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South Africa vs Georgia First Test

Boks need to find a different 22.

First time I've seen Kolisi without strapping in recent memory and it's the best he has played. Hopefully this means his injury bugs are behind him.
How is Elton Jantjes still, after all these years, getting caps?

Not a bad run out for the Boks - rustiness is to be expected but they settled as it went on and a very comfortable win in the end
Some positives for Georgia, as well, but their reserve forwards took a beating and they were just consistently on the back foot in the 2nd half
Georgia's centres were great, and that young fullback is a talent
Final 40-9 for South Africa
Georgia still have a lot of work to do to compete with the best teams in the World but they were not looking that bad.
Also, there is a new generation coming up, today, 11 of the starting XV + 5 replacements were U25 years old.
The 4 best props were missing (Nariashvili and Kaulashvili at loosehead, Gigashvili and Chilachava at tighthead) and the starting backrow (Giorgadze, Gorgadze, Tsutskiridze)
Respect to Georgia. A lot of people are calling our first 30 minutes "rusty" and to an extent that might be the case but I wager most of that was due to Georgia beating us in that period plain and simple. Centers and young 15 looked excellent with a strong push back from what I hear is a largely 2nd string Georgian pack?

For SA, in the front row we know what we have in Kitshoff and Malherbe. Good depth at prop and hooker.

Thought our locks did well enough but it would be great to see one or both of De Jager and/or Snyman come in.

Thought Vermeulen was missed. Very rarely takes a backward step and he consistently puts in MotM performances at all levels. Kolisi as expected better in green than at CC level. A bit unfit though? PSDT doesn't look like he missed any rugby or was ever injured. Better options than Smith for my money behind those 3. Soooo many options actually. Smith, Le Roux and Elton Jantjies for me are players we need to put behind us.

Herschel over Reinach but that is a moot point as De Klerk will probably be the starter.

Was not impressed with Elton Jantjies. Steyn was the form 10 in SA for some time now. He needs to come into the bench or Willemse because of his ability to cover multiple positions. I wouldn't start Willemse but he is a good shout for a sub if we ever find ourselves chasing a game or having to mix it up. If Pollard were injured I'd start Steyn and retain Willemse on the bench.

Kriel looked sharper than F Steyn in the centers but that might just be down to Georgia effectively stopping us closer in and limited space. Moot point in any case since De Allende and Am will probs start with either of the other two on the bench. Kriel over Steyn for me still. He covers 13, wing and 15, Steyn 10, 12 and 15. Between Willemse and Kriel we have the backline well covered from the bench.

Fassi for me showed enough maturity to warrant a start at 15. Le Roux is a good man to have in the squad but if Gelant weren't injured it would've been a tussle between Gelant and Fassi for the 15 jersey as far as I'm concerned. Le Roux gives away as much as he gives and we aren't in a position anymore where we don't have options beyond him.

All in all we finished a lot of chances even though for large parts of the game we looked to force it too much.

Georgia the next team to do a "Japan" and become fully tier 1?
Good to know that Fassi can play 15. I can't see him finding a spot in the wing as long as Kolbe and Mapimpi are in their prime; unless Kolbe gets moved to fullback. I thought Kriel looked mighty impressive but DDA and Am is a center combination I wouldn't want to touch. I thought Speckman was below test standard.

I think Willemse needs to find a position, I don't think he has the intangibles that Steyn does to cover all the spine positions. I'm certain you tell Willemse to pick a pick a position and focus on it, he could be a key contributor to the Boks. I think he would be fine as the 22 for now. He'd have to bide his time behind Pollard but I don't Pollard is as untouchable as Sexton per se.

As I said earlier, this is the best Kolisi has looked in a Bok jersey in some long time. Noticed he moved to a 1 spot instead of 3 pod in the midfield, so the coaching team must feel he's gotten he's pace back. He was also able to play the full 80.
Not sure that many are aware of this :
Georgia head coach Levan Maisashvili was in a critical condition after contracting the virus following Georgia's 40-9 defeat to the Springboks in Pretoria on 2 July.

Maisashvili was placed on a ventilator @ Netcare Milpark Hospital during 2 months.
He says his family was told that he had less than a 2% chance of survival and his lungs were absolutely paralysed and infected with bacteria

He remembered little of his time in the intensive care unit, but his recovery after waking up was incredibly difficult. He added that he weighed 85kg before falling ill and weighed between 60 and 62kg when he woke up.

He was back to Georgia last month
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Great news, it occurred to me that other day that I hadn't heard an update in a while.

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