England in SA

Habana eager to improve

2012-06-08 07:47
Bryan Habana (File)
Cape Town - Despite a much improved 2012 season, Springbok wing Bryan Habana says his form is not yet where he wants it to be.

Habana had an indifferent 2011 where he was often guilty of silly handling errors and mistakes on defence but a return to form has seen him help the Stormers top the South African conference in the Super Rugby competition as well as retain his place in the Springbok team.

But the veteran wing, who will play his 75th Test against England in Durban on Saturday, is eager to up his game even more.

"I wouldn't call it good form because I'm still far from where I want to be. There's still a lot I want to achieve," he told Die Burger.

"If I think about what I've achieved over the last eight years, the pressure will always be on me to perform. I'm a player who was able to make a difference on the field.

"The most frustrating thing from last year was the number of mistakes I constantly made. I had to go do some introspection and set new goals for the year."

Habana's direct opponent on Saturday, Chris Ashton, feels the South African, who holds the record for the most tries in Springbok history (40), is the best wing in world rugby.

However, Habana is himself wary of the dangerous Englishman, who has scored 15 tries in 23 Tests.

"Ashton has made a big impact since he started playing Test rugby. I'll be left behind if I'm not on top of my game," said Habana.

The first Test at Kings Park kicks off at 17:00 on Saturday, followed by Tests in Johannesburg (16 June) and Port Elizabeth (23 June).

Teams:

South Africa:


15 Zane Kirchner, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Jean de Villiers (captain), 12 Frans Steyn, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Pierre Spies, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Juandré Kruger, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Beast Mtawarira

Substitutes: 16 Adriaan Strauss, 17 Coenie Oosthuizen, 18 Flip van der Merwe, 19 Keegan Daniel, 20 Ruan Pienaar, 21 Pat Lambie, 22 Wynand Olivier

England:

15 Mike Brown, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Manu Tuilagi, 12 Brad Barritt, 11 Ben Foden, 10 Owen Farrell, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Ben Morgan, 7 Chris Robshaw (captain), 6 Tom Johnson, 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Mouritz Botha, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Dylan Hartley, 1 Joe Marler

Substitutes: 16 Lee Mears, 17 Paul Doran Jones, 18 Tom Palmer, 19 Phil Dowson, 20 Lee Dickson, 21 Toby Flood, 22 Jonathan Joseph

Read more on:    springboks  |  england in sa  |  bryan habana  |  rugby
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