Thu, 22 Aug 2019

Wellington - All Blacks lock Brodie Retallick predicted fireworks against the Springboks in Wellington this Saturday, as the southern hemisphere rivals both seek a mental edge ahead of the Rugby World Cup.

Kick-off is at 09:35 SA time and the match will be screened live on SuperSport 1.

The Rugby Championship clash is a dress rehearsal for the global showpiece in Japan, where New Zealand and South Africa will face each other in their opening Pool B match on September 21.

Adding further spice to this weekend's fixture, the Springboks upset the world champions 36-34 a year ago when they last played in the New Zealand capital.

Retallick noted that New Zealand and South Africa both rested key players for their victories over Argentina and Australia respectively last weekend with the Wellington showdown in mind.

"I think it's going to be a fiery one... there's going to be some fresh bodies, so no doubt there's going to be plenty of energy," he said.

"They won here last time in Wellington and obviously we want to be winning every time, so I guess it'll be a big one. Wait and see."

Assistant coach Ian Foster confirmed the All Blacks were fired up as they prepare to chase their third straight World Cup and fourth overall.

"It's on everyone's mind, you can't deny that," he said.

"That brings out a real hunger, particularly in your top athletes who have been eyeing the prize for a long, long time.

"There's no doubt there's an edge in the group."

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