Boks confident of comeback

2009-11-18 07:23

London - South Africa assistant coach Dick Muir lamented his side's failure to hold onto a lead after the world champions were beaten for a third successive time on their European tour, but expressed confidence they will redeem themselves against Italy on Saturday.

The stuttering Springboks came to Wembley Stadium on Tuesday on the back of defeats to Leicester Tigers and France, but they looked as if they were going to claim their first victory this month when they took an 18-6 lead into the interval against Sarries.

However, the tourists imploded in the second half, conceding two early tries before seeing South African flyhalf Derick Hougaard drop a 75th-minute goal to win the game 24-23 for the English league leaders.

With Tests against Italy and Ireland still to come, South Africa still have an opportunity to bounce back on this tour but Muir was disappointed his side, made up of second-string dirt-trackers, could not hold out at England's home of football.

"I thought we had a very good first half but they put a lot of pressure on us and the things we did so well in the first half, we didn't do in the second half," he said.

"There were a couple of decisions that went against us in the second half but they got the momentum.

"I certainly believe we can redeem ourselves in the next two Test matches though. We are taking things game by game, and the game in Italy (on Saturday) is going to be huge."

Two-try winger Jongi Nokwe was one of the few players to cover himself in glory on Tuesday night as he touched down in the 38th and 63rd minutes, the second a particularly well-worked score.

Centre Juan de Jongh was the Springboks' other tryscorer, in the 29th minute, but in general the team produced a mixed bag in front of 46,281 fans.

Muir nevertheless insisted nights like these provide an opportunity for the country's youngsters to pick up some valuable experience and Brendan Venter, the former South Africa centre who is director of rugby at Saracens, agreed.

"These players have not played or trained together enough," he said.

"But these are really good players. Individually they didn't play badly but how do you mould a team without any training sessions? They are basically like a Barbarians team, so I do feel for them.

"It would be unfair to criticise the depth (in South African rugby). I still think the experiment hasn't failed - they have been blooded and are being exposed to players like Victor Matfield, John Smit and Fourie du Preez in training every day."

The Springboks could have a front-row crisis on their hands after Leinster prop CJ van der Linde, who was only recently called into the squad, trudged off with a strained hamstring after just 10 minutes.

With Johann du Plessis out of the tour because of a hand injury, and both hooker Chiliboy Ralapelle and prop Gurthro Steenkamp injured in the defeat to Leicester, head coach Peter de Villiers is down to the bare bones in that department.

Andries Bekker was another South African to pick up an injury at Wembley, the lock going off with a rib complaint.


  • Impi - 2009-11-18 07:30

    Don't worry, at least they're No. 2 in the world. Go Lieflings.

  • jaco - 2009-11-18 07:38

    oh yes of course you will beat italy its so obvious and then you will say see i told you!!! the tour is a f!@K up!!! try and fool someone else with your bull**#*.

  • vj - 2009-11-18 07:46

    I think Dick is smoking something with that rastafarian.

  • Mike JJ - 2009-11-18 07:54

    Yet another potentially good game ruined (or marred) by an incompetent refereeing display ... (I stopped short of saying biased !). The game is being influenced by too many marginal decions which have a major effect on the outcome... too many rules, & too many different interpretations ! But so long as SA is on the receiving end, the IRB is quite happy!

  • VIVIAN MALEMA - 2009-11-18 07:56


  • de Waal - 2009-11-18 07:56

    Ruan Pienaar's spirit is broken, send him out to pasture. It's also about time that the fact that a referee can determine who wins the game needs to be carefully examined. Soon it will be the selection of the ref that counts and not the team.

  • reedtarts - 2009-11-18 08:10

    all you bok haters are absolute chops... this isn't the bok team, it's the guys that are coming thru the ranks as future boks and this exposure is good, they didn't play badly on an individual level but as a team the lacked, great bunch of players who are rubbing shoulders with the best rugby team in the world, ie: BOKKE!!! so lay off on the hate speach chops!!

  • Michael - 2009-11-18 08:10

    Lets hope Muir is correct. The Italians are not that great. If they do beat the Boks then we have some serous problems. I see the Boks winning by 15

  • Concerned - 2009-11-18 08:12

    I have serious concerns with regards to the future of SA rugby!

  • GW - 2009-11-18 08:16

    They are all new Boks cos all the experienced ones where playing for Sarries..ha! SA caught out by their own policies of quota and not playing overseas based players ( how did CJ vd Linde get the nod?). Sad to see so many experienced players on the other side. Not fair that they are referred to as "Dirtrackers" cos they played better than the test team did against France.

