustain movements etc. Defensively sound and unselfishly offloading to Mpimpi when he could have completed a hat trick, truly a sign of a true team player and a credit to his coaching team at the Lions.

    Faf of course again proving how poorly Alistair Coetzee treated him and what a loss he has been to SA rugby in the interim. Like Jantjies he makes mistakes with his fast paced instinctive game but in the end he is worth every penny.

    As for the forwards a pass mark for most of them but what the hell will we do if Malcolm Marx get injured again ? The current setup in the loose forwards will be found wanting on that front although van Staden did show some promise in his cameo. A bit of a penalty waiting to happen but that’s to be expected in his role but he needs to improve his timing and be more selective like Marx.

    Overall it’s a pass mark for the Boks with reservations but the question going forward is will Rassie continue building on his ‘expansive’ game plan or retreat into his shell against the bigger boys. Saturdays Argie second test should go some way to answering that. Cheers.

    • Greg Shark

      WOW Herman you’ve out done yourself for producing a boring long winded comment, maybe apply for a sports writer job and sing your praises of your golden team. By the way for a avid lions supporter (beaten by the Sharks in their last SS game) you’ve got the wrong man in “Djantji”…. no such player on the team list, maybe you refer to Dyantyi. the mercurial flier?
      Moments of brilliance is what lead to tries and of course sustained forward pressure – surely you’re aware that the backs could not score tries if the forwards did not secure the ball? So something is being done correctly. Boy, that mid-field pairing from the Sharks really kept the line straight and pulverized the Pumas on defence.
      Onto the fly half story – lets face it Jantjies has had so many failed opportunities that Pollard has a huge amount of catching up to do in that department. Granted 5 missed kicks was disappointing but not more so than a fly half that wilts under pressure and ….. agh, I’ll just leave it at that.
      Back to Dyantyi, he just needs to choose the correct options – kicking/chipping the ball forward is not always the best choice when you have support players around you, but then at the Lions he’s such a team player and the brilliant coaching would implore him to kick ahead instead of passing inside? …. none-the-less, he’s a good player just not as quick as Mapimpi but fast enough anyway! A different consensus from the sports commentators was a preference for MOM to be Etzebeth, he was everywhere, driving like a bull, tackling like a man possessed…..now that’s a no-frills player the team can look up to…. he was truly impressive for a 1st game back in Bok jersey. I’d have been happy with MOM Etzebeth but really its a TEAM game so it makes no difference.
      On the forwards I’d agree they’re a little slow and gee I was surprised at how slow Marx really is, luckily with Whitely playing they set up the hits right next to Marx…shooo, that helped! I’m not a Kolisi fan but reviewing the game I was surprised to see just how often he was in the mix….
      Well, how could we not comment on FAF, what a nippy scrummie. That move to the UK was the best thing he could ever have done. His skills are 100% better and boxing kicks 90% on target. Just goes to show how limited coaching is in RSA, no to so?
      Last word on Willemse – in 18 minutes gave away a try, kicks to touch for attacking line outs too far from the 5m line even when he kicked from just 10m away…… poor forwards were set up to drive twice the distance than they should have…. anyway he’s the new golden boy so unlikely Jantjies will be back any time soon…
      Well to finish off – I’m sure Rassie is most pleased that you’ve ticked his box for him, given him the golden seal of approval for another game…..he’s an emotional guy you know so I wouldn’t be surprised if he shed a tear or two. Nice chatting to you cheers ’til next time….

      • Herman Schroder?

        Thanks for your wonderful support in your post it is most appreciated. I didn’t even mind your derogatory comments on the tone of my contribution or pointing out the unforgivable spelling error on a surname as it clearly means you hang on my every word and put a lot of effort into finding something to ‘pick’ on which I take as a compliment. Your censorship abilities are quite formidable so should it ever be imposed on these forums I will definitely put your name forward.

