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VIDEO: New voices help Boks evolve

The Springboks’ new four-year cycle officially gets underway later today when they face Wales at Twickenham Stadium in London.

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Since Rassie Erasmus took over as head coach of the Springboks, there has always been a clear plan: South Africa has to be #THE Powerhouse of the rugby world.

And thus far they have done just that.

Between 2019 and 2023, the Springboks have won two World Cup titles, a British & Irish Lions tour and a Rugby Championship trophy.

They have cemented themselves as arguably the best team of all time.

However, the next four-year cycle is a crucial period and a massive adjustment as they try to build towards World Cup 2027  without Erasmus’ right-hand man Jacques Nienaber.

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The 2023 World Cup-winning coach joined Leinster, while attack coach Felix Jones joined England.

Their respective departures saw the introduction of former Ireland hooker Jerry Flannery as defence coach and former All Black flyhalf Tony Brown as attack coach.

Brown and Flannery come with impressive resumes, the former served as an assistant coach for Japan from 2016 to the 2023 World Cup and the latter coached at Munster between 2014 and 2019 before joining the Harlequins.

Saturday will be the first time that Springboks fans will get a chance to judge the impact of the foreign duo.

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One man who is already fond of the pair’s presence is Springbok assistant coach Mzwandile Stick.

“We have always said if we are going to do the things that we did in 2019 or 2023 the other teams are going to catch up on us. They will study us and surpass us.

“Therefore as a team, it is important to keep evolving,” the 39-year-old Stick said.

“There are certain things we can’t compromise when it comes to how we play the game and as South Africans we take pride in our physicality and how we play our kicking game.

“But the new voices and new coaches give us a balance. I have been enjoying working with them. They don’t have big egos. They are people who want to contribute to the team to make it a better place.

“Tony Brown’s mindset is he wants to empower the players when it comes to decision-making on the field.

“The key thing for us as coaches is that we want to compliment each other when we play the game.”

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Brown’s addition to the coaching ticket will a level of innovation to the attack and will add another dangerous aspect to already formidable team.

However, Stick reiterated that in an effort to level up the attack, the team will not neglect the fundamentals like solid set-piece work and defence, which remain the vocal point of the Springboks’ DNA.

“There are certain things we can’t negotiate. The players know if we defend well, kick well and in the set-pieces we get an advantage there we get a better chance to win the game, the rest can follow after that.

“If we going to try to do all the nice things and not do the hard work on the field it will be a long day for us.

“Hopefully things will come together nicely against Wales.”

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