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All Blacks forward pack ready for Springboks pressure

All Blacks forward pack ready for Springboks pressure

All BlacksAugust 25, 2023

Tight forwards in the All Blacks know they cannot look any further ahead than their Friday game with South Africa in London because whenever the two sides meet, the tight forwards bear the brunt of Springbok pressure.

That pressure will be all the more intense because New Zealand got one-up when claiming the spoils in the only outing between the sides in the Livopitan-D Rugby Championship.

Lock Scott Barrett said his body was feeling refreshed, and he was looking forward to playing on Friday evening because there wasn't much better motivation than playing the Springboks.

"The way they play it is always a huge occasion for us big boys up front. Our mindset is just to keep getting better."

Barrett said while the All Blacks won their earlier Test in the Rugby Championship, that was after they started so well. But South Africa had come back by putting more pressure on them at the breakdown, so they would have learnt from that and would probably want to implement that from the start, something they anticipated with hooker Malcolm Marx starting.

Prop Tyrell Lomax said there was no more significant test for a forward than going up against South Africa. Trying to win games through their set-piece was part of their DNA, so that it would be an awesome Test.

Lomax said while the pressure was starting to build ahead of the World Cup, the All Blacks' attention was still on facing the Springboks this weekend in front of a capacity house at Twickenham, which was a great place to play.

Barrett was asked if having his brothers Beauden and Jordie alongside him for another Test match ever got to the stage of being run of the mill.

He said it didn't because being selected was something they never took for granted.

"Lining up for the anthem there's always a moment there where you think about your parents, grandparents and family being able to give you that opportunity and some of the hard work we've done to get to that point, it's never taken for granted."

Having Sam Whitelock back after he missed the earlier Test against South Africa would be good. They were familiar with each other's play because of their Crusaders link, but with Brodie Retallick injured, it was a chance to continue the rivalry between all the sides' locks.

The group had good competition, but they all worked for the team's benefit.

Last time around out @springboks 📸

Looking forward to taking to the field again at Twickenham!#AllBlacks pic.twitter.com/ktHmV20un1

— All Blacks (@AllBlacks) August 19, 2023

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