With 500 days to go until the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France on Tuesday, Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber said that while the 2022 season in South Africa is still a great one, the excitement with the global event is starting to run rampant come. Rugby World Cup Fans can buy Rugby World Cup 2023 Tickets from our website.
Nienaber, who was an assistant coach at the 2019 Springbok Rugby World Cup Japan under the tutelage of SA Rugby director Rassie Erasmus, said the milestone date had caused much excitement. While also stressing that a focus on their title defense is their structure.
The Boks are grouped into Group B along with Ireland. Scotland, Spain, and a yet-to-be-determined qualifying team. Which will be in Toulon for most of the competition’s group stages.
“We’ve been counting down for a while, but from a preparation point of view. The 500 days of the Rugby World Cup is a real reality check,” Nienaber said.
“We have a limited number of test games planned ahead of the international event. We need to make sure we get the most out of each match and take as many lessons as possible. So that we can set up the necessary structures and systems before we leave for France.
“We will be based in Toulon for the pool phase of the game, an attractive city with world-class services. But also with plenty of space for players to enjoy themselves during their breaks. Which is crucial to creating the mental balance needed to play. Let them perform at their best.”
Nienaber added: “Next year we will play Ireland for the first time in the Rugby World Cup. While we played Scotland in England in 2015 and 1999. We were also in the same group as Spain and we are looking forward to seeing it again. See as one group.”
The Springboks are also speeding up, with just over two months to go. Before their Castle Lager Incoming Series opener (Saturday, July 2) in Loftus Versfeld. Pretoria faces Wales, followed by Testing in Bloemfontein (July 9) and Cape Town (16th of July).
This will be trailed by the first two rounds of the Castle Lager Rugby Championship in three weeks. When the Boks face the All Blacks in back-to-back Tests in Nelspruit and Johannesburg (Saturday 6-13 August). Australia and Argentina, where they will beat the Wallabies and Pumas twice in Buenos Aires.
The final round of the tournament is on Saturday, September 24 against Argentina in Durban.
Nienaber and his coaching team have been working hard. Behind the scenes to prepare for the international season. The first of their two calibration camps took place in Durban. Earlier this month and the second on Sunday 1 to be held in Cape Town on Thursday 5 May from Sunday until Sunday.
“We hope to build on it in our next camp. It’s great to see players bought our process a few weeks ago in the first calibration camp,” said Nienaber.
“So the sooner we can get the players and management to agree on our structure. The international season is getting closer. The easier it will be when we play in the first training camp before the test in July.”