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We review Bafana’s crucial Africa Cup match against Sierra Leone this weekend.

I so look forward to the football this weekend when Bafana takes on Sierra Leone…
And now for something far more serious.

Maandagaand op Supersport was Piet Helium weer op sy stukke. Sy waarneming van die toets SA teen Samoa: “Ek dog vir ’n oomblik ek sit en kyk na Hawston se derde span wat teen Gansbaai se derde span speel. Daar is rugby ook ’n bysaak.” Inderdaad!

On Wednesday evening I was surfing the web, being mindful of hungry sharks, looking for something new to say about the upcoming weekend’s rugby. It was difficult to find an objective opinion. Richard Loe may have been a great forward in his day, but does that make him an expert? Methinks not, and he is not the only one.

When the ‘Boks played Wales, I was overseas, but managed to relive the second half for the first time last night. The fact that my eyes were fixed on the clock ticking away more than on the actual game,despite knowing the eventual outcome, says it all.

The one thing the Aussies and our team have in common is that we never give up. While the huge array of commentators and experts may dissect the individual players’ skills, weighing individuals up against each other, I believe that the difference will be our superior bench.

The difference they made against Wales was nothing short of spectacular. While the Beast is sadly missing, there is a good reason why the mix in the reserves were changed, allowing John Smit to be replaced without moving him to tight head and weakening the front row in the process. (Dankie, Bobby vir daai insig en André, ek hoop jy is nou tevrede?)

Most of the overseas commentators keep harping on how old our players are, but the spark brought to the game by Bismarck, Hougaard and even Gurthro cannot be measured in years. It is more than just a contest between youthful exuberance and experience. The side who manages to stay in the zone will win.

I spoke to South Africa’s very own “Cool Runnings”, Alex Heath, last night. He represented South Africa at two winter Olympics and a number of world championships. He says this applies to all sports, when you get to that defining moment. You forget about everything else, and do your utmost to focus on what you have to do; not on what others have achieved, or hurdles in your way – just do what you have to do.
There are two factors beyond our control: the officials, and the weather. While Bryce Lawrence may have ruffled a few SA fans feathers, the Aussies were very critical about his rulings in their loss against Ireland. Australia have always been on the border of illegality when it comes to scrum time, and their apprehension about providing Morné Steyn with any opportunity of punishing them within kicking range, may just work in our favour.
The weather may just put a damper on their attacking game. I do not think they have a conservative alternative, especially in terms of their forwards, but with a coach like Deans, I will not for one moment doubt that we are in for a humdinger. It is rather sad that either Wales or Ireland have to bow out after the weekend.

I think I speak on behalf of 99% of our readers when I wish France and Argentina all the best, and success, this weekend.

O ja, en vir Bafana ook.

Ou Manie sê hy het sy wekker al van Maandag af gestel om betyds wakker te word Sondag. Die ander deel van sy voorbereiding is om so ietsie by sy koffie te gooi. Hy voel mens behoort nie onvoorbereid op te daag nie.
Gesondheid!

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