‘Boks won’t take Baa-baas on at their own game’ – Stick

Date published: October 30 2016

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The Springboks will not be employing an expansive game-plan when they face the Barbarians in their opening tour match at Wembley on Saturday.

That was the word from the Boks’ back-line coach, Mzwandile Stick before the team’s departure on their end-of-year tour to Europe.

The Baa-baas are renowned for their free-flowing style of play but Stick said South Africa won’t be tempted to take on the famous invitational team at their own game.

“I think the main thing for us when it comes to the next game, is we need to get better… trying to fix the things that we did wrong [in the loss against New Zealand], where it didn’t go well,” said Stick.

“The key thing for us is not about playing Barbarians rugby. For us we going to treat this game more as a Test match and we going to try and focus on what we want to do well and it will be good to make sure that we come out of the game on a positive note, because going to England at Twickenham is going to be a tough one,

“They [England] are a very good side at the moment with a great coaching staff, so it’s going to be a tough challenge for the youngsters. But once again, the Barbarians game for us is all about turning things around and making sure that we play the right game for our country.”

The two-time world champions were dealt a blow on the eve of the tour when openside flanker Jaco Kriel was forced to withdraw due to a knee injury.

Despite that setback, Stick believes the Boks’ back-up players will be able to do a good job.

“I think as a coaching staff we always have plans; we always have backups and we had a good plan actually,” he added.

“Looking at our squad and looking at the players that we’ve got in the Barbarians side, I think it was an easy call for us to make because you’ve got someone like openside flank [Roelof Smit] and then also having Nizaam Carr as a backup.

“He [Carr] has played there before [openside flank] for the Springboks, so it was an easy call for us to make knowing that Roelof is part of the squad going into the Test matches

“I think it was an easy call for the coach [Allister Coetzee] to make because he [Carr] is here in our squad, a player that has been there before. Also, Nizaam is one of the guys that we are looking forward to working with,” Stick added.

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