We could kick ourselves

South African goal-kickers’ lack of consistency could come back to haunt the Springboks when the Test season starts next month.

Former Bok flyhalf great Naas Botha was lamenting the missed kicks by current Bok flyhalves Andre Pretorius and Meyer Bosman.

Both men missed injury time conversions that would have given their respective teams last-gasp wins. Instead Pretorius’ miss meant the Cats drew 34-all with the Western Force at Ellis Park and the Cheetahs lost by one point to the Blues.

“Our kickers are missing too many kicks especially in pressure situations. It could cost us in important matches this season,” said Botha.

“It’s their job,” explained Botha, “Like a hooker, a rugby hooker, must put the ball in straight at the lineout. It’s not negotiable.”

And the Boks current number one kicker, Sharks No 15 Percy Montgomery, has barely been kicking with Tony Brown around. Brown’s injury may be a blessing in disguise – for the Boks at least – as Monty will have to take over the duties in the remaining two rounds. It could prove valuable practice ahead of the June Internationals.

“You don’t want a guy getting eight out of eight one week and then one out of eight the next. I’d rather have a guy getting five from seven every week and at least you know you can count on that,” added Botha.

With the most gruelling Test schedule the Boks have ever faced less than a month away, Bok coach Jake White will be hoping all three find their radar soon.

By Andrew Hollely