Planet Rugby

Coetzee backs WP pack to dominate

25th October 2013 15:59

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allister coetzee

Excelling: Allister Coetzee

Western Province boss Allister Coetzee believes his forwards can overcome their Springbok-laden opponents in the Currie Cup Final.

The Sharks will arrive at Newlands fielding the South African front-row with Tendai Mtawarira and the du Plessis brothers, with other Springboks Marcell Coetzee and Willem Alberts also starting.

Province have been lethal on the attack, thanks largely to their own forwards, and coach Allister Coetzee singled out his pack for their role in his side's unbeaten record this season.

"Our pack of forwards has started to get a bit of dominance in every game we've played," said Coetzee.

"We have grown and have been more accurate. On the defensive side of the breakdown, with Deon Fourie as captain and operating at openside flank, the forwards have made some unbelievable decisions."

At times, however, Province had been subdued in the set pieces and were aware the team dominating at the breakdowns and set pieces would benefit from possession as well as setting up the attacking platforms.

"With Duane Vermeulen also playing a similar role to Deon -- having a go at the breakdown and knowing when to go -- he has all contributed to the way we've handled the breakdowns," added Coetzee.

In recent weeks, Province have also benefited from their back three - full back Gio Aplon and wings Cheslin Kolbe and Gerhard van den Heever - springing penetrative counter-attacks.

Coetzee felt Kolbe's arrival in the team had brought out the best in seasoned players like Aplon and Van den Heever.

"Cheslin has unlocked players like Gio Aplon and Gerhard van den Heever and we've seen how they have used open space after our opponents have kicked the ball into their areas," stated Coetzee.

"The way we have been treating kick possession and the manner in which we've worked turnover possession has also been a major improvement for us."

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