Pienaar: Don't write Boks off

2015-01-28 11:01
Francois Pienaar (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Former Springbok captain Francois Pienaar says the Boks should not be written off ahead of this year's Rugby World Cup.

The Springboks stuttered on their year-end tour to Europe late last year, losing two (Ireland, Wales) of their four matches.

They beat England at Twickenham, but also struggled in their win agaisnt Italy in Padova.

The 2015 Rugby World Cup will be played in England and Wales and the Boks' poor form in the Northern Hemisphere led to fears that they would struggle at this year's showpiece event.

However, Pienaar feels it's still early doors and remains confident in South Africa's hopes of claiming a third World Cup crown.

"A lot of rugby still needs to be played and I've always said the tournament is a four-month project," Pienaar told Netwerk24.

"Things could work out just right for a team, but it's what happens in the three months preceding and in the tournament itself that matter.

"You don't know who will be injured or fit and your game plan needs to change to the conditions. You have to be adaptable in that way.

"We have a good group and have played some of our best rugby at past World Cups."

Pienaar also said he hoped centre Jean de Villiers recovers in time for the event after the Bok skipper badly injured his knee in the last Test of 2014 against Wales in Cardiff.

Pienaar, 48, captained the Springboks to their first World Cup title in 1995 when they beat the All Blacks 15-12 in the final at Ellis Park.

Read more on:    springboks  |  rwc 2015  |  francois pienaar  |  rugby

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