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Rassie Erasmus: 'Outspoken' Irish became full of themselves

By Ian Cameron
South Africa's director of rugby Rassie Erasmus reacts prior to the Summer Series international rugby union match between South Africa and Wales at Twickenham Stadium, south-west London, on June 22, 2024. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP) (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)

Springboks head coach Rassie Erasmus has accused the ‘outspoken’ Irish of becoming full of themselves, while also claiming there’s jealousy directed at the Irish regarding their over-achievement in rugby.

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Speaking in a clip released by the official Springboks social media accounts, Erasmus complemented Ireland before claiming that they had become ‘windgat’ – an Afrikaans word for a show-off.

If the clip was meant to act as a metaphorical olive branch between South Africa and Ireland rugby fans, or another subtle dig at the Irish to amp up Saturday’s Test match in Pretoria,  is unclear.

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“Contrary to what most people think, I can say nothing bad about the Irish. The media likes to hype it up a lot. I loved it when I was there [as head coach of Munster]. The Irish when I got there, they minded me with my rough Afrikaans accent. I learned a hell of a lot when I was there.

“I’m very good friends with most of the players there. I think sometimes, I’ll say it as it is, people are a bit jealous that a country like them with only four or five million people is number 1, 2 in the world. They only have 160 professional rugby players.

“When they do very well they are very proud and outspoken about it [cuts to Irish fans bragging outside the Stade de France at the Rugby World Cup].

“But you guys were a bit full of yourselves. You were a bit windgat, you know, and now you see… [cuts to pictures of Bundee Aki crying after the quarter-final exit at the Rugby World Cup].

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“It’s not something in Irish culture that’s frowned upon. It’s passion… it’s ‘We love our team’ and ‘listen if you come in our way we are going to give you some stick’,

“I wouldn’t be too hard on them, they’re proud for what they are achieving and if they want to be competitive and they rate themselves with the teams up there.”

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There has been much talk in South African rugby circles that Ireland have somehow disrespected South Africa and the Springboks, who haven’t beaten the men in green in eight years, and Erasmus’ comments again seem to play into that narrative, whether the slights are real or imagined.

Ireland play the first match of their two-Test series against South Africa this Saturday at Loftus Versfeld.

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Comments

51 Comments
J
Jon 15 days ago

Haha great video, and so true! Love the look of those Irish fans with a bit of a grin on at their cheeky comments.

B
Barry 16 days ago

We all know what Rassie is full of…

M
Moby 16 days ago

I think the journo Ian Cameron is being a little irresponsible. The most part of the clip surrounded Rassie complimented the Irish. Cameron could have led with the heading: “I learned a hell of a lot when I was there” referring to his stint with Munster. The Munster players all seem to be unanimous in their praise for him. Once again it’s the journo’s having some puerile fun. Check out the choice of photo of Rassie too. Really? Jack Nicholson in the shining looks More passive.

D
Dawid 16 days ago

Rassie: “I respect Irish fans so much.”

Rugbypass: “lets see if we can take it out of context”

Rugbypass you are owned by world rugby. Should be promoting those values not promoting negativity.

p
paul 16 days ago

Spitting Image had it right almost 40 years ago…

B
Bull Shark 16 days ago

Is a bit of trash talking, 💩 stirring, good for the game? Or should we all mind our Ps and Qs?

Sure drives a bit of attention (eyes and money) towards the matches. Who actually cares who gets offended by who said what?

I’m sure the boys will share a beer and have a braai - and the world will keep turning.

J
Johann 16 days ago

Boys, Ireland play brutal, thuggish rugby at times ask Bismarck about BOD’s tackle and O’Mahony knows how to tickle where there's an itch. But I have been to Ireland and they are not an arrogant people. Usually diminutive in their language for a reason.

As a South African I can tell you our camp has been verbose and I think for the most part the cultural nuance of “See you in the final” is lost on South Africans that don't believe it to be “Best of luck”.

I think the boys from the Emerald Isle have plenty to cry about in their own history of division and loss. They find another grear against the English from that place. We Pride ourselves on the same. Motive to win.

Problem is Messer's O’Connel and Farrel have been silent and we have fed that beast. No shots coming from Ireland. Zero. And for all the talk about their URC loss in the Semi, they took a leaf from Glasgow that spoke no evil, went hush and pitched on game day.

We are going to get a shock and I expect a vastly explosive Ireland. Our boys are too playful and bantery since Brown is Rassie's bro’. We are at risk of losing our steel.

Finally, let's not forget Leicester are breathing fire and smarting from their loss and have another look at the same patch of green. Also Jacques Nienaber's intellectual capital will help Ireland.

I am rooting for SA, but I think we are feeding the Irish beast with gamesmanship that is not working for us but rather against us.

D
Dan 16 days ago

Amusing how much utter 💩 Rassie spews now to soothe his thickos in SA.

He knew he’d never get away with at Munster - they know too much about the sport to put up with that display.

T
Turlough 16 days ago

“But you guys were a bit full of yourselves. You were a bit windgat, you know, and now you see…”

Munster and Ireland provide Erasmus and de Allende with warm welcomes for many years. We get repaid by lies and insults. Honestly, can’t stand playing SA. Thoroughly unpleasant, hateful experience. Seems to be targetting Bundi Aki with a cheap shot in this video. Let’s do our best to take these arrogant gits down a peg and get out of there. Hopefully, won’t have to deal with their arrogance for another year.

S
Shaylen 16 days ago

Gotta love Rassie🤣

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