Nienaber, Springboks turn focus to Scotland and their SA-born force

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Jacques Nienaber for the Springboks
Jacques Nienaber for the Springboks
Tertius Pickard/Gallo Images
  • Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber doesn't expect the United Kingdom end-of-year tour to get any easier after beating Wales on Saturday.
  • The Boks will be up against Scotland in Edinburgh on Saturday.
  • The Scots also have a South African connection that concerns Nienaber.


With the Welsh albatross off his back, Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber said the tour won't get any easier.

They've got a buoyant Scotland side in Murrayfield in Edinburgh, one that saw off Australia 15-13 in a scrappy, but gritty encounter on Sunday.

However, there's a significant South African connection in the Scottish setup that gives Nienaber reason to be concerned.

They have SA Rugby's former scrum coach Pieter de Villiers in their ranks while Duhan van der Merwe and Pierre Schoeman played their formative rugby in South Africa before leaving for Scotland.

Nienaber said he may know the South African contingent in the Scotland team, but that doesn't make their task any easier.

"I think the tour is going to get tougher. People are looking at Scotland and they think it's going to be an easy game," Nienaber said.

"I analysed their Tonga game and they have a couple of South Africans in their team who would understand how we do things.

"Duhan and Pierre are guys I have coached so I know their quality, so we really need to get our stuff sorted out.

"Pieter de Villiers was with us for quite some time and he'll have some information, so we need to be sharp."

Having beaten Wales for the first time in Cardiff since 2013, the Boks have much-needed momentum heading into what will be a tough encounter.

Nienaber admitted that Murrayfield may be even more hostile than Cardiff considering how further north the Scottish capital is as compared to the Welsh capital.

"It always helps when you get a bit of momentum and that is something we were looking for," Nienaber said.

"There were so many Springbok supporters with green jerseys and you could hear our anthem being sung in the stands."

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