Two standout players over Round 5’s fixtures of the inaugural Rugby Championship included that of Bryan Habana and Cory Jane – two wingers who showed their worth for their respective national sides by picking up 3-tries a-piece.
Habana proved a handful for the Wallabies, while Cory Jane adopted the role of the villain against the aspirational Argentinians, and the two world-class wingers will meet this weekend at Soccer City.
While Habana is known for the number 11 jersey, he’s found himself coming into his own on the right wing, donning the number 14 as of late. This puts himself and Cory Jane (a specialist left-winger) on opposite sides against one another, but given the work rate of both players, a meeting of the two is inevitable.
But whether they face-off is irrelevant, as their impact for the team as a whole is where it counts.
Habana has silenced many critics by showcasing his trademark speed and line-breaking ability in heaps over the last season. Habana always finds himself on-hand to receive short balls off a set-piece. The Stormers flyer showed what he could do with quick-ball against the All Blacks in Dunedin, scoring a dazzling individual try in the right corner.
Habana has also physically expressed his urgency, by speeding up the game with tap-penalties, quick-lineouts and any other way he can get the tempo up.
Habana will be threat to the AB’s, as they’ll need to watch his mid-field work, along with his obvious pace out-wide.
On the other end of things is Cory Jane, and what the All Blacks winger lacks in size, he makes up for in pace, strength and intelligence.
Jane showed the full arsenal of his dangerous traits against the Pumas, with a cleverly-plucked intercept, followed by great speed and an impressive hand-off to evade the tackle-attempt of Juan Martin Hernandez.
Jane has showed his love to counter-attack from downfield kicks, and as he proved throughout Super Rugby, links up well with his other winger and fullback.
Jane always seems to be on the end of All Black’s set moves and will be a lethal factor in New Zealand’s attack on Saturday.
The Springboks will need to keep a close eye on the elusive Cory Jane, as he won’t overlook any chances at crossing the tryline.