JOHANNESBURG. – Springbok captain Siya Kolisi is adamant – the Boks won’t defend their Rugby World Cup title if they play the same brand of rugby that won them the Webb Ellis trophy in 2019.

Kolisi said on departure that the team had been altering their game plan slowly over the past few seasons, and were looking to bring a more attacking angle to their play to give them that extra edge they need if they are to defend their title in France next month.

Kolisi said the changes had excited players with what they could achieve, even though there had been some teething problems in slowly changing their game plan.

“Off the field not much but on the field there is a lot that has changed. We have had to change a lot. We stuck to our core things – setpiece, scrums, physicality and kicking game – but there is no way we can win playing the same way we did in 2019,” Kolisi said.

“You would have seen this year how the boys played, some of the plays we used – we had to change some of them instead of playing the same way as the last time, which people have studied. We have had to change quite a lot in the way we played. It is quite exciting for us as players and for a lot of players in the team, it gives us more freedom.”

Kolisi added that the team were happy at being defending champions rather than underdogs and there is a quiet confidence in the squad that will fuel their campaign this World Cup.

“We’re fine, all you can do is prepare and work hard and have confidence in your squad. Outside pressure and how people see us is what we can’t control in our group. We know what we are going out there to do and we are already going to try and win the cup back to back. That is enough pressure for us and that is what we are focusing on.”

Kolisi also said he was confident he would be at 100 per cent fitness when he got to the tournament after training fully with the squad for the last week. – SuperSport.

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