Jacobson ready to face South Africa for the first time

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He's regained the starting spot he secured for the game, only to go down with a stomach complaint on the eve of the Townsville Test. But having completed his recovery, he is keen to build on the impact he has made on the All Blacks game during the 2021 season.


Jacobson said: "It's good to be back. I probably only just started feeling normal again yesterday [Wednesday]. It's pleasing to be back with a bit of energy in my sails."


He was disappointed to miss out on the centennial Test last week but is excited to face South Africa for the first time in his nine Test career.


"I'm lucky enough to get another opportunity so I'm looking forward to that," he said.


While there were some battered All Blacks bodies earlier in the week, Jacobson said he was looking forward to getting in and testing himself against one of the more physical forward packs in the world.


His illness did provide him with a chance to watch the Springboks in action at close hand, and he was keen to contribute to a result that wasn't as close.


"They are a great team. We just have to be prepared for that and go in firing," he said.


The All Blacks didn't get to play the brand they enjoyed, but they took lessons from the game and were prepared for anything from South Africa this weekend.



But the All Blacks were looking to nail some details they hadn't managed in Townsville, he said.


While Jacobson enjoyed the All Blacks play of committing to moving the ball around, he wasn't afraid of the physical contest the Springboks impose.


"Nobody probably likes running into brick walls all day. It's good when we try to spin the ball around a little bit and make a little bit of space.


"But, I do enjoy the physical match-up as well. It's a real punch-for-punch sort of set-up.


"We are looking to, hopefully, land some punches, but then have a bit more skill on the outside of that this weekend, and exploit a few spaces," he said.


Matched against Springbok No8 Duane Vermeulen for the first time, he was looking forward to that contest.


"He's been doing it for a few years now and is probably one of the better No8s in the world. He goes out there and he throws his body on the line, is physical and pretty skilful as well," he said.


Improving the contest at the breakdown would be one of the challenges. That was not only for the loose forwards but the team overall. There was also a need not to chase everything but to be patient and sometimes to let the play come to them.


"You have to bid your time and let the opportunity come and take it when it comes," he said.


As a Chiefs teammate of centre Quinn Tupaea, Jacobson was not surprised at Tupaea securing the penalty at the turnover that provided the penalty goal chance for fullback Jordie Barrett to win the Test.


"It was top work for Quinn. He's been working away at it all season and good on him for getting over it. He's a muscle ball over that and pretty hard to move so kudos to him," he said.


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