Rugby Championship

Bulls coach defends under-fire Bok captain

2016-08-31 07:03
Adriaan Strauss (Gallo Images)

Pretoria - Blue Bulls coach Nollis Marais has defended under-fire Springbok captain Adriaan Strauss following the national team’s loss to Argentina in Salta.

Strauss, like the rest of the Springbok team, has come under heavy criticism after losing 26-24 to Los Pumas.

The hooker's captaincy credentials are also being questioned.

Marais, who asked Strauss to captain the Bulls at the start of the season, says the Bok captain doesn't deserve the criticism coming his way.

"Adriaan is an excellent captain and I think the value he brings is underrated," Marais told Netwerk24.

"There were many individual mistakes in Saturday's Test and unfortunately the captain and coach get all the criticism."

Marais said he was impressed by Strauss during a difficult period in the Super Rugby tournament earlier this year.

"He showed then how valuable his captaincy is. He is a captain who you can take to war and I'm not just saying that because he's a Bulls player."

Marais said Strauss should get the chance to settle as captain and grow with the rest of the team.

"It would be unreasonable to look for a replacement after just five Tests. If they decide at the end of the year he is not the right person to lead the Boks, so be it.

"I would give Adriaan more time if it was my decision. The Springboks will improve and we have to remember Argentina are not the team they were five years ago."

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