Boks to rely on Steyn's boot again

Wed, 05 Oct 2016 06:47
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IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Morne Steyn will once again be the Springboks' biggest weapon when they face the All Blacks in Durban on Saturday.

Steyn, who took over the pivotal role from Elton Jantjies, scored all of the Boks' points (four penalties and two drop goals) with his accurate boot in the 18-10 win over the Wallabies in Pretoria last weekend.

The 32-year-old is a proven match-winner and his experience on the international stage will once again be a valuable asset for the Boks when they come up against a powerful New Zealand outfit.

"He is very experienced and he brings some calmness in the backline," said Springbok backline coach Mzwandile Stick.

"We had opportunities to take points [against Australia] and he did very well and that was what we were lacking on in previous games. 

"When we got opportunities we could not convert it into points. With Morne Steyn, every time we get an opportunity inside their half, you go for polls and he will give you the three points. I think that was the main thing on the weekend."

With wet conditions expected for the match on Saturday, the battle for territory could be a key factor during the 80 minutes. The Boks' kicking game will have to be accurate as any missed-placed kicks will be pounced on by the All Blacks' deadly back three.

"I think we got a good coaching staff, we have done our job and we have done our homework," Stick added.

"New Zealand and Australia are totally different sides. You got Ben Smith at the back who is a top class player - he can play the kicking game very well and he is also very dangerous on the counter-attack with Israel Dagg next to him. 

"For us as a coaching staff, we need to find what is best this week. We have got a plan in place and hopefully it is going to work on Saturday."

Meanwhile, the Springboks are still sweating over the availability of Bryan Habana and Jesse Kriel.

Kriel is still struggling with a groin injury, while Habana received a knock to the thigh in the win over the Wallabies.

With Lwazi Mvovo already ruled out of action after an appendix operation last week, Willie le Roux could feature in the back three.

Damian de Allende or Lionel Mapoe could partner Juan de Jongh in the midfield if Kriel is ruled out.

By Warren Fortune, in Durban

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