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Muliaina: Springboks will kick

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Sportal.co.nz     04 Sep 2009     Getty Images

The low-risk strategy reaped reward for the world champions in their two wins against the All Blacks on home soil when they kicked deep to force Richie McCaw's men to counter-attack then ramped up the pressure at the breakdown to earn penalties that Morne Steyn banged over with regularity.

"There's no doubting that their kicking game is right up there at the moment, so I wouldn't be surprised if they still kept that mentality," Muliaina said.

"Obviously in Perth they played a lot more and the Australians probably let themselves down a bit early in that first half which allowed them to play a bit better."

"But I still think they will go a lot for the aerial and we just have to get a whole lot better at that."

The All Blacks had a one-day training camp in Christchurch on Wednesday and raising the standard of the players' skill level and execution was high on the agenda.

"Getting our skills right and our execution, that's what we lacked in Durban and probably Bloemfontein as well," Muliaina added. "We put ourselves under a lot of pressure and our skills and execution of our roles weren't up to it."

"There was a little bit done on that today to make sure we get it right for [the Test]."

Also under the spotlight was the line-out where the All Blacks struggled against Victor Matfield and Bakkies Botha in South Africa.

"We have just got to get better at the set piece," said coach Graham Henry.

"We were flaky at the set piece, particularly the line-out in South Africa and if we don't improve that for this Test it's going to be very difficult for us so we just have to make sure our set piece ball is good and go from there."

South Africa could win the Tri Nations title - its first since 2004 - if it beats Australia on Saturday, although Henry was hoping its trans-Tasman foes could keep the competition alive for another week.

"They are up against it so they will be desperate and if a team is desperate they can do anything," he said.