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Marx Backed Boks Despite Early World Cup Exit

  • May 7, 2024
  • 2 min read
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Marx Backed Boks Despite Early World Cup Exit

Springbok hooker Malcolm Marx has revealed he was confident South Africa could win the Rugby World Cup in France last year, even though he only played in the opening match.

Marx suffered a knee injury in training after the Scotland game and was ruled out for the tournament. Surprisingly, the Springbok coaching staff opted not to call up a replacement hooker, believing they had sufficient cover within the squad.

This decision came under further scrutiny when Bongi Mbonambi, the remaining recognized hooker, sustained a knee injury just minutes into the final against New Zealand. Deon Fourie, the team’s oldest player who had previously played hooker, stepped in admirably.

“It’s easy to say now,” Marx admitted to Sportswire, “because the boys did an incredible job. Marco van Staden and Deon both had to fill the role at times, and they did well. The results speak for themselves.”

The Boks’ relentless performance overcame the All Blacks to win 12-11 at Stade de France and claim their fourth World Cup title, moving one ahead of New Zealand. Marx expressed his confidence in Fourie’s ability to perform under pressure, which proved to be a key factor in the team’s success.

“Definitely,” said Marx without hesitation. “He was selected for a reason, of course. You feel bad for Bongi – similar situations happened in both the 2019 final (against England) where he got injured early.”

“But everyone in the squad was fit, and as I said, the results speak volumes. The dedication from the management and players throughout the tournament was phenomenal.”

Marx was speaking at the 17th edition of the SA Sports Awards in Sun City, where SARU, president Mark Alexander, captain Siya Kolisi, Eben Etzebeth, and Manie Libbok were recognized for their achievements during the previous season.

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