Bok 'primal mode' praised

2010-11-29 13:03

Rob Houwing, Sport24 chief writer

Cape Town – Even Brian Moore, the former England and Lions hooker, found it impossible not to dish out some grudging laurels to the Springboks on Monday after their rousing victory at Twickenham.

Moore tends to have an axe to grind against South African rugby in his commentary and press reports, but perhaps through gritted teeth he conceded in The Daily Telegraph that the Boks had provided “a masterclass in bloody-minded character” in dismantling supposed favourites England 21-11 on Saturday.

The combative former No 2 added: “Against all but the very best, South Africa have the sheer willpower and strength to prevail.

“I maintain that against a team who are able to come close to matching their forward effort and who can tackle the gain line, the Springboks do not have enough guile or subtlety in attack.

“Whether the reintroduction of their litany of injured players will compensate for this is unknown, but what is certain is that anyone unwise enough to get embroiled in an out-and-out scrap with the Boks is unlikely to win.”

Meanwhile specialist rugby scribe Robert Kitson of The Guardian wrote: “South Africa turned in a strong-arm display which drove several ox-carts across the tender green shoots of English recovery.

“(They) demonstrated how difficult it can be to play against a team whose forwards are pumped up and who have the nous to vary the game when required.”

In the same organ, Paul Hayward said Martin Johnson’s men “went to work in white and limped home black and blue”.

“The autumn’s promising resurgence was smashed by a Springbok fist. South Africa were in primal mode. Not dirty, just merciless, man on man.”

Steven Howard in the mass-circulation Sun tabloid said the Boks had once again looked what they are – World Cup champions.

“They were superior in every department and nowhere more so than at the lineout where the outstanding Victor Matfield was untouchable.
“When it came to the contact areas, England were beaten up.”


  • waynet59 - 2010-11-29 13:16

    So why did they play as if they sleepwalking against Scotland?They failed to pitch up to work on that day.The management needs to get them to play with 100% minimum effort each time they put on the jersey.Maybe another payday mentality against Scotland and made them realize the supporters deserve a side that performs consistently at the acceptable standard that has been set through history.

      BardofAvon - 2010-11-29 15:32

      It's a South African thing, wayne.... to first need to be "cross" before delivering your very best.

      Nico - 2010-11-29 20:26

      Has nobody figured out that there were huge bets against Scotland winning that game? Somebody had a massive pay-out.

      Neilson - 2010-11-29 23:12

      Its easy, South Africans don't have the same motivation as other countries when they play. Other countries play for pride of their country, where as the Boks have a really difficult time in finding some pride in their country these days. Thats why they need a motivation like a world cup to play with their whole heart. The only pride some of the Boks have these days is maybe for their own honour and for their family and looking at the History where SA was the best. One day, when SA get rid of the corrupt politicians and the violent crime, then pride will slowly come back to the nation and to the players.

      Ivan - 2010-11-30 09:55

      I agree with Neilso,, i agree with Nic, and I agree with BardofAvon. But, I still hold the opinion that our coaches are clueless.

      jacowium - 2010-11-30 12:45

      And I agree with Ivan!

      Ivan - 2010-12-03 01:09

      It's simple, scotland nullified our forwards. It has been done most of the year. I wouldn't get to chuffed over this win, as it means nothing in context. We out muscled Ireland too, but look what happened after that. Nothing's changed from the TNs.

  • Walker Plumbers - 2010-11-29 13:17

    Well done boys !! This is just the start of the green machine starting to gain some momentum and when it is running not much can stop it. BOKKE BOKKE BOKKE !!! Luke

  • Sh@rks Fever - 2010-11-29 13:20

    Nice to see comments like this from the critics. I was so impressed with Bakkies Bothas' discipline this weekend. The oaks did what they wanted with him and he just smiled and turned the other cheak every time. Well done Bakkies. He also played well and still hurts the oaks with his tackles. Would like to see how he and Alister plays this weekend.

      colleenjnicol - 2010-11-29 15:33

      I like your spelling of okes!!!! They were like solid tree trunks!

