Springboks

Beast over heart condition

Tendai "Beast" Mtawarira (Gallo Images)
Tendai "Beast" Mtawarira (Gallo Images)
Durban - Springbok prop Tendai "Beast" Mtawarira has overcome his heart condition and is relishing the opportunity to wear the green and gold again when South Africa tackles Italy at Kings Park on Saturday.

Mtawarira's season was cut short at the end of 2012 after he had a recurrence of mild heart palpitations ahead of the Test against Ireland in Dublin last year.

Scotland will face Samoa in the curtain raiser before South Africa play Italy. The 118kg loosehead says he is keen to add to his 41 caps.

"Yes, I missed last year's tour, but it has made me really hungry to put on that Bok jersey again. I just want to perform well for my team and my country," he said at the team hotel in Umhlanga Rocks on Tuesday.

"To have two Tests on one day is something very special and unique. It's a historical occasion and I would like to urge the crowds to come out in their numbers to support. Scrummaging has been a big focus for us and we would just like to improve on our performances of last year."

The 28-year old regards the Italian scrum as one of the best in the world. He is particularly looking forward to the showdown with his Italian counterpart Martin Castrogiovanni.

He is aware of the threat posed by the tighthead prop, but cautioned that they would be making a big mistake by targeting an individual.

"I think he (Castrogiovanni) is an experienced tighthead and they have a very good scrum. But we are not particularly looking at one player, we look at the whole scrum.

"Scrummaging is about the whole pack and it is definitely going to be a great challenge for us on Saturday. They have done really well this season and we are really looking forward to getting back in action again," he added.
 
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