Irish luck

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November 10, 2016
Irish luck

HARD AT WORK : Springboks

All Blacks defeat inspires the Boks.

The Springboks will be looking to take a leaf out of Ireland’s book when they face England at Twickenham on Saturday (4.30pm).

Joe Schmidt’s team stunned the rugby world when they ended New Zealand’s world record unbeaten run in Chicago last weekend.

And despite having gotten the better of England on each occasion in the last decade, the Springboks enter this weekend’s match as underdogs – with England still unbeaten under coach Eddie Jones.

SA assistant coach Matthew Proudfoot, though, hopes they will have the luck of the Irish on their side.

Asked if Ireland proved anyone is beatable by ending New Zealand’s streak, Proudfoot replied: “Correct, and I think the key there is the Irish had a very sound plan and executed it very well.

“Their line-speed was tremendous and they took the All Blacks on where the All Blacks wanted to play, and nullified them as well.

“I thought the kicking game of the halfbacks was exceptional as well, and that forced the All Blacks to play from very deep.

“And just the intensity of the Irish side is what you’ve got to have in Test match rugby.

“You hear every week ‘we’ve got to turn up’.

“It’s a common cliche thrown about but that is the epitome of Test match rugby.

“If you turn up with that intensity that’s right there, then yes you can beat anybody.”

Springbok coach Allister Coetzee will announce his squad for the match today, with the biggest question mark being who will fill the No.6 jumper role.

Of the openside role, Proudfoot adds: “The breakdowns are a definite area of concern and focus at the moment as it was obvious we weren’t good there in the first game.

“We have a plan in place and we are really confident it will work.

“It looked promising during training. What I can say now is that I am pleased with where we are at the moment in terms of what we want to achieve with our breakdown and the collision and contact area at Twickenham on Saturday.”

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