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Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus says that he is likely to make a few changes to the team for the third test against England at Newlands Stadium on Saturday. Having secured the series 2-0 after beating England 23-12 in Bloemfontein on Saturday, Erasmus says that he is looking to tweak a few things for the final test, but will not be making wholesale changes.
Springbok captain Siya Kolisi says his team will need to lift their intensity and work rate if they are to win the second Test of the Castle Lager Incoming Series against England in Bloemfontein tomorrow. Kolisi says they need to play for the 80 minutes including their bench making the impact that is required to maintain the intensity of the game. Kolisi commended his team on the character they showed last weekend in coming back from behind to win the game but says tomorrow’s game will be a completely new affair and the team will need to follow their processes if they want the same result.
Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus has made only two changes to his starting line-up to play against England in the second Test in Bloemfontein with tighthead prop Frans Malherbe replacing Wilco Louw and Pieter-Steph du Toit comes in at blindside flank in place of Jean-Luc du Preez who drops to the bench. Utility back Jesse Kriel comes on the bench on place of Elton Jatjies who drops out of the match day 23. Erasmus explains why he made the changes. Erasmus says versatile players like Du Toit should not be confined to one position and that he will be utilized both at flank and lock for the foreseeable future.
Springboks forwards coach Matthew Proudfoot is expecting to bring some changes in the Springboks team to face England in the second Castle Lager Incoming series Test in Bloemfontein on Saturday. Proudfoot says it is part of the evolution of the team and coaches for them to be better every week as is required by Springboks coach Rassie Erasmus.
Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus says the inclusion of former Saracens hooker Schalk Britz into the Springbok squad will benefit the younger players in the side with his experience. Britz last played for the Springboks at the 2015 Rugby World Cup and recently retired from the game after winning the English premiership title with Saracens. The fact that Britz has played in England for the past few years and knows the England players well was also a consideration in Erasmus calling up the former Stormers and Lions number two. Erasmus says that flyhalf Handre Pollard will be fit to play in the second Test against England in Bloemfontein after suffering a shoulder injury in the first Test in Johannesburg.
England coach Eddie Jones conceded that it was not pleasant being on the losing side but praised his team for the kind of rugby they played in their 42-39 loss to the Springboks in the first Test of the Castle Lager Incoming Series at Emirates Airline Park. Jones also lauded the appointment of Springbok captain Siya Kolisi as the first black captain of the national side as good for the game in South Africa and around the world.
Springbok captain Siya Kolisi says tomorrow's (Saturday) first Test of the Castle Lager Incoming Series against England at Emirates Airline Park will be the beginning of a new chapter for Springbok rugby. Kolisi will lead the national team for the first time under new coach Rassie Erasmus and the Stormers captain believes that they have worked hard enough as a team ahead of the game.
England rugby coach Eddie Jones admits that he was reading nothing into South Africa’s defeat to Wales in Washington over the weekend ahead of their three-Test series beginning on Saturday. The Springboks were beaten 22-20 in what was their first match of the international season, a game that also marked the debut of new coach Rassie Erasmus. However, the new Bok boss played a heavily experimental side, that included no fewer than seven debutants. Jones, whose England side touched down in the country over the weekend for their Castle Lager Incoming Series, is not reading anything into the Boks’ historic loss in America.
Springbok Sevens coach Neil Powell is hopeful that his team could emerge victorious from the last two tournaments of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series. The Blitzbokke go into the London and Paris tournaments starting this weekend just four points adrift of Fiji on the overall series standings and still in contention to successfully defend their world title which the Blitzbokke won in the penultimate tournament last season in Paris.
Newly appointed Springbok captain Siya Kolisi says he was overcome with emotion when announced as captain and that it was a proud and humbling moment. Kolisi says the magnitude of his appointment he will probably feel when he leads the team against England in the first Test on June 9 in Johannesburg, and this week has just been focussed on helping the squad get into shape ahead of their Test against Wales in Washington on Saturday. Kolisi says he is a man of few words and Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus wants him to just play well. Kolisi says he was appointed as captain by Erasmus purely on reasons of his leadership and his relationship with Erasmus and not because of the colour of his skin. Kolisi says he is a captain for all South Africans and not just black people.
Springbok assistant coach Mzwandile Stick says his return to the Springbok team after a one year hiatus has helped refresh his mind and hunger. Stick has acknowledged Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus for bringing him back into the fold and says that Erasmus trusts him as they have worked previously. He admits that his confidence took a knock after being demoted as assistant coach in 2016 during the tenure of former coach Allister Coetzee. Stick says self-doubt did set in at the time but says that is par for the course as a coach and says he believes in his ability as a coach.
Stormers coach Robbie Fleck confirmed that Springbok lock Pieter-Steph du Toit failed his fitness test and will not be available for the derby against the Lions on Saturday. Du Toit is suffering from heat exhaustion and a bout of flu after the team’s shock defeat against the Sunwolves in Hong Kong. Fleck admits that he has been tempted in playing Springbok lock Eben Etzebeth, who has been out injured since the end of last year but has resisted because he hasn’t yet been given the green light by the Stormers medical staff.
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