Rugby Championship

Coetzee praises Bok locks

2017-09-09 22:54
Pieter-Steph Du Toit (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Springbok coach Allister Coetzee complimented his lock pairing following the side's 23-23 draw with the Wallabies in Perth on Saturday.

Pieter-Steph du Toit was given a start ahead of Franco Mostert, who was being rested, in the second row alongside captain Eben Etzebeth. Du Toit performed brilliantly and Lood de Jager produced a solid cameo appearance when he came off the bench.

"I hadn't seen Australia lose any line-outs but we were able to put some pressure there," said Coetzee.

"We have four excellent locks at our disposal at the moment and Pieter-Steph was outstanding tonight. That's one healthy thing about the Springboks this year is that they compete for their positions.

"The guys outside are knocking hard and if they are starting they know they've got to play well to keep their positions."

Coetzee also lauded his side's comeback from being 20-10 down in the 48th minute.

"I think there were two good sides who were desperate to win tonight," he said.

"I'm really proud that we were able to get ourselves back into the match after trailing by 10 points in the second half. I'm proud of the character in this team.

"I think we let ourselves down in the first half with a bit of ill-discipline... In general, you're never pleased with a draw, but I'm pleased with the result."

Next up for South Africa is a trip to Auckland for a clash with the world champion All Blacks.

"The mindset was different this year; in the past we were thinking about the All Blacks way too early and forgetting about a tough and good Wallabies side," added Coetzee.

"We got close, we know we had them in the second half, we came up short a couple of times. Different challenge next week, I think we'll have to improve our discipline, keep the physicality and be ready for another dog fight." 

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South Africa v Australia, Bloemfontein 17:05
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