Junior Springbok assistant coach Bafana Nhleko expects a different challenge against Wales in the second match on their UK tour at Cardiff Arms Park on Tuesday.
Following the 41-3 win against Scotland in their opening tour match, the team returned to the training field on Sunday after travelling from Scotland to Wales on Saturday, and were greeted with warm sunny conditions, much to the players’ delight.
With the players having overcome the journey to the UK and settling in well at their base at the Vale Resort in Cardiff, they wasted no time switching on mentally and physically for their next match.
Nhleko said that while they were tested against Scotland, they expected another tough challenge against Wales.
“Wales will pose different threats to Scotland, especially in terms of their defence and breakdowns, so we have to be prepared for that,” said Nhleko.
“We struggled in certain departments against Scotland, although the scoreboard says otherwise, so we need to be better at the breakdown and make sure that our shape is set early.”
Nhleko said the team had settled in well in the UK, and he was confident that the tour would prepare them well for the World Rugby U20 Championship in the south of France.
“It was part of the plan to come out here and familiarise ourselves with the U20 Championship scenario. So we are on track with that.
“The difficulty for the players is adapting to the travel and the short turn-around time between matches, so the challenge has been good for us and we are learning. The best thing about it is that the boys will be ready for the pressure of the U20 Championship after this tour.”
The Junior Springboks will face England in their final tour game on Friday, 11 May, at the Sixways Stadium, home of the Worcester Warriors, before returning to SA for their World Rugby U20 Championship holding camp.
Junior Springbok coach Chean Roux will announce his match day squad for the clash against Wales on Monday.