Rugby 15.9.2016 03:59 pm

Springboks keen to resume All Blacks rivalry

Springbok coach Allister Coetzee. Photo: Lee Warren/Gallo Images

Springbok coach Allister Coetzee. Photo: Lee Warren/Gallo Images

‘This is definitely a great opportunity for us, and whenever South Africa have played New Zealand in the past, it’s always been a big battle,’ says Coetzee.

The Springboks are excited to resume their rugby rivalry with New Zealand when the two teams meet in the fourth round of the Castle Lager Rugby Championship at the AMI Stadium in Christchurch on Saturday.

Springbok coach Allister Coetzee and flanker Francois Louw, who will earn his 50th Test cap for South Africa on Saturday, addressed the media earlier on Thursday at their team hotel in Christchurch.

Looking forward to the big clash this weekend, Coetzee said: “This is definitely a great opportunity for us, and whenever South Africa have played New Zealand in the past, it’s always been a big battle.

“We are looking forward to it because tradition and history tell you that it is going to be a physical battle and skill sets will be tested. We are playing against the world’s number one team, and it’s going to be a great test of where we are as a team and how much progress we have made up until now.

“We’ve come close on numerous occasions against New Zealand, where we lost matches by just falling short of the line or missing a lineout ball in the last minute of the game. You cannot afford those soft moments against a quality side such as the All Blacks.”

The Springboks had another good training session on Thursday at their base, the Peppers Clearwater Resort, and they will wrap up preparations on Friday with the captain’s run at the stadium. The match will be televised live on SuperSport1 – kickoff is at 9.35am (SA time).

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