Rudolph Jacobs
Rugby Journalist
2 minute read
19 Aug 2016
2:43 pm

Define ‘conservative’ – Bok captain

Rudolph Jacobs

While there’s a lot of talk of the Boks inexperienced backline, Strauss believes it should be put into perspective.

Adriaan Strauss (Captain) during the South African national rugby team Captains press conference and team photograph at Tsogo Sun Emnotweni on August 19, 2016 in Nelspruit, South Africa. (Photo by Dirk Kotze/Gallo Images)

Springbok captain Adriaan Strauss said on Friday that while they view Saturday’s Test match in the Rugby Championship against Argentina as one where the Bok traditions will be focused on, they won’t necessarily follow the conservative route.

In the recent Test series against Ireland there wasn’t much evidence of a sparkle in the Bok backline, but Strauss believed the Boks are heading in the right direction.

“I think Test match rugby is definitely different to provincial rugby, but we are heading to a direction where we want to make good decisions on the field.

“It might sound like a cliché but it’s something you grow into.

“If you are in your own 22 and it’s on to play you need to see that option first of all and have the confidence to back yourself enough to make that call and run from there.

“But when it’s not on to also make conservative and good calls, so I don’t want to say we will base our gameplan on conservative decisions but rather on making the good calls.”

And while there’s a lot of talk of the Boks inexperienced backline, Strauss believed it should be put into perspective.

“It’s always easy to get younger guys up for training and you don’t need to motivate them at all.

“The energy is there, you need the guys who had been there to show a prescience.

“But the guys who played their first Test or didn’t have a lot of Test caps showed against Ireland they can play at this level.

“That really put my mind at ease and I’m looking forward to take the field with them.

“And I just know they will have another great performance and hopefully the senior guys who have played in those tougher times will step up and take that pressure and come through with flying colours.”

Strauss who will captain the Boks the fourth time in his 58th Test will become the 13th Bok skipper in the Rugby Championship, formerly the Tri-Nations.

“We know very well what’s lying ahead on Saturday, it will be a very tough and physical game, as it always is against Argentina, and we expect exactly the same.

“With their leg chops on defence and the way they attack the rucks, they really throw you out of your own game plan and we always say there’s momentum shifts in games and with penalty counts and rucks they disrupt your momentum and unsettle you.

“It’s important that we play for 80 minutes within our won structures and enforce our own game plan.”