      BardofAvon - 2010-11-29 15:34

      Nice to see that kind of comment from a Sharks supporter. But tell me, Sha@rks, how come you know how to spell "discipline" but you battle with okes and cheeks?

  • unratedexter - 2010-11-29 13:22

    Not dirty, just merciless, man on man. - Great comment. My only gripe with the game was that the backline did not compliment the forward effort, but it's to be expected as we didn't have an outside center (J Fourie) to start with. But once the backline shuffle was complete, F Steyn on Fullback and Adi on Outside, things started to take shape - but to entirely there. We do miss very much Fourie and Du Preez. Steyn had a good game, but was wishing for Lambie to get more game time, as he attacks the game line.

      Gregory Martin - 2010-11-29 14:00

      We must not get too carried away by this win.It was much about pride, guts and glory and compensating for the very poor performance against Scotland.We should not only be playing like this when we have our backs against the wall - it should be done regularly. We could not score in the first half when we should have and our back line play is not good at all.We need to get someone in to make our back line more creative and effective before WC 2011 and the defence also needs some polishing. With all that said though, the win on Saturday was LEKKERRRR!!! UP THE BOKKE!!!!

      FuzzyStorm - 2010-11-29 14:18

      F Steyn was terrible as an outside centre, I lost count of the number of butchered passes and squandered chances. Our backline started to take shape when AD came on, and that is glaring proof of just how bad he was. Stay at fullback if you want to play for SA Frans.

  • bob smith - 2010-11-29 13:38

    I'll take a wild guess that they were back on their supplements this week. From personal experience (I am no pro sportsman) going cold turkey on supplements leaves you doubting months of work at the gym. From supremely focused workouts to faffing around with weights wishing your were rather chilling on the couch. Of course losing to Scotland could have the same effect... would be nice to found out?

      Etienne - 2010-11-29 18:09

      The thumping we gave England is so much sweeter with couch potato comments like this. We were simply superior in every facet of the game. I think you were probably delusional, going cold turkey on supplements "from personal experience" when writing this comment. Next time concentrate more on playing hard test rugby than trying to rile the opposition's supporters After catching a hiding.

      bob smith - 2010-11-29 21:23

      I was merely asking if they were back on supplements this week. They stopped taking all supplements before the Scotland game and produced a horrifying performance. This week they were a lot more focused. It's logical to ask if they had their supplements cleared of containing illegal substances and were allowed to take them again. Glad you take such pleasure in "couch potato" comments, I prefer getting it by watching the Boks put together a great performance on the field.

  • Hendrik - 2010-11-29 13:38

    yes, typically, the English will congratulate us, but with it saying we are savages, or barbarians, hence :"anyone unwise enough to get embroiled in an out-and-out scrap with the Boks is unlikely to win" So what he really say is that we can't play rugby, we were just strong brutes that got the upper hand. I can't stand these English, they will always have some excuse that they are actually better

      Kagiso - 2010-11-29 14:38

      Perhaps you missed the comment from Steven Howard where he said: "They were superior in every department and nowhere more so than at the lineout where the outstanding Victor Matfield was untouchable."

  • ray.romans - 2010-11-29 13:39

    It was great having a ref that allowed continuity as well. No gripes about this Irish ref from my side.

      jws.paterson - 2010-11-29 14:44

      I must agree with you there. Thought he had one of his better games, and except for the shoulder charge on beast, was one of the better refs of our tour. (

      Pappa Smurf - 2010-11-29 14:50

      You guys also didn't complain about Steve Walsh 2 weeks ago.

      BardofAvon - 2010-11-29 15:37

      yes, ray, now that you mention it, the first time I noticed the ref was when I read your comment.

  • raymondoppert - 2010-11-29 13:49

    You are all a bunch of hypocrites.....why dont they play like this all the time. This week you will be praising P div and next week when they loose, you will be calling for his head on a block. How about he wins more than 5 games in a row for a change, the praise him and the team.....!!!!

