Jantjies on new Bok captain Whiteley: 'We know each other very well from the Lions'

13 June 2017 - 17:57 By Mahlatse Mphahlele
Springboks assistant coach Franco Smith (L) listens carefully alongside Elton Jantjies (R) during the South African national men's rugby team media briefing at Garden Court Umhlanga on June 13, 2017 in Durban, South Africa.
Springboks assistant coach Franco Smith (L) listens carefully alongside Elton Jantjies (R) during the South African national men's rugby team media briefing at Garden Court Umhlanga on June 13, 2017 in Durban, South Africa.
Image: Steve Haag/Gallo Images

Taking more responsibility‚ being aware on the field and improved communication are the reasons behind the rebirth of Springboks pivot Elton Jantjies.

Jantjies‚ who is Springboks’ go to man with the boot in this ongoing three match series against France‚ said here on Tuesday the above attributes have helped him to improve his game.

“For me it is about making sure that I am aware on the field‚ communicate well and take personal responsibility‚" said Jantjies‚ who scored three conversions and as many penalties in the 37-14 win over the French in Pretoria on Saturday.

"It is also about team fundamentals‚ especially after we fixed what happened last year.

"The guys really want to buy into the way we want to play and taking personal responsibility‚ communicating and being aware on the field have helped me to be better.”

Janties said playing next to No 8 Warren Whiteley and scrumhalf Ross Cronje at the national team helps him a lot because he understands them from the Lions‚ where they have been hugely successful over the past two seasons.

“We know each other very well from the Lions‚ we speak the same language and we communicate well which makes it easier on the field.

"They are always calm and they know exactly what to do and which calls to make‚ which make things a lot easier.”

He also said it was wonderful to see team-mates Cronje‚ Courtnall Skosan and Andries Coetzee‚ Raymond Rhule of the Cheetahs and Dillyn Leyds of the Stormers making their debuts last weekend.

“It is always special to become a Springbok but with that comes a lot of responsibility.

"Someone like Raymond Rhule has been knocking very hard on the national team door and waiting to get his opportunity and he definitely used it.

"Everyone has got their own story to tell and finally they got their Boks debuts. It was nice to enjoy the moment with them‚” he said.

 - TMG Digital/TMG Sport

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