The Springbok Women departed for London on their Rugby World Cup warm-up tour on Wednesday in high spirits after an intense one-week training camp in Pretoria. The tour will serve as the team's main preparation for the IRB Women's Rugby World Cup in France.
This tour has been made possible by a R2,3m grant by the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund.
The Springbok Women will face the Nomads twice on June 28 and July 1 respectively, before travelling to France for a Test match against the World Cup hosts in Marcoussis, where the pool stages of the World Cup will be hosted.
The World Cup will be played from August 1 to 17.
“The training camp in Pretoria was very productive for this tour as well as for the World Cup as it allowed us to spend a lot of time on our game plan and structures, while also getting the various player combinations to gel,” said Springbok Women's coach Lawrence Sephaka.
“The players also had sufficient time to bond off the field, which is important before a challenging tour.”
The team will arrive in London on Thursday morning, with their first clash against the Nomads taking place on Saturday at 14h00, which will give the players sufficient time to recover from the trip.
But with most of the preparation completed at the training camp, Sephaka said they would manage the players carefully on Thursday and Friday.
“The players had a series of high-intensity training sessions in the last week, which was planned in advance so that we could tone down the tempo of our training closer to match day,”said Sephaka.
“So we plan to manage their work load wisely when we arrive in London to ensure that they are fresh when they take to the field.
“The Nomads are a quality team comprised of a few international fringe players and a several experienced players, so we are expecting them to tests us. Some of the players have played against the Nomads before, so they know that they will have to approach the match as seriously as the Test against France.”
The Springbok Women's squad for Saturday's clash will be announced on Friday.