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South Africa

De Villiers expects tough scrum battle

20th November 2013 11:37


Pieter de Villiers SA scrum coach 2013

De Villiers: Wary of les Bleus scrum

Springbok scrum consultant Pieter de Villiers believes the Bok pack faces a tough battle against France in Paris on Saturday.

The Boks go into the clash without their first-choice tighthead of the tour Frans Malherbe - who suffered a rib cartilage injury in last weekend's win over Scotland - while France have recalled highly-rated Clermont loosehead Thomas Domingo to their 30-man squad.

"France will always be strong scrummagers," De Villiers said on Tuesday.

"They've proved they've got one of the most successful scrums.

"Around the globe in the last year their scrum earned the most penalties and conceded the fewest. It will be a scrumming test for us."

De Villiers represented France in 68 Tests between 1999 and 2008 and expects les Bleus to raise their game on Saturday.

"France have always been highly motivated against the top sides in the world," he added.

"New Zealand and South Africa have often brought the best out of France."

He said, however, that the Springboks were relishing the challenge.

"We've also been working hard at our scrums and it is great to end the tour off against a good scrummaging side to see where we stand."

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