That is the view of Springbok Women head coach Louis Koen after the team concluded their preparations for WXV 2, which will be played in Stellenbosch and Cape Town over the next three weekends. South Africa will face Scotland, Italy and Samoa in three Tests.


The Springbok Women wrapped up their preparations against Samoa in a tough Test in Hermanus on Saturday, where the match finished in a 17-17 draw.

Before the Samoa clash, they had camps in Stellenbosch, Potchefstroom and Krugersdorp before playing against Kenya, the San Clemente Rhinos and Barbarians during the last three weeks, and Koen is confident that the players saw the right pictures to prepare them for the next three weeks.

“The time we could spend together as a squad was really valuable and we did get a lot of work done, culminating in yesterday's Test against Samoa in Hermanus,” said Koen.

“We were tested in different ways by all our opponents. The Barbarians played a very fast game against us, and yesterday Samoa came with a huge physical challenge and that prepared us well for the opponents we will face in WXV.

“We are in a good space and our work is done leading into the tournament. The injuries did not help, and we wish those players a speedy recovery, but despite those, we are ready for this challenge and opportunity.”

Koen said the challenge this week, before facing Scotland at the Danie Craven Stadium in Stellenbosch on Friday 13 October, will be to refresh minds and bodies, do the necessary analysis on their opponents and fine-tune their approach for the game.

“It is very exciting; we are playing this tournament at home and that is huge for us and to face top 10 teams in the world are exactly what we want and need as a squad who have ambitions for the future,” he said.

Saturday’s Test in Hermanus was memorable for Springbok Women debutant and wing, Maceala Samboya, who scored a try and was given a yellow card shortly after for not rolling away in a tackle, following a try-saving tackle on a flying Samoan.

Samboya’s exploits made the good crowd attending the match at Hermanus High School smile.

“I never had a yellow card in my life, so when I had to leave the field, I was not quite sure where to go," Samboya said afterwards.

“It was not something I ever played through in my head, as I never planned to concede a yellow card. I now know where to go, but I am not planning on getting another yellow card," she added with a broad smile.

Samboya was more pleased with the crucial try she scored in the second half: “I am a wing, so it is part of my job, but what was pleasing for me is how it played out.

“Coach Louis always encourages us to stay in the moment on the field and I did exactly that, called for the ball at the right time and the space opened up. It was such a great feeling.”

The 24-year-old Boland Dames player said she was humbled and proud after the match: “It was a dream came true, almost unreal, knowing how far that dream seemed away at the time, but today I can only thank God, his plan for me gave me this opportunity and that is something I will cherish for the rest of my life.”

Koen will name the squad to face Scotland on Wednesday.