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Sep 14, 2015

Pollard purrs as Du Preez set to return

EASTBOURNE, England (Reuters) – The prospect of the long-awaited return to the South African team of veteran scrumhalf Fourie du Preez for Saturday’s Rugby World Cup game against Japan in Brighton has his potential halfback partner purring with pleasure.

“It’s great to have him back. He’s probably one of the best decision makers on the field. He can control the pace of the game, he can decide what happens,” said flyhalf Handre Pollard on Monday.

Sep 14, 2015

Rugby-Pollard purrs as Du Preez set to return

EASTBOURNE, England, Sept 14 (Reuters) – The prospect of the long-awaited return to the South African team of veteran scrumhalf Fourie du Preez for Saturday’s Rugby World Cup game against Japan in Brighton has his potential halfback partner purring with pleasure.

“It’s great to have him back. He’s probably one of the best decision makers on the field. He can control the pace of the game, he can decide what happens,” said flyhalf Handre Pollard on Monday.

Sep 14, 2015

Boks prioritise controlling pace against Japan

EASTBOURNE, England (Reuters) – Controlling the pace of the game is a priority for South Africa as they plan for their opening Rugby World Cup fixture against Japan in Brighton on Saturday, assistant coach John McFarland said on Monday.

“Japan definitely pose a threat with the speed of their game and it is up to us to control the pace of the game. They’ve got some players with Super Rugby experience and they are a well-coached team, coached by a guy who has been involved in winning a World Cup (Australian Eddie Jones),” McFarland said.

Sep 14, 2015

Rugby-Boks prioritise controlling pace against Japan

EASTBOURNE, England, Sept 14 (Reuters) – Controlling the pace of the game is a priority for South Africa as they plan for their opening Rugby World Cup fixture against Japan in Brighton on Saturday, assistant coach John McFarland said on Monday.

“Japan definitely pose a threat with the speed of their game and it is up to us to control the pace of the game. They’ve got some players with Super Rugby experience and they are a well-coached team, coached by a guy who has been involved in winning a World Cup (Australian Eddie Jones),” McFarland said.

Sep 14, 2015

Dutch links add familiar flavour to Man United visit

LONDON (Reuters) – An air of familiarity will pervade the Champions League return of PSV Eindhoven and Manchester United when they open their Group B campaign in the Netherlands on Tuesday.

There is a strong Dutch connection at the English club, back in the competition after missing out on continental football last season, and manager Louis van Gaal will be up against one of his former players.

Sep 14, 2015

Soccer-Dutch links add familiar flavour to Man Utd visit

LONDON, Sept 14 (Reuters) – An air of familiarity will pervade the Champions League return of PSV Eindhoven and Manchester United when they open their Group B campaign in the Netherlands on Tuesday.

There is a strong Dutch connection at the English club, back in the competition after missing out on continental football last season, and manager Louis van Gaal will be up against one of his former players.

Sep 13, 2015

Rugby-McCaw wants retirement talk to wait

LONDON, Sept 13 (Reuters) – Richie McCaw’s future on the rugby field remains a matter for conjecture, with the New Zealand captain saying on Sunday he did not want retirement talk to overshadow playing at the Rugby World Cup.

“I haven’t made a final decision yet although I’ve given a reasonably strong hint,” McCaw told Reuters.

Sep 13, 2015

No lucky charm as South Africa captain looks for better fortune

EASTBOURNE, England (Reuters) – South Africa captain Jean de Villiers has not taken to tucking a rabbit’s foot into his pocket, or under his pillow, even if his past Rugby World Cup experiences make turning to lucky charms quite understandable.

Injury has blighted the Springbok centre’s previous World Cups, with just a handful of his 107 caps over the last 13 years coming at the tournament.

Sep 13, 2015

Rugby-No lucky charm as South Africa captain looks for better fortune

EASTBOURNE, England, Sept 13 (Reuters) – South Africa captain Jean de Villiers has not taken to tucking a rabbit’s foot into his pocket, or under his pillow, even if his past Rugby World Cup experiences make turning to lucky charms quite understandable.

Injury has blighted the Springbok centre’s previous World Cups, with just a handful of his 107 caps over the last 13 years coming at the tournament.

Sep 12, 2015

Rugby-South Africa prepare three-point plan for World Cup glory

EASTBOURNE, England, Sept 12 (Reuters) – – Mastery of scrums, line drives and the breakdown will win the World Cup, South Africa coach Heyneke Meyer said after his 31-man squad arrived for the tournament on Saturday.

“These are three areas that will determine the outcome of the tournament and we have spent a lot of time working on them,” Meyer said.