Rugby Championship

De Allende relishing Bok culture

2014-09-25 07:26
Damian de Allende (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Springbok centre Damian de Allende says he’s making the most of his time in the national squad this season.

De Allende is one of the exciting young talents on the South African scene this season.
After impressive performances in Super Rugby and the Currie Cup in recent years, he received his first Springbok call-up ahead of the June Tests.

However, an unfortunate knee injury prevented him from featuring against Wales and Scotland during the incoming tour fixtures, but he did recover in time to play during the Rugby Championship.

He started in both victories over Argentina in Pretoria and Salta, while he also featured on the bench against the All Blacks in Wellington.

“I’m making the most of my time with the Springboks, on and off the field,” De Allende told the MyPlayers website. “It’s not only been an honour and a privilege, but it’s been a major learning curve for me as a young player training and playing alongside some of the best players in world rugby.

“The players were all welcoming and it’s been great learning and being part of the Springbok culture. It’s added a lot to my development. The biggest lesson I’ve learned is that every mistake at Test level will be punished.

“We did well to come away with two victories against Argentina as we didn’t play at our best. The defeats against the Wallabies and All Blacks were disappointing as we did improve overall, but we’ll be looking to come out stronger during our home Tests against them.”  

De Allende added that the Springboks will be aiming to be more clinical against the Wallabies in Cape Town and All Blacks in Johannesburg.

“We will be looking to improve in all areas, but we’ll definitely be aiming to close off results and earn those victories.”

Springbok wing Bryan Habana and captain Jean de Villiers achieved milestones as they made
their 100th Test appearances during the tour of Australasia. De Allende enjoyed being part of the celebrations.

“That’s been another honour. I also played during Jean de Villiers’ 100th Super Rugby game,”
said De Allende. “To share that experience with two legends of South African rugby was amazing. There was a great vibe on and off the field during those two Test weeks, and it inspires me to work hard for the national team.

“It’s a pity couldn’t give them the win. However, we’re aiming for a strong finish to the Rugby
Championship, which we believe we can achieve.”

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