Strauss: Scots will face music from Boklash

Warrior Springbok Josh Strauss has warned Scotland that South Africa will be going all out for revenge at Murrayfield tomorrow.

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The two sides last met two years ago at the home of Scottish Rugby when Andy Robinson's men claimed a famous victory over the then reigning world champions by 21-17, thanks in no small part to the boot of former Glasgow star Dan Parks.

Tomorrow's Test will be the 22nd meeting between the sides since the first Test in 1906, with the Springboks winning 16 and losing five.

And South African-born Glasgow back-row star Strauss, who knows all about the Boks side having played with and against most of their team before his move to Warriors this season, is forecasting a hard match for Robbo's men.

He said: "The Springboks took a lot of criticism back home for the way they won in Ireland last week and that will have hurt. On top of that, they don't like to be turned over and that defeat at Murrayfield, when they were the reigning world champions really stung them.

"Back home, it did not go down well at all and I think it will make the 2012 touring Springboks absolutely determined and focused to get the win tomorrow.

"From having spoken to a few of the lads the big thing for them at Murrayfield will be to start a lot better than they did in Ireland last time out.

"So Scotland are going to have to be very strong in the set-piece at the scrum and off the Bok line out they will have to nullify their driving mauls. That is what battered the Irish into defeat and it's a strong part of the South African game."

The Scots need to win tomorrow and beat Tonga a week later to secure a second seed berth for the England 2015 Rugby World Cup in three years' time.

Stakes are high and Strauss knows all about the powerful ball carrying of the Boks back row from his SuperRugby battles with them. And he is convinced Scotland will do well to subdue the all-out brute force of his countrymen.

He said: "Willem Alberts is a monster but with Francois Louw and Duane Vermeulen in tandem they will take some stopping. I also rate Eben Etzebeth in the second row very highly and he could put the Scottish ball at the line out under real pressure.

"I think Scotland can expect a physical contest that is a level up from the one they got from the All Blacks last weekend.

"They will have to be prepared to sacrifice their bodies because when a Springbok pulls on that green and gold shirt he is prepared to die for it.

"Scotland have picked Euan Murray at tight head as he did so well for the British Lions against the Boks, but the whole Scottish tight five faces a testing afternoon. I have to back the Boks to win as they have a real point to prove."

Meanwhile, fans who played their part in selling out Murrayfield for last Sunday's EMC Test against New Zealand are being invited to secure a unique memento of the day.

Scotland team sponsor RBS commissioned a 360-degree, multi-billion pixel image of the crowd and is now urging supporters to go online and make themselves part of the picture and enter a competition to win a signed Scotland shirt.

To view RBS FanPic and locate themselves in the crowd, log on to www.rbs.co.uk/scottishrugby.

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