        Now onto the rugby side of matters and not the petty ‘point scoring’ waste of time. As with everything in life there are two sides to every story. Your contention is that the feats of the players who created all the scoring moments was down to the pack of forwards. Well blow me down how did I miss that ? In rugby it’s a given that the forwards supply the backs who then need to create try scoring opportunities. In other words it’s a given. What the backs do with it however is the difference. On Saturday we had individuals who capitalized on their possession to score some great tries ( a foreign concept at the Sharks by the way if you take into account their miserable try scoring efforts these past few years ) and at test level these are normally few and far between. So what your point was in bringing up the ‘forward’ aspect is beyond me.

        The Sharks centres ?? Well spending 90% of their time on that cast iron defence in order to keep the score down ( the dom krag way ) and creating nothing themselves with skill and vision gives us an indication of why the Sharks have such a pathetic try scoring record. But because it’s a TEAM sport ( as you say ) I suppose the whole team lacks the skills to produce these moments and it showed on the final
        SR log and in the playoff ( singular ).

        I can write a book on the Pollard / Jantjies conundrum but you appear to have already made up your mind so I’ll be wasting my time. Suffice to say Pollard is a throwback to the dinosaur years and still plays like it and Jantjies with a decent coach and game plan is the best expansive game flyhalf in SA. He has a record to prove it Pollard has not. If you want to see what the ‘people’ really thought of Pollard then go to Rugby 365, read it and weep.

        By the way your reasoning about Pollard ‘catching up’ with Jantjies is laughable. So you mean he must be allowed to continue cocking up like he did on Saturday ?

        AS for Dyantyi ( correct enough for you ? ) remember he is with the Lions and they give him the freedom to express himself unlike the poor backs at the Sharks. Like all players who do this they make mistakes ( Jantjies is another ) but their flair leads to opportunities and tries are scored all over the park. Again compare the Lions 229 tries to the Sharks 135 this year. Lions in the final Sharks nowhere. I rest my case.

        Etzebeth did surprise with his fitness but lineout work ?? In a dom krag environment Etzebeth. like most of these unsuccessful Boks from the last few years including the last two Heyneke Meyer years. have a role to play. But even there the game has moved on. The AB forwards play like backs these days and swift offloads are the order of the day. When most of your forwards are grunters with no skill you will not beat the better teams. If you wanted to see a real MOM lock performance then Brodie Rattallick epitomized it on Saturday. Shows how low are standards are.

        Marx is head and shoulders above the rest and Whiteley should be captain. Kolisi is workmanlike but in this country we have the bad habit of praising players for actually just doing there job. At test level it’s the job plus that separates the men from the boys.

        With Faf it was more experience that improved his game not his coaching at the Lions that fell short. Your bias has no bounds.

        Willemse is being rushed at this level to satisfy transformation criteria and like Bosch and RdP will be sorely tested and probably found wanting against the big guns. Not their fault but a sad indictment of our times. Jantjies will be back my friend and if Rassie pursues his stated goal of expanding the Bok game he has no equal in this country. Again his record proves it.

        Rassie will not have my seal of approval until he convinces me he has the right game plan and picks skilled players to play it. At the moment he has a hybrid of the two games and still too many plodders to play the ‘real’ game. That’s why Saturday was such a hodge podge. The jury is still out, I’m afraid.

        Well thanks for ‘listening’ and I trust my spelling and ‘tone’ is acceptable to you. I trust that you will consider the other side of the story with an open mind. Cheers.

        • Greg Shark

          WOW Hermie…you’ve out done yourself for gassing! Congrats and cheers

      • SweetAz

        He does get kinda tedious cheerleading the Lions, someone should buy him some pom-poms and a gender reassignment. Nothing wrong with being a fan/supporter but one should have the humility to acknowledge other teams and players as well.

        • Herman Schroder?

          I have responded to Greg above, please feel free to comment. There’s still plenty of gas left in this bag believe me, lol. Cheers.

        • Greg Shark

          He’s a perennial gas bag! Loveable to some I suppose?

