Meyer only interested in winning

Heyneke Meyer took charge of South Africa’s rugby team in January, succeeding Peter de Villiers.

Heyneke Meyer took charge of South Africa’s rugby team in January, succeeding Peter de Villiers.

CAPE TOWN - Springboks coach Heyneke Meyer is patently clear about his primary task in charge of South Africa's rugby team - nothing but winning will suffice.

"I believe in two types of rugby; winning rugby and losing rugby, there is nothing in between for me," said the man entrusted with the fortunes of the Springboks over the next four years.

"I've always said attack puts bums on seats but defence wins games. I'll rather take an ugly win than lose a game playing great rugby," he told Reuters in an interview ahead of his debut series against England in June.

Former Leicester and Bulls coach Meyer, 44, took charge in January, succeeding the controversial Peter de Villiers.

There will no revolutionary change in approach or shift away from the tough physical game characteristic of South Africa for decades.

"I intend to play to South Africa's strengths which is great big forwards and skillful backs," Meyer added.

Any thoughts of the new coach carrying on with the colourful quotes and bizarre expressions voiced by De Villiers are quickly dispelled.

Meyer comes to the job after South Africa's failure to successfully defend their World Cup crown in New Zealand last year, where they lost in the quarter-finals to Australia, and at a time when many long serving players have ended their international careers.