  • Louis - 2009-11-18 08:17

    Get rid of Ruan Pienaar...I promised myself / wife that I wont watch any rugby match if he plays again!!!!!!!! Ruan cant kick - tactical / out of the hand / under pressure and he can not kick for points....... I cant believe that the Bok Management keeps on picking him?????? Dont tell me he is still a young player, etc!! Look at Ruan Pienaar, look at Gysie Pienaar ( Ruans "Dad") and look at Henry Honnibal (Lem) = see if you notice any "similarities" - use it dont use it!! Bokke, good luck the the next 2 tests and may you redeem yourself!!

  • Gavin van Zyl - 2009-11-18 08:18

    Vivian u mean as lily white as bafana bafana.Maybe we should have a all white football side and a black rugby side.

  • cj - 2009-11-18 08:21

    I'm surprised no-one has commented on the fact that the Boks lost momentum when Heinie Adams was replaced. He gets the ball away quickly and cleanly everytime, which had the backline running beautifully in the first half. Francois Hougaard, by contrast, had a shocker, not only in not getting his backline on the front foot, but giving away the try by Ernst Joubert.

  • Anti-VIVIAN MALEMA - 2009-11-18 08:22

    VIVIAN MALEMA you are a idiot, the Lilly white team are world champions, not the imbalanced politically chosen team chosen by colour not by merit that played and lost last night. Proof once again that teams should be chosen on merit not colour. Importantly they were beaten a local league team of white South Africans that are not selectable for the boks.

  • Willian - 2009-11-18 08:29

    @ VIVIAN MALEMA - Yes Vivian, you are quite right in your summation, but then again maybe we should be trading some LILLY whites for your ALL BLACK Banana Banana team. Maybe then BB can redeem themselves and win some games and not be 85th in the world. WTF. I suggest you better also ask for public protection you nitwit RACIST

  • Frost - 2009-11-18 08:31

    Before going on tour Muir was very clear that the public are going to see a few losses now! Reason: The eye is on 2011! When we reclaim the trophy in NZ in 2011 no one will give a continental about the losses now! The loosing streak must come ahead of 2011, or it will arrive in 2011! Go Bokke! These games are exposing some young talent and revealing some blunders too! Somthing Strauli should have done instead of issue 100's of test caps!

  • Dyl01 - 2009-11-18 08:32

    Firstly the team last night are not the Boks and will never be, so i dont know why the British are bragging about beating the world champions as that was not a world champion team. The CHAMPIONS play on Saturday. And secondly the Boks have had an amazing year and respectfully are tired from their great season. Lets not forget they have played Super 14 and some of them have won that, British and Irish Lions and we won that, Tri nations and we won that, and Currie cup which accumulated into an intense final stage. People who are loosing confidence in the Bok team should not judge the team by this crap dirt trackers. Im a Bok fan all the way and good luck for Saturday.

  • webb - 2009-11-18 08:38

    They may be "second stringers", but they are the future bok players ie the cream of what's on offer in this country. To feel it's acceptable that they can lose to a club side is just rubbish. Previous "dirt trackers" had much harder games against sides such as England "A" and came through, so what's the problem here? Revisit the game last night and look at the lose maul situation at the breakdown area - one or two boks getting turned over by a wave of Saracen players. Where is the rest of the team? That's not lack of experience but rather plain and simple lack of commitment. Poor team effort = poor game!

  • al - 2009-11-18 08:38

    I am a soccer loving fan but recently rugby has been my number 1 sport to watch. The springboks to me have shown what it means to represent a nation and as far as I am concerned they are the best. This tour is only a learning curve for the emerging players. Sure it hasn't been great but we can't win all the time. This is an opportunity for the new players to see if they have got what it takes to wear the green and gold. Go Bokke.... I wish Bafana had the same spirit maybe they should get the color balance right.

  • Worsrol - 2009-11-18 08:39

    Dick to sing the SA anthem before the Italian match.

  • Blikperd - 2009-11-18 08:41

    Andries Bekker the worst lock in SA. Doesn't do anything except stand on the wing. Even I would look good playing the way he does. Jaques Lombaard of the Griquas is the future of SA locks.

  • jackp - 2009-11-18 08:41

    he didnt just say that the italy game is going to be huge?!?!

  • hyena - 2009-11-18 08:43

    they going to loose to Italy. will makes it 5-0 for the series. rugby will becomes just as all other sport in the country.

  • trev2 - 2009-11-18 08:44

    Yes we can complain about the ref but it works both ways. Nokwe's second try came from a forward pass so maybe they were lucky to lose by only 1 point.

