Counter a concern for SA

The Wallabies’ dangerous counterattack needs to be culled this Saturday, says Springbok captain Victor Matfield.

There are several areas that will come under scrutiny at the Subiaco Oval with the breakdown set to take centre stage. Matfield said he expects the Wallabies to back themselves in this department and develop their game strategies accordingly.

Australia won’t stray too far from their usual style, but Robbie Deans’s influence will lend the hosts an edge.

“He [Deans] has always been keen to keep the ball infield,” Matfield said. “From the last three games it is clear that he has just taken the Australian way of playing, and is attempting to make that better. Every week there will be something new.

“You can still see the Australian way of play. We know he loves counter-attacking, and we know he loves putting things in place with turnover ball.

“Five or six years ago, the Wallabies started all this phase play, and keeping the ball in phases. But he has come in and probably given them more direction, and even seen them penetrate a bit more.”

The Boks will have the Aussies’ recent Tests against Ireland and France to analyse in preparing for this game, but it could be that Deans was holding something back in those fixtures.

Bok coach Peter de Villiers said South Africa are well aware of where the Australians are strong and where they are susceptible. The analysis of the respective weaknesses and strengths, says De Villiers, will not be divulged to the media.

“We definitely have [analysed the Aussies]. That’s what we’re being paid for. But it is our bedroom business and we don’t want to discuss our bedroom business in public.”