URC – “There Are No Second Chances And Making The Top Eight Is Non-negotiable” – Jaque Fourie


The Emirates Lions are back in Johannesburg this weekend as they take on Irish giants Leinster in Round 14 of the Vodacom United Rugby Championship. Still in the hunt for a play-off spot (top-eight finish), the host is well aware of the challenges the next few weeks will bring but is hoping the support from Joburg will push them towards that goal.

Ahead of Leinster, former Springbok centre and now Emirates Lions defence guru, Jaque Fourie says being back home after three weeks on the road is an opportunity for players and management to reset and focus on the upcoming task.

“We were disappointing against Ospreys and Benetton but we are back home now and we needed to reset ourselves. There are no second chances and making the top eight is non-negotiable.

“To do that we need to win all our home games and we need consistency – in terms of how we want to play and what our brand is – we need to get that right every week.

Fourie went on to say that his side is not really concerned about which side Leinster fields on the day amid speculation that the Irish outfit travelled to South Africa with their second stringers.

“They will be well prepared and whichever team they field will be a big challenge for us,” he said.

“If you have a look at the game we played last season, I think with 10 minutes to go we were still ahead and the second-string guys that they brought just came back and won that game,” said Fourie.

“They have such good depth in their squad, so it doesn’t matter what team they bring. Most of their second-string guys would walk into any other first team in this competition. So the squad they have got is really strong,” concluded.