Mon 11 Apr 2022 | 11:31

Nienaber reveals the 'threats' Wales will pose in July

Nienaber reveals the 'threats' Wales will pose in July
Mon 11 Apr 2022 | 11:31
Nienaber reveals the 'threats' Wales will pose in July
SHARE

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Despite not having won a series on South African soil, Wales should not be underestimated.

ADVERTISEMENT

This warning comes from Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber.

The Boks will kick off their 2022 season against Wales in three Tests – at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria on Saturday, July 2, Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein (July 9) and Cape Town Stadium (July 16).

The Dragons, who will return to South Africa for the first time since 2014,  do have the upper hand against the Boks in recent matches played in Cardiff – having won four of the last five encounters in Wales.

However, they have yet to win a series in South Africa.

And to make the outing more challenging, the visitors head to South Africa at the back of a horrendous Six Nations campaign.

Last year, Wayne Pivac’s men won the Six Nations trophy.

ADVERTISEMENT

However, in 2022, the side ended the tournament in fifth, as they struggled to find consistency and suffered four defeats – including the shocking loss against Italy.

But despite their dismal Six Nations season, Springbok coach Nienaber has revealed the encounter will be an ‘arm wrestle’.

“Wayne Pivac [Wales head coach] and some of his management members were here [in South Africa] for a visit a couple of days ago,” Nienaber said, adding: “We had dinner and he made no secret of the fact that they haven’t won a series in South Africa yet and that it is one of the big goals they have set for themselves.

“If you look at their performance in the Six Nations, they had a few big injuries this season and over and above that we have had some close results against them in the past.

ADVERTISEMENT

“On our UK tour last year, it was the first time in eight years that we beat them at home.

“If you look at the game, we only took control in the last 10 minutes.

“History has shown us that it is going to be an arm wrestle.”

The coach revealed what he feels makes Wales such a dangerous opponent

“To zone into two of Wales’ Six Nations games – they were 0-12 down against England at Twickenham and they went on to score three tries in the last 20 minutes.

“Wales are one of those teams that don’t go away and that keep putting you under pressure.

“Against France, who won the Grand Slam and who are one of the in-form teams in the world, they were 9-10 behind at half-time, and France went on to win 13-9.

“If one looks at it realistically, that impressive France side could only score three points into the second half.

“To me, that amplifies the spirit of the Welsh team.

“They are a tough team and instil it will be a grind.

“We must make sure that we get our ducks in a row for them.”

Nienaber will announce the Springbok squad for the series against Wales in July towards the end of the United Rugby Championship in May.

@leezil07
@rugby365com

PV: 18
ADVERTISEMENT