Rudolph Jacobs
Rugby Journalist
2 minute read
2 Sep 2019
8:56 am

Rassie: We don’t want Japan making a sequel!

Rudolph Jacobs

Japan's famous win at the 2015 World Cup led to a movie being made. The Boks don't want that embarrassment again.

Rassie Erasmus during the South African national men's rugby team departure media conference at The Pivot at Montecasino on August 29, 2019 in Johannesburg, South Africa. (Photo by Lee Warren/Gallo Images)

Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus has warned his men that Japan will be eager to make a point in their World Cup warm-up match on Friday by proving their shock victory in 2015 was not a one-off performance.

The Boks had a morning gym workout on Sunday, followed by an afternoon field session in Seki, after arriving on Saturday.

They were met by cloudy but hot and humid conditions.

“They have an outstanding coaching team who have been preparing for this game for a while now and they will be determined to prove that 2015 was not a freak result,” Erasmus said, recalling the Boks’ 34-32 loss in the group stages four years ago.

“They made a movie about the last time they played us and it’s our job to make sure there’s no sequel.”

Erasmus said it was great to be there and they had received a warm welcome from their hosts.

“We’ve heard a lot about Japan from the many players in our squad who have played here, as well as from one of our coaches, Matt Proudfoot,” he said.

“They have all loved their time in Japan and talked a lot about it before we arrived, so it’s great to finally be here and to experience it ourselves.”

Coming off the back of winning the Pacific Nations Cup after securing victories over the United States, Tonga and Fiji, Erasmus admitted Japan were a well-conditioned side.

“They have reason to be confident and they have just equalled their highest ever world ranking (ninth).

“We did a number of detailed recces before coming out and the hotels and training fields are really outstanding, and now it’s down to business.”

Bok team management underlined that point by getting straight to work, as the squad began preparations in earnest in Kumagaya, a 45-minute bullet train ride from Tokyo.

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