Hansen expects direct Boks

Thu, 03 Oct 2013 22:26
Large steve hansen looks Large ian foster   steve hansen

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen expects the Springboks to rely on their strength up front as they pursue four tries at Ellis Park.

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen expects the Springboks to rely on their strength up front as they pursue four tries at Ellis Park.

Hansen said while the Boks had shown greater intent to play an expansive game against the Wallabies, South Africa had adopted a more direct approach against the All Blacks.

The hosts sit five log points behind the All Blacks and will need to score four tries and deny New Zealand a bonus point to take the Rugby Champoinship title.

"I don’t expect them to kick too many shots at goal from penalties," Hansen said on Thursday, ahead of the Rugby Championship decider between South Africa and New Zealand.

"They’ll kick for the corner and try and drive over and score some tries that way.

“They’ll try and play their way into the game like they always do and I'm sure they’ll be physical and look to use the ball a little bit more," he added.

Whilst the Boks were quite expansive at times against Australia last week, Hansen is expecting their approach to be more similar to their strategy in Auckland which was based on being as abrasive as possible.

"They used the ball a bit more against Australia than when they played us and they were more combative in Auckland.

"They kicked against us a bit more and they were happy to take us on up front."

Hansen believes the Boks would not be throwing the ball around chasing the four tries, but they would rather try and grind their way over the whitewash.

"If you try and change your game too much just because you are searching for four tries, you will get yourself into trouble.

"The Boks are too smart for that and they will stick with their strengths and try and wear us down."

The Springboks last scored four tries against the All Blacks back in 2004 when they inflicted their second biggest winning margin over the New Zealanders with a 40-26 triumph at Ellis Park.

The visitors were looking forward to playing at Ellis Park, a ground which had proved to be intimidating for them in the past.

"This is one of the biggest occasions on the rugby calendar - the All Blacks versus South Africa is what these guys do for a living.

"They want to play against the best, and they see the South Africans as the best side in this competition," Hansen said.

"We want to go out and play really well against them, then you have the added bonus of playing at Ellis Park which is great."

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