Rugby and more Rugby!

The Rugby Championship and Currie Cup are in full swing. Who are the early title favourites? Have your say on our Forum!

Boks brace for open game

2012-09-26 18:51

Johannesburg - The Springboks expect a fast-paced encounter against Australia in their Rugby Championship match at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday.

VIDEO: Heyneke Meyer hails Morné Steyn - in the shower!

With the national side back on home soil and playing at altitude, Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer said on Wednesday they were bracing themselves for an open game.

"If you look at the previous games on the highveld, they (Australia) opened up the game from the kick-off, kept the ball in hand," Meyer said.

"I think that is probably why they will go with (Kurtley) Beale at 10 as well.

"Their intention will be to move us around and to run us around and hope we will tire."

The last time the two sides clashed at altitude in the Tri-Nations was in 2010 when both matches turned into high-scoring games.

The Springboks beat their counterparts from Down Under by 44-31 at Loftus Versfeld while the Australians won the next match 41-39 in Bloemfontein.

Incidentally, it was Beale that sunk the Boks with a penalty conversion on the full-time whistle.

Meyer, however, felt the Wallabies would play into their hands if they opted for an expansive game at Loftus.

"I like that because it gives you chances of great defence to get turnovers and you score from turnovers," he said.

"They will definitely play an attacking game, move the ball around, but that will suit our game plan as well. We will also open up the game.

"In a sense, on the highveld, there are always more tries and that will be great for the public."

Meyer also made minor changes to his side in line with the game plan they expected the Wallabies to employ.

One of the changes was to replace lock Juandré Kruger with Andries Bekker.

"Against New Zealand you want guys who play more to the ball, which suits Juandré (Kruger) and Flip (Van der Merwe) and they were superb with that playing to the ball and hitting rucks," he said.

"With Australia it is always a more open game and Andries's strong point is to pitch up as a centre, ala Victor Matfield, on the wing sometimes.

"He brings something different and it is going to be a more open game. I think it is going to be a quick game.

"They are going to open up the game and if they open up the game we will do the same."

Meyer has come under severe criticism over the Springboks' game plan but he assured on Wednesday that the team had already made changes to their play.

"If you are a rugby purist, there are slight changes from week to week," Meyer said.

"Three away games against three tough countries is tough.

"So we've changed a few things and obviously you want the guys to score tries and go out there and express themselves, so hopefully things will click."

He believed the team had already made strides in the right direction and expected his charges to win on home soil.

"I am not making any promises," he said.

"I can see this team is improving every single week but even if you are a young, inexperienced side, you have to win your home games."

Teams:

South Africa:


15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Bryan Habana, 13 Jean de Villiers (captain), 12 Francois Steyn/Jaco Taute, 11 Francois Hougaard, 10 Johan Goosen, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Andries Bekker, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Beast Mtawarira

Substitutes: 16 Tiaan Liebenberg, 17 Coenie Oosthuizen, 18 Flip van der Merwe, 19 Marcell Coetzee, 20 Elton Jantjies, 21 Jaco Taute/Juan de Jongh, 22 Patrick Lambie

Australia:

TBA

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
60 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Fixtures

06 September 2014
  • New Zealand v Argentina, Napier 09:35
  • Australia v South Africa, Perth 12:05
13 September 2014
  • New Zealand v South Africa, Wellington 09:35
  • Australia v Argentina, old Coast Queensland 12:05
27 September 2014
  • Argentina v New Zealand, La Plata 00:10
  • South Africa v Australia, Cape Town 17:05

Logs

Rank Team P W Pts

Results

23 August 2014
16 August 2014
28 June 2014
21 June 2014
14 June 2014
07 June 2014
23 November 2013
17 November 2013
09 November 2013
05 October 2013
28 September 2013
14 September 2013
07 September 2013
24 August 2013
17 August 2013
22 June 2013
15 June 2013
08 June 2013

Opinion Poll

After 4 rounds of this year's Absa Currie Cup, who's your favourite for the title?

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.