Junior Springbok assistant coach Nazeem Adams said the mood in the SA U20 camp was positive ahead of Monday’s World Rugby Under-20 Championship semi-final against England, and that the team believed they could advance to the final.
Adams admitted that the team’s lineouts and defence, in particular, had to improve immensely to achieve this, but he said they have been hard at work trying to improve those areas since returning to training on Saturday.
Ireland will meet Argentina in the first semi-final at the Academy Stadium in Manchester on Monday at 17h30, with South Africa lining up against hosts, England, in the final match of the day at 19h45 (20h45 SA time).
“We are positive,” said Adams.
“We are working hard and realise we need a big improvement in our lineouts and defence, in particular. But the mood in the camp is good.”The Junior Springboks wasted no time identifying the areas of the game they needed to improve on as well as studying their opponents, as they had video sessions on Thursday and Friday.
“England is a strong team,” said Adams. “They are very structured, they have a good set piece and their defence is solid. In fact, they have only conceded two tries in the competition so far. They will also be playing at home, which will motivate them significantly. So we will face a tough challenge.”
Adams, however, was confident that the Junior Springboks had the goods to challenge England for a place in the final and said: “The players are ready. They know it is not going to be easy, but they are aware that if they believe in their abilities and play to their potential, we have a good chance to win this match.”