      AGENT - 2010-11-29 15:27

      I gotta admit, I was one who was hoping the Boks loose (If thats what it would take to get rid of Pdiv). I still don't like the moron and I'm sure I will never like him. He is a pathetic coach. I'm hugely dismayed by the fact that they are getting more guys to come "help" him, If it carry's on like this , there will be so many training staff that each player will have 2 or 3 people assisting him and Pdiv is gonna be sitting on his ass wondering what to have for lunch. I still say get rid of this Ahole and three quarters of our crap is sorted out.

      BardofAvon - 2010-11-29 15:38

      Nobody is "praising the coach", raymondoppert, he remains a clown. This effort was from the lads.

  • Makutu - 2010-11-29 13:53

    Juan de Jong, Jaque Fourie, Fourie du Preez and Heinrich Brussouw should compelet this team. our backline looked like they were missing a thing or two. But with more hard work, we can make something out of thsi team. Welldone BOKKE!

      FuzzyStorm - 2010-11-29 14:21

      you hit the nail spot on boet. and Luwazi to replace the out of form Habana. What a star that kid is!

  • Mike Webber - 2010-11-29 14:01

    Men against boys. Nothing like giving the Poms a good smack! They came dressed in white, but limped off in their red blood-stained skippers... Too much Bok firepower for the English. bawahahaha!

  • kturpin - 2010-11-29 14:13

    Juan Smit had no small part to play in that onslaught, he hits the line with savage intent. I could'nt believe what i was seeing, total anarchy.

  • molefeP - 2010-11-29 14:13

    Blowing smoke. Any serious rugby supporter will have seen the glaring deficiencies in our game. It is a fact that England on the day played so much worse than we did, not that we played so much better. We still do not have a back line, we have no centres, Frans Steyn is a joke, Ruaan Pienaar is not fit for a u12 girls team(Either as no 9 or 10). Geo Aplon is a roving gap in the defence And our coach persists in his moronic substitutions! The only small ray of light is the forwards who for a change made fewer errors. Nothing at all to rave about in the Boks game. If you want to see class, look at the AB's. They are giving rugby lessons to the world at the moment, as much as I hate having to admit it.

      Johann - 2010-11-29 14:37

      I agree with all your comments 100%. then there is the debate about having a "fetcher" or not necessaraly ................ I can not recall losing more loose ball after the "fetcher" Stegman was replaced with that man Alberts, he is brilliant !!

      kturpin - 2010-11-29 14:45

      Why is everyone so up in arms about this tour, its quite obvious that the boks are in survival mode, they will take a win whichever way it comes, it was'nt pretty at all, but its plain to see that we're a limping wounded animal rite now. We do not need to measure ourselves against any team. South Africa is the benchmark as far as i'm concerned

      molefeP - 2010-11-29 14:59

      I agree Johann, Alberts has played out of his skin. And lets face it, Bismark has been doing very well as a fetcher. I am a huge fan of Stegman in the Super14, but he just has not made the step up in internationals. I say give Alberts a full game. Let us see if he is just a supersub, or if he can do the whole 80 minutes! Can you imagine Spies running off the back of the scrum, with Alberts taking the ball at speed from Spies to punch a hole for the back line to exploit! That is assuming we have a back line offcourse!

      Kaapie - 2010-11-29 15:13

      Dont know what game you were watching re Aplon. Between Aplon and JDJ we probably have seen some of the best tackling this season. JDV tackling was poor against Scotland, I counted some 5 missed tackles, and Frans Steyn is a liabilty at outside centre. However, he was far more secure defensively than JDV. Stegman like Olivier has failed to make the step up. Remember both firts choice 13's are at home. Agree though that the AB are sublime at the moment. IMO Pienaar has had his opportunities and failed Perhaps Macleod, Vermaak and Hougaard to contest the 2nd berth after FDP.

