Boks 'on track' for World Cup

2011-08-14 19:43

Cape Town - Two former Springboks believe the Springboks are on the right track for the World Cup, despite their 9-14 loss to Australia in Durban.

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Corné Krige, the Springbok captain at the Rugby World Cup in 2003 says there are more than enough highlights for Bok coach Peter de Villiers to take out of Saturday's loss with the World Cup in mind.

"The were so many positives, the difference between the teams was very small," Krige told the Rapport newspaper.

Krige says fetcher flank Heinrich Brüssow was "unbelievable".

"To play like that in your first game back, takes a man," said Krige.

He was also impressed with replacement hooker Bismarck du Plessis and believes De Villiers should consider taking Smit off the field after 60 minutes.

Krige believes Victor Matfield is a "good enough" captain to take charge until the end of the game.

Former Springbok wing and 1995 World Cup winner, Chester Williams also feels there's no need to panic ahead of the Word Cup.

"We are definitely on the right track. You could see in the last 10 minutes of the first half and the last 20 minutes of the match that the guys haven't played for a while," said Williams.

"We haven't played enough yet, but we will be ready for the World Cup."

Williams believes next week's Test against the All Blacks in Port Elizabeth and the first four group matches at the World Cup will be enough to prepare the Boks for the crunch knockout-games.

Williams was also highly impressed with Brüssow's performance, while Du Plessis, Bakkies Botha, Jaque Fourie and Beast Mtawarira also caught the eye of the former Bok flyer.


  • Graham - 2011-08-14 20:01

    I actually agree. Thought we had patches of decent play, and some good individual performances. What more could we expect considering these guys havent played together in a long time. A couple of handling errors, a call that went against us(more prob rightly so), a couple of passes that should have gone off, if these things go the other way, then we are putting australia under pressure. As long as we can scrape through Wales and Samoa(Scrape through as these will be incredibly tough games), also think we will be sharp enought to challenge

      Nettas - 2011-08-15 08:15

      Absolutely agree with you, there were enough positives to be optimistic about the upcoming RWC.

      Jay - 2011-08-15 09:23

      I agree! Something i think alot of people on this forum are missing is the fact that most of these players have been rested, and rested well. So they are not match fit will take a few games. But if they have timed it right, then the boks should be hitting 100% buy the time the quarters are here!!! Go Bokke!

      birdman - 2011-08-15 09:52

      Desparation drop goal attempts when on attack, fumbled balls and knock-ons on the tryline is not what should be happening at Springbok level so close to the RWC showpiece. There was no plan on Saturday! Practicing bread basket passes is what they do in the under 12A team - not at National level. The players are still battling with too many fumbled passes - why? Place kicking should be spot on - EVERY TIME! Why are we still missing penalty kicks at this level? Both Butch & Stein "had a go". The place kicker at this point in time should be able to operate like a Swiss watch, but here we are still leaving points on the field. Penalties and place kicks win matches! What happened to the juggernaut that was the Bok team? It's too late to "go back to the drawing board". We may as well start planning for 2015!

      GR - 2011-08-15 10:10

      @birdman. I think you are being a bit harsh. The handling wasn't the greatest especially by Roussow but the conditions at the end weren't ideal with the rain. In saying that though the Sharks and WP showed awesome handling the night before in much worse conditions. As for the kicking the wind seemed to be pretty strong with Aus also missing a few kicks. It was good to see Spies and Habana hit a bit of form again although Habana is still a huge concern for me. He keeps breaking his defensive line to go for the intercept but teams have cottoned on and are exploiting it which puts us as huge risk defensively. Loads of positives for me personally, I think the introduction of the likes of Alberts and Burger will make a big impact as well. I just hope they do not even contemplate moving Smit to prop during the WC not even if its for 5 mins.

      Makutu - 2011-08-15 10:11

      How come no John Smit caught the eye of no one? Why are people afraid to publicly critisize the guy? he was woeful! Him, Bucth James and Danie Rossouw! They are by far the worst players we have. Matfield and du Preez were also very ineffective!

