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Springboks told to focus on wins not bonus points

South African Rugby head coach Heyneke Meyer

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Article Published: Tuesday 24 September 2013

South African Rugby head coach Heyneke Meyer has told his players for forget about needing to win their Rugby Championship match against Australia this weekend and to rather focus on winning the contest.

South Africa led the Rugby Championship standings until their loss to New Zealand who have now moved ahead and taken the top spot.

New Zealand's All Blacks are expected to beat Argentina's Pumas this weekend which will extend their lead. If South Africa beat Australia this weekend they need to ensure next weekend at Ellis Park on October the 5th they beat the All Blacks to win the title.

"I have told the players to focus on the basics and forget about the bonus point," Meyer told Reuters.

"We can't look past this game, if we don't at least win it then we are out of the championship."

"There are a lot of scenarios but if you try to work them all out, add and subtract bonus points, then you lose focus on what is important which is working hard on our own game."

South Africa have already beaten Australia away from home in this year's tournament and as the first result was a record bonus point result a similar scoreline is expected this weekend due to home advantage.

Meyer has praised the Wallabies backline and pack of forwards but has also promised that the Springboks will continue with their attack-minded approach.

"We will play positive, attack and hopefully score tries. I have been very proud of our attacking level this season," he added.

"We have scored the most tries and recently recorded our highest winning margins against Argentina and Australia away and that speaks for itself."

The Springboks attacking game may however have to be toned down a little as this month has been unusually wet in Cape Town which could make the ground soft and the ball slippery but Meyer says he is not concerned.

"It is not something I am worried about," said Meyer.

"The 2015 World Cup (in England) will probably be wet so in the back of your mind you also think it might actually be good to plan for that."

Meyer added that he could make one or two changes to his line up for this weekend while lock Flip van der Merwe, centre JJ Englebrecht and prop Guthro Steenkamp all face late fitness tests.

Rugby Championship Standings
Nation Games Points    
1. Australia 3 3 0 0 85 48 37 1 13
2. New Zealand 3 2 1 0 85 65 20 1 9
3. Argentina 3 1 2 0 64 98 -34 1 5
4. South Africa 3 0 3 0 65 88 -23 2 2
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