Durban - There are no two ways about it. If the Springboks are to stand any chance of beating the All Blacks in Durban on Saturday, they will have to put in their best performance of the season.
The Boks bring the curtain down on their Rugby Championship campaign against the current world champions and best side in the world, and there are few who feel that they stand a chance even after their 18-10 win over Australia in Pretoria this past weekend.
Francois Louw, speaking to media in Durban on media, remained adamant that the All Blacks were beatable, but he was not under any illusions as to just how tough the task would be.
Bok coach Allister Coetzee, meanwhile, knows that the Boks will have to be on their game to stand any chance.
"You’ve got to make sure that you fire in all departments," Coetzee said.
"New Zealand capitalise on soft moments in the game. You saw against Argentina
how with 10 minutes to go in the first half they just turned it around and
scored three quick tries.
"In the last 20 minutes they have that self-belief that they are fitter than anyone else in the competition."
Coetzee spoke about the importance of looking after the ball, while he also wanted his players to show a bit of patience and composure as the All Blacks look to implement their rushed, hard pressing defensive line.
it’s important to just be consistent," Coetzee added.
"If we are consistent when we turn ball over on the
ground, it creates so much opportunity.
"To just get through those two more
passes or rucks and get that accuracy. You cannot give them anything on a
platter. It has to be consistency for 80 minutes against a top team."
Louw agreed with Coetzee, acknowledging that the Boks could be far more clinical than they have been.
"We’re a side that wants to continuously improve. In all the Tests that we’ve
played we’ve shown moments of brilliance. Our most lacking factor has been the
consistency," Louw said.
"In Test match rugby when the margins are so small you need to be
consistent and execute effectively.
"Test match rugby is not about thinking positive … you really
have to dig deep sometimes and find the thing that motivates you as an
individual to hit your form and peak at the right time and play a solid game
for 80 minutes.
"I highly doubt there is a South African rugby player that
doesn’t find that bit of motivation when they go up against the All Blacks. We
will prepare well this week, we’ll train well and work on what we need to."