Sport: Rugby World Cup 2019: South Africa scrum-half Faf de Klerk hits back at criticism of his kicking - - PressFrom - Australia
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Sport Rugby World Cup 2019: South Africa scrum-half Faf de Klerk hits back at criticism of his kicking

21:01  23 october  2019
21:01  23 october  2019 Source:   sportingnews.com

Rugby World Cup 2019: Springboks overpower hosts Japan to book semi-final berth

  Rugby World Cup 2019: Springboks overpower hosts Japan to book semi-final berth Makazole Mapimpi touched down twice as South Africa ended Japan's incredible Rugby World Cup campaign in the quarter-finals.Japan pulled off a stunning 34-32 triumph over the Springboks in the previous tournament but were unable to repeat the trick in their first appearance in the last eight as their dream run on home soil ended.

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Faf de Klerk has put the boot in on his social media critics as South Africa prepare to try and kick Wales out of the Rugby World Cup on Sunday.

Scrum-half De Klerk was named man of the match after his starring role in the 26-3 quarter-final victory over tournament hosts Japan.

Pictures: Best pictures from the 2019 Rugby World Cup

That did not stop some Springboks supporters from calling on the playmaker to cut down on putting up the high balls ahead of a last-four showdown with the reigning Six Nations champions.

De Klerk defended South Africa's tactics, however, pointing out they were effective in putting their opponents on the back foot.

"We do kick a lot, but we try to read the game and the momentum. So, if you look at last weekend, we did kick a lot in the air, and Japan managed to contain our aerial battle," De Klerk said. 

a group of young men playing a game of football: South Africa scrum-half Faf de Klerk © Getty Images South Africa scrum-half Faf de Klerk "But if you look further than that, we managed to get so much territorial gain on them with our defence, with the guys being loaded on that.

"It was a very positive outcome when we kicked. We did give them possession, but they rarely managed to do anything with it."

On facing Wales, he added: "It is going to be a different challenge this week. I don't think we are going to have the same threats as that [Japan provided].

"It's all about seeing the space, and I feel our wings have come so far over the last two years. They are really competing well in the air.

"They [Wales] have got very good wingers, so it is going to be a massive battle in the air. We don't always go out with a set plan of me just going up and kicking.

"We do read the game, and I listen a lot to what Handre [Pollard] is telling me."

We need to choose our battles to win the final war, says Underhill .
We need to choose our battles to win the final war, says UnderhillThe way South Africa have approached most of their recent games follows a familiar pattern -- a huge pack creating a safe space for scrumhalf Faf de Klerk to slowly deliver endless up-and-unders for his team mates to chase.

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