Div: We can take on the world

2011-06-01 12:20

Stephen Nell

Cape Town - He could take on the world with Rassie Erasmus as technical advisor on his management team and always knew that senior Springboks would hit their straps.

That was the word from Springbok coach Peter de Villiers when quizzed on Tuesday about the state of Springbok rugby. On Wednesday, there are 100 days to go before the World Cup kick-off in New Zealand.

"I don’t know whether Rassie has a life outside rugby. He eats, drinks and even rests rugby! With his technical knowledge and my man management skills, I believe we can take on the world."

De Villiers recently announced that Erasmus and conditioning expert Derik Coetzee would come on board as consultants for the World Cup, which starts on 9 September. The Bok coach said that they had already made valuable contributions.

"The one thing that Rassie and Derik have brought to the environment is the insight that you could improve on something as soon as you are able to measure it. It's a component that we did not have previously," said De Villiers.

"Now that we have that, we can help players reach the next level."

It's not as if De Villiers is complaining about the level that many of his senior players are operating at in Super Rugby at the moment.

While the form of senior Boks was a major point of discussion in the media earlier this year and concern was expressed that a number of them may be past their prime, the majority of the players have upped their game in recent weeks and allayed some fears.

"I was never worried," said De Villiers.

"Take Bakkies Botha as example. He carried the ball a lot more than usual in the first few games, but is focusing on cleaning rucks again and suddenly you see the ball come out to the scrumhalf a lot quicker.

"Take Pierre Spies, who was also off form. He is good off a scrum going forward, but the Bulls scrum has struggled until recently. He struggled because he could not carry the ball. Suddenly everything is falling into place and it's looking good for us."

De Villiers's focus now shifts to the Tri-Nations and the tournament will also be important to sharpen the match fitness of injured senior players such as flank Juan Smith and scrumhalf Fourie du Preez ahead of the World Cup.

Du Preez's praises were again sung by the coach, who did not believe the scrumhalf's form was poor to begin with.

"Everybody said he was not good enough, but the team won back 60% of his kicks. How much better does he have to be?"

Smith's fitness is important to De Villiers because of the fear that the flank strikes into the hearts of opponents.

"If you remove Juan from the team, you take away the fear of your opponents. Why would we want to make it easier for opponents?"

De Villiers also believes that the Cheetahs, Stormers and Lions' recent victories over New Zealand opponents demonstrates that South Africa have nothing to fear.

"If we can beat teams in New Zealand, just think how well we could do against any nation if our preparation is good," said De Villiers.

"New Zealand would like to avoid lineouts against us. They fear Victor Matfield."

The Bok coach's only fear are potential injuries that could strike between now and the World Cup, especially with a number of tough South African derbies still coming up in the Super Rugby tournament.

He will keep the core of his experienced players for the World Cup and play to a pattern with which they are comfortable.

"I understand the psyche of my team and how they are inter-dependent on one another," said De Villiers.


  • PMG - 2011-06-01 12:55

    The problem is,is the world ready for our midget coach who talks like Donald Duck?What was SARU thinking when they appointed this complete and utter moron?The guy is an embarrassment,and every time he opens his mouth on TV I cringe.

      buzz - 2011-06-01 13:14

      Yeah yeah yeah, we've heard it all before, and nothing will change. So you can either be negative or be positive, seems you've chosen the latter - hope that works well for you.

      boyd.lance - 2011-06-01 13:56

      I'm sorry...was there anything in the article that was idiotic? To me everything sounded pretty above board to me

  • Gorilla - 2011-06-01 12:58

    Oh shut up you flippen idiot.

      TrueSaffa - 2011-06-01 14:41

      i think maybe u should shut up...

  • Piet Promises - 2011-06-01 12:59

    Cheetahs, Stormers and Lions proves SA can win in NZ. But he chooses the majority of the Boks from the Bulls and the Sharks?? Clever plan Pete-mate, they'll never see that coming. Rather sit on your ass dont talk thru it...

      Plato - 2011-06-01 13:28

      @Piet Think it is about the “big match” temperament. Who will you choose to play a S15 final against the Reds in Aus? Cheetahs? Lions? I will surely put my money on the Bulls.

      RL - 2011-06-01 14:04

      the bulls have been the form team for the last couple of seasons hence the selection patterns...its not really difficult to understand.

  • Theuns - 2011-06-01 13:12

    Those who are making predictions now are fools. Do your talking on the field and after the final........

