Rugby Championship

Jean: Boks on right track

2012-09-09 10:41
Jean de Villiers (File)

Perth - Springbok captain Jean de Villiers insists the Springboks are on the right track despite a narrow loss to a resurgent Australia in their Rugby Championship Test.

South Africa led 13-3 at one stage in the first half on Saturday but the Wallabies came from behind to win 26-19 and notch a much-needed win after last month's embarrassing 22-0 loss to New Zealand.

It was Australia's fifth win in a row over South Africa, themselves keen to make a statement after a disappointing 16-16 draw with Argentina in their previous outing in the four-nation tournament.

De Villiers said the result was disappointing, especially after his team had laid the foundations for a win, but that the side would continue to improve as they gained more experience.

"I don't think that we can suddenly expect to be the greatest team in the world and just click and play fantastic rugby. We need to learn from the experiences, we need to grow as a team and that takes some time.

"We want to be winning every single game that we play and those pressures from the media, from the fans, we feel them at times."

De Villiers said that Wallabies veteran Nathan Sharpe "had more caps than our whole pack just about", which put things into perspective.

"But we believe that we are on the right track. We believe that we played much better rugby today and hopefully we can keep on improving when we play next week as well," he said.

"It is a young team but it is Test match rugby and you don't have a lot of time to grow at this level. We need to quickly rectify those mistakes and hopefully get a better result next week."

Coach Heyneke Meyer, with just three wins from his first six Tests at the helm, echoed De Villers's sentiments.

The Springboks, who stand second in the Rugby Championship table with seven points, behind New Zealand (12) face a mammoth task against the all-conquering All Blacks in Dunedin next Saturday.

They have injury concerns, with winger Bryan Habana (ankle), who scored the only try against the Wallabies, and tighthead prop Jannie du Plessis (hamstring) both forced from the field.

Eben Etzebeth has also been cited after appearing to headbutt Sharpe in the first half.

The Wallabies head to the Gold Coast to play Argentina on Saturday with major injury concerns of their own.

Stand-in skipper Will Genia will be sidelined for at least six months with a serious knee injury suffered late in Saturday's match.

Original captain James Horwill (hamstring) and his replacement, David Pocock (knee), are already out for extended periods.

Sharpe, who originally announced he would retire earlier this year, is enjoying an extended farewell and took over the captaincy for the dying minutes against the Springboks.

Berrick Barnes, whose six-from-six effort with the boot helped the Wallabies run down the Springboks, appeared to suffer a calf injury late in the game and hobbled off, while man-of-the-match Sitaleki Timani also finished the match on the bench with a hamstring strain.

Hooker Stephen Moore was a late omission from the team that faced the Springboks with a hamstring injury.

HAVE YOUR SAY: What did you think of the Springboks’ effort against Australia on Saturday? Do you believe they are on the right track or is some changes needed? Send your thoughts to Sport24.

NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

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
111 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

 

Quiz: Test your Rio Olympics memory!

Think you know what went on at the Rio Olympics? Prove it by tackling Sport24's ridiculously impossible yet highly addictive post-Games quiz!

 
 

Rio Olympics

GALLERY: SA's Rio Olympic medallists
As it happened: Rio Olympics - Day 17
Selecting 6 numbers turned Britain into Olympic superpower
Caster cranks up the heat in Rio semi
Fixtures
10 September 2016
New Zealand v Argentina, Hamilton 09:35
Australia v South Africa, Brisbane 12:05
17 September 2016
New Zealand v South Africa, Addington, Christchurch 09:35
Australia v Argentina, Perth 12:05
01 October 2016
South Africa v Australia, Pretoria 17:05
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who would you like to see start at flyhalf for the Boks in their next Rugby Championship clash against the Wallabies in Brisbane?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

Follow all the action from the 2016 Rio Olympics. The highs, the lows, the tears, the smiles as the world's greatest athletes compete for gold, silver and bronze.

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

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