      BardofAvon - 2010-11-29 15:40

      molefeP... your comments are spot on. I particularly liked your "moronic substitutions" chirp.

      molefeP - 2010-11-29 15:41

      @Kaapie, Did you watch the previous games? Every try scored against us, where was Aplon? Yes he has the hart, but he is getting caught out of possition every single time. And as for JDV, never mind the defensive slips, one day that man is going to pass a ball and the whole game will come to a complete standstill, and that out of complete and utter shock! The same goes for Olivier! They seem constitutionally incapable of passing a ball! I mean, we may as well not play Wings at all!Frans Steyn is like a little kid who gets so over exited that he actually has the ball that he invariably messes up. Give a kid a hot marble and you will see Frans Steyn! And then there is Pat Lambie. That he has prodigeous talent there is no doubt. But they are putting way to much pressure on the youngster! I just hope that he does not burn out! I do agree with you on Mcleod! He deserves a spot!

      jmvrek - 2010-11-29 16:37

      The question is rather what do we do with Alberts once Schalk, Brussow and Rossouw are back. Surely he should be on the bench at least, maybe with Brussow starting? I guess the only way to find out is to give him a full 80min?

      scipio - 2010-11-29 18:25

      Frans Steyn had to save a certain try cozof Aplons defensive woes. he went for the intercept which went 2 yards above his head. Steyn ran past the puny man to cover Aplons man. Aplon is going the same route as Habana... By that I mean, he's at the stage where Habana is now. Hougaard was solid on wing when he came on. Pity the guy is white hey...

  • Boerseun - 2010-11-29 14:18

    Bokke does it again..mooi so manne!

  • jakeslouw - 2010-11-29 14:28

    @molefeP: Spot on, dude. I liked this one "Geo Aplon is a roving gap in the defence ". Nearly pee'd my Jockeys. Ruan has no place in the team, full stop. He sunk us in against the Scots in difficult conditions, and without a Habana on the wing, those kicks are just loss of possession. Bad tactics. The ABs would have MURDERED us.....

  • Xavier - 2010-11-29 14:33

    Although the boks had won, they did not convince me at all. They have a long hard road ahead to become a formidable team who can defend their world rugby title next year else we will fall out in the first round and that will be a disaster. Luckily for us, England had a very bad day, else we would have lost.

      kbsummit - 2010-11-29 14:59

      Xavier what bloody game were you watching. The English got a moerse hiding. If the Boks had taken all their opportunities the score would have easily exceeded 50 points. England did not have a bad day - they were tackled into oblivion and had no space to play. Their pompous backsides were smacked black and blue by a combined Zulu and Boer horned impi attack that left them splattered, bruised and bloodied. The freakin pound should be devalued way below the rand after that wimpish effort by the poms. Ironically the best player on the England side was a South African youngster!!!!! I wouldn't be surprised if the Samoans also give England a hiding in the World Cup next year. As for the Bokke - they'll be there don't you worry you of little faith anhd knowledge of rugby.

      Walker Plumbers - 2010-11-29 15:12

      Xavier ... What do they have to do to convince you ? Lay a golden egg ? Boet they played well , they beat and England team in their back yard and the England team has been playing some very good rugby.

      tommo - 2010-11-29 15:29

      Tend to diagree, for once I must take my hat off to the Boks; that was total rugby. Complete domination start to finish with 100% commitment. Backs need shaping, but you can see this team has the potential to pull off the biggest trophy in history: A world Cup win in the land of the long cloud

      Ingwe - 2010-11-30 06:40

      kbsummit how are England going to lose against Samoa at the next world cup, they are in different groups. Samoa are in the same group as the Boks and they cannot even meet in the quarter finals maybe the semi's but that is not going to happen. Maybe you should think before you make stupid statements or is it the brandy and coke talking.

      kbsummit - 2010-11-30 08:21

      Ingwe you idiot. The implied message here is that anybody who plays England will give them a bloody hiding next year in whatever group they find themselves, if they continue on their current form. Secondly, I drink beer not brandy and coke which is reserved for ar%% like you

      Ingwe - 2010-11-30 14:30

      Hey kb did I touch a raw nerve. Your exact words were I wouldn't be surprised if the Samoans also give England a hiding in the World Cup next year; there is no implied meaning in your sentence, it is clear for everyone to see exactly what you said. So it was under a beer induced haze that you made your comments. Oh and by the way I only drink good quality red wine, preferably South African.

