Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport Rugby World Cup

Boks are in right mindset: Kolisi


By Andy Newport

South Africa captain Siya Kolisi does not believe his side need to ramp up their mental state to face quarter-final opponents Japan after insisting they have been playing "do-or-die" rugby since touching down.

Rugby round up Newsletter

Game previews, plus expert insights and exclusive commentary from the Belfast Telegraph sports team.

The Springboks will have to battle the Brave Blossoms - as well as the lion's share of the sell-out 50,000-strong crowd at the Tokyo Stadium - tomorrow if they are to reach the last-four.

But it will be no easier a challenge than the one they faced in their tournament opener, when Rassie Erasmus' side kicked-off against champions New Zealand.

A 23-13 defeat left the Boks with no margin for error but they refused to blink and took care of Namibia, Italy and Canada with minimum fuss.

And Kolisi believes his men have shown they can cope under pressure, having survived three win-or-bust encounters to reach the knockout stages.

He said: "Luckily for us it's been do-or-die since the first game, so we've been in that mindset for a couple of weeks now.

"Sunday is not like any other Test match. It's play-off time now. We have all prepared for it mentally and the coaches haven't put that kind of pressure on us.

Sign In

"But we know what needs to be done. I don't think anybody needs to tell us that this is a big game. If we don't know that already then we are in the wrong place."

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph