'No reason we can't beat Boks'

2013-11-04 14:30
Mike Phillips (AFP)
Cape Town - Wales scrumhalf Mike Phillips says there's "no reason" why they can't go out and beat the Springboks in Cardiff on Saturday.

The "Red Dragons" have improved markedly in recent years, winning two Grand Slams and three Six Nations titles since Warren Gatland took over as coach in 2008.

However, their record against the three Southern Hemisphere powers - South Africa, New Zealand and Australia - remains dismal.

They have suffered 22 defeats in 23 matches against the "Big Three" under Gatland with the sole victory coming against the Wallabies in 2008.

Their overall record in Tests against South Africa is also poor, with the Boks holding a 24-1 winning record, with one match ending in a draw.

However, Phillips is adamant that things will be different this time round, especially since they've come close to notching victories against the Boks in their last four outings.

South Africa won 17-16 at the World Cup in New Zealand two years ago and in three Tests in Cardiff before that the respective scorelines read: 29-25; 34-31 and 20-15.

Phillips, in an interview with the RBS Six Nations website, said they have the talent in their squad to go out there and do it.

He described the Boks as an immensely physical side but is confident his charges will be able to match that.
The controversial scrumhalf was recently sacked by his French club Bayonne for arriving at a training session under the influence of alcohol, but his focus is now firmly on the South Africa challenge.

He said he was impressed by the Springboks in the Rugby Championship but doesn't see any reason why Wales can't bag a victory.

Wales will also take heart from the British and Irish Lions' demolition of Australia earlier this year.

There were 10 Welsh players in the Lions' starting team for the decisive third Test against the Wallabies in June - a game the Lions convincingly won 41-16 to claim their first series win in 16 years.

Kick-off at the Millennium Stadium is at 19:30 (SA time) on Saturday.

Read more on:    springboks  |  mike phillips  |  rugby

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