AUCKLAND (Reuters) - South Africa will leave for Argentina in two groups over the weekend with the Rugby Championship trophy in their sights as coach Rassie Erasmus declared their camp in Auckland a success.
The Springboks elected to stay in New Zealand after last weekend’s 16-16 draw with the world champions, but will now head for Buenos Aires, where they will initially camp before travelling on to Salta on Thursday for their potential championship decider with Argentina on Aug. 10.
“We chose to stay behind in Auckland mainly for two reasons,” Erasmus told reporters on Friday. “Firstly, to cut down on the amount of traveling time between New Zealand, South Africa and Argentina.
“And secondly, we had some good team-building exercises, while we used the time together to fit in some extra training time with the squad.
“We have grown into a very tight unit, so looking back at the past week I think we ticked both those boxes.”
The Boks have a one point lead over holders New Zealand at the top of the Rugby Championship table going into the final round of matches in the shortened competition this year.
Australia and New Zealand play in Perth in next Saturday’s early match after which the Boks will have the chance to claim the trophy for the first time since 2009 with victory.
Reporting By Nick Said; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty