Springbok coach Allister Coetzee have hit the headlines for all the wrong reasons of late.
And with Coetzee set to name his match-day squad on Thursday for the penultimate Rugby Championship Test against Australia at Loftus on Saturday, the coach was said to call for reinforcements to his back-up staff.
But he was quick to rubbish reports that he send a SOS to SA Rugby for ‘help’ as far as his assistant coaches are concerned – backline coach Mzwandile Stick, forward coaches Johann van Graan and Matt Proudfoot as well as defence coach Chean Roux.
“If I have a problem with the management team I will sort it out with them and SA Rugby,” said Coetzee.
“But at this point in time there’s no issues from my side,” said Coetzee.
“You guys (the media) make comments in your newspapers and then you want me to make comment about that, it doesn’t quite work that way,” said Coetzee.
Coetzee however believed the traditional strengths of the Boks should never be discarded and it might take longer to unite as a team after the exit of several senior players following last year’s World Cup.
“Our physicality is something we’ll never lose as a Springbok team, so we have to come up with a really top-notch performance this weekend, from the pack and the backs.
“I have gone before with a 6/2 bench split and if you want to make Loftus your ally on the highveld you need that impact, but I’m happy with the balance of the loosetrio.
“It’s important that continuity be set with a new group of players an players need to gain confidence but certain players also understood that they were given second chances and that there would be consequences if you didn’t grabbed that opportunity.
“So the 23 will come out of the 31 (now 28) but we are going to make adjustments.”
Coetzee believed with the likely recall of veteran No 10 Morne Steyn on Thursday they could be well served to play in the right areas.
“The most important thing at Test level is that territory is still the be-all.
“The All Blacks kick a lot to get into good positions and we have researched that this is why we are losing matches because we don’t have sufficient territorial advantage and that’s why our defence had been under pressure.
“So our plan will be different to get our chase lines in place.”
While not everyone agrees with Coetzee he is the man in charge and his word does need to have some authority.
“Our pack has been really good, the one massive positive area has been our setpiece and we have interchanged giving Trevor a chance at tighthead as well and giving opportunities to Bongi Mbonambi and Malcolm Marx and I’m pleased with the experience they have gained.
“And they haven’t been shunted around and haven’t been dominated.”