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World champions South Africa are eager to test themselves against Australia and New Zealand in the Rugby Championship, said coach Jacques Nienaber.
The Springboks will face Australia twice in September, followed by two tests against arch-rivals New Zealand, while the Southern Hemisphere championship comes to an end next month.
“It’s always nice to test yourself against Australia, New Zealand and Argentina. We missed it last year,” Nienaber told a press conference on Tuesday, referring to South Africa’s decision not to participate in the 2020 championship. due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s phenomenal to play against them again. It was hard to miss last year and we wondered where we were in terms of our strength and ability.
“Pitching yourself against the SANZAR teams allows you to measure yourself, so we’re really looking forward to playing against them.”
South Africa beat Argentina in two tests at Gqeberha, formerly Port Elizabeth, and top the early rankings ahead of their next encounter with the Wallabies on the Gold Coast on September 12.
Fresh off a small series win over British & Irish Lions, Nienaber once again defended his side’s emphasis on forward dominance and kicking for territory, turning the Tests against the Lions into tough games.
“Each team has their own skills and their own unique athletic skills. They all play to the DNA of the team. That’s the beauty of rugby, there are different styles and ways to win test matches.”
Nienaber said he expects the Wallabies and All Blacks to present a different challenge than the Lions.
“If you look at Australia and New Zealand, I think their style of play has a lot of similarities, a lot of movement, fast, fast, confident. It’s quality sides with quality coaching,” he added.
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