Habana hits back

Bryan Habana has answered his critics in the best possible way this season – through his performances on the field.

After a disappointing 2011, Habana re-emerged in the 2012 Super Rugby competition as one of the form wings and returned to the national set-up rejuvenated and renewed. He turned in consistent showings for the Stormers, solid performances shot through with a characteristic crowd-raising brilliance. And if the man himself is to be believed, that was just a starting point.

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‘I’ve gone back to basics,’ he says in the new issue of SA Rugby magazine. ‘I’ve found myself in the right place at the right time, whereas in the past year or two maybe I wasn’t in that kind of position.

‘When things aren’t going your way, you tend to overwork yourself. You know you should allow the ball to come to you in space, but when it doesn’t, you go looking for it, sometimes unnecessarily. This season, certain things have made all the difference.’

Habana goes on to explain what those things are, while Stormers attack coach Robbie Fleck provides some insight into Habana’s struggles last year.

The winger also talks about what it’s like working with Heyneke Meyer, competition for the Bok No 11 jersey and mentoring tomorrow’s stars.

Also in the new issue:

Adriaan Strauss – page 58

– Keo on why the Kings should not have appointed a Kiwi coach

– How Cheetahs hooker Adriaan Strauss powered his way into Springbok contention

– The Bulls have given JJ Engelbrecht the opportunities he was denied at the Stormers

Tim Whitehead has helped to solve the Sharks’ problems in midfield

– Former France prop Pieter de Villiers on how he got into coaching, the technical aspects of the scrum, and why it is such an important part of the game

– A once-proud New Zealand franchise has fallen on hard times. The big question is: Can the Blues find a way back?

– In his most revealing interview since winning the World Cup, Graham Henry talks about the pressures of the All Blacks job, the effect it had on his family, and what he’s up to now

JJ Engelbrecht – page 64

– Wallabies captain David Pocock is not your average rugby player

Ruan Pienaar had an outstanding season for Ulster

– Former Free State prop Daniel Kotze has become the cornerstone of the Clermont scrum

Gary Gold on his short stint at Newcastle, the challenge he faces at Bath, and the issue that fractured his relationship with Peter de Villiers

– The Blitzboks‘ poor World Series campaign highlighted flaws in the national sevens system

– All professional rugby players should have a post-retirement plan

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