The Boks’ original flight from Johannesburg to Sydney was cancelled on Thursday night due to complications relating to flight staff, but the squad departed for Australia at midday on Friday, with the coaches and conditioning staff swiftly adapting the team’s training programme.
The Boks arrived in Sydney early on Saturday morning and then made the short trip to Adelaide – with a warm welcome from SA supporters awaiting the squad at the airport – where they will play their first of two Tests against the Wallabies at the Adelaide Oval on Saturday, 27 August.
The team wasted no time getting into the swing of things with a gym session lined up for Saturday afternoon and another Sunday, while they will resume full field training sessions on Monday.
South Africa face the Wallabies in their second Test in Sydney on Saturday, 3 September, before taking on Argentina in two Tests, in Buenos Aires (17 September) and Durban (24 September) respectively.
“The players rested well on the plane, and everyone is excited to be in Australia are looking forward to our two Tests against the Wallabies,” said Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber.
“I must commend our operational staff for the swift manner in which they dealt with the cancellation of our original flight and for making things as simple as possible for the team to hop onto the next available flight.
“The professional manner in which the situation was dealt with resulted in minimal disruption to our programme, which is certainly pleasing from a coaching perspective.”
Nienaber added: “The team will have flush-out gym sessions in the next two days to recover from the travel, and we will follow our usual Test week programme from tomorrow.
“This is going to be a massive week for us, and everyone understands the importance of ensuring that they recover as well as possible so that we can train full-out on Monday as we look to get our Castle Lager Rugby Championship campaign back on track.
“We haven’t beaten Australia at home since 2013, so we are under no illusions about the challenge that lies ahead. We will have to be at best to start our tour on a positive note.”