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In little over 48 hours, at the time of writing, Allister Coetzee and his troops will take to the field against Ireland in an attempt to salvage some of their lost pride. Match-2 between South Africa vs Ireland should make for some very entertaining viewing. No, not because of the Springboks exciting style of play, but rather because of the numerous “mini-battles” within the match, and that is where the intrigue and entertainment can be found in this upcoming weekend’s round 2 fixture between Ireland and South Africa
Ireland Vs South Africa Match 2 – Complete Preview & Analysis
The team who can win the smaller battles within the match is the team who will ultimately emerge victorious. Below is The Sport Freaks complete rugby betting preview, predictions and analysis for South Africa vs Ireland match 2, enjoy!
South African Weaknesses
We did a lot of research at the end of last week’s disastrous loss, which we wrote extensively about earlier in the week, however, our research and analysis now shift to match 2.
We identified a number of key areas where the Springboks will drastically need to improve on if they are going to have any chance of winning against Ireland in match 2.
Ireland played 60-minutes with 14-men, however, it is not so much the fact that South Africa lost the 1st match which should be worrying Springbok supporters.
What should be worrying Springbok supporters, and the coaching staff, is the statistics! When looking at official match statistics Ireland managed to turn South African ball over a whopping 22-times, despite playing without a fetcher in CJ Stander!
To rub salt in the wounds for the disgraced national rugby team is the fact that they could only manage to steal 7 balls from Ireland, despite the Irish being a flanker down…Yikes!
Can the Boks Limit Turnovers?
Perfecting the breakdown is one of the most difficult tasks of rugby union, players need to make smart decisions, need to get to the ball early, get a feel for the referee’s interpretation of the laws, and above all else, need to play according to the correct strategy, not exactly something you can turn around in 5 or 6 days!
Ireland would have identified the breakdown as a weak spot in the South African game, coupled with the fact that they (Ireland) will be back to a full complement of 15-men, all point towards the fact that we will continue to see an extraordinarily high amount of turnovers conceded by South Africa, something which the Irish will no doubt exploit in the 2nd match.
South African Defense.
Another shocking twist in the Allister Coetzee chapter until thus far is the defense, and perhaps to a larger extent the defensive strategy the Springboks were using.
Many believed, and rightfully so, that defense will be the backbone of the South African rugby team, under the Coetzee regime. Yet, South Africa was slow, sluggish and just generally awful on defense last Saturday at Newlands.
We covered earlier in the week how to break Coetzee’s defensive strategy – and how Ireland managed to use the kick in behind the South African defensive line to great success, something we are sure they will continue to do in match 2.
Can The Springbok Defense Improve?
There will certainly be a lot more intended from the players this time round, however, we don’t believe for a second that lack of intend / motivation by the Springboks was the reason for their poor defensive showing at Newlands.
It was rather a case of using an outdated defensive system, which many teams have deciphered and figured out by now.
A sweeper will need to get worked into the defensive pattern, cover and scramble defense will need to improve and Willie LeRoux will need to step up BIG TIME in match 2 if the South African defense is to improve.
True, it can be argued that the Springboks have not been together long enough to fully understand Allister Coetzee’s defensive pattern, but then shame be on the coach, for not adopting a more generic defensive plan while the players get accustomed to his defensive strategy, and that is the problem we have with AC.
Coetzee very rarely has a plan B or different tactics to go by, and when he does try to implement some different tactics it often leads to disastrous results, something Stormers supporters are all too familiar with!
So will the South African defense be better in match 2 against Ireland? Better…yes but the question should be, will it be good enough, to sustain what will be a brutal Irish onslaught? Hard to say, but we believe not!
Except for the fact that the Springboks lost, or that they turned over the ball 22 times against a team playing without a flanker, perhaps the single most embarrassing factor coming out of the South African loss was their total inability to play good offensive, attacking rugby.
Don’t get us wrong they tried; they tried real hard…but failed miserably! Therein lies the problem, good attacking rugby should NOT be forced, it is something which should come naturally.
South Africa VS Ireland Match 2 – What The Springboks Need To Do, To Bounce back.
