Springboks looking to increase killer instinct for crucial All Blacks rematch

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    • The Springboks are looking for more killer instinct at Ellis Park this weekend against the All Blacks.
    • Deon Davids said they wanted to translate their set-piece dominance into better attacking conversion.
    • Davids lauded their defensive intensity but admitted technique needed to be worked on.

    The Springboks are looking for more killer instinct this weekend against the All Blacks, whom they comprehensively beat in Mbombela on Saturday. 

    Springbok assistant coach Deon Davids said they had upped their intensity in training regarding putting opportunities to bed, especially in matches where they are the clear dominant force, as was the case last Saturday.

    The Boks scored two tries to the All Blacks' one, which came when they were down to 14 men, to win 26-10, the biggest victory margin against New Zealand for nearly 100 years.

    READ | Bok winger Kurt-Lee Arendse suspended for 4 Tests

    However, the widely held view is that the score could have been more comfortable had they turned their undoubted superiority into more points and not give New Zealand hope of a comeback.

    "This morning, we've upped our intensity in terms of the opportunities that we had and how we can improve our decision-making," Davids said.

    "If you get top quality possession from set-pieces or a good counter from a turnover ball that creates unstructured defence, we'd like to use those opportunities if you have them.

    "If we look critically at ourselves, we'd say there were one or two opportunities we had that we can improve on.

    "We'll definitely look to improve in terms of that this weekend."

    Damian de Allende of South Africa and David Havili of New Zealand. (Photo by Dirk Kotze/Gallo Images)
    Gallo Images

    The Boks and All Blacks are preparing for a rematch at Ellis Park in the second Rugby Championship Test, with the visitors smarting from their third straight defeat, including two losses to Ireland at home.

    They were sent through the grinder by the South African defence, which never lacked in heart and intensity.

    However, SA lacked in composure at times, with scrumhalf Faf de Klerk's passionate start leading to him careening into Caleb Clarke's tree trunk thighs and knee. De Klerk was out cold in less than a minute and didn't play a minute after.

    Rookie wing Kurt-Lee Arendse also mistimed an aerial bomb, leading to his ejection from the game after colliding dangerously with Beauden Barrett in the air.

    Arendse copped a four-match suspension as a result.

    Davids lauded their defensive intensity but admitted technique needed to be worked on.

    "In our preparation, you always look at your defensive plan and the players' effort. You can't find big mistakes in terms of our defensive effort," he said.

    "The players did things with intent and went into collision areas with intent. Faf was unfortunate in that scenario, he maybe got his head into the wrong position.

    "That is something we work hard on; to get proper level change and get our entries right. If you don't, you expose yourself for red or yellow cards if you execute it wrongly. It is a focus area.

    "The effort of the guys to get back up on their feet and cover the width of the field and each other's inside, those were exceptional.

    "Against New Zealand, you need to be up for that collision area, whether you're carrying the ball or stopping momentum."

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