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Ken Borland



Boks have measured themselves … & found themselves wanting – Kolisi 0

Posted on October 04, 2021 by Ken

Captain Siya Kolisi said on Friday that the Springboks have been measured by themselves and they found themselves wanting in last weekend’s defeat to Australia, which is why they will be running out with great determination to rectify that when they meet the Wallabies again in a Rugby Championship Test at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane on Saturday.

South Africa went down 26-28 to Australia last weekend in an unfocused, error-strewn and ill-disciplined performance. Kolisi said the world champions and the team clinging on to the number one ranking under pressure from the All Blacks know they are much better than what they showed on the Gold Coast.

“We know exactly where we went wrong, it was very upsetting to lose like that. The mistakes we made with things that are normally a given, it was so tough to see that on the review. They were simple errors. Just on the day, we were not at our best in the physical part. We have our standards, but we made fewer tackles and especially less dominant tackles, Australia dominated their hits with ball-in-hand.

“We compared ourselves to how we played against Argentina and the British and Irish Lions and the standard was definitely not the same. We need to make that better first before we complain about anything else. So we are going to be more determined on Saturday to bring what we did not show on the field last weekend,” Kolisi said.

To make matters tougher, the Springboks have a very disappointing record in Brisbane. Since the return from isolation, South Africa have won just once there in 12 attempts against Australia. Kolisi, along with Willie le Roux, Eben Etzebeth and Duane Vermeulen, is one of the players who featured in that memorable 38-12 hammering of the Wallabies in 2013.

“We’ve only won once at Suncorp and we want to change that, but the most important thing is for us to stay in the competition and defend the Rugby Championship. So we are going to throw everything into this game. We’ve spent the week asking ourselves why we did not get to where we are meant to be in the previous game and I’m confident we will pitch up this weekend.

“Winning is what we care about, that’s the only way we can maintain our number one ranking. But the ranking is not our focus, we want to get back into the competition and give ourselves a chance of winning it again. But if we’re not disciplined then we won’t get the result we want,” Kolisi said.

Sharks identify not giving away possession or penalties as key 0

Posted on June 09, 2021 by Ken

Not giving away possession or penalties is what the Sharks have identified as the key things they need to rectify as they go into their Rainbow Cup match against the Lions on Saturday on the back of successive defeats to the Bulls and Stormers, according to lock Reniel Hugo.

The setbacks have left the Sharks four points adrift of the log-leading Bulls and sitting in third place below the Stormers on points difference. If the Lions win at Ellis Park on Saturday then they could actually leapfrog the KwaZulu-Natalians.

“It’s not nice having two losses behind our names but we have the opportunity to rectify our mistakes this weekend. We are conceding a lot of penalties and that just allows the opposition to kick out and set the rolling maul, which then takes a lot of energy to defend. So we have been working very hard on our discipline so we don’t concede penalties and also on keeping the ball.

“Against the Bulls we had to defend more than a dozen rolling mauls and sometimes your legs just give in. But sometimes it’s just one guy coming in at the wrong place and that breaks the system. A few guys have made mistakes and I was one of them. As an older guy, hopefully I can bring a bit more experience and try and get the team to gel together better,” Hugo said on Tuesday.

The Sharks have won their last four matches in Johannesburg, dating back to their 26-19 Super Rugby defeat in their opening game of 2018, and Hugo said their focus is squarely on becoming the first South African team to contest the Rainbow Cup final.

“The Lions lost their first three games, but they weren’t big losses and they had lots of opportunities to win. It just shows that all four teams in this competition are very good and the quality of rugby is such that there are no easy games. So it’s going to be very important for us to be clinical, we must stop them, get turnovers and create opportunities for ourselves.

“But the Lions showed how tough this competition is when they beat the Bulls to open the Rainbow Cup up massively. If we can now win both these last games then we’ll be in with a shout of playing in that final in Italy,” Hugo said.

Bulls rectify lack of ball-carrying loosie with Potgieter signing 0

Posted on May 19, 2016 by Ken

 

The Bulls have looked to rectify their lack of big ball-carrying loose forwards by signing Springbok flank Jacques Potgieter on a three-year contract, the union confirmed at Loftus Versfeld on Wednesday.

The 30-year-old Potgieter, who is 6’4 and weighs 115kg, starred previously for the Bulls in 22 SuperRugby games in 2012-13, before becoming a high-profile player for the Waratahs. He joined the Sharks at the beginning of the year, but an ankle injury meant he never actually played a game for them, and John Smit, the CEO of the KwaZulu-Natal franchise, confirmed on Wednesday that they had released him from his contract. Potgieter is engaged to actress Angelique Gerber, whose career would be better served by them living in Gauteng.

“We always knew SuperRugby was going to be a battle on the gain-line, so we need good ball-carriers. We know what Jacques can do, we’ve seen how he’s played for the Bulls previously and for the Waratahs, so he’s definitely a good signing. At the beginning of the season we lost three loose forwards to injury at the same time, and Jacques also played four and seven for the Waratahs. Jannes Kirsten can do that too, and they both can really carry the ball,” coach Nollis Marais said.

High performance manager Xander Janse van Rensburg said Potgieter, who has been seen at practice this week already, will probably be ready to train in a week’s time. He will probably play in all three SuperRugby rounds after the June break.

The acquisition of Potgieter offsets the disappointment of losing hard-working flank Lappies Labuschagne to Japanese club Kubota at the end of the SuperRugby season.

Janse van Rensburg told The Citizen they are hopeful, however, that Labuschagne will be able to return to play for the Bulls in the 2017 SuperRugby campaign at the end of the Japanese season. The fact that Frans Ludeke is coach of Kubota means the Bulls obviously have a negotiating platform, but they did fire Ludeke last year.

Van Rensburg also announced the signing of Southern Kings tighthead prop Jacobie Adriaanse, who Marais described as “a very competitive scrummager who stood his ground against the Crusaders”.

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