Rugby Championship

Wallabies eyeing fast start against Boks - Hooper

2017-09-30 15:41
Michael Hooper (Getty)

Cape Town - Wallabies captain Michael Hooper believes his team's start will be vital if they want to beat the Springboks in Bloemfontein on Saturday.

Hooper said hitting the ground running is a must against the Boks, who will be smarting after their 57-0 loss to the All Blacks in their last match.

"Start fast, start well and put pressure on these guys," he said.

"We were disappointed and it's been well written about our start down in Canberra.

"Just allowing the opposition into the game off things we are doing off our own bats.

"(We need to be) coming out, being the first to strike tomorrow night."

Hooper believes the two first starters in their pack - Izack Rodda and Jack Dempsey - will help put the Wallabies on the front foot, early in the piece, before Lukhan Tui throws his weight around in the second term.

"I've been really impressed with those guys," he added.

"I've been with Jack (Dempsey) for quite a while, he had a great game here a couple of years ago with the Tahs against the Cheetahs.

"Lukhan has been amazing at training.

"The attention to detail and the aggression that has been shown has been fantastic and then Rods has been doing it for weeks now.

"To get these guys genuine minutes on the field tomorrow night, which we will with the bench we have picked, that will happen, there is plenty of opportunity for guys there to state a claim."

Above all, Hooper will be looking to rectify the 18-10 loss in Pretoria in the corresponding fixture last year, a performance that brought back bad memories for the captain.

"We were really disappointed with that performance last year," he said.

"We let the game get away from us.

"I thought we were in control in parts and we were able to run in some nice tries and put the pressure on.

"But slowly the discipline, among other things, mistakes, errors, a lack of urgency, allowed that to creep back in the game."


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