Home Sport Bok coach looking at ‘bigger picture’ after Wales loss

Bok coach looking at ‘bigger picture’ after Wales loss


Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber says Saturday’s loss to Wales has provided answers over a number of players as they look to build a side for the World Cup.

Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber
Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber. Picture: Gavin Barker, BackpagePix

Bloemfontein — A disconsolate Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber said that his revamped team’s 13-12 loss to Wales had provided answers on a number of players and that the wider picture of a World Cup next year had to be considered, although he regretted that a full-house crowd in Bloemfontein had been “let down.”

The Boks dominated for most of the match but could not convert pressure into points and then in a very poor final quarter their discipline failed and a series of penalties were converted into victory by the never-say-die Welsh.

“Most of all, we are very disappointed that we could not reward a sold-out Bloemfontein crowd with a victory,” Nienaber said. “I thought the intensity was there, we had our chances but were inaccurate, and then our poor discipline let Wales back in.

“Yes, we could have taken the conservative route and stuck with the same side, but what if that side had lost … games against Wales are always so close … and then we would have not learned about our greater squad.

“Now we have answers on our 42 players and looking at the bigger picture, the answers we got outweigh the negatives, and now we go to Cape Town to play a final.”

Wales captain Dan Biggar, raising a bottle of Castle Light in the press conference, said the achievement of beating the Boks for the first time in South Africa would be celebrated long into the night.

“Professional sport is so cutthroat and the agony of defeats linger, and we had a long time to suffer after the Six Nations,” he said of a campaign that ended in a first-ever defeat to Italy.

“Then last week in Pretoria we felt we deserved to win but the game got away from us at the end while this week, the game probably got away from South Africa after they were 12-3 up, and we are now so delighted that we have been able to do what so many really good Wales teams before us could not.”


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