Rugby World Cup 2011

Variation important - Spies

2011-09-23 11:10
Pierre Spies (File)

Taupo - The decision to give a big ball carrier like Willem Alberts a start in the number six jersey, ahead of ball-stealing specialist Heinrich Brussow, was always going to be to the team's advantage, said Springbok No 8 Pierre Spies.

"You need good variation and it is also important for a loose trio to play well together and fit like a glove," said Spies.

"Sometimes you sit with injuries, and some other things you have to face, so you take it week by week and see how you can adapt to it."

Alberts earned the man of the match award for his performance in South Africa's 87-0 drubbing of Namibia on Thursday, while Brussow was on the field for only 12 minutes.

Spies said he thought different players brought different strengths to the side, but one thing they had in common was that each of them would be out to do his best.

"At this stage the loose-trios have played well, so now it is all about managing the team so that they peak at the right time," he said.

"Luckily we have a good group of players and some wonderful loose-forwards who can fill those gaps [should they open up though injury]."

On a personal level, Spies has shown improvement in every match he has played at the world spectacle.

In last week's game against Fiji, he showed glimpses of his old self as he attacked the gain-line while also putting his team on the front foot with some great long distance carries.

Against Namibia, where he was a force in the line-outs, he lifted his play another notch.

Like all professional athletes, however, Spies said he would never be fully satisfied with his performance.

"There is always room for improvement," he said.

"We set goals for ourselves and we were all very pleased with the results we had against Fiji and Namibia.

"It was important for us to build some momentum."


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