Mon 19 Jul 2021 | 02:53

B&I Lions defence coach opens up about Faf factor

B&I Lions defence coach opens up about Faf factor
Mon 19 Jul 2021 | 02:53
B&I Lions defence coach opens up about Faf factor
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IN THE SPOTLIGHT: The British and Irish Lions assistant coach Steve Tandy believes his team have enough firepower to handle Springbok scrumhalf Francois De Klerk.

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The scrums have been pinpointed as one of the British and Irish Lions’ work ons ahead of the first Test.

Thus far, the tourists have enjoyed fairly good results so far after recording wins over Johannesburg Lions, Sharks and Stormers.

While the defeat to South African A  is the only blemish on their tour report card.

The SA ‘A’ boasted 18 World Cup winners including the talented De Klerk.

The scrumhalf continued with his fine form and delivered yet another impressive performance against the British and Irish Lions.

Aside from his yellow card in the 39th minute, De Klerk managed to keep the Lions under pressure – outshining his opposite number  Conor Murray.

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“He is a super talented player,” assistant coach Tandy admitted when asked about De Klerk as the Springboks’ attacking weapon.

“There is that uniqueness [to him] and also the off the cuff stuff [he does so well]”.

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“He has an incredible kicking game, he can run and his distribution is amazing.

“He can literally a kick from anywhere. So you have to trust your own systems and know you can’t cater for everything in specific detail.

“However, you have to believe that what you set out will work and we have world-class players and players who have played against him [de klerk] in England.

“He is a super talented player, but we believe we can cater for that,”

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‘Robust’ selection meeting

Tandy revealed that the coaching staff held a ‘robust’ selection meeting and they have a near full-strength squad to choose from, with only flyhalf Finn Russell set to miss the series opener due to injury.

“It was one of the toughest things that I have been involved in as so many people have put their hands up in terms of putting their best foot forward,” Tandy said.

“It was really robust and at the end of the day, the time flew by around selection.

“There are probably one or two things to firm up, but the majority is probably done.

He added: “There will be bitter disappointment for some players.

“But everyone will be geared up to win the first test and those not playing will support the team,”

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B&I Lions defence coach opens up about Faf factor | Rugby365