CJ Stander Describes Just How Intense Test Level Rugby Is
Test level rugby is a completely different ball game.
CJ Stander made his Ireland debut this time last year and got his first taste of Test level rugby. For most that step-up is a long, hard road to perfection, for Stander it was man of the match in his first game.
Stander isn’t most rugby players however, and that’s probably why. The South African born star has been the in-form player for both club and country in the last twelve months and shows no signs of slowing down.
Heading into the Six Nations however, he has described just how difficult that step up to international level is.
“Everything has to be an instinct,” Stander told The42.
“You can’t think about something, because those few seconds – one, two, three seconds where you’re thinking of something, someone is going to give you a big tackle.
“The margins are a lot smaller. So in the league you might get a big carry because someone made a bad decision in defence. But (at Test level) if you make a bad decision about carrying you’re gonna get smashed.”
Adapt to survive.