Springboks

Rassie: Rob du Preez 'feels guilty' after Wales loss

2018-06-05 09:10
Robert du Preez (Gallo)

Cape Town - Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus says that Robert du Preez feels guilty after his costly mistake against Wales last Saturday, but he has backed the young flyhalf to bounce back. 

The 24-year-old Shark, on Test debut in Washington, was at fault for Wales' winning try when he had two kicks charged down in quick succession in the final moments of the match. 

It allowed Wales to sneak a 22-20 victory, but Erasmus would not lay the blame at Du Preez's feet. 

Instead, he suggested that the team had also contributed to the mistake by not providing Du Preez with enough 'shield' support around the rucks. 

"It isn't 100% his fault ... it was more a team mistake," Erasmus explained.

"He feels guilty, but the only thing you can do is bounce back and rectify it when you get your next opportunity. He understands that."

Erasmus explained that giving young players a platform was crucial at this stage of the Bok journey towards Japan 2019. 

"We have to make some big calls between now and the World Cup. We have to try guys and see what they have and we're going to make a few mistakes while doing that," he said.

"We can go the old route and just pick the same guys, coach them better and hope for different results or we can throw guys there in the deep end and hope they swim.

"There were 13 new caps on Saturday and some of them swam and some of them struggled a little bit. Robert was one of those guys."

The Boks now turn their attention to England and this Saturday's clash at Ellis Park in the first of three Tests.

Handre Pollard will start that match at flyhalf.

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