New-look Boks ‘have the experience’ to give Stick to Los Pumas

14 August 2021 - 13:51
By mahlatse mphahlele AND Mahlatse Mphahlele
Springbok assistant coaches Mzwandile Stick.
Image: SA Rugby/Twitter Springbok assistant coaches Mzwandile Stick.

Springbok assistant coach Mzwandile Stick is expecting a solid defensive performance from their senior players against Argentina in their Rugby Championship clash on Saturday.

Springboks take on Los Pumas at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium with a new-look backline that is without regular starters like Makazole Mapimpi‚ Cheslin Kolbe‚ Damian de Allende‚ Lukhanyo Am‚ Handrè Pollard and Willie le Roux.

Stick‚ though‚ is confident that the likes of Elton Jantjies‚ Cobus Reinach‚ Jesse Kriel‚ Sbu Nkosi and Frans Steyn will be able to stand their ground against what is expected to be a physical challenge from Argentina.

“Cobus‚ Elton‚ Frans‚ Jesse Kriel and Sbu – we know those guys and what they have done for us before. We know they have got what it takes and the fact that you have one or two youngsters on the outside channels where they can bring some ex-factor in the game‚ and that is the key thing for us‚” Stick said.

“We take pride when it comes to our defence and I don’t doubt that those guys will step up and make sure that they grab their opportunities.

“It’s going to be tough because Argentina have good players and they have selected probably their best team that they could possibly select from their squad. It is going to be a tough one but we will be up to the challenge.”

Stick said the Boks have not changed their preparation and have stuck to their usual routine.

“If you look at how we were preparing for the British and Irish Lions‚ there is not much of a difference to what we are doing now. We respect all the teams that we are going to play against and we stick to our routine‚” he said.

“I have mentioned that we had goals from the beginning and those goals have certain actions that we need to take to be able to achieve them. So‚ the process of how we do things‚ how we analyse teams‚ how we share information with the players and sticking to the routine doesn’t change irrespective of who we are playing against.

“We must make sure that we are consistent with what we want to achieve‚ we have very high standards for ourselves and the biggest challenge is to maintain those standards to make sure that we achieve everything that we want to achieve.”