Matfield wants happy 50th

South Africa lock Victor Matfield wants to mark his 50th appearance for the Springboks by banishing to history one of his worst 80 minutes in the green and gold. [more]

Lions Australia Tour 2013

South Africa lock Victor Matfield wants to mark his 50th appearance for the Springboks by banishing to history one of his worst 80 minutes in the green and gold.

Matfield reaches the half-century against Tri-Nations champions New Zealand in Wellington seven days after a 49-0 shut-out against Australia.

And if he needed any further motivation, the lock has yet to claim victory over the All Blacks on their home turf – and their 50th test in the capital could set the scene for one of international rugby’s biggest shocks.

He told The Dominion Post: "We have to lift our intensity quite a bit. It wasn’t there last week and when things got away from us the guys didn’t know how to turn it around.

"So we have to keep the focus up and the intensity up, and do what we have done in the last two years.

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"When you stand and face the haka it gets the adrenaline pumping. We all love playing against the All Blacks, it’s an old rivalry and the one game I know the Springboks are always up for.

"It’s going to be very tough. We are playing the top team in the world.

"Playing your 50th Test match in a week like this is very difficult, but it’s an opportunity to turn things around and really make a big comeback.

"In all of sport there have been good comebacks and hopefully we can make one."

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