Scoring tries 'looks like a really simple thing for him'
RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP SPOTLIGHT: Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus said he doesn’t want to over-coach Herschel Jantjies, who has certainly cemented his World Cup place in the past week.
South Africa snared a dramatic 16-16 draw in their match against the All Blacks on Saturday thanks to Jantjies’ late try and a tricky conversion from Handre Pollard.
The 23-year-old Jantjies also bagged a double on debut in the win over Australia in Johannesburg a week earlier and has injected an effervescence into the Bok squad.
“Try-scoring looks like a really simple thing for him at this stage,” said Erasmus.
“For a guy like him you want to keep his natural game flowing and you don’t over-coach him too much with all the technical things.
“A lot of the mistakes we as coaches make is that we put a lot of emphasis on the mechanical and technical things like box kicks. His [Jantjies’] service is nice and crisp, his feeling for the game and his support play are great attributes he brings to the game.
“I guess if we keep encouraging that and don’t over-coach the things that he doesn’t do great then he will keep improving and he will keep doing the things that he did today [Saturday].
“The nice thing is he is doing it at the highest level, so hopefully he keeps on doing it.”
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The two heavyweight sides struggled to create scoring opportunities, bagging only one try apiece as smothering line speed shut down space and time.
It mirrored a series of defence-dominated contests in Europe last November when the leading World Cup contenders met.
Erasmus said New Zealand’s line speed has gone up a notch, further transforming major Tests into the forward-based contests of previous generations.
“I guess in the old days, the scores were 12-10, 15-12 and Test match rugby was like that … it was only one or two tries normally,” he said.
Meanwhile, Erasmus confirmed that Faf de Klerk failed his concussion test. De Klerk left the field early in the second half with Jantjies replacing him.
A few minutes later it looked as if De Klerk was ready to return, but he was stopped from going back onto the field.
“He failed it [Head Injury Assessment]. There was a bit of a communication gap because of the time limit.
“I was getting upset because I couldn’t hear back if he failed or not because there is a time limit on it.
“We didn’t get the communication back in time, but it didn’t matter because he failed it.”