Boks not fooled by Wales v NZ result
SPOTLIGHT: Springbok assistant coach Deon Davids knows that his team will be facing a different beast in Cardiff on Saturday.
Wales will enter Saturday’s match against the Bok off the back of a 16-54 defeat against New Zealand, while the Springboks come off a 31-29 victory against the All Blacks in the Rugby Championship a month ago.
Wales were missing several star players due to the Test falling outside of the international window.
For Davids, Wales’ big defeat to the All Blacks means very little ahead of Saturday’s clash as the Boks will not be taking their opponents lightly.
“When you are playing against one of the top two teams in the world, it will always be a tough game,” said Davids.
“Wales had a few injuries, which may have stopped their momentum, and over and above that the match was competitive for the first 60 minutes, so it could have gone either way.
“We know Wales will be up for this game and they’ll be very competitive, and we have to be up for it in all areas of the match.
“There are some players who played for the British & Irish Lions who will be back, such as [Louis] Rees-Zammit and [Taulupe] Faletau, and they have a lot of quality and experience up front and young players coming through as well.”
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Meanwhile, Wales could be without captain Alun Wyn Jones after he left the field with a shoulder injury against the All Blacks.
When asked what impact Jones’ absence could have on Wales, Davids replied: “t’s a big loss for any team if you lose your captain, especially someone with so much experience and with a unique skillset.
“But they have a lot of quality leaders in the team who can take them forward.”
Albertus ‘Kwagga’ Smith, who made his Springbok debut against Wales in Washington DC in 2018, added: “It would be big to lose their captain, but it may be something that could be treated, so perhaps he could still play. That said, they have several quality leaders in the squad that can fulfil that role.”