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Springboks know all about must-win situations, says captain Kolisi

Springboks captain Siya Kolisi says they are used to pressure.
Springboks captain Siya Kolisi says they are used to pressure.
Image: SHAUN ROY/ BACKPAGEPIX

The Springboks have seen this movie before.

From the World Cup through to the British and Irish Lions, the SA team have been confronted with must-win situations and they know what to expect in the winner takes all clash against Wales at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.

They lock horns in the Mother City with the series tied 1-1 and Wales have huge motivation because they are on the verge of back-to-back victories over the Boks and their first series win in SA.

For the Boks, defeat in front of an expected capacity crowd will be deflating and they will also put a stain on the significant milestones of Eben Etzebeth and Bongi Mbonambi who are playing in their 100th and 50th matches, respectively.

Flanker and captain Siya Kolisi said the team was not intimidated that Saturday’s clash was a final.

“We’ve been in these situations before and it builds character. The coaches want us to be in situations such as these, so this is nothing new for us. I am sure Wales have been in these situations too. It is a great way to start a season because we can definitely build from it.”

Stick added that this match would serve as a good yardstick for the Boks as a unit ahead of the rest of the season that included back-to-back matches against New Zealand.

“We are still in a building phase to the Rugby World Cup and for us it is great to win games. Last week, in Bloemfontein we were not happy with the result, we had several opportunities which could have allowed us to put them away but we didn’t use them.”

“This week will probably tell us where we are as a team, we have not doubt it is going to be another big tussle, but we will do everything we can to win. Wales have a similar style of play, and they can feed off the scraps and create something from nothing, so we are aware of the challenge that lies ahead,” said Stick.

On preparations, Kolisi said he was satisfied with the work they put during the week since they arrived in Hermanus earlier in the week.

“The preparation has gone well, Wales are a tough team and they don’t stop playing for 80 minutes but we are looking forward to this weekend. We looked at last week’s game and where they were strong, and we’ve been working on that and on improving our game,” said Kolisi.


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