Joel Stransky: South Africa will struggle to beat England, Italy or Wales

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Watching South Africa 'a slap in the face'

The current South Africa side are "very average" and a "great concern", says World Cup winner Joel Stransky.

The Springboks begin their end-of-season tour against the Barbarians at Wembley on Saturday, before playing Tests against England, Italy and Wales.

Stransky, 49, whose drop-goal sealed the 1995 World Cup for South Africa, told BBC Radio 5 live: "We are going to suffer defeats - that's the reality.

"I don't think this is a team that can beat England."

He added: "It's a team that will struggle against Wales. It's a team that might even struggle against Italy. The likelihood is we are going to experience defeat."

South Africa suffered a record 57-15 defeat by New Zealand in Durban last month in their most recent match, described by Stransky as a "proper slap in the face".

The former fly-half said some of the team's young players must "embrace the Springbok culture a little bit better and put their bodies and hearts on the line".

Since South Africa lost in the World Cup semi-finals last year, senior players Victor Matfield, Fourie du Preez, Schalk Burger and Jean de Villiers have retired or been unavailable for international duty, while Allister Coetzee has replaced Heyneke Meyer as head coach.

"Three years ago we had a really good side. Five years ago we had a great side. Now we have a very average side," said Stransky.

"They're not particularly well coached, but if you look at the 15 players who are going to take to the field, it's not a team that can win a World Cup.

"It's not a group of players who are going to put fear into the opposition and that for us is a great concern."

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