Ross Roche

By Ross Roche

Senior sports writer

Kitshoff expects another stern scrum examination, as Dweba joins Bok pack

Kitshoff was also relieved to have picked up the win the first Test, and admits that it was a special occasion.

Springbok prop Steven Kitshoff is expecting another stern examination from the All Blacks scrum when the two teams meet in their second Rugby Championship clash at Ellis Park on Saturday.

Kitshoff is also not fazed by the change to the starting front row that sees his future Stormers scrumming partner Joseph Dweba come in for Bongi Mbonambi, who picked up a knock in training on Tuesday afternoon.

Dweba has only made two Bok appearances so far, starting against Argentina in Gqeberha last year and against Wales in the second Test last month, and he will be fronting up against the All Blacks for the first time.

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It is a slight surprise that the Bok management didn’t promote Malcolm Marx back to starter after his brilliant performance last weekend, but it shows their belief in his impact as part of the bomb squad, to keep the All Blacks in check during the second half this weekend.

“I am extremely happy for Joseph. He has been involved with us for quite a while now. He’s been training and working hard and he knows our structures inside and out. It is also very sad for Bongi. I hope he gets well soon and back on the field,” said Kitshoff.

“The All Blacks (scrum) will always come out and be a tough opponent. We had a lot of work to do (in the first Test) especially in the second half, although we didn’t get the dominance that we wanted.

“We have put in the hard work this week and it is going to be another physical scrum battle coming this weekend.”

Win relief

Kitshoff was also relieved to have picked up the win the first Test, and admits that it was a special occasion breaking the eight year winless run against their massive rivals in the country.

“We are extremely proud, but in saying that it took a lot of hard work. Behind scenes analysis, tough training camps and hard lessons we learnt in the Welsh series that built up to last week,” explained Kitshoff.

“So it was a bit of a relief to get the victory, but we know that there is still a lot of hard work to do for this coming weekend’s match, especially over the 80 minutes between the four white lines.”