Assistant coach Matt Proudfoot says it will suit the Springboks to play against Wales at a neutral venue for a change.
Wales have won the last four matches between these sides, thrice at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff and once at RFK Stadium in Washington DC.
Now they are set to square off again in the semi-finals of the 2019 World Cup, and Proudfoot is adamant that South Africa can end their losing streak in this fixture.
‘The fact that we have always played them in Cardiff and then there was the one Test in Washington where we had to juggle the two teams – with having to play England the following weekend – made it difficult,’ Proudfoot explained.
‘Nine times out of ten the Cardiff Test was outside the Test window. So it’s nice that it’s going to be on neutral ground and we have a full squad to pick from, that bodes well for us.
‘We have got the team that we want on a neutral ground, I suppose they can say the same thing. It’s two teams going at each other and it’s interesting.’
With Wales briefly ranked No 1 in the World Rugby rankings a few weeks ago and having reached the semi-finals on the back of five successive victories, Proudfoot says the Boks have to show them the utmost respect.
‘They are ranked third in the world, they are Six Nations champions, they have got a fantastic defensive outfit and a very formidable pack with one of the most experienced Test captains going around in Alun Wyn Jones,’ Proudfoot warned.
‘That pack had been the heartbeat of the British Lions pack that went to New Zealand and to go there and win a Test you have to be a very formidable side.’
Proudfoot, however, says he has great confidence in the Springbok forwards to stand up against their Welsh opponents.
‘I take confidence as a forward coach in the ownership that the pack takes for the various platforms, whether it be for scrum or contesting scrum or for mauling or lineout of whatever,’ he added.
‘The way we function as a pack is to give ownership to the players and they take that on board. We’ve got guys who drive various aspects of the game and that has been rewarding for me, seeing the understanding that the players have to solve problems on the field.
‘It’s knockout rugby and the opposition will pose different challenges for you. They’ll change first half to second half and the players have the ownership to change to things – adapt to things; solve problems to achieve the goal we want.
‘I’ve been really proud to see them pushing for pressure points and when they feel that crack they have flooded that situation. We plan to utilise our pack as one of our weapons and I suppose it’s just having belief in your plan.
‘If you look at how we’ve played in the tournament, we’ve changed it a little bit every now and then, but whatever plays have been put out they have believed in and that’s the confidence we take, that we have alignment in the group,’ he concluded.
Photo: David Rogers/Getty Images