Rugby Championship

Meyer vindicated over Kirchner

2013-09-07 22:49
Zane Kirchner (File)

Brisbane - Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer felt vindicated for a controversial team selection after Zane Kirchner and Willie le Roux were among the try scorers in South Africa's 38-12 victory over the Wallabies on Saturday.

As it happened: Wallabies v Springboks

Despite coming into the Rugby Championship match on the back of eight straight wins, compared to Australia's four straight defeats, it was Meyer who was under the most pressure of the two coaches before the game.

The inclusion of Kirchner, who came into Saturday's match at fullback short of match practice, meant Willie le Roux was shunted to the right wing and was also seen as a conservative selection.

But talk of a negative selection policy seemed ill-judged after the match in which South Africa outscored the Wallabies 4-0.

"I'm just thankful that sometimes the coach gets it right," Meyer told a news conference.

"Probably people back home can't believe with Zane Kirchner in you can score tries. I'm just really happy for him and the backs.

"He hasn't played for quite some time, probably two or three months. He was brilliant there. We knew exactly what we didn't do well in the previous game. He brought something."

The move to the right wing did not stifle Le Roux, who set up Kirchner's try with a sublime pass from the touchline.

"Willie is a quality player he's still learning Test match rugby," Meyer said.

"I thought he was awesome. It's a horses for courses approach. He's always scoring or playing. Willie's a brilliant player. People think South African backs can't be exciting. I truly believe they can."


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