Penalty count crucial

Discipline is the key to victory in the first Test between South Africa and Scotland, says the tourists’ coach Frank Hadden.

“We are proud of our discipline,” Hadden told Die Volksblad’s Hendrik Cronje. “During the recent Six Nations we won the penalty count every time. We would like to do the same on Saturday.”

“A team’s attitude towards the referee can be crucial these days and we’d like to stay in Donal’s (Courtney) good books.”

“Referees differ, and one gets to know them through experience. Fortunately, we have experienced players who will quickly observe on the field what Donal wants,” Hadden said.

One hopes that Courtney is less pedantic than South African referee Tappe Henning, whose shrill whistle was the dominating factor in the Boks warm-up match against the World XV last weekend.

Hadden is pleased White has recalled some of his established players as they are hoping for victory and not a hollow one against a second string outfit.

“We don’t want anything less; that is why we are here. We have a good team and we’ll play good rugby. However, we realise the Absa Stadium is one of the most difficult grounds to play on.”

The Absa Stadium is in fact the Springboks least successful ground in South Africa. Of the 21 Tests played there, the Boks have won 13, drawn 3 and lost 5, which represents a winning percentage of 61,9%.

Hadden has given his team the best possible chance of an upset by retaining the pack that took Scotland to victory against Italy in their last Six Nations match of the season. The backline chosen for Saturday is the same one that played against England and France.