      MB1810 - 2011-08-15 11:13

      @makutu: JS Smit was looking more solid in the set pieces that Bismarck did while he played at hooker. The Scrum was solid with him in the middle and he did not miss his line out jumpers once. I agree that he was dreadful at prop, but that piece of poor strategy can not be blamed on him. As for Butch James, he was the only reason Genia and Cooper did not run riot on Saturday. I have to agree about Danie Rossouw, worst player on the field.

  • ChrisW - 2011-08-14 20:02

    My heart agrees but my head battles with the optimism. Like saying a few practice matches and we'll be good enough to win RWC whilst others have been preparing for over a year with RWC in mind?

      !!Vrystaat!! - 2011-08-14 21:12

      I feel the boks must play some of the currie cup teams. That will be good practice ! :D

      Craig - 2011-08-15 06:50

      Agree, I feel the boys are going through the motions without heart, no heart will mean disappointment for us at the world cup, sorry to say!

      SirPlod - 2011-08-15 07:48

      Chris, I take comfort in the fact that NZ have been preparing for the RWC for 4 years every 4 years, and they still haven't won one in a while. I think that a lot can change in a few weeks when you have a core as talented and experienced as ours. Now if only there were a way to keep Divvy, Muir and Gold from making any decisions whatsever between now and the world cup, then I think we may be in with a chance. Hey, we have to hang on to some hope. Is kidnapping 3 men for 2 months and keeping them hostage still considered a crime if it's in the national interest?

  • Wizz - 2011-08-14 20:04

    what scares me is,u look at australia,their team changed,especially the backline. u look at the boks,u almost see the same team we had in the last world cup,is it a good thing or a bad thing?

      fconnection - 2011-08-15 00:35

      bad very bad we never invested in new players now we stuck with old tired injured players . bad management if you ask me

  • EDI2000 - 2011-08-14 20:08

    At the end of the day I'm just a BOK fan thats tired of losing hey! Whoopie great to have positives but what about a win??? Snorr seriously has no clue about his sub stratagy in the second half, no direction no leadership, like a rudderless supertanker.

      RowRobCk - 2011-08-14 22:55

      too many redbulls and the tired brain wont work at all.When the guys are playing that is when a coach should be at there sharpest not looking tired and drained like the Bok coaching squad looked like in the box camera .the team needs advice and strategies to be updated and flexed look at yourselves and how you are projecting confidence, the pressure is always on deal with it , your in everyone's crosshairs.

      maloorsports - 2011-08-15 07:36

      I have to agree with you Chris. I'll stand by our team, but it hurts to see them lose so often, when you know we have the potential and the players to beat every team in the world. The sight of a Springbok scrum being repeatedly destroyed is something that no Bok supporter wants to see. I agree - how about a good win, to show we have the will to defend the World Cup?

      tiredofitall - 2011-08-15 09:11

      OK. But what about his advisors???????

  • Phillip - 2011-08-14 20:10

    were going to win this world cup. We have BMT and plenty of talent. .Were not the All Blacks but No matter how showy your game, when a win is all that counts, i believe we have what it takes when it really matters.

      StephanM - 2011-08-14 21:17


      Richard - 2011-08-15 00:36

      What have you been smoking Phil?

  • flat bier - 2011-08-14 20:14

    25 days and counting boys-I can feel the butterflies!

  • Mark Schaafsma - 2011-08-14 20:18

    It was an improvement , we only lost by a 5

      StephanM - 2011-08-14 21:18

      haha, best comment i've read in ages!

      goofree - 2011-08-15 07:15

      Mark were you exspecting more

  • GT - 2011-08-14 20:22

    not sure how much fitter they can get in 30 days. They were gasping after 30 minutes. ALL OF THEM!

  • gatvol4corru - 2011-08-14 20:24

    I would like to believe them,yet loosing can become habit. I am afraid,with dimwit THE CLOWN&MUIR&GOLD & pensioner JS,we hardly stand a chance. I do not have much hope. We do not have game-plan to speak of,JS is to sloooooow,Butch can't kick,nor has convinced me he is the fly-half that we need. The GNOMe makes changes which effects the match,every time! Are we just suckers for punishment? Thanks HOSKINS,you messed it all up and now want to play the race-cards again

  • Marshall - 2011-08-14 20:28

    I'm a BOK SUPPORTER, but I hope Namibia will not be the only team we might win in our Pool. The Boks cannot play for one half, lead by 6 points and think they've won the match.

