Springbok tighthead Jannie du Plessis has hailed new scrum coach Pieter de Villiers as the key to South Africa’s strong performance up front last week.
Tue, 12 Jun 2012 15:17
The Boks put in a solid showing at scrum-time against a physical England pack on their way to victory in the first Test in Durban, and Du Plessis said that he expects another fierce test in Johannesburg on Saturday.
“Both teams were very physical and I think it is massive for this week’s game to stay physical and play good rugby,” he said.
Former French international front row star De Villiers only had one week with the Boks ahead of the first Test, but Du Plessis said that he made some vital technical adjustments in that time which paid off at Kings Park.
He commented: “We have a new coach in Pieter de Villiers who has really brought in some new ideas and exercises that made a massive difference.
“It is one of the foundations of getting good go-forward ball so there is always a lot of emphasis on scrummaging, but it is nice to work with people that make a point of talking about it.
“He brought us technical exercises, a few fitness drills and other ways to put your feet. All those things make a big difference at the end of the day.”
The 29-year-old prop had an impressive match in front of his home crowd, getting involved in some loose play as well as the tight exchanges, but he was quick to point to the collective contribution of his teammates.
“It doesn’t always happen like that because you play against opposition who are the best in their country.
“I guess that is why it is called Test rugby – it really does test you and maybe it was lucky for me I got seen a bit more on the weekend.
“All the eight guys played brilliant rugby in the pack and also in the backs, so I wouldn’t say it was my best game – I would say it was a great team performance,” he said.