  • Wendell - 2010-11-29 14:54

    What I REALLY don't understand is this PDV bashing. Haven't we lost focus a bit? We're trying to nail PDV if we loose and when we win, it's the players that stood up and said to hell with this. We'll follow our own game plan. I wan tot say you guys are hypocrites or racists, but I will refrain... Why do I say racist? Well, before someone comes up with the old 'PDV was not appointed on merit' crap (his credentials by the way were exactly the same as Jake White's), let's consider this. Most of the Boks supporters are generally also Protea fans. I think the Proteas have a much more horrible record than the Boks. So why didn't we not dish the same treatment to 'poor old Mickey Arthur'? Seldom did we read that their poor performance was because of the coach. We bash the players because they are suppose to be used to this arena. So why don't we bash our players that is suppose to be used to this environment? I can't help but to think that some of us criticise just because the man is not white. Please enlighten me.

      kturpin - 2010-11-29 15:27

      Totally Agree china, glad somebody has the nads to say it like it is. PDV is abit of an eccentric, but honestly, i think things would be very difficult for any coach in charge of the boks rite now. I've never seen supporters so hellbent on getting rid of a coach, and in the same breath, nobody ever praises the guy when he does do well.

      kbsummit - 2010-11-29 15:27

      Agreed. At the end of the day the players and their captain are out on the field and it is their moment to moment decisions and or actions (or non-actions) that make or break a game. Once the players are on the field they have to put into practice the game plan and change it if necessary. Coaches often come in for unncessary flak. Now what was PDV doing ......(LOL)

      molefeP - 2010-11-29 15:46

      I will tell you what Div does. NOTHING, nothing at all! And that is why he is taking so much flak. Where is Pdiv when the back line coach gets everything so totaly wrong? Where is Pdiv when leadership is needed? Where is Pdiv when a guy like AD Jacobs, who has played all of 30 minutes the whole season gets selected for the National team? No dude, dont pull the racist card here. And just look for some of my comments on the Proteas to see what I thought of Mickey Mouse!

      molefeP - 2010-11-29 15:47

      Oh, and what about his moronic subs? You fail to mention those! Or are those not attributed to the coach?

      Wendell - 2010-11-29 16:15

      @molefeP. OK, point taken, but where is PDV when we win? He did the same things at the beginning of the year. Remember before the SWC? When we flew to Wales, beat them and returned to SA to thrash the Frence a week later? When we lost against NZ and the Aussies, everybody said that PDV doesn't have the guts to replace the 'old guys' and that it was his fault. We quickly forget that some of the games we could've easily won, but lost in the last few seconds. Unfortunately I can't think of anything else, but the fact that PDV has some much more to prove than any other coach in the past, purely because he's not white. Or let me put it in another way. It is so much easier for some fans to critise him, because he's not white. If you have any other suggestions, I'm open for them. I think sometimes, given our history, it is quite normal to do this as we tend to first see what we have in common with that person, before we give our true objective opinion. then again, I might be doing the exact same thing, by defending PDV. But surely, don't you think the criticism has gone a bit too far?

      kturpin - 2010-11-29 16:42

      @Molefe, Our pack, all of them seasoned campaigners with tons of caps all except for one position being number 6, and he scores 3 tries, what a brilliant selection. Furthermore the forwards could further attribute their success to the fact that they have actually played together before, unlike our entire backline, not one of them are definite first choice except for Jean DV.

      scipio - 2010-11-29 18:30

      Cricket is a fairly silly sport mind you, and cricket fans.. Well, better not speak of them, I might awaken them from their graves. It's not racism. The National side is doing badly, the Super 14 sides not so... You can look at the stormers, Bulls and now Sharks and compare it to the Boks... There's a major difference which is? A GAME PLAN. But hey, maybe you right. PDV is so brilliant his own players fails to see his game plan XD good on him.