It is hard to see how South Africa can bounce back in match 2, even for the most loyal of Springbok supporters. With that being said, we do believe a South African win is not entirely impossible, providing the correct tactics and decisions are made, which we will touch on below.
What Allister Coetzee and his coaching staff need to realize, is that it takes time, to build a squad which plays good attacking rugby. They shouldn’t force tactics on players which they are not yet comfortable with, something we believe happened at Newlands.
In match 2 for the South Africa vs Ireland test series, the Springboks should return to their traditional strengths. That is good ol’ 10 man rugby.
Great emphasis should be placed on strategical kicking and, playing inside the opposition half, where they should try to milk the penalty and then chip away with 3-pointers, slowly building a lead, while keeping their own penalty count at a minimum.
The Springbok forward pack is a rather formidable one with some quality players, and despite the SA forwards having been completely outplayed in the first test, we believe they are still capable of physically taking on the Irish forwards.
If the ball is kept tight, they will eventually start tiring out the Irish forwards and gaps should then start to appear towards the last 20-minutes of the game, which a half competent South African backline can then hopefully exploit. It’s all very basic stuff really!
Yes, the above is probably not the best for the long term strategy of the team, however, above all else what, Allister Coetzee and the Springboks, need right now is to get a win, to get their confidence levels up before any emphasis starts shifting to more expansive, attacking rugby.
Also, one has to face the facts, a forward heavy game plan has traditionally been a strength of South African rugby and one shouldn’t completely abandon your strengths just to play a more attractive brand of rugby, even in the modern era where (much) more emphasis gets placed on attack.
The key is to strike the right balance, but for right now the immediate goal for South Africa should be to get a win under the belt regardless of how ugly it might be! Another loss would be absolutely disastrous for team confidence, with The Rugby Championship around the corner.
Conclusion – Prediction Ireland Vs South Africa Match 2
This is a real tough one to predict, the above is easier said than done and one has to remember Ireland will be entering match 2 with their tails up.
With that being said, Ellis Park is a formidable ground to play at, many former players label it as the most intimidating ground in world rugby and the importance of that should not be underestimated.
We will be monitoring the news closely in the build-up to the 2nd match between Ireland and South Africa, but for now, our money is on an Ireland victory.
However, should Allister Coetzee start talking about using better tactics and placing more emphasis on some of the above we touched on, towards the build up of match 2, our prediction might very well swing, towards the narrowest of Springbok victories.
Continue to watch this space, for further updates!
If you are a gambling man who enjoys a good ol’ rugby bet every now and then, the below is for you, else you can skip the below section although it still makes for a pretty interesting read, whether you are a punter or not!
Ireland Vs South Africa, Match 2 – What The Bookmakers Are Saying
As we have mentioned in the past, we often like to use the bookmakers odds and lines as an indication as to what to expect from a certain match, that is not to say we always agree with them, in fact we went against the bookies last week and advised all our readers to do the same, the result was a very nice little payout on @8.00 for a straight Ireland win, however, all that has (slightly) changed now.
For match 2 Between Ireland & South Africa The Bookmakers are offering The Following odds.
As to be expected the odds has slightly shifted for match 2 between Ireland vs South Africa. With that being said we would have expected the shift (change in odds) to be much more severe, strangely that is not the case! If you enjoy a good ol’ rugby bet, match 2 (like the 1st test) provides some real opportunities to exploit.
Current odds reads as follow:
- Straight Up South African Win @1.25
- Straight Up Ireland Win @ 4.00
- Handicap +/- 10-points @ 1.91 giving Ireland a start of 10-points.
The Sport Freaks Recommended Bet
As mentioned above, we are still undecided as to which team to back for an outright win. With that being said, the chances of South Africa winning by more than 10-points are extremely slim! Thus, backing Ireland at +10-points with odds of @1.91 certainly makes for a very promising prospect. If you like
If you are brave the @4.00 odds, while not as attractive as @8.00 last week, certainly does not make for a bad bet…however, we prefer to find comfort in safety backing Ireland at +10-points, with relatively high confidence!
As Always drop us a comment below and let us know who you think will come out on top in the 2nd match Between Ireland and South Africa, playing Superbru? What is your predicted scoreline?