Baby Boks with all to do against England

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content on 11 Jun 2012 at 10:00
Tagged with : , , ,

Dawie Theron and his SA Under 20 side will need to outperform their senior counterparts when they face England at the Cape Town Stadium on Tuesday.

After an embarrassing opening defeat against Ireland, in which none of Theron’s big-names pitched for the game, the Baby Boks managed to get their campaign back on the rails (to an extent) in defeating Italy 52-3 on Friday night. With England beating Ireland and themselves having run up an even bigger score against the Italians in the opening round, though, they head the pool on 9 points and while the Boks still have their own destiny in their hands, they know that it will require a huge effort against the English in order to ensure qualification for the semi finals.

Second chances in this competition are few and far between, with only the winner of each pool progressing to the cup semifinals; with Ireland on 5 points and sure to pick up 5 more against Italy, the Boks will need at least 4 against the English, while somehow ensuring a better points difference to progress ahead of the Irish. This will imply, of course, keeping the English pointless, no small feat in itself. Should Theron’s men pick up a bonus-point win against England (and prevent their opponents from picking up a losing bonus point), then they will go through, but that’s looking like a tough ask indeed for a team yet to even find their straps, much less hit them.

Friday’s 8-try-to-none result was hardly as convincing as it sounds, with two tries in the final 3 minutes somewhat inflating the scoreline. Italy, as we know, are very weak in this competition and the reasonable, if not great, performance by a team that showed sweeping changes to the one that narrowly lost to Ireland will have left Theron with no idea at all as to which players his strongest team should comprise. Only inside centre Jan Serfontein can be considered a certainty, having shone brighter than any other against Italy, whilst lock Paul Willemse and number 8 Braam Steyn were also reasonably impressive.

Set pieces remain a concern, though, with the Boks at times looking uncertain in the scrums and, for the second match in a row, making a complete shambles of virtually every lineout, despite having a completely different hooker.

SOUTH AFRICA 52 (19) – Tries: Jan Serfontein (2), Paul Willemse, Braam Steyn, Steven Kitshoff, William Small-Smith, Vian van der Walt, Pat Howard. Conversions: Handrè Pollard (5). Tony Jantjies.

ITALY 3 (3) – Penalty: John Apperly.


  • Correction.

    If South Africa get only 4 points, and Ireland get 5, then Ireland will advance regardless because they beat South Africa in the pool game.

    If SA vs Ireland has been a draw, then it would’ve come down to points difference.

    The only scenario where points difference would really matter was for 4th-seed qualifier, but NZ has that pretty much wrapped up.

  • Comment 1, posted at 11.06.12 10:15:33 by hendrikp Reply
  • Tell you what, if Italy somehow manage to deny Ireland the 4-try bonus point, which I doubt, then it’s going to be a helluva game to decide who goes through. I don’t think we can score 4 tries against England, but we can definitely grind out a win with good defense and playing territory.

  • Comment 2, posted at 11.06.12 10:18:52 by hendrikp Reply
  • We have to go for it; we have the players and the performance of the forward pack was a lot better; hopefully they wake up and see that Du toit should be used at 7, as our light loose trio struggled to get us over the advantage line in the first game.

    Team i hope Theron picks-

    7.Du Toit
    9.Hlungwane(great attacking 9)

  • Comment 3, posted at 11.06.12 10:48:57 by JJR Reply
  • We just need to Win with a Bonus point….simple, doesn’t need anymore thinking than that. And at the same time just don’t let England score 4 tries, then we through.

    BTW, our captain doesn’t deserve a starting spot…pity he is the captain.

  • Comment 4, posted at 11.06.12 10:50:57 by JJR Reply
  • @JJR (Comment 3) :

    Adendorff had an excellent game first up. If all was fair, you’d imagine he’d be a sure thing on the openside, with Steyn dropping out.

    @JJR (Comment 4) :

    If Italy dont get BP, we just need to make sure we win, while holding England to a maximum of 1 BP. If we win with a bonus point, we go through regardless of what happens.