  • wood - 2011-08-14 20:32

    These guys remind me of the little legless armless Knight in Pythons Holy Grail. `Just a flesh wound come back and fight`Two more B and C ´s and they will translate 3 losses into into partial victories. A little less silly optimism and a little more realism is nescessary. The team was knackered after 60 minutes.The scrums were like an Italian tank with reverse gears (against an AUSSIE SCRUM) and the backs couldn't make a break if the other team sat down.Apart from that it was pretty mediocre.

  • Jacques - 2011-08-14 20:35

    It was frustrating to see the good work of the first half undone in the second. Hope there if they can build on that couple of good minutes. What really makes me angry is this new system of subbing everybody that has a good game after the break. It turns the whole game on it's head! It does not mean that just because you have a couple of guys sitting on the bench they have to play. I understand that the guys need game time but it's getting too late for trying combinations and blooding youngsters!

      StephanM - 2011-08-14 21:21

      just like it is too late to admit that pdiv hasn't got a clue...

      Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-08-15 08:28

      @Jacques - while I agree with you about the subbing, I think Div is still experimenting with a few combinations, options and alternatives. Also, a couple of so-called "rusty" players need much needed game time.

  • Frans Smith - 2011-08-14 20:35

    keep in mind a few things things; 1) it was a home game - you should in this competition win almost 90% of your home games. 2) why can we not score tries and if we is normally 1 if we really lucky 2 - i think to get to the final and to win it, you will need to score tries (more tham one). 3) the aussies did not play well two games in a row - they will only get better AND, irrespect of the score, THEY STILL WON! i am not as positive - if every one is saying take smit off (or afte rteh first half) what is he doing there? we need players that can if called upon to do so, play the entire game without ending up being a passenger. it is the same as taking an injured player (i.e. when we took an injured bob skinstad)

      Frans Smith - 2011-08-14 21:35

      i say; take smit as a consultant - not player to the wc. that is where he can make a huge positive contribution (with his experience and previous wc knowledge). he has the ear of the players and pdv - they all get on well. we can only gain from that. but as player, i think he is way passed his sell by date.

  • Carel Laubscher - 2011-08-14 21:08

    The only change we need to make is the Snor. He has now proven that he does not have what it takes to take the team to the next level. He has run out of ideas some time back and we need some fresh onse for the WC. Overall the boks played well. Pity about the missed tackles. Are there any penalties for the quilty ones who missed? There is a perception of "if I miss its okay". Well done Bokke Lets see what you can come up with for next weekend.

      David - 2011-08-15 09:17

      And Gold and Co?????

  • Anneck - 2011-08-14 21:12

    The fact we face not winning a single game for the first time in Tri Nations history, and we scored no tries in our own back yard?

      StephanM - 2011-08-14 21:24

      but at least pdiv is 90% sure they will win the wc!

  • FJ2 - 2011-08-14 21:30

    Rugby is just a game. You win, it's great. You lose, nobody died. If you're in my line of work, dealing with grief and loss, with death and the dying every day, you gain some perspective: Rugby is just rugby, not life.

      buckaroo - 2011-08-15 11:35

      Yawn...... You sound like my wife... and her granny!!!!!

      FJ2 - 2011-08-15 14:40

      Your wife sounds like a smart girl.

  • Alan - 2011-08-14 22:44

    If Smit is ok to play then he must go to the RWC but play from the bench as a hooker for the last 20min only i.e. Bismark to start. Other changes would be Flip vd Merwe to be the on the bench not Mostert - Flip addds far more to the scrums. A replacement prop is the real problem there is just nobody out there who can do the job - in fact I now need to ask what are the props in the other teams (aus and kiwiland) using cause just a couple of years ago they couldn't scrum for a slice of bread? Brussouw is vital so must stay on as 6, maybe Burger or J.Smith (if recovered) to play 7 and a slowly improving Spies at 8 (pity Duanne got injured). M.Steyn in the squad only but not in the matchday 22. Lambie at 15, Ruan Pienaar or Butchie at 10. Frans Steyn to play 12 (De Villiers is not half the centre Fransie is). I would prefer Sadie (he has the x-factor we lack) on the bench but lets face it, the coach likes Jean DeVilliers so ok, let him take a bench spot. Otherwise we are pretty much there. Just tweeks people, just tweeks, match fitnes (more than enough time) and confidence. As for our semi final opponents, well that will be the French. The ABs will loose their poole match, have to face England and then be knocked out by Aus - simple realy.

