Jacques van der Westhuyzen

Compiled by Jacques van der Westhuyzen

Head of Sport


Boks back in training after All Blacks bashing — on island of Corsica

"This is an important week for us, and we are looking forward to getting our preparations in place for the match against Scotland."


Springbok World Cup stars Cobus Reinach and Manie Libbok have expressed their happiness about training on the Mediterranean island of Corsica this week, ahead of the squad moving to the French mainland on Sunday.

The World Cup in France gets underway next Friday, with the Boks playing their first game next Sunday, on September 10 against Scotland in Marseille.

Corsica

The Boks arrived in Corsica on Saturday, following their two-week camp in the UK where they beat Wales and New Zealand in warm-up games in Cardiff and London respectively.

“Corsica has been good so far,” said Reinach. “The weather is unbelievable and very different to London. It’s good to finally get here and get used to the conditions we are going to face in France.

“It’s a little humid. When we first arrived, we had to shower a few times, so it’s something we have to get used to.”

Libbok, who enjoyed a good outing against the All Blacks, also spoke of the conditions, saying: “It’s hot over here, but it’s good for our preparation because we are expecting similar conditions in Toulon (where the Boks will base themselves during the World Cup).

“It’s a unique and beautiful island, and we are enjoying being here. This is an important week for us, and we are looking forward to getting our preparations in place for the match against Scotland.”

Raring to go

With the team’s opening RWC encounter less than two weeks away, Reinach said the players were excited about the challenge and were raring to go.

“It’s been a long wait with a lot of games in between with the Rugby Championship and our warm-up matches,” said Reinach.

“But the boys are very eager and excited to get started. We had our first training session on Monday, and you could see the energy is there and everyone is very excited.”

Both Libbok and Reinach echoed Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber’s sentiments that although the victory against New Zealand gave them confidence, it didn’t offer the team much more than that, as the results that count will be at the World Cup.

“The clash against New Zealand was good, but it doesn’t count for anything,” said Reinach. “The Rugby World Cup only starts now. Each game from now on is important, and there’s still a lot of work to be done.”

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