  • Comment 5, posted at 11.06.12 10:56:41 by hendrikp Reply

  • @hendrikp (Comment 5) :

    Also very tough deciding between Mark Pretorius and Jason Thomas. Both terrible line-out throwers, and Thomas didn’t face the stronger opposition.

    Also, Hlungwane isn’t even in the team?!

  • Comment 6, posted at 11.06.12 10:58:31 by hendrikp Reply

  • richard arent you guys going to do a LMS on the internationals

  • Comment 7, posted at 11.06.12 11:24:59 by MJ Reply

  • @MJ (Comment 7) : nah. Too short to make it worthwhile

  • Comment 8, posted at 11.06.12 11:42:24 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @robdylan (Comment 8) :

  • Comment 9, posted at 11.06.12 11:43:49 by hendrikp Reply

  • @hendrikp (Comment 5) : You are right Adendorff is solid…the best loose trio for me would be 6.Adendorff 7.Du Toit 8.Steyn…i don’t rate the captain at all, he doesn’t even fetch or carry the ball up that well…so i’m not really sure what his role is?

  • Comment 10, posted at 11.06.12 12:05:01 by JJR Reply
  • Will be tough deciding who to leave out in the backs.

    William Small-Smith or Pat Howard may find themselves sitting on the bench, or needing to push Paul Jordaan out of the wing position.

  • Comment 11, posted at 11.06.12 12:07:55 by hendrikp Reply

  • @JJR (Comment 10) :

    Definitely nowhere near his predecessors, Stander & Botha.

    Saying that I think you’re being a bit harsh on him. Didn’t see much from Steyn against Italy to justify him knocking anybody out of the starting line-up, besides maybe Booysen who had a bloody shocker against Ireland.

  • Comment 12, posted at 11.06.12 12:09:32 by hendrikp Reply

  • Junior Springbok team v England:

    15. Dillyn Leyds (Western Province), 14. Paul Jordaan (KZN), 13. William Small-Smith (Vodacom Blue Bulls), 12. Jan Serfontein (Vodacom Blue Bulls), 11. Pat Howard (DHL Western Province), Handrè Pollard (DHL Western Province), 9. Vian van der Watt (MTN Golden Lions), 8. Fabian Booysen (MTN Golden Lions), 7. Wiaan Liebenberg (Vodacom Blue Bulls, captain), 6. Shaun Adendorff (Vodacom Blue Bulls), 5. Ruan Botha (MTN Golden Lions), 4. Paul Willemse (MTN Golden Lions), 3. Oliver Kebble (DHL Western Province), 2. Jason Thomas (Vodacom Blue Bulls), 1. Steven Kitshoff (DHL Western Province)


    16. Mark Pretorius (MTN Golden Lions), 17. Allan Dell (KZN), 18. Pieter Steph du Toit (KZN), 19. Braam Steyn (KZN), 20. Abrie Griesel (Vodacom Blue Bulls), 21. Tony Jantjies (Vodacom Blue Bulls), 22. Tshotsho Mbovane (DHL Western Province), 23. Maks van Dyk (KZN)

  • Comment 13, posted at 11.06.12 13:37:14 by hendrikp Reply

  • Potent backline. Scenarios as follows:

    If we beat England with a bonus point we go through to the semis regardless of the Irish result. In this case we have 11, England 9 (or 10 if they get a losing bonus point) and Ireland 10 if they get a bonus point win against the Italians. If we beat England with 4 points and the Irish get 5 we both end up on 10 and the Irish will go through regardless because of their head-to-head win against us. The only time points difference will count is if England get a losing bonus point against us and all three end up on 10 points. That’s why we hope the PD between Ireland and Italy is not too great. Anyway, the Irish game is first so by the time the Baby Boks run on they will know exactly what is required.

  • Comment 14, posted at 11.06.12 14:07:34 by Micky Reply


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