Australia's forwards have to be more competitive, says Michael Lynagh

Last Updated: 27/09/13 10:57am

It's been a tough year for Australia but a win against South Africa on Saturday would throw a different light on Ewen McKenzie's tenure.

However the Springboks are still in the hunt for their first title in four years and a big win in Cape Town may just set up a Championship decider against New Zealand a week later.

Australian have made some changes in the backline with McKenzie deciding to stick with Nick White at halfback - with Will Genia still on the bench. Tevita Kuridrani gets a start at outside centre with Adam Ashley Cooper moving to the wing.

However they can make all the changes in the backline they want but if the forwards do not compete against this gargantuan Springbok pack then it does not matter who is in the backs.

"I'm nervous, we were lucky to beat Argentina and it does not get any easier," said Michael Lynagh on the Rugby Club.

"We are also getting smashed at the breakdown and poor Michael Hooper is on his own - it's a lone battle for him. We have got to throw more numbers into that area and secure the ball"

Michael Lynagh

"We have not won in Cape Town since 1992 so it is a big, tough assignment against this huge South Africa pack. I am not confident at all.

"It's been tough since we lost the Lions series and there are a lot of things that we need to improve. Our defence has been poor - these South African's are so big that when you go to tackle them they are still making five or ten yards and getting on the front foot.

"We are also getting smashed at the breakdown and poor Michael Hooper is on his own - it's a lone battle for him. We have got to throw more numbers into that area and secure the ball."

Power

Former Springbok and current Saracens scrum-half Neil de Kock believes South Africa are really going to turn the power on come Saturday and says that their coach Heyneke Meyer will keep them focused on the job in hand.

"I think it is going to be a huge reaction from the Boks this weekend," said De Kock.

"They are still smarting after the drama in Auckland against New Zealand and will come out very positive this weekend. They will stick to what they are strong at - I have no doubt that Heyneke Meyer will go back to plan A, that is playing in the right areas of the field, a completely solid scrum with a good maul and keep the Aussies under pressure.

"There is a bit of concern that they have their eye on the final game against the All Blacks but Meyer will keep them focused on Australia."

Quality

While it may be all about the Bok power over the weekend, Will Greenwood says that in fullback Willie Le Roux, they have got something that they have not had for awhile.

"Without stereotyping South African backs, they want to stick it under one arm and go over you and really dominate you physically.

"But Willie Le Roux is something else, I love this kid. He has made more metres than anyone else in this Championship and he is up against some big guns in terms of doing that.

"Why is he such a good footballer? Because the ball is always in two hands - you don't know whether to step in, hang off. He is a quality, quality footballer."

Watch South Africa take on Australia, 4pm, Sat, Sky Sports 2HD