  • witperd - 2009-11-18 08:45

    Te veel Bloubulle in die span

  • Robert Schamotta - 2009-11-18 08:47

    With comments like Lilly White team, Put him out to pasture etc, you all seem to be missing the point. Yes they lost, but why? one simple pedantic one eye, one sided REF. lets all stand together and start some action, that ref's like this idiot be repremanded and taken to task for his actions. If anyone thinks back to the game, think of his body language when Derrick put the drop over. His pleasure was so clear!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Awa - 2009-11-18 08:48

    Ruan missed alot, Derick on the day was not as good, but the vital kick he got over even after trying a few drop goals and getting booed-probably by bok supporters? Saracens side have ex-boks, not 2nd or 3rd stringers. Wikus, Brits, Hougaard are some of the best SA players- Saracens no.1 in Guinness premiership doesn't count for nothing. It's quite obvious our overseas players are good enough to fill bok boots, but Twakkie doesn't want them back. Cheetah front row not as good in second half-we need a better scrum coach-Os or Balie.

  • @vivian - 2009-11-18 08:48

    Once again i find ur comments pathetic just like u're namesake King Julius. Brendon Venter is 100% right with his comment about the SA team not playing badly for a bunch of guys who have had about two weeks to train together. One thing which was not mentioned is that our players are definately suffering from fatigue which is why their second half performance was a bit poor but we must give our guys a break....they have had a big year of rugby and loosing a few games overseas is not the end of the world. next year all the top players will be rested and i'm sure we will loose a few more games as we did before the last world cup so lets not loose focus. As for Vivian...politics and sport don't mix so rather don't comment on colour issues. we all know our rugby would be alot better off if the best players were picked because of their talents and not the colour of their skin. (No names mentioned....2 hookers from the Bulls.)

  • @VIVIAN MALEMA - 2009-11-18 08:49

    @VIVIAN you @#%&ING idiot , please what do even know about rugby???? SA rugby is ranked 2nd in the world . Where is your BA%&*#UP BA%&*#UP aka BAFANA BAFANA.........85th. Now you tell me where the colour balance should be????

  • Mark,Perth - 2009-11-18 08:51

    What an embarrasment,the Wallabies would have walked over this team easily but this weak lucky world champs lost,WTF??

  • Bok - 2009-11-18 08:53

    @ Vivian Malema- Playing the that card again.. Did you watch the game against Leiscester? If not, That team was filled with black rugby players!And did you watch last nights game, you know the one where that guys played with the green jerseys they call them the boks, they played much better than against leiscester and there were fewer black players in. I guess you are one of those who only watch the score and then you comment on something you dont have a clue of. Please if you comment, comment on the weather or pap or toi-toi something you have knowledge about. This is rugby!!!

  • Fish@vivian malema - 2009-11-18 08:53

    Stop asking for hand outs!! Get your players of colour to do the work and maybe they will get a chance to play for the Springboks! Do you expect everything for free? Um... maybe you should look at the "quality" of players like Chilliboy who gets injured every time he runs onto the field and realize that it takes alot of hard work to play at this level. Are you afraid of hard work or just intent on giving your people a bad name?

  • Kuppy - 2009-11-18 08:53

    We keep hearing the same old story from this coaching staff but they keep making the same mistakes. When will they come to terms that Pienaar is not a flyhalf and not a goal kicker. I found myself supporting Saracens last night i realized that i have more in common with them than our own lot, this quoter system just does not go down well with me, how can you support a team if some players are not there on merit it is just not right. I will be supporting Italy in the test, the whole SA rugby setup have to be brought back to reality and be humiliated before they catch a wake up. This Pvd is so stubborn or just very stupid but does not seem to know what he is doing, i can't understand why Dick Muir wants to be part Pvd's coaching staff, he is destroying his good name. Last night was a sad day in springbok rugby.

  • @vivian Malema - 2009-11-18 08:54

    You the type of Racist we dont need in this country. Look at your all Black team Bafana Bafana. Tell me again how did we do against Jamaica.

  • zolani - 2009-11-18 08:54

    It all went pear shaped when the scrummie heinie adams left the field, they could not get the ball. ingnore Viviene malema, it does not have a clue

  • @VIVIAN - 2009-11-18 08:54

    lillywhite? you chop! ...and go the way of bafana? take your pathetically chipped shoulder to another sport.

