No need to pussy-foot around, so I will just say it, the Boks are going to lose tomorrow by about 4 points.
Sorry but there is no way to ease you into what I believe will be an upset tomorrow at Newlands. An upset, because the bookies have the Boks as firm favourites and the Aussies are well… written off it seems.
The Boks, bookies and fans it seemed took a hell of a lot of confidence out of our two recent wins over New Zealand, and so they should because it was a great achievement – but the Aussies are a completely different kettle of fish and I fear a loss tomorrow simply because I believe we will try and beat the Wallabies by playing the same type of rugby we played to beat the Blacks.
There is a difference when you front up to these two teams. The Blacks like the Boks loves the physical stuff, and we simply outklapped them in this department. We played simple rugby, kick the ball down on them and tackle the crap out of them. This was aided by the fact apart from Mills at 15 and Donald at 10, the Blacks had no great kickers in the back to take us on in this territorial battle and were forced into mistakes in their own half.
Add to this a woeful NZ line out and they were on a hiding to nothing.
At times however, when the Blacks did manage to string a couple of phases together and build momentum they penetrated the Bok defense rather easily in my view – as the Ross try illustrated last week.
With that one move, the Blacks gave the Aussies the blueprint on how to take on the Boks, and the scary part of this is, the Aussies have always been damn good at this type of rugby. Stringing together lots of phases, have their fetchers ensure quick ruck ball and then have their strike runners cut open defenses. Add their brilliant off-loading game and support play and you can smell trouble coming a long way away.
The Aussies with the exception of Lachie Turner, the right wing, all have accomplished kickers in their backline to not only repel a Bok aerial assault but also possibly out-kick them! The Aussies we know are good in the air competing for the ball and next to Victor and Bakkies, probably have the best line-out in the world.
Their scrum against the All Blacks looked much improved and as a couple of tries (and even the botched tries) showed, they are better as an attacking back unit than what the Boks are who struggled to get the ball to the wings against the All Blacks.
Our game plan against the All Blacks were perfect, we concentrated on their weaknesses and exploited it, and looking at the team selected for tomorrow, I reckon we will look to do the same against the Wallabies and that my dear friends, will cost us a win.
I have the Aussies outscoring us 3 tries to 2, the Boks to have a slender half time lead and the Aussies to exploit the loss of momentum from the Boks when the substitutions are introduced.
Prediction: Aussies by 5 or less
South Africa: 15 Frans Steyn, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Jaque Fourie, 12 Jean de Villiers, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Fourie du Preez, 8 Pierre Spies, 7 Juan Smith, 6 Heinrich Brüssow, 5 Victor Matfield, 4 Bakkies Botha, 3 John Smit (captain), 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 17 Jannie du Plessis, 18 Andries Bekker, 19 Danie Rossouw, 20 Ricky Januarie, 21 Ruan Pienaar, 22 Adi Jacobs
Australia: 15 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 14 Lachie Turner, 13 Stirling Mortlock (captain), 12 Berrick Barnes, 11 Drew Mitchell, 10 Matt Giteau, 9 Luke Burgess, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 George Smith, 6 Richard Brown, 5 Nathan Sharpe, 4 James Horwill, 3 Al Baxter, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Benn Robinson.
Replacements: 16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 Ben Alexander, 18 Dean Mumm, 19 David Pocock, 20 Will Genia, 21 Peter Hynes, 22 James O’Connor.