Jonathan Davies backs Wales to respond against Boks

Date published: November 1 2021 - Planet Rugby

Wales centre Jonathan Davies is adamant that they will get better when they face world champions South Africa in the Autumn Nations Series.

A depleted Welsh side were no match for a full-strength New Zealand 23 as the visitors went away from Cardiff with a dominant 54-16 victory on Saturday.

It doesn’t necessarily get easier for Wayne Pivac’s men with them set to play the Springboks, a team that overcame the All Blacks on their last outing.

However, Wales have toppled the Boks four times in a row at home, with South Africa last departing the Welsh capital victorious eight years ago.

Time together means improvement

“We are always trying to develop our game,” said Davies, who took over captaincy duties when Alun Wyn Jones went off injured after just 18 minutes of the New Zealand encounter.

“The one thing this team always shows is that the more time we spend together, the better we get.

“We will dust ourselves off, look to build and get a result next week at home.

“It’s the fine details – not moving forward on kicks, executing our exits correctly and not putting pressure on ourselves.

“The way South Africa play, they want to put pressure on you. For us, it’s making sure we build and play in the right areas of the field.

“Look, you work extremely hard to get a result, and when you don’t get it, it does hurt.

“The beauty of it now is we have another opportunity next week to put the wrongs right. That is what this group will want to show next week.”

Wales trailed the All Blacks by just 12 points after an hour, but were then blitzed as Beauden Barrett, in his 100th Test, inspired the visitors as they ran in four tries.

Davies added: “They showed why they are one of the best teams in the world. When they get opportunities, they always take them.

“It’s a credit to them. They are ruthless with every chance they get. We worked to get ourselves back in touching distance, and the disappointing thing is that our errors opened the door for them.”

Backline duo set to boost Wales ahead of Boks Test

Wales are set to receive a timely boost when their British and Irish Lions representatives Dan Biggar and Louis Rees-Zammit join their camp ahead of another bruising Autumn Nations Series Test.

Head coach Wayne Pivac’s charges face a daunting task when they take on 2019 Rugby World Cup champions the Springboks at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff this Saturday.

Northampton fly-half Biggar and Gloucester wing Rees-Zammit were among seven players unavailable to face New Zealand because the game took place outside World Rugby’s autumn international window.

Along with the likes of Saracens centre Nick Tompkins and Wasps flanker Thomas Young, they will now join the squad for Springboks preparations, while Pivac awaits fitness updates on several other players.