Springboks coach Rassie Erasmus to step down after RWC final

South Africa coach Rassie Erasmus will mentor the side for the final time on Saturday. Photo by Marcelo Endelli/Getty Images

South Africa head coach Rassie Erasmus will mentor his final Test with the Springboks when they take on England in the Rugby World Cup final on Saturday, he has confirmed.

Erasmus has led the Boks to their third World Cup final, having beaten Wales in the semifinals, and says he would like to remain involved with the team in a lesser capacity, in order to focus on his family.

The former international forward was quoted on SA Rugby Mag: "It's probably my last Test match. It is my last Test match of being head coach. It's an emotional one. I didn't think 25 Tests would go that quickly.

"When I came back from Munster, I thought it would be more about focusing on my family as well as thinking more strategically in terms of helping the schoolboys, helping the sevens, and helping the Bok coach.

"When you become the Bok coach you become more hands-on, your adrenaline starts pumping and you really become part of it. It's wonderful to be here. It's sad that there are only three days and then it's all over."

As for his future, and that of the team, Erasmus urged the team and whomever takes over as coach to continue to build on the recent success, after a low point two years ago when Erasmus took the job.

He added: "I will still be heavily involved whatever way we go in terms of the next Bok coach. I must say, just being the coach gave me such hope again for South African rugby.

"Two years ago, everybody was talking about this hope thing, but I was like, let's just focus on the rugby. I've changed my mind. If we play with passion and people see it, it can help them forget about their problems.

"We have to use this platform. No matter what happens on Saturday, we have to use what we've built to take us forward in the next six or seven years."

As for the final, he said that not winning it would not be a catastrophe, as long as they players gave it their all in the process: "The only failure is not giving everything.

"When you walk off the field and you realise that you didn't give everything and you realise that you were beaten by a lesser team ... that's not good enough.

"We can live with not beating England on Saturday as long as we know that we gave everything. That's life."