Koch out to bury demons
INTERVIEW: Springbok prop Vincent Koch, who will start on the Springboks' bench against Argentina, is ready to bury the demons after a nightmarish experience against the same opponents a year ago. Warren Fortune reports.
In his second Test for the Boks in Durban in August last year, Koch struggled in the scrums against Argentina's Marcos Ayerza. The Boks eventually lost that Test match 25-37.
That was Koch's first start and last outing for Springboks before he was named in Allister Coetzee's matchday 23 for this weekend's Rugby Championship opener.
I put everything behind me," Koch told reporters in Nelspruit.
"It has been a year since I played for the Springboks and I learnt a lot out of that Test.
"I took it very personally as well. I think I recapped everything that I learnt in the past year. Whatever I learnt I am taking into the next game.
Koch said he is mentally stronger now than when he made his international debut.
"I think I have made a lot of mental changes," Koch added.
"I think my mind has got a bit stronger and I learned a lot out of all the mistakes and I got a bit more experienced over the past year."
With Ramiro Herrera, Agustín Creevy and Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro forming a strong Argentinian front row, Koch said he and his teammates are under no illusions about the task they face at the Mbombela Stadium.
"I think we worked hard as a pack because we know they [Argentina] want to manipulate us in the scrums.
"We worked a lot on that and we spent a lot of time on ourselves. I think we have prepared the best we can for this weekend," he said.
By Warren Fortune, in Nelspruit