England flank Lewis Moody says taking on the Springboks is the most physical challenge in world rugby.
Writing in his regular column for UK-based International Rugby News magazine, Moody heaped praise on the Boks who will play England in two Tests on 18 and 25 November.
“Every time you take the field against them it’s a huge challenge because of the sheer physicality and determination; you know you are going to get that every time, it’s a really tough battle,” he said.
“It’s probably the most physically demanding challenge in the game, because they do seem to bring this different element on to the pitch – the pressure and physicality is just incredible.”
Moody’s flattering words are surprising considering the Poms thrashed the Boks 32-16 the last time the teams met at Twickenham. So dominant were the home forwards that Jake White admitted afterwards that it had been a case of “men against boys”.
England tackle the Boks four times before next year’s World Cup, which Moody believes will benefit the players involved.
“It’s a bit like at Leicester when we played Wasps five times in one season,” he said. “In terms of internationals, it can only help playing a country that you will face at a later date in a tournament.”