'I thought I’d take the chance': Willemse opens up on Twickenham heroics
SPOTLIGHT: Springbok flyhalf Damian Willemse has opened up on some of his moments of brilliance against England at Twickenham.
The Boks ended their year-end series with an emphatic 27-13 win over the English with Willemse playing a big role in the triumph.
Apart from his two crucial drop goals, he started the move with a brilliant run that set up Kurt-Lee Arendse’s try, but he said both drops were a spur of the moment decisions.
“It wasn’t planned,” said Willemse.
“I just felt that we weren’t getting much momentum as England defended really well in their 22, so I thought I’d take the chance and strike it down the middle.
“I’m just pleased I could contribute.”
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Willemse praised his teammates for fighting until the end on tour despite having to overcome the massive disappointment of suffering defeats against Ireland and France.
“We’re obviously very happy with the win. It’s been a bit up and down for us, with the first two results not going our way. But I’m proud of the boys,” said the playmaker.
“No one complained.
“Everyone put down their heads and we went to Italy and did the job.
“We got some confidence out of that because we said as a group, we haven’t won here in eight years, so it was very special for us.”
Despite only winning two of their four Tests on tour, Willemse says there is plenty to be proud of heading into a World Cup year.
“There are a lot of positives we can take from this tour,” said Willemse explained.
“In the Ireland game, we shot ourselves in the foot. We tried really hard, but we didn’t capitalise on the possession and opportunities we had.
“The match against France was one of those where the bounce of the ball didn’t go our way, but we held on with 13 men at the end. And in Italy everything came together, and it was great to build on that against England.”
Additional source: @Springboks