  • Louisg - 2009-11-18 08:54

    Guys we have had a phennominal rugby year (when it mattered).... P.Divy is experimenting and it's not working.... he is learning to his detriment...!! Consider this tour as a build up to the World cup, when this tour is done and dusted he is the one that would have learnt the most.... from now on he cannot bask is Jakes glory... and he has the oppertunity to become a great Coach....!! We have the talent....!! and we have the time to prepare in every position.....!!! lets now focus on the next world cup and use every game as a stepping stone to hold that cup and beat all major unions in the world cup final as in 95.... Australia, France, New Zealand (meeting England in the playoffs even better) Nothing less expected and coach will have no excuses, P.Divy will then be called best S.A. coach ever and have all the respect he wants and deserves.

  • joe - 2009-11-18 08:57

    its time to realise that in international sport you chose the best side including all players local or overseas. Just look at Bradley Barritt. Wake up guys we are losing out big time.

  • Edward - 2009-11-18 08:59


  • Johan - 2009-11-18 08:59

    @vivian...yes vivian, let's get the colour right...just like we did in all major state paristatels...and look what happened. They crippled it

  • Mark,Perth - 2009-11-18 09:11

    Boks to be white-washed in Europe. After the series Boks will be number 5 in the world which is where they belong with other arrogant lots,Ozzies to climb up.Oi-Oi.

  • Dianne - 2009-11-18 09:12

    'Boks Confident of Making a Comeback' ... mmmm now where have I heard those words before. Oh yes! Last week after the Leicester debacle ...

  • Jimbo - 2009-11-18 09:15

    If I remember correctly, about 3/4 years ago under Jake White we had Second and Third Boks teams which were almost as good as team A. What has gone wrong ?

  • Barry - Cape Town - 2009-11-18 09:16

    It is clear that the legacy of the coaching of Jake White has run out. The "B" team has not had that benefit and clearly show the signs of planless coaching. Div, you are exposed as not good enough. The road goes down from here unless somebody with a strategic mind and coaching skills is added to the team. Don't blame the players if there is no effective game plan.

  • jay - 2009-11-18 09:18

    when they do the IRB rankings they should not count this dirt tracker SA-15's performance as though they are true boks. only the main bok team should be "graded" as boks.

  • adrian - 2009-11-18 09:24

    Traditionally the Boks do not have a good end of season tour up north. All sorts of reasons are given. Tired players , difficulty in motivating players , etc etc. Although some or maybe all the reasons may be true , i think it goes a little deeper. Rugby is played differently in the north to the south due to weather conditions , playing surfaces etc. You have to change and adapt your way of play. What works at Loftus , doesn't work at Twikenham. I think we choose players for the end of year tour that aern't suited to the type of rugby played. This has certainly been highlighted by the dirt trackers. You need a flyhalf that can kick you into a good field position ( not Pienaar ) hardworking , grinding tight five , and loosies that can compete on the ground (fetchers - preferable 2 in side) and big strong driving no eights. The dirt trackers , although filled with some talented players , don't fit the bill. The only area we can compete at moment is lineout time (more reason to kick for field position). Dirt trackers also don't have much time to gel together as unit. Maybe answer is for a SA 'A' side to tour at end of year (too much rugby already played). Coaching staff ? Gary Gold's forwards are being drilled. WP forwards suddenly are lot better after he left and was replaced by Proudfoot for Currie Cup. Does he have the knowledge. I think not - compare Stormers to WP. Same players different result. I know s14 different to CC but not THAT different..

  • Paul Young - 2009-11-18 09:29

    For Dick the dickhead to say the Springboks will redeem themselves against Italy is an insult to the supporters in this country. Italy have the proud reputation of winning one game in the six nations earlier this year. So, does dickhead think the Springbok supporters will be all forgiving if we manage to overcome Italy? What rubbish. The loss to France is palatable only because they are a national team with a history of some success. Losing to two "clubs" is absolute rubbish. Redemtion against Italy indeed. At least Bafana have no score against them in the last two games. Bring me my vuvalema.

  • Megabull - 2009-11-18 09:30

    pdivvy and dick is our problem. As long as we play sharks/looser rugby we won't win. Earlier this year we played Bulls rugby and won the BI Lions and the T3. Play Bulls rugby and we will win again. Proof we are in front at half time and then sit back, sharks rugby.

  • nazeem - 2009-11-18 09:30

    i think you have to pick your second best thats why the first team cant perform to much off stress injury list getting longer but how good will it be if you have youngsters like francois louw peterson good place kicker wicus blaauw liebenburg ithink the coacch should have rest someplayers bakkies victor dupreez and habana you can seen these players are underpressure to perform and tired griekwas n09 also agood option

  • scipero - 2009-11-18 09:34

    al for president