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Ken Borland

Louw the baby of the team, but gives powerful display in city of his birth

Posted on August 15, 2022 by Ken

At 22-years-old, Elrigh Louw was the baby of the Springbok team at the weekend, making his Test debut off the bench in the city of his birth, but the loose forward was certainly not over-awed as he produced a powerful display in the second-half comeback by the home side against Wales at Loftus Versfeld.

Whether carrying powerfully, making crunching tackles or standing up to the gibberish of Dan Biggar, Louw was influential in the half-hour he spent on the field.

Captain Siya Kolisi praised the Bulls talent afterwards saying, “Elrigh was special, it’s amazing how chilled he was.”

Louw himself exuded the air of someone with a very mature, focused head on his shoulders.

“We were under pressure when I came on, but I knew exactly what I had to do. I was able to enjoy it. I was actually more emotional when I heard I was in the 23 than running on the field,” Louw said after the 32-29 win.

“When I ran on, I knew my goal and I did not think about my emotions. I knew my Pa and Ma would be very emotional though.

“It’s an honour to hear my name mentioned as a Bomb Squad member, but the important thing was I knew exactly what the coaches expected of me,” Louw said.

The superb attack that resulted in Cheslin Kolbe’s crucial 65th-minute try that closed Wales’ lead to just two points would see Louw go perilously close to scoring himself under the poles after a storming run.

“I just had one thing in mind and that was to dot the ball down on my debut, but Wales tied my shoelaces together quite well in the end,” Louw laughed.

He was more serious when taking co-responsibility for the rolling maul try the Springbok forwards conceded in the 77th minute as Wales levelled the score at 29-29 with two forwards in the sin-bin.

“We will definitely go and have another look at that and what went wrong. For our pack that was not acceptable at all,” Louw said with a face that must have resembled the one he had whenever he was caught being naughty at Hoerskool Transvalia not that long ago.

But one of the nicest features of the weekend thriller in Pretoria was the birth of another new Springbok career that is sure to go a long way.

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