  • Barry Smith

    Whilst having the benefit of already having watched the game, I can honestly say my views are unchanged.
    Willemse is still a boy and needs another year at least! Bosch needs a decent chance- he was only given half an hour on the Wales fiasco and went off injured. His defensive stats are better than Willemse’s he is more mature and has a better boot!
    Lambie and Frans Steyn, because of their ability to cover multiple positions, are what we need for the World Cup. We need experienced men, not talented boys! But there is a question of fitness and availability, do of the remaining talent, in the interim, we need to test Bosch and Rob Du Preeze properly. Du Preeze was the top points scorer in SR, how is it that he is totally overlooked?
    I suspect that there will be some beef added to the 8 berth on the coming Argentina test.
    I am not sure front row is an issue Oosthuizen, Malherbe, Beast, Kitshof and Thom Du Toit as cover for both 1 & 3

    • Herman Schroder?

      Agree Willemse is being rushed through prematurely and it’s not fair on the guy. Calling up Lambie and Steyn is a retrogressive step. These guys both have their roots in the dinosaur error and that is not going to win any trophies these days. Lambie is also the highest paid non playing rugby player in world rugby.

      When Bosch and RdP can convince me they can cope with SR then I’ll take note. Bosch’s defence is not even close to being up to standard. Tackling is intuitive and I believe cannot be coached. You either have it or you don’t Poor tacklers do what’s called selective tackling. D’Allende another culprit just watch him pull out of potential tackling opportunities. Bosch’s ‘waltzing matilda’ style of jersey pulling will be totally ineffective against the big boys.

      RdP I’m afraid is another Pollard and I don’t mean in a good way. Robert must get out of the stifling Sharks set up and go where the game plan is more expansive orientated. Only then will we see if he has the right stuff. Being the top points scorer in SR means nothing. All it means that the Sharks went for posts most of the time while others went for try scoring opportunities. Their final log position indicative of their failed game plan.

      As for more beef. Believe it or not the modern game calls for more brains and less beef. If you have both then good and well ( Marx ) but we can no longer bully other countries physically especially the top teams. Pumping the Argies up front on Saturday and still being only six points clear with ten minutes to go just proving my point. Smart expansive rugby is the order of the day, ignore it at your peril. Cheers.

      • Herman Schroder?

        Correction: Ist paragraph, ‘error’ should red ‘era’ of course. Cheers.

        • Chris Mouton

          Herman, Bosch’s tackle efficiency was 64% in comparison to Jantjies’ 58% during this year’s Super Rugby season. De Allende stands at 75%. How very ineffective. So, you’re bashing du Preez. Let’s have a look at his figures. 5 Tries, 7 Try Assists, 442 Running Metres from 67 Runs = 6.6m/run and 215 Points. Compared him to Jantjies who had 1 Try, 11 Try Assists, 483 Running Metres from 83 Runs = 5.8m/run and 173 Points. Oh, yeah, and du Preez’s tackle efficiency stands at 67%. The stats don’t lie. Maybe giving Rob du Preez isn’t such a bad idea after all…

          • Herman Schroder?

            Individual stats are highly subjective and only needed by coaches to ASSIST them in analyzing the players performance in a specific game. Add them all together and they are pretty worthless. For example Bosch was mainly a fullback where he can pick and choose his tackles, which he does by the way, lol. Jantjies is in THE channel at flyhalf with the grunters targeting him. The small feller was exposed to that for every second of 19 games in SR and never stood back despite being trampled at times so of course he’s going to be bossed in a few. There’s absolutely no comparison and shows how little stock you can put in player stats.

            The same applies to RdP. His running metres accumulates taking it up in true dom krag style, ( crash and bash ) but the ball dies with him eventually. Whereas Jantjies offloads intelligently and his team scores nearly twice the amount of tries that the Sharks managed and it showed on the final log. Same with kicking, Jantjies goes for the corner, RdP for the posts and RdP considered the better kicker because he scored more points ?

