Boks set for more records
Brenden Nel - SuperSport
Auckland - The Springboks will take another step towards a remarkable record when they take on Namibia on Thursday morning (SA time).
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In fact, a number of unique records can be set when the Boks meet their northern neighours at the North Harbour Stadium in Albany in what is expected to be a rather one-sided contest.
With a victory, the Boks will equal their own record run of 10 unbeaten games in a World Cup, and close in on the Australian record of 12 consecutive victories in the tournament. Ironically to do that, the Boks will need to beat Samoa next week and then are likely to face the same Australians to claim a place in the semis.
While both coach Peter de Villiers and captain John Smit played down all milestones on Tuesday, it is very apparent that the game not only serves as the perfect motivation to keep the World Cup momentum going, but also to settle some personal milestones that have been plaguing the team for much too long.
The chief among these is Bryan Habana’s continued stall at the 38th parallel with Joost van der Westhuizen in the all-time scoring stakes. There is nobody more atuned to this than Habana, who will want to answer his critics by crossing the tryline during the game and making the record his own.
There are more milestones that can and will be reached, and for now if the Boks can be ruthless against Namibia, they will score a few records of their won.
John Smit will captain the Springboks for a world record 82nd time. It will also be his 15th Test in RWC tournaments and 10th as captain. Smit made his RWC debut in 2003 against Uruguay as a replacement hooker. In this match he will extend his Springbok record as the most capped hooker to 94 caps and become the most capped Springbok with 109 Tests.
Jaque Fourie holds the Springbok record for most career tries as a centre (27). Following his try against Fiji on Saturday he shares with Bryan Habana the Springbok record of eight tries in RWC tournaments.
Morné Steyn needs 24 points to reach 400 points in his Test career.
Schalk Burger is South Africa’s most capped flank forward with 63 Tests and shares the all-time Springbok try scoring record for a flank with Juan Smith with 11 tries each.
Pierre Spies is South Africa’s top try scorer in Tests as a No 8 with 7 tries.
Gurthrö Steenkamp became South Africa’s top try scorer as a prop in Tests when he scored his sixth Test try against last week against Fiji.
15 Pat Lambie, 14 Gio Aplon, 13 Jaque Fourie, 12 Frans Steyn, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Pierre Spies, 7 Schalk Burger, 6 Willem Alberts, 5 Danie Rossouw, 4 Bakkies Botha, 3 CJ van der Linde, 2 John Smit (captain), Gurthro Steenkamp.
Substitutes: 16 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 17 Tendai Mtawarira, 18 Francois Louw, 19 Heinrich Brüssow, 20 Fourie du Preez, 21 Ruan Pienaar, 22 Juan de Jongh.
15 Chrysander Botha, 14 Danie Dames, 13 Danie van Wyk, 12 Piet van Zyl, 11 Heine Bock, 10 Theuns Kotze, 9 Eugene Jantjies, 8 Jacques Nieuwenhuis, 7 Jacques Burger (c), 6 Tinus du Plessis, 5 Nico Esterhuyse, 4 Heinz Koll, 3 Marius Visser, 2 Bertus O'Callaghan, 1 Johnnie Redelinghuys
Substitutes: 16 Hugo Horn, 17 Jané du Toit, 18 Pieter Jan van Lill, 19 Rohan Kitshoff, 20 Ryan de la Harpe, 21 Darryl de la Harpe, 22 Conrad Marais