All Blacks coach Steve Hansen says the Wallabies’ bold move to start both star openside flankers David Pocock and Michael Hooper provides weaknesses to exploit in Saturday’s Rugby Championship decider.
Wallabies coach Michael Cheika has opted to play Pocock out of position at No.8 in order to get both loose forward terriers into the starting side together for the first time in the clash at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium.
Hansen was half expecting the ploy, especially after his team struggled at the breakdown and conceded turnovers in their last-start win over South Africa as the Springboks started two loose forward ball scavengers, Heinrich Brussow and Schalk Burger.
“It’s not a surprise is it, particularly after what the Boks did last week,” Hansen said in Sydney on Thursday.
“They were particularly good with their two fetchers on the track. They caused us problems for a while, so I don’t think you needed to be a rocket scientist to work out he (Cheika) would probably go with that.
“Whilst that gives (the Wallabies) strength in some areas it probably weakens them in others.
“So we’ve just got to make sure we take advantage of those weaknesses and make sure that we don’t allow them to have a field day at the breakdown.”