Boks need to be more clinical - Heyneke
Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer has branded his team’s win over Australia good, but not good enough.
Meyer expressed his delight about the 31-8 victory over the Wallabies in their Castle Rugby Championship game at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday, but quickly reminded all who would listen that he wasn’t happy the Boks weren’t able to finish.
The Boks missed six kicks at goal on Saturday, leaving 16 points on the table and had three tries turned down by the television match official, precisely what Meyer was referring to when he reminded all he wanted this team to be the best in the world.
Still, a five-try victory over the Wallabies was nothing to laugh about, and the Boks will take a lot of confidence out of the victory ahead of their showdown at FNB Stadium against World Champions New Zealand.
Meyer lamented the fact the team wasn’t more clinical, although was still very happy with the victory.
“We have very high standards, and there were three more tries that we should have scored," the Bok coach said. "It’s great to come home and win, and we haven’t beaten the Aussies for some time, but we have to start taking those opportunities.
“We would like to score more tries next week but we are aware of the challenge of playing the world champions.”
Meyer tried to play down some of the expectation ahead of next week’s game, especially as the challenge against the All Blacks is likely to be a far tougher proposition.
"New Zealand are a very settled side. In terms of defence, they have a number of experienced players who have been in that system for ages.
"They’re the world champions and one of the reasons for that is their defence. It’s going to be really difficult to create and score against them.
"We will need to be more patient with ball in hand, more tactically astute. If we get scoring opportunities, we will need to make them count.
"We are the only team that has played three matches away in a row. The All Blacks will come here now and we are hoping that South Africa will get behind us. It is always harder for visiting teams to win on the Highveld too," he added.
While much of the positive change in play has been attributed to rookie flyhalf Johan Goosen, captain Jean de Villiers played down the influence, saying the Bok victory was more built on the forward platform that allowed the backs to play a more flowing game.
De Villiers said the Boks had not changed anything in their game plan, but rather finished off the opportunities they were creating.
"We haven’t changed one thing," said the Bok captain. "The thing that has changed is that we are now capitalising on the pressure we put on the opposition. People don’t seem to understand that.
"We have shown that we can create, and now we are starting to finish. It’s not that we went out there with a more attacking mindset. It was more about playing the situation.
"If the opposition leave men back, then obviously there is more space to attack from close. If they bring men up, then you will kick to the back to find the space. No defence is watertight, there is always space. It’s about finding out where that space is and exploiting it."