Kurt-Lee Arendse impresses despite red card: 'He'll play a lot of Tests for Boks'

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  • Springbok wing Kurt-Lee Arendse received plaudits for his performance despite not finishing the first Test against the All Blacks in Mbombela on Saturday.
  • Arendse, who scored in the Springboks' 26-10 win against New Zealand, was red-carded in the 75th minute for taking out Beauden Barrett in the air.
  • Halfback Jaden Hendrikse also received plaudits for an assured performance after coming on in the first minute for an injured Faf de Klerk.


In Mbombela

Springbok wing Kurt-Lee Arendse may have ruled himself out of next week's second Test against the All Blacks in Ellis Park, but he's already earned himself a permanency card from coach Jacques Nienaber.

Arendse, who scored the Springboks' first try in the eighth minute as the home side marched to a 26-10 win against the All Blacks at the Mbombela Stadium on Saturday, was red-carded for clattering into the airborne All Black flyhalf Beauden Barrett in the 75th-minute.

Arendse had come in for Cheslin Kolbe and Nienaber felt he did everything that was asked of him before that moment.

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Nienaber could not comment, however, on the state of Arendse's head-knock that saw him being stretchered off despite being sent off.

The same was also applicable to Faf de Klerk's head injury assessment, even though the hometown hero was back on the side of the field by the 19th minute.

"I really think Kurt-Lee was good and I think he'll play a lot of Tests for the Boks in the future," Nienaber said.

"I really think he did excellently and he did everything that was asked of him. I'm not sure about his state at the moment.

"I haven't had any feedback from the medical team."

All Black coach Ian Foster took a dim view of Arendse's collision that nearly invalidated his first-choice pivot.

Springbok wing Kurt-Lee Arendse

However, he acknowledged that Arendse made an impact in the game and challenged them from a defensive perspective.

"He played well. I wouldn't spend the rest of the day watching him, but he reads the defence very well," Foster said.

"He's very quick and elusive, but I think he just needs to work on his chasing technique, especially with high balls."

Nienaber was also chuffed with Jaden Hendrikse's performance. The former Dale Junior and Glenwood High product had an assured performance as a rampant pack gave him front-foot ball on a platter.

Hendrikse was on in the first minute of the game after De Klerk was knocked out cold attempting to tackle All Black wing Caleb Clarke.

READ | Boks break 8-year hoodoo in physical style with profound manhandling of All Blacks

"Jaden stepped up well and we're fortunate that we have depth at scrumhalf right now," Nienaber said.

"We've got some quality nines in Faf, Jaden, Herschel Jantjies while we've still got Cobus Reinach coming back from injury.

"We still have Grant Williams, so that's five quality scrumhalves, so the competition is fierce. We back Jaden in the way we did in the last Test against Wales.

"He wasn't nervous at all when he came on. He knew what to do and he's playing good rugby."


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