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Shakes Mashaba sympathises with Heyneke Meyer

Mashaba said the Bafana team are behind the Boks and know they can turn things around.

The Springbok coach, Heyneke Meyer with Bafana Bafana coach, Shakes Mashaba ahead of the Boks send off. Picture: Safa.

JOHANNESBURG - Bafana Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba says he's symphathetic to Springboks coach Heyneke Meyer following the loss in their opening match of the 2015 Rugby World Cup currently underway in England.

The South Africans were defeated 34-32 by Japan on Saturday in Brighton.

"I would like to convey my symphathies to the coach of the Springboks after their loss to Japan. While he, as well as millions of South Africans, had high hopes about that match, the unthinkable happened but it must not drain their energy," said Mashaba.

The Bafana coach visited the team before their departure to England and spent some time with Meyer.

"As Bafana Bafana we are behind them and know they can turn things around. They should just put their shoulders to the wheel and keep on working hard. The match is in the past, but it is critical to refer to that defeat and see what happened so as not to repeat the same mistakes again.

"We were and are still disappointed at the outcome but it's not the end of the tournament. We still believe and have a lot of trust in the team. All the best against Samoa on Saturday, we know you can do it."

South Africa take on Samoa on Saturday in Birmingham and must still face the USA and Scotland.

The Springboks are currently in third place, two points adrift of Samoa and Japan.

Scotland and the USA are fourth and fifth respectively.

Visit the Eyewitness News special Rugby World Cup 2015 portal.

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