Published: Tue, October 08, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

South Africa power past Namibia; polish missing

South Africa power past Namibia; polish missing

According to Namibia coach Phil Davies, 70 percent of the team plays in South Africa, and even the coaching staff know what it feels like to lock horns with a Springbok. It was bad looking at the (Pool B) table and seeing us there with zero points.

He added that the Namibia game will have made his fringe players "battle-ready" should any be called in to face Italy because of injury.

Coming up against a lowly-ranked team like Namibia should be no problem for giants like South Africa, but they learned the hard way in Brighton four years ago never to take any team lightly.

Erasmus said he had picked Brits, captain for the day, at No 8 in order to give Bongi Mbonambi some game-time at hooker. When you get on to the pitch‚ you just try to focus on the next task.

First five-eighth Cliven Loubser kicked a first-half penalty for Namibia's only points. Nevertheless, the first points in the game came in the 10th minute when Mbonambi crossed over following a lineout drive and Louw also went over the line in the 15th minute as they raced to a 12 point lead.

"We studied them a lot in the games leading up to the World Cup, and then the Italy game (which Namibia lost 47-22)", Erasmus told reporters in Nagoya. Mapimpi got his second and fullback Warrick Gelant, the attacking spark for the Springboks from the back of the field, got a try too.

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Aaron Finch retains the skipper's armband, with wicketkeeper Alex Carey and paceman Pat Cummins sharing vice-captain duties. However today's squad indicates that mindset has changed, with just over 12 months until the T20 World Cup on home soil.

"The effort, the commitment of the players and the way we tried to play was exciting, we just have to be a little bit more accurate to the ball the next time we play", he added.

The Brave Blossoms have one way of playing - fast - and will look to shift the ball wide to Matsushima and William Tupou as quickly as possible in Shizuoka on Saturday. Still, getting a win on the board will cheer Rassie Erasmus, his staff and the Springbok players themselves.

Ireland go into this weekend's clash with hosts Japan without talismanic playmaker Johnny Sexton but they will still expect to overpower the Brave Blossoms and preserve their winning record. The 38-year-old former Saracens hooker swapped the front row for the back row and marked the occasion with only his second Test try to complete the scoring in the final 10 minutes.

Pray for Namibia, though, when they tackle - or attempt to tackle - the All Blacks in Tokyo on Sunday, October 6.

South Africa next face Italy on Friday in Fukuroi City in a match that should decide second place in the pool, while Namibia face the daunting prospect of New Zealand in Tokyo on October 6.

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