Cape Town – Former national team coach Nick Mallett has urged Springbok coach Allister Coetzee to stick to his best team for Saturday’s final Test against France in Johannesburg.
This past weekend’s 37-15 win in Durban saw the Springboks take an unassailable 2-0 series lead and this could prompt Coetzee to try out new combinations.
However Mallett, who was speaking in the SuperSport studio after last Saturday’s game, disagrees with that notion.
“We just won two games by scoring 37 points twice in a row and all the players contributed to a good team effort, so why should players concede their jersey to other players just because the series has been won?” Mallett questioned.
“A player should play himself out of the Springbok jersey with a poor performance. Rotation is the right thing to do at Super Rugby level, because it’s a marathon. A Test is there to be won every week. It’s not a marathon, it’s three games, then there’s a break, followed by the Rugby Championship, then there’s another short break before the end-of-year tour. Winning Test matches is all that matters, so you put your best team on the field every time. When you have one or two injuries, you replace those players, but otherwise you don’t just change for the sake of changing.”
Mallett expects a 3-0 series win for the Boks.
“The backbone of this team has been the Lions players and we play in Johannesburg next weekend. I think it’s fantastic that Lions and Bok captain Warren Whiteley can take his team to his home ground in search of a 3-0 series win. Imagine the confidence we’ll then take into the Rugby Championship. I mean, Scotland are fifth in the rankings at the moment and with these sort of performances we can very quickly get back to No 2 in the world.”