WATCH | CJ Stander responds to Rassie's 'soft' chirp: 'That is a big statement to make'

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CJ Stander (Getty)
CJ Stander (Getty)

Ireland's South African-born loose forward CJ Stander has responded to a suggestion by Rassie Erasmus that the Irish forwards were "soft".

Erasmus, who coached the Springboks to World Cup glory in Japan last year, made the claim in a behind-the-scenes Chasing the Sun documentary on South Africa's campaign.

While addressing reporters ahead of Ireland's Autumn Nations Cup clash against England at Twickenham this week, Stander was asked what he thought of Erasmus' comments.

"It's a bit of a challenge. If that is his view and that is what he believes, I would like to, not really prove him wrong, but I'd like to show him what we can do and what we have done before," Stander said.

In the documentary, Erasmus described Wales, who were South Africa's semi-final opponents, as "tough fu***rs who are not softies" and that "they're not Ireland or England who goes away".

Stander continued: "That is a big statement to make. He put it out there so, you know, that's his prerogative.

"If that's what he thought of us, it is not going to be easy to change his view. Luckily, we are not playing against them this week. We will get them at some stage."

Erasmus and Stander worked together while the former was director of rugby at Irish province Munster in 2016-17.

Stander will start at No 6 for Ireland in Saturday's clash at Twickenham.

Kick-off is at 17:00 (SA time).

Teams:

England

15 Elliot Daly, 14 Jonathan Joseph, 13 Ollie Lawrence, 12 Henry Slade, 11 Jonny May, 10 Owen Farrell (captain), 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Billy Vunipola, 7 Sam Underhill, 6 Tom Curry, 5 Joe Launchbury, 4 Maro Itoje, 3 Kyle Sinckler, 2 Jamie George, 1 Mako Vunipola

Substitutes: 16 Tom Dunn, 17 Ellis Genge, 18 Will Stuart, 19 Jonny Hill, 20 Ben Earl, 21 Dan Robson, 22 George Ford, 23 Max Malins

Ireland

15 Hugo Keenan, 14 Keith Earls, 13 Chris Farrell, 12 Bundee Aki, 11 James Lowe, 10 Ross Byrne, 9 Jamison Gibson-Park, 8 Caelan Doris, 7 Peter O’Mahony, 6 CJ Stander, 5 James Ryan (captain), 4 Quinn Roux, 3 Andrew Porter, 2 Ronan Kelleher, 1 Cian Healy

Substitutes: 16 Rob Herring, 17 Ed Byrne, 18 Finlay Bealham, 19 Iain Henderson, 20 Will Connors, 21 Conor Murray, 22 Billy Burns, 23 Jacob Stockdale

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