Springboks Director of Rugby Rassie Erasmus is one of the most enigmatic characters the sport has ever seen.
A skilful ball-playing backrow during his playing days, Erasmus would feature on 36 occasions for Boks between 1997 – 2001.
Three years after hanging up his boots, Erasmus would find himself in the coaching box of his beloved Free State Cheetahs in 2004.
Winning back-to-back Currie Cup titles in 2005 & 2006, Erasmus proved his coaching ability from the off.
For all of his brilliance as a coach, Erasmus’s greatest strength has always been his ability to work with the right people.
No coach has been alongside Erasmus longer than his long-term friend Jacques Nienaber. Having met during their army days back in the early 90s, the duo have gone on to form arguably coaching’s greatest double act.
Initially starting as a team physio with the Cheetahs in 1997, Nienaber would work alongside his old buddy, who at the time was a player for the union.
Fast forward to 2004, and Nienaber would then be the team’s strength and conditioning. It would take four years, and a move with Erasmus to Cape Town before Nienaber would take a more hands-on coaching role.
As Erasmus took over the reins at Super Rugby franchise, the Stormers Nienaber would become the teams’ defence coach.
Since then, Nienaber has been exclusively a rugby coach alongside Erasmus, with the duo taking the reigns at Irish powerhouse Munster in 2016 before returning to the Springboks in 2018.
During their time in charge, the Boks won a Rugby World Cup in 2019 and are now amongst the favourites to once again win the game’s top prize.
Clearly, this level of success has taken not just hard work, sacrifice and dedication but exceptional rugby intellect to achieve.
Continually looking to improve their team, the duo have, at times, employed left-field tactics that have left fans and opponents scratching their heads.
One such move that has been a hot topic of conversation at this year’s Rugby World Cup has been their use of a traffic light system in the coaches’ box.
First coming to prominence during the Springboks’ opening round victory over Scotland, the system had journos, fans and opposition guessing just what they were up to.
Initially, brushing the system off as nothing more than a tool to communicate with their medical staff. The Springbok coaches have now been found out…
Putting their finest investigative journalists on the job, South Africa Rugby site Rugby365 has now uncovered the dastardly meaning behind the lights system.
We must warn you, ladies and gentlemen it is one of the most unsportsmanlike endeavours we have ever seen.