      D - 2010-11-30 13:22

      Wendell, Good points, yes the SA coach does come under tremendous pressure and criticism after even one loss, but I dont think it is racist at all. Tell me which Springbok coach has not come under calls for his head after one loss or especially two consecutive losses, even Jake White was not spared prior 2007. Aside from Christie, almost every single post isolation Bok coach has had at least 40% of the rugby watching public calling for their head at any one point. Its just that some people choose not to realise that and instead take criticism as racism... a few regular posters on this site (not saying you Wendell), but there are definately some.

  • ArtGee - 2010-11-29 15:34

    Speaking of the Coach.... how can one COMPLIMENT THE COACH, with 9 Wins outta 19????? Back to the England game, the Boks BROKE the English! As the one fellow said, "England arrived in white and left BLACK AND BLUE" not to forget the RED and a couple of BROKEN BONES! This win has struck FEAR into the HEARTS of England.... see what happens next time the two meet!

      molefeP - 2010-11-29 15:54

      Art, I think you miss the point. The physical contest was never in doubt. THe English know that the Bokke where going to dominate them in contact, that is why they played people like that brilliant no 4 of theirs. To try and use mobility against our physicality. With the dominance the Bokke had up front and in the contact, does it not seriously worry you that we could only score the two tries? Think about it.

  • abe1wp - 2010-11-29 15:58

    Well done to the Boks and to the management for maintaining through everyone's critisism. Persist with this game plan and play to your strengths. A team that wants to beat you whilst playing this game plan will have to keep the ball away from you for almost 50-60mins that is the only way.

      scipio - 2010-11-29 18:37

      No old sport. The Boks need to keep the ball away from them for 50-60 odd minutes. Seems you still on the Klippies since saturday.

  • Mervin - 2010-11-29 16:15

    I want to say well done to Div, coaching team and players. We critisize the coach when they not doing well and its just fair to praise him when they do well. What a game! Sheer brute and physicality.

  • Danie - 2010-11-29 17:28

    The Boks played like a bunch of idiots in the first half no one in the back line could hold a ball!! Second half was better and the boys looked like a team!!

      ashman211 - 2010-11-30 05:12

      No Danie...Frans Steyn couldn't hold the ball. Fact.

  • blesbuck - 2010-11-29 21:19


  • wouter.debruin - 2010-11-29 23:35

    Al die suurbek opmerkings oor die Bokke wat net 'n pak voorspelers het en niks agterlangs nie, pas ons soos 'n handskoen. Met die RWC in NZ volgendejaar, sal ons die agterspelers saamneem. Voeg Fourie du Preez, Habana en Jaque Fourie by, met Frans Steyn die keer op heelagter en daar wag 'n verrassing op al die buitelandse rugbyskrywers. Moennie die Bokke nou al afskryf nie!

  • Solly - 2010-11-30 01:45

    Mr wayne59. Have you ever played in freezing (icy) conditions and pouring rain? These are alien conditions to a side that comes from a country with good rugby playing and firm underfoot condtions. Added to that a ref. that would not allow them to play their game. I am not complaining about the ref. but I know from experience that poor decisions can have a negative impact on the players. They did "pitch up for work that day" but the foreman had other plans.

      Ingwe - 2010-11-30 06:42

      Ever played in Cape Town on a cold wet winters days, maybe not as cold as the game against Scotland but just as wet

  • Leon - 2010-11-30 09:55

    It amazes me that the real weak link in the back line is seldom mentioned. Morne Steyn is a joke. He positions himself sooo far back with the result that the centers get possession fifteen meters back from where they just cleared a scrum. Relying first on the boot will never breed imagination amongst the backs Leon

      StaalBurgher - 2010-11-30 12:57

      Very few will argue that Morne is the best attacking option, but he is too valuable with the boot at this stage to be left out.

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