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VIDEO: Rassie’s ‘spicy’ response to Zebo’s rant

VIDEO: The fractious rivalry between Ireland and South Africa just became a lot more entertaining.


Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus is also not upset about remarks made by Munster and Ireland wing Simon Zebo.

The Bok coach made it clear he enjoys the additional spice created ahead of the two-Test series between the counties in July.

Zebo, one of the most senior members of the Ireland squad, recently created a stir when he suggested that Erasmus genuinely dislikes Ireland.

This follows hot on the heels of comments by members of the World Cup-winning Bok camp.

Damian de Allende said Ireland should expect ‘war’ and that the Boks were aiming to get some ‘respect back’ during the Tests at Loftus Versfeld (July 6) and Kings Park (July 13).

Lock Eben Etzebeth claimed Andy Farrell’s side was ‘arrogant’ after their World Cup pool match in Paris in September, which Ireland won 13-8.


The 35-year-old Zebo added fuel to the fire with comments of his own.

“Rassie hates the Irish; he really,” Zebo said, adding: “He really doesn’t like us, which is quite funny.

“It will build up even more and it drip feeds into the players.

“RG Snyman has been copping a little bit of flack over it.


“There is a really, really big rivalry there, and it’s bubbling.

“It’s mainly the Irish media’s fault.

“I think it’s based in Dublin, not the Irish media down here where I am [at Munster].

“It’s going to be a juicy test series, that’s for sure.”

This week Erasmus was asked to comment on Zebo’s remarks, but true to his nature, the Bok head coach just smiled.

(WATCH Erasmus’s response to media questions about Zebo …)

Video Spacer

“He [Zebo] messaged me after it happened and anyone who knows him knows he is a joker,” the Bok coach said.

“He makes a joke every chance he gets – a crack here and there,” he added.

“He immediately messaged me and said that it came out wrong.

“They didn’t understand what he was trying to say.

“He apologised and asked if he should go back on air and rectify it.

“I said no – let’s spice it up, let’s keep it that way.”

Erasmus is not the type of coach that will tag his team as the favourite or the underdog, but as far as the Test series against Ireland goes, he said on paper the Irish have the upper hand.

“If there’s one team that’s certainly got the upper hand, it’s them having won every game since 2016,” he added.

“I never want to make us the underdogs and we don’t want to be, but the stats are there.

“We haven’t beaten them since 2016.”

South Africa lost their last three matches against Ireland, falling to a 3-38 defeat in Dublin in 2017, a 16-19 loss in 2022, and an 8-13 loss at the World Cup last year.

The two-Test series will also be Zebo’s last rodeo against South Africa after he announced that he would retire at the end of the season.

Zebo scored more Champions Cup tries than any other Irish player (35) and is third on the all-time list for tries in the competition.


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