      Tongie - 2011-08-15 03:13

      even Chilliboy is a better impact player than Smit. Smit will be chosen purely for his leadership skills. otherwise nothing more....

      Linzam - 2011-08-15 07:50

      Since when in the last few years have you seen an All Black team that couldn't scrum?

  • rosemarie - 2011-08-14 23:03

    Oh- Please - we need innovation and imagination - the selectors and coaches really can do with insightfull assistance. we have lost 8 out of 9 tri nations matches in 2010 & 2011. we are not on the right track we are bumbeling along.

      saburger - 2011-08-15 11:15

      I agree with Rosemarie. How can you be competitive in a professional sport, having unprofessional coaches?

  • Bloubul Jonck - 2011-08-14 23:55

    What track? how not to win the world cup

  • Henry - 2011-08-14 23:56

    Liked to hear their comment's after saturday's hiding against the All Blacks B team

  • slg - 2011-08-15 02:02

    This is wishful thinking without basis in fact. RWC 2011 is likely to be a repeat of 2003.

  • Glenn - 2011-08-15 03:06

    On the right track? The Boks were derailed from those tracks shortly after PDV and his clowns took over. With 7 losses out of the last 8 Tri Nations' Tests, what track exactly are we on?

  • Tongie - 2011-08-15 03:23

    SARU, the couching staff and players need to be changed... simple as that. the whole system is messed up... wouldnt mind seeing Nick Mallet get a crack at coaching the boys again, i reckon he could do a better job. or we could even flirt around with the idea of getting a foreign coach to take over and bring in a new competitive dimension to our game. we need a total make over of the way we understand and think rugby on the pitch.

  • Kevin Rack - 2011-08-15 05:16

    Talk rubbish. We will not defend the RWC with an outdated give the possesion away jake white game plan, a non existant non try scoring ball shuffling backline nor with players who are too slow for the modern game. The Aussie backline made our supposed supers stars ordinary without any creativity or skill. Too many legends running on reputation on not form. The Kiwis are going to give us one...

  • Benoexpat - 2011-08-15 05:52

    Losing battles to win a war? What kind of stategy is that? Anyway, should the Springboks win the world cup they'll be the world champions only untill the very first defeat by any other team thereafter. You're a real champion if you win game after game.

  • Surfer - 2011-08-15 07:30

    To all you negative turds...this is it..what is done is done. There is nothing left to do but get better, we cannot change the coaching staff at this point and still hope to be successful, we need to stick to this team and be more positive and give them our undying support. If any of you remember the 2003 world cup and Kamp Staaldraad you will realize we are in a far better position this year, things are exponentially better now than they were then. Just get behind our team and support them and stop frikkin whinging about the same cr@p, over and over. Boohoo PDivy this..boohoo John Smit that. Come on people if everybody believes we will lose..then that is exactly what will happen. So wake up and pull your heads out of your negative arses.

  • Gideon Hanekom - 2011-08-15 07:49

    Just don't get "knocked-out" by the first four group games ... samoa, not half bad ... as the Wallabies found out the hard way ..fiji and wales .. not too bad either ..

  • SirPlod - 2011-08-15 08:18

    Part of me agrees - we definitely have the exprience and the talent to beat the AB's this weekend, and to build a winning foundation from there and take the World Cup. The other part of me reminds myself that we have Div, Muir and Gold at the helm, and these chaps are horribly out of their depth, and horribly out of ideas. Whenever I watch the Boks lining up, I see confidence, strength and talent, and I get excited about the game that's about to kick off - but then the camera pans to the coaching box, or Div does an interview ... that's when I come crashing back down to earth...

  • Straightdeal - 2011-08-15 08:20

    I cannot get optimistic.What I saw was a tired and unfit bunch of players playing without plan and with the occasional solitary bursts forward. Jannie du Plessis was taken off after 60 minutes because he was "tired", with the catastrohic move of Smit to prop. The coaching squad should surely be fired, they choose inexperienced players to "rest" the experienced ones, and then the latter are too unfit to get through a game. WTF??

