Rugby Championship

Aus expect aerial bombardment

2012-09-25 19:00
Berrick Barnes (AFP)

Johannesburg - Australia's Berrick Barnes is expecting the Springboks to bombard the Wallabies with high kicks and said the tactic had contributed to Australia struggling to beat them in Perth on September 8.

"You're not allowed to kick in Australia!" he joked. "But there's a real appreciation for the kicking game here, I guess it depends on what you find entertaining.

"It's a huge part of Test rugby, how you exit your own half and we struggled with that in Perth. We'll endeavour not to try as many grubbers this time.

"They can be effective if you get them through the line, it's just we didn't get any through.

Barnes is expected to play at fullback in Saturday's Test in Pretoria, with Kurtley Beale likely to be picked at flyhalf.

The Springboks have received fierce criticism for their one-dimensional game plan, which has left them without a victory in their last three Rugby Championship games. But the Australian doesn't expect the South Africans to alter much in their strategy.

"I'm sure I'll either be at 10 or 15, and if I'm fullback then I'll have a lot more work under the high ball. No side tests the fullback as much as the Springboks do. People talk about the forward battle, but you have to deal with the kicking game as well," Barnes told reporters on Tuesday.

Wallabies media manager Matt McIlraith said a gastrointestinal bug had affected the Australian camp, with lock and captain Nathan Sharpe, props James Slipper and Ben Alexander, lock Sitaleki Timani and loose forwards Liam Gill and Scott Higginbotham all being laid low.

The Wallabies will also be without hooker Stephen Moore, who strained a hamstring. McIlraith said uncapped Reds hooker James Hanson was on his way to South Africa to cover for Moore.

The 29-year-old Moore will remain level with Jeremy Paul on 72 caps as Australia's most-capped hooker.

Australia will announce their team on Thursday afternoon.


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy 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
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Is Allister Coetzee the right man to coach the Springboks?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

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.