Cape Town - Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus has paid tribute to his opposite number for Saturday's Rugby World Cup final, England boss Eddie Jones.

Jones, considredone of the game's shrewdest tacticians, has also carved out a reputation for himself as somewhat of a mindgames specialist. 

After having been full of pre-game banter ahead of his side's semi-final clash against New Zealand this past weekend, where he even went as far as suggesting the All Blacks had spied on English training, Jones has been surprisingly subdued this week ahead of the final. 

Perhaps that is because him and Erasmus go back a long way. 

"With Eddie ... he is such a brilliant coach and I had the privilege to work with him for three weeks prior to the 2007 World Cup - great work ethic," Erasmus said on Thursday.

"He knows what he wants, how to play to the strengths of his team and exploit the weaknesses of the opposition.

"Everybody knows he is a workaholic, and he gets the best out of players.

"I sometimes think the way Eddie engages with the opposition coaches through the media is very clever, and takes off the brilliance of his coaching.

"Sometimes other coaches get involved and talk to Eddie, forgetting he stays on task, coaching his team, planning, tactical work, leadership skills, video sessions, gameplan. 

"That is one of Eddie’s masterstrokes.

"I enjoy people like that, as it is another skill that a coach has.

"I, for example, can’t do that. The moment I start doing that, I tend to forget exactly what I must do in a video session or in the lineouts."

Kick-off on Saturday is at 11:00 (SA time). 



15 Elliot Daly, 14 Anthony Watson, 13 Manu Tuilagi, 12 Owen Farrell (captain), 11 Jonny May, 10 George Ford, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Billy Vunipola, 7 Sam Underhill, 6 Tom Curry, 5 Courtney Lawes, 4 Maro Itoje, 3 Kyle Sinckler, 2 Jamie George, 1 Mako Vunipola

Substitutes: 16 Luke Cowan-Dickie, 17 Joe Marler, 18 Dan Cole, 19 George Kruis, 20 Mark Wilson, 21 Ben Spencer, 22 Henry Slade, 23 Jonathan Joseph

South Africa

15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Siya Kolisi (captain), 5 Lood de Jager, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Tendai Mtawarira

Substitutes: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 RG Snyman, 20 Franco Mostert, 21 Francois Louw, 22 Herschel Jantjies, 23 Frans Steyn