Did flying economy class adversely affect Boks?

Allister Coetzee and Derick Coetzee in 2007 (Gallo Images)
Allister Coetzee and Derick Coetzee in 2007 (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - The Springboks’ sleeping patterns may have been disturbed on their way to Europe, the team’s former conditioning coach Derick Coetzee fears.

READ: Coetzee to be sacked by December - report

READ: Coetzee says no to more Bok consultants

Due to financial constraints, the Springboks travelled to Europe in economy instead of business class and Coetzee feels this may have had a negative impact.

“It’s important that the players’ biological clocks are properly set while on tour. The fact that the Boks flew in economy class and not business class could cause their sleep rhythms to be disrupted, even if the time difference in Europe is not much. I would never let big players or guys with lower back problems fly economy class,” Coetzee said in an interview with Netwerk24.

The Boks started their year-end tour on a low note when they were thumped 38-3 by Ireland in Dublin last Saturday.

It was Ireland’s biggest ever win over South Africa, comfortably eclipsing the 32-15 win in Dublin in 2006.

Coetzee was the Springboks’ fitness guru between 2004 and 2007, when Jake White was the head coach.

His tenure ended when the Boks won the 2007 World Cup final by beating England 15-6 in Paris.

This Saturday the Boks tackle France in Paris, before also playing Tests against Italy (Padova, November 25) and Wales (Cardiff, December 2).

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