British & Irish Lions

'Passionate and detailed' - Springbok coaching staff 'newbies' are already popular men

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Deon Davids. (Photo by Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images)
Deon Davids. (Photo by Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images)
  • Passion and attention to detail has seen the two "newbies" of the Springbok coaching staff, Deon Davids and Daan Human, already become very popular among the players.
  • Senior prop Frans Malherbe notes the duo have added immense value because they make "mundane" facets of play exciting again.
  • But the Springboks' powerful forward performances still remain a collaborative effort between players and coaches.

Continuity and the Springboks go hand in hand since the World Cup triumph of 2019.

Some form of change is inevitable though, even in the most stable and secure of environments.

It's a feather in the cap of the national setup then that the two changes Rassie Erasmus - as national director of rugby - has made to the Boks' coaching staff, Deon Davids and Daan Human, have made their presences felt so quickly that they might not even be considered as proverbial newbies.

For Frans Malherbe, South Africa's senior tighthead, it's been the two men's passion that's stood out for him.

"I've really enjoyed working with them," said the Stormers star, ahead of Saturday's decisive Test against the British & Irish Lions in Cape Town.

"They've fitted in so easily."

Human's approach has been effective simply because he's so enthusiastic about the scrum, a facet of the game that's become mundane and even negatively perceived due it being misunderstood.

"Coach Daan is just really passionate about scrums," said Malherbe.

"I liked it when a coach is like that, a guy that wants to get everyone involved. He just makes us all excited about scrumming again. I've learned a lot from him."

Davids, on the other hand, is popular among the players for his attention to detail.

"He's meticulous and he loves the line-out," said Malherbe.

"What stands out for me about coach Deon is his attention to detail. He focuses on the small stuff and that's really important too because it's stuff that one can easily forget."

More importantly, there are encouraging tangible signs that their input is translating into the typically powerful performances associated with the Bok pack.

But that's not just down to the coaches.

"We've grown a lot as a pack and credit to the back five, who have bought into our plan and who generates the power in the scrums,” said Malherbe."We are learning a lot from one another and working together to make the team better."When I came off the field on Saturday and saw the impact the forwards made off the bench, I was very satisfied." 

Kick-off is at 18:00. 

Teams:

Springboks

15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Cobus Reinach, 8 Jasper Wiese, 7 Franco Mostert, 6 Siya Kolisi (captain), 5 Lood de Jager, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Steven Kitshoff

Substitutes: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Marco van Staden, 20 Kwagga Smith, 21 Herschel Jantjies, 22 Morne Steyn, 23 Damian Willemse

British & Irish Lions

15 Liam Williams (Wales), 14 Josh Adams (Wales), 13 Robbie Henshaw (Ireland), 12 Bundee Aki (Ireland), 11 Duhan van der Merwe (Scotland), 10 Dan Biggar (Wales), 9 Ali Price (Scotland), 8 Jack Conan (Ireland), 7 Tom Curry (England), 6 Courtney Lawes (England), 5 Alun Wyn Jones (Wales, captain), 4 Maro Itoje (England), 3 Tadhg Furlong (Ireland), 2 Ken Owens (Wales), 1 Wyn Jones (Wales)

Substitutes: 16 Luke Cowan-Dickie (England), 17 Mako Vunipola (England), 18 Kyle Sinckler (England), 19 Adam Beard (Wales), 20 Sam Simmonds (England), 21 Connor Murray (Ireland), 22 Finn Russell (Scotland), 23 Elliott Daly (England) 

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