  • buzz - 2011-06-01 13:13

    Okay guys, its time to support P Div, his staff, and the team. Some of you don't agree with the setup, and thats okay - but if it means that you do not support the entire team, then rather please don't comment. They all need our support - and deserve it too.

  • Danie B - 2011-06-01 13:14

    Ai ou Snorre, jy is 'n OK ou. Jy laat my gereeld lekker lag!

  • kosie - 2011-06-01 13:17

    "Everybody said he was not good enough, but the team won back 60% of his kicks. How much better does he have to be?"well if it was 10% less then it would be 50/50 and that is not good at should be 70 to 80... With his technical knowledge and my man management skills... what manaement skills.hahahaha

  • Vegas - 2011-06-01 13:17

    Div for the first time knows how it feels not to be clueless. Rassie will coach the Boks and Divvy will entertain the media *eyes rolling*

  • Plato - 2011-06-01 13:21

    For what I have heard, it is true – he is a good manager. The problem is we need a coach. With Rassie there (and I believe the senior players want him) we might see a plan on the table. PdV has respect for Rassie and will obviously follow his recommendations. Please explain the “because the opposition fear Juan Smith”? Why not select a team full of JHB. bouncers and fear the sh@t out of the opposition? What about rugby skills? Eish...

      RL - 2011-06-01 14:31

      plato if you can, please stop being a retard ...

      RL - 2011-06-01 14:31

      but if you cant then well uhhhh sorry.

      TrueSaffa - 2011-06-01 14:50

      juan smith has great skill. He is one of the best ball carriers in world rugby and he is excellent in the line outs.

  • Marcell - 2011-06-01 13:24

    Rassie is a good guy. Look what he did for the chokers from Cape Town. I'm battling to remember the number of Super or Currie Cups they have won in recent years.

  • Sbali - 2011-06-01 13:26

    @Greg and the MORON fans always clutching at straws. Pieter show them them middle finger and win it!!!

      Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-06-01 14:23

      Agreed. I wonder if SARU would consider contracting Paul Treu as a tactical consultant.

  • theprodigy - 2011-06-01 13:28

    Easy tiger, what about just being custiously optimistic, be humble!

  • Jonathan - 2011-06-01 13:45


      TrueSaffa - 2011-06-01 14:51

      wow, pessimistic much? you're def a glass half empty kinda guy....

  • zigster - 2011-06-01 14:00

    Div is more intelligent then what meets the eye...he likes to make controversial comments to have people deviated from the rugby and focus on him that is how he smashed the kiwi and the ausies respectedly in the tri nations 2009.Who helped him won that cup????Remeber i dont know who is much clued up with their rugby but Divvy won the world cup with the under 21's aswell something we have not achieved since Divvy won it last

      Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-06-01 14:18

      Agreed. What will it take for people to realize that Div is not going anywhere. The best thing to do is to get behind him and support the players.

  • Gorilla - 2011-06-01 14:00

    "...New Zealand would like to avoid lineouts against us. They fear Victor Matfield..." ha ha ha ha ha. Matfield has been seriously outplayed by most S15 teams this season. I'm beginning to think that all Div does is watch re-runs of the last RWC games and bases his opinions on that. What a plonker.

  • Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-06-01 14:03

    One has to commend Div's confidence and his belief in the players. Coach of the Springbok rugby team must rate as one of the most stressful jobs going, SARU would do well to appoint a spokesperson.

  • Rob van den Heuvel - 2011-06-01 14:06

    Success bread success, we must brace for a massive player exodus after the world cup. Johann Rupert has got some money to throw around. Saracens could end up fielding a team of more than 80% SA players.

  • RL - 2011-06-01 14:23

    simple interview with good points and those who have sisters for mothers and brothers for sisters are as always riled up ready to stone the black man ... black or white hands off our coach …

  • - 2011-06-01 14:30

    We've beaten the All Blacks in New Zealand more than once under the great PDV! Jake White did not have the man management skills to do this. I'd rather go th New Zealand with PDV as coach than Jake. The numbers speak for themselves.

  • Mr Khoza - 2011-06-01 14:40

    We will have that cup next to African cup of nations this year,Amabokkobokko

  • CarlosR - 2011-06-01 15:34

    Good thing when you talk about the world cup in rugby you talk about 10 nations tops.Imagine if it was a real world cup like soccer, we`d be in real trouble.

  • Claude - 2011-06-01 16:10

    There is one good thing about Peter De Villiers - the rest of the world will underestimate us with him as coach.

      manuel28 - 2011-06-02 07:44

      i loved in 2009 how they winged, will they do it this year again? boring this boring that? we'l take it this year!

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