            I can go on ripping your stats theory apart but I think I have made my point. In fact the stats in truth do in fact lie and it’s the game plan and it’s execution that really counts. An overall stat does give you some indication but the only one that matters is the tries scored. The Sharks a ‘blistering’ 135 the Lions 229 which is actually 241 if you include the playoffs. This also tells you which team has emerged from the Jurassic era with more success and which one remains locked in the past.

            A word of advice. If you want to progress at all get rid of your coach, if not send RdP to the Lions where he can hopefully begin to blossom in the right way. I’m not saying he isn’t without potential just wasted where he is. Bosch needs to still mature and prove that he can hold his own on defence, ‘waltzing matilda’ tackles don’t count. Again he is not in the right environment at the Sharks and should move as well. Far easier to just get rid of your coach and go shopping overseas imo. Cheers.

          • SweetAz

            LOL, -facts don’t mean much in the world of a one-eyed Lion. They are getting to be just as obnoxious as they were when Gerald Bosch was winning stuff for them.

          • Chris Mouton

            Oh, and seeing that you’re moaning about Pollard, let’s look at his stats as well. 5 Tries, 7 Try Assists, only 144 Points BUT 801 Running Metres from 84 Runs = 9.5 m/run! Quite clear why he’s the first choice. Oh, and his tackle efficiency is at 75%. Once again, the stats don’t lie.

    • Greg Shark

      Could not agree with you more Barry, Willemse touched the ball 4x gave away a try, overshot his passes and quite honestly had a worse game than Robert du Preez’s 5 min against Wales. At least du Preez could point to the fact that his forwards were woeful and gave him no protection, YET, do we hear any crit of Willemse’s display? Nary a word, bring back du Preez and give him a reasonable opportunity….
      Next, Malherbe does not deserve a position on the field. He looks unfit and could not keep up with play. Apparently he put in a lot of tackles BUT from my seat in the stands (close to the action) and reviewing the TV recording he missed as many tackles as he made!
      Am and Esterhuizen were solid and took the ball up with a lot of power, they sucked in a number of defenders each time they ran the ball.
      Dyantyi is a very good finisher and will only get better with his decision making. Mapimpi like Dyantyi has blistering pace and his development will prove him to be a possible great.
      Add some extra beef with Jean-luc du Preez, its going to be needed going forward. The loose trio was so-so but MIA when critical support play was crucial.
      Lets look forward to the future!

      • John Comyn

        Oh one more thing Greg – No need to make up stuff as you go along Malherbe had an excellent game!

      • John Comyn

        Greg you are starting to sound like Herman. Everyone was relatively crap other than the Sharks contingent. Du Preez may well be a better option than Willemse but the fact is they both had a nightmare on debut so one can’t really make a call. Both were only on the park for a short time. Rassie is not about to kick either into touch just yet. Hell Jantjies has been around for 6 years and is still trying to cut it at test level.

      • Herman Schroder?

        Had to laugh at your ‘excuse’ for RdP being the woeful forwards and lack of protection from his team mates. What do you think Jantjies has been suffering from since the advent of that coaching challenged Alstair Coetzee ? Forwards were poor, game plan was non existent and Jantjies had to perform miracles and when he couldn’t was lambasted by all and sundry. Oh the double standards. Cheers.

        PS: Have also responded to Barry Smith above.

  • TheUltimateCouchCoach

    Good to see the backs did not disappoint the immense forward pack. Eben was unbelievably powerful and will be exactly what the Doctor ordered if he maintains that against ABs and Wallabies. Hats off to Dyanti who was on fire scoring brilliant tries. He is also playing a more balanced game with improved defense but Pollard had a forgettable kicking night. I agree there is media bias as Elton would have been flayed for wasting so many missed opportunities. What was not great to watch was the poor lineouts close to the try line. This meant we couldn’t take 3 points at posts or 5 or 7 in the corner. We cannot play like that against the ABs as they will return the favour by scoring on the other side! That said SA needs to up the defensive intensity similar to what Australia was doing in the first 20 minutes of the Sydney opener. The ABs were clueless on attack until the Wallabies lifted the lever and allowed the ABs back in. That said, It would be nice if the Rugby Championship results predictability could be shattered by more cohesive 80 minute performances by the Springboks. Go Boks!!!!!

