First Bok alignment camp concludes: 'We look forward to a challenging international season'

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Springbok mentor Jacques Nienaber. (Photo by Tertius Pickard/Gallo Images)
Springbok mentor Jacques Nienaber. (Photo by Tertius Pickard/Gallo Images)

  • Bok coach Jacques Nienaber is satisfied after the year's first alignment camp was concluded in Durban on Tuesday.
  • There will be a camp with overseas-based players later this month, as well as another alignment camp in Cape Town early May.
  • The Boks open their international season with a three-Test home series against Wales in July, before the Rugby Championship in August and September.

The Springboks concluded their first alignment camp in Durban on Tuesday, with coach Jacques Nienaber saying saying they achieved their goals set out.

The Bok coaching staff will also conduct a camp with the overseas-based players in England and France. This camp, which will include virtual meetings, is scheduled for between 16-25 April.

The final alignment camp is scheduled for Cape Town from 1-5 May.

A group of 22 players attended the first camp, which featured eight information sessions presented by the coaching team.

SA Rugby said the camp was "to ensure the players are all on the same page in terms of what the Boks would like to achieve on the field the processes involved in being selected for the national squad".

"We are pleased with the outcomes achieved at our first alignment camp and I believe the players have a good idea of what is expected of them on and off the field as we look forward to a challenging international season," Nienaber said in a statement.

"As I explained before the camp, the key for us was to inform the players of what the calendar will look like for the year and to paint the pictures we wanted to, so that we can ensure everyone is on the same page when we select our national squad for the series against Wales and then later in the Rugby Championship.

"Once we have finalised our squad for the Wales Tests, we will have a training camp where we will be able to put all of the aspects of the game we discussed into practice as we look to fine-tune certain areas of our game."

The Bok mentor added: "Hosting these alignment camps will not only save time before our field sessions once the Springbok team get together, but it also gives the players a chance to start improving on certain aspects of their game individually as they continue their provincial commitments in the lead-up to the international season."

Nienaber was also pleased with the atmosphere in the camp: "It was great to see how excited the players were to see one another and to witness their focus at the information sessions first-hand.

"The fine details are essential in winning Test matches, and that is something we tried to drill into the players minds' at the alignment camp in the different aspects of the game, and hopefully we will reap the rewards of that when we take the field against Wales.

"Every match and training session will be vital for us as we prepare for this season and look further ahead to next year’s Rugby World Cup in France, so the more effective we are in every possible area of our game, the better we will become as a team."

The Boks open their international season with a three-Test home series against Wales in July, before the Rugby Championship in August and September.

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