The Springboks’ coaches are satisfied with the way they approached the game on Sunday, but say there are still a few creases that need to be ironed out before the game against Ireland.
“You can’t plan to kick off the Rugby World Cup well or badly, but you can plan to kick off with intensity. I think we had a massive intensity today, which I am very happy about,” the head coach, Jacques Nienaber, said after the match.
The South Africans scored 12 tries on Sunday to beat Romania 76-0 in a Group B match.
He believes that the Goats have given Romania the respect they deserve this past week and says that as a team there were quite a few goals that the Goats wanted to achieve with the match.
“One of them was to give a few of the guys an opportunity in the other positions they play. We managed to get Faf de Klerk to play at flyhalf, Deon Fourie and Marco van Staden at hook and Grant Williams at wing.”
He also gave Romania a thumbs up. “There are going to be a few sore bodies in our team tonight.”
Nienaber says his team’s attacking work is one of the aspects they still want to work on in the run-up to the showdown against Ireland this coming Saturday. “We missed a few opportunities to score a try, so we have to look at that and try to rectify that when we return to the field on Tuesday.”
The Boks leave for Paris on Monday to prepare for their third match in pool B.
Nienaber praised the team’s tenacious defense, which prevented Romania from scoring a single point in the game. “We’ve been paying attention to our defense in particular this past week and working really hard to make sure we’re ready for them. The players put a lot of effort into that facet of the game and I’m very happy with that.”
Regarding Vincent Koch’s injury during warm-up, Nienaber said: “We think it’s his knee, but I have no idea how serious it is. The doctor will examine him tonight (last night) and we will have a better idea of the extent of the injury later.”