Ruan to boost Boks


Speaking to Stephen Nell of Die Burger, Jean de Villiers said that Ruan Pienaar gives the Boks an attacking boost.

The Springbok rugby team’s attacking game could receive a strong boost because of Ruan Pienaar’s inclusion at flyhalf, says South Africa’s midfield playmaker, Jean de Villiers.

The experienced centre, who is likely to be on Pienaar’s outside in the Test match against Wales on November 8, does not expect the Sharks scrumhalf to have trouble switching No 10.

“We trained a little with Ruan at flyhalf during the Tri-Nations series and he came on at flyhalf for the last twenty minutes or so of our last Test match,? De Villiers said on Thursday.

“I don’t think it will be a problem for him to adapt. He has outstanding ability on the attack and a lot of speed. He attacks the line well and we hope he’ll play that role for us.?

De Viliers resumed training on Thursday after missing Wednesday’s practice because of a stomach virus.

However, Schalk Burger, who has a hamstring problem, was still unable to join in. He is likely to start working out with the team only after their arrival