White ‘desperate’ to win

South Africa coach Jake White is concerned last month's defeat to France may weigh on his players' minds ahead of the start of their Tri-Nations campaign. [more]

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South Africa coach Jake White is concerned last month’s defeat to France may weigh on his players’ minds ahead of the start of their Tri-Nations campaign.

Just a day before their clash against Australia at the Suncorp stadium, White, who saw his side lose 36-26 to the French on June 24, spoke of a "desperation" to ensure the Springboks return to winning ways.

The Australian squad will hardly be overflowing with confidence after they were convincingly seen off 32-12 by New Zealand in the opening game of this year’s tournament.

"At this level it is difficult to get out of a rut," White told the Cape Argus. "We lost to France and Australia lost to the All Blacks.

"There is a lot of expectation going forward and there is always desperation in any game. Even when you are unbeaten, there is pressure not to lose what you have built up.

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"Our desperation is to win our first game on the road before we go to New Zealand.

"It’s the same in the Wallaby camp. They know they have got the All Blacks again in two weeks’ time and it will be interesting to see who is the more desperate.

"I think this team can play more expansively than in the past, but this is a Test and it’s simple – you’ve got to get more points than the opposition and the bottom line for us is to try to win as many matches as possible.

"Once you start winning and get that culture, then maybe you can start getting more expansive. But it’s difficult to run everywhere and play expansively when, at the end of the day, it’s about winning."

White hinted the Boks will be targeting the Wallaby scrum, which got a real working over from their All Black counterparts last weekend.

"You never move away from what works for you," White added. "If you’ve got a pack of forwards and that’s one way you can dominate and win games, then stick to it."

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