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Siya Kolisi wants Springboks to be ruthless at breakdowns despite Wayne Barnes’ presence

Siya Kolisi wants Springboks to be ruthless at breakdowns despite Wayne Barnes’ presence

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Cape Town – The Springboks will encounter Wayne Barnes again in Saturday’s Test against Italy in Genoa – and will they receive fairer decisions this time around?

English referee Barnes was in charge of last week’s 30-26 Bok defeat to France in Marseille, and whatever your thoughts may be about Rassie Erasmus’ tweets and subsequent ban, there is no doubt that the South Africans were on the wrong side of a number of questionable decisions.

Barnes won’t have the whistle at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris on Saturday as he will be one of the assistant referees running along the touchline, with fellow English official Matthew Carley the man in the middle.

Deon copping a lot of flack for this yellow card, to be honest I also thought the Blue 16 detached and maul over, we just have to work harder and make sure we understand the rules correctly! Very costly 🟨 ! We deserve all the criticism!! Sorry 🇿![CDATA[]]>🇦 💔 pic.twitter.com/vyBTf5dUXO

— Rassie Erasmus (@RassieRugby) November 13, 2022

Scotland’s Sam Grove-White is the other assistant referee, with France’s Eric Gauzins the television match official (TMO).

Barnes allowed France considerable leeway at the breakdowns and mauls in particular at the Stade Velodrome, with his lack of consistency highlighted by the fact that he didn’t issue a yellow card to Les Bleus after a number of infringements inside their 22, but was quick to dish one out for Bok loose forward Deon Fourie for supposedly collapsing a maul with 10 minutes to go – despite it being South Africa’s first infringement during that period.

There was also the situation where French centre Gael Fickou came from an offside position and jumped on Cobus Reinach in the 71st minute that went unpunished by Barnes – and the home side scored two minutes later through tighthead prop Sipili Falatea, which was also a problematic decision as it seemed as if there was a double movement, and then Barnes’ line of communication with the TMO suddenly broke down.

But Bok captain Siya Kolisi said that all of that is not going to bother the team against Italy.

“We’ve played with him (Carley) before. Those things happen – sometimes decisions go for you, sometimes they go against you,” the No 6 flank said.

This so clever by Fickou, the way he moves and presents himself on our side of the ruck has no influence on our speed of the ball from the ruck !! We can certainly learn from this !! Sorry 🇿![CDATA[]]>🇦![CDATA[]]>💔 pic.twitter.com/nCisruylk4

— Rassie Erasmus (@RassieRugby) November 13, 2022

“But we’ve worked on our breakdown… Nothing has changed. We know what we have to do as a team, in terms of securing our own ball.

“And we know that the Italians are very good at the breakdowns – their captain (Michele Lamaro) especially. He said he wants to become a player like Richie McCaw. And it’s not just him: the hooker and eighthman are also very good on the ground.

“We’ve also got guys who are good on the ground, and we want to be as ruthless as we can be at the breakdowns, obviously within the laws. That’s the most important thing.”

And it’s not just the breakdowns that will be hard fought, as the Azzurri proved in their 28-27 victory over Australia last week that they have some exciting backs too, such as fleet-footed fullback Ange Capuozzo.

“They’ve shown that they can play against any team at any time. Their set-piece is strong, their breakdown work is very good, and their forwards can play,” Kolisi said.

“They can maul, they can do plays off a maul, and they can scrum very well too. And their backs have just shown… I was watching last week some of the things that they were doing – they can attack from any place on the field.

“They’ve grown as a team, and teams are showing them a whole lot more respect than they’ve done in the past, and that’s what we’ve done as a team.

“We’ve done a lot of research… I watched the game last week, and looking at the players individually as well, to see what they’re good at.

“I think a lot of the teams don’t do that, and that’s what we’ve done as a team. We don’t want to make that mistake, because we know what they can do – and we’ve seen that if you don’t learn from other teams’ mistakes, that means we’re not improving or getting better.”


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