    • SweetAz

      Yep, Etsebeth playing like that forces Whitelock and Retailick into performing their core roles, -something the Wobblies neglected allowing Retailick to play centre. I really believe Retailick is overrated, he looks better than he is because of the team he plays in. Put Etsebeth in a team like the AB’s and you will see just how good he is, I would like to see him and RG Snyman together just to see what they can do.

    • Herman Schroder?

      Good read coach, Cheers.

    • Greg Shark

      Correct the Boks line speed on defence was poor to say the least. Letting the AB or Wallabies run at them will be a disaster, you just have to aggressively shut them down quickly and narrow their running options.

  • Rant

    It’s so funny, people are just never happy. I personally thought the Boks showed some marvelous intent. Certainly the best they have played in years. I just hope Rassie sticks to his guns. I recall Heyneke Meyer came in spouting about playing “modern” rugby, started well with some big wins over Argentina and beating New Zealand, but then he lost the plot, got found out and went into his shell.

    But I digress, on Saturday, the Springboks with an exciting team, played an exciting brand of rugby. Sure they tried a bit too hard at times. You could say that 3 of the Argies tries should not have been scored as they were from our errors when we should have just settled down and earned the right to swing it. But geez, if the Boks keep up this sort of improvement they will be a true superpower at next years World Cup.

    Well done Rassie’s Boks, keep up the improvement and cut out those mistakes. You need to appreciate the ball a bit more and mix it up a bit. Good luck on the trip to Argentina.

    • John Comyn

      Exactly Rant. We outscored them by 6 tries to 3 and had Pollard not had a bad day with the boot it would have been a hiding. What does concern me is we don’t appear to have a 2nd goal kicker. Even the great fly-halves have had off days but most sides will give the captain a 2nd option he can call on to take the kicks. Back in the day if you missed 3 in a row your cappie would give the ball to someone else.

      • Herman Schroder?

        Faf is a deadly kicker but he won’t always be around apparently. Cheers.

      • Dean

        Frans Steyn on the bench perhaps? He could win you close games with that cannon boot.

        • Herman Schroder?

          A relic from the Jurassic period and not a team player. Waste of time. Cheers.

  • John Comyn

    Best back on the park was Willie Le Roux. Always looked dangerous with ball in hand. I now get why they rate him so highly overseas.

    • Herman Schroder?

      Willie and Faf saved Rassie’s ass in the three wins, no doubt. Cheers.

  • Dean

    This team is developing nicely, but we’ve been here before, only for one massive blowout to change minds. We were definitely the better team on the day and by some distance. The Springboks have always been strong at home. When they travel, it’s a whole different story. I am keen to see how they perform in Argentina. A place we have struggled in recent times. If we come away with a convincing victory there, then I’d say we stand a good chance to place second in the RC.

  • maxwell

    I cant believe the praises and excuses for Pollard’s, Faf’s and Willie’s schoolboy errors and then the negative comments made on Willemse. Seriously? Did we watch the same game?A coach should not tolerate the performance of an experienced Pollard who should by now at least show signs of maturity in his playing and kicking abilities. I saw Faf (missing in action) and Willie (went for a short offload instead of securing the ball at the ruck ) wanted at a turnover ruck for the Boks and then a 2nd phase ruck which lead to a try for Pumas. I saw Willie tried to catch a high ball like a netball player. Willemse came on but then, for some reason, Faf had to kick behind the ruck.This is clearly signs of the lack of coaching skills in game awareness -planning. I predict the same gameplan will go for Jantjies as for Willemse and that he is being set up to fail again. I believe we on our way for yet another bumpy ride and rude awakening.

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