Wednesday 20 November 2019

Compiled by Ruaidhri O'Connor

Hansen and Meyer: a beer-based bromance

Heyneke Meyer is hoping it's his shout on Saturday night when he and Steve Hansen meet for their traditional post-match drink at Twickenham.

South Africa and New Zealand enjoy the game's most enduring rivalry, but their coaches appear to be in the midst of rugby's greatest bromance. Hansen texted Meyer (above) after the Springboks' shock defeat to Japan, a mark of the relationship the two head coaches enjoy.

"We've started a tradition where the first time I'd lost I was very down, he came over and I think that's great about rugby - he came over and brought me a beer," Meyer explained yesterday. "He said 'listen, I know how you feel, I know the pressure on you, just have a beer with me' and I really respect that.

"The second game we played away was very close and we lost that game as well, and he came looking for me with another beer afterwards. He gave it to me and we started talking about his family, and his wife, and we know we're under the same pressure.

"I've said to him 'Steve you know what, I can't wait for the first day I can bring you the beer', because the winning coach always brings the beer. At Ellis Park it was only the once. I said the first time we beat you I'll bring you a case of beer.

"So hopefully on Saturday, I can bring him a case of beers."

England's misery

compounded in rout

After writing, podcasting and pontificating about the World Cup for more than a month, the travelling hacks finally got to put their money where their mouths were on Tuesday night in the traditional media match.

This was a chance for England to redeem themselves with one final win on home soil, but up against the Rest of the World it was always going to be a tough task.

With the Irish Independent flying the flag for the mostly departed Irish media contingent, it was a comfortable evening for the composite side. Fittingly, given they were decked out in all black, it was a pair of New Zealanders at scrum-half and out-half who did the damage in a free-flowing, high-paced and error-strewn affair that finished 38-12.

Quote of the day

"I thought I'd be doing a couple of speaking gigs, get a bit of cash!"

- Matt Giteau's World Cup has panned out somewhat differently than expected after Michael Cheika changed the ARU rules to get him back.

Number of the day

400 Bryan Habana has played every minute of every game for the Springboks at this tournament. He can break Jonah Lomu's all-time record of 15 World Cup tries if he crosses on Saturday.

Compiled by Ruaidhri O'Connor

Irish Independent

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