A video of Canan Moodie, a teenaged Springbok debutant, practising his tackling this week is not just another cynical attempt at team management to point out referees’ inconsistent interpretation of the laws.

The issue has resurfaced following South Africa’s loss to the Wallabies last weekend in Adelaide, where home winger Marika Koroibete escaped punishment for a no-arms tackle on a try-bound Makazole Mapimpi.

As a result, Moodie’s drills reminded some of Rassie Erasmus and Jacques Nienaber “guiding” Andre Esterhuizen on his tackling technique, just days after the midfielder was the victim of an unpunished shoulder charge from England’s Owen Farrell in a 12-11 loss at Twickenham in 2018.

Springbok assistant coach Mzwandile Stick, on the other hand, was quick to point out that this was not the case.

“Canan was doing all of his extras on his own. Rassie volunteered to accompany him and assist him by picking up the bag once he completed a tackle “He made the remarks ahead of Saturday’s rematch in Sydney.

“It was yet another manifestation of his head on his shoulders. Canan is well aware of his responsibilities.”

Indeed, the video shows Erasmus gleefully participating, with Moodie merely engaging in proper bearhugs – no sign of a practising shoulder charge, as seen in the viral video four years ago.

Meanwhile, Erasmus’ role has come into focus once more this week as the Springboks look to avoid a three-match losing streak.

The national director of rugby’s World Rugby match-day ban ends this month, but he’s been on tour with the team.

Siya Kolisi, the skipper, stated that his influence has been similar to any other week.

“Rassie’s been contributing to the team, assisting us, and ensuring we’re mentally and physically prepared for the game,” he said.

“He’s also just offered encouragement where he can, as he always does.”

Saturday’s game begins at 11:35 a.m. (SA time).



Reece Hodge (15), Tom Wright (14), Len Ikitau (13), Hunter Paisami (12), Marika Koroibete (11), and Noah Lolesio (10). 8 Rob Valetini, 9 Nic White Fraser McReight (7th), Jed Holloway (6th), Matt Philip (5th), Rory Arnold (4th), Allan Alaalatoa (3rd), Folau Fainga’a (2nd), James Slipper (1st) (captain)

16 David Porecki, 17 Scott Sio, 18 Taniela Tupou, 19 Darcy Swain, 20 Rob Leota are the subs. Pete Samu, 21, Jake Gordon, 22, and Andrew Kellaway, 23

South African Republic

Willie le Roux (15), Canan Moodie (14), Jesse Kriel (13), and Damian de Allende (12) 10 Damian Willemse, 11 Makazole Mapimpi Jaden Hendrikse, 9 Jasper Wiese, No. 8 Franco Mostert, 7 Siya Kolisi No. 6 (captain), Lood de Jager, 5 1 Steven Kitshoff, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Malcolm Marx

Substitutes: Deon Fourie (16), Ox Nche (17), Trevor Nyakane (18), Kwagga Smith (19), Duane Vermeulen (20). Cobus Reinach, 21 23 Warrick Gelant, 22 Frans Steyn

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