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Boks bracing for "grind" in search of elusive win in Wales

Boks bracing for "grind" in search of elusive win in Wales

FILE PHOTO: Rugby Union - Rugby World Cup - Semi Final - Wales v South Africa - International Stadium Yokohama, Yokohama, Japan - October 27, 2019 Wales' Dan Biggar in action with South Africa's Pieter-Steph du Toit REUTERS/Edgar Su/File Photo

South Africa wing Jesse Kriel says the Springboks will not read too much into the mauling handed to Wales by New Zealand last weekend as they expect a "grind" when they visit the Principality Stadium in Cardiff on Saturday.

An under-strength Wales were thumped 54-16 by the All Blacks, but were without their overseas-based players who will return for the weekend clash with the world champions.

Having said that, the home side have lost skipper Alun Wyn Jones, and loose-forwards Ross Moriarty and Taulupe Faletau to injury, but Kriel says the Boks still expect a backlash as they seek a first victory in Cardiff since 2013.

"It is going to be a massive grind, it always is against Wales," he told reporters on Wednesday. "You will get a handful of opportunities in the game and the team that capitalises on those and turns them into points will win.

"We have to identify those opportunities and execute."

He adds there is little mystery between international teams these days, and says the Boks have done their homework on what to expect.

"You always have an idea of what a team will bring and what is their DNA going into a game. There is always that 20per cent of what you don’t know, so it is a case of us focusing on our systems and doing things the way we want to," Kriel said.

"That means dominating the physical part of things and the rest will sort itself out. We always try to focus on what we do well and impose that on the opposition."

Kriel will play on the wing instead of his regular position at outside centre, just the fourth time in 49 tests he has started out wide.

"Our preparations don’t change much as outside backs. Most of the backs in our team are able to play various positions. We all have got a great focus on aerial skills, it is something we work hard on every day," he added.

"I just want to deliver for the team and do well wherever I play, so I am just happy for the opportunity on Saturday."

(Reporting by Nick Said; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

Source: Reuters

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