  • slg - 2011-08-15 08:26

    Yea right, like Corne knows.

  • Annie - 2011-08-15 08:33

    Lets all hope that Rassie and Nienaber bring such much needed direction and insight into the coaching structures because Snor and Co have no damn idea what they should be doing. PdV is a huge albatross around each and every players' neck!

  • Stuart - 2011-08-15 08:34

    I was sitting high up in the stands and from there one could see that every time the Boks got the ball the Wallabies simply lined up and waited for us to run into their defenders. Definitely need to be able to change strategy mid game. This week we are going to have to take 5 steps forward and truly lift our game otherwise it could be a humilating day in PE. All blacks supporters are arriving in their masses and it is going to be interesting to see who in the Bok team puts up their hand. Charatcer building to say the least. Frans Steyn is totally unfit and at one stage before his "injury" could hardly chase down a Aussie attacker, his oppositional kicking was also poor. Good Luck Boks this weekend

  • Derek - 2011-08-15 08:41

    World cup, world cup, world cup....... How about just winning a few more test matches for us long suffering supporters. As Robbie Deans says you just go all out to win the test match in front of you, and the aussies have been in three finals!

  • LionsFan - 2011-08-15 08:47

    It is good to be positve but also one has to realistic ,aussies made a lot of mistakes and they scored easily,backline of the boks way too flat and Jean de Villiers had the ball at least 6 times and made no attempt to pass ,Beast was awesome but if he had passed- two easy tries .Why are we not playing the ABs on the highveld ,stuff them up with the altitude or play on the hardest surface know to man the rustenburg stadium

  • LionsFan - 2011-08-15 08:53

    Frans steyn needs a shave and hair cut ,looks really unprofessional or go and do shampoo ads

      BlueRaven - 2011-08-15 09:55

      I don't know who told him that the dirty French look is attractive... lol he needs a hair cut and a shave, but then again different strokes for different folks! As long as he brings his A game who cares about his hair? :)

      InternetMan - 2011-08-15 11:18

      But.. but lionsfan used to have a hardon for him but not anymore. Not with that unprofessional look! lol

  • amabok - 2011-08-15 08:55

    On the right track for a 1st round exit.

  • Surfer - 2011-08-15 08:56

    What I saw. 1. Our defense was 10 times better in this game than any time last in 2010. 2. Our scrum was 10 times better until the changes. 3. There was definitely a change in the game plan, albeit small.. it was there. Although the old game plan is still there. But we don't necessarily want to get rid of it altogether just add to it..makes us more unprdicatable 4. Our passing down the line was 10 times faster on occasion than is has ever been. 5. Some stars are starting to stand up again. Butch James, Pierre Spies, Fourie du Preez, Jaque Fourie, Heinrich Brussow, Beast, Bismark, Matfield, Bakkies. Last season it was hard to find even one player that did slightly well. I was also hard as nuts finding any positives, but this last game was streaks ahead. Has anybody actually noticed too that the All Blacks have actually adopted a lot of our forward type play into their game, it was this exact style of play that crushed the Ozzies, denying them any decent ball.

  • Ozman - 2011-08-15 13:04

    SA must loose Smith as captain and player, switch and changing positions up front during important matches at key times during the match is cause for concern, the best 15 must start the game and be on the field for a good 60 min, then introducing impact players to keep up the intensity for the full 80. It might be an idea to introduce smaller and more mobile forwards to combat the speed and ability of other international sides, SA have lost a trick and are still a page behind.

  • AgJaNoFine - 2011-08-15 13:50

    What are these guys on? "We haven't played enough"? These guys are tired out from Super Rugby! To me, it looked like the team that played in the first half were Jake White's old guard, who played very well in fact, as they have actually been coached by a genius, Jake White. His legend clearly lives on in those who played underneath him, whom he taught strategy and tactics. Bring on PDV's young guns in the second half and they looked like a bunch of schoolboys without a clue. This is what happens when you are not coached, or do not have an intelligent game plan. But what can you expect from someone who is not intelligent? To me, the problem is simple.

  • Raymond - 2011-08-15 20:03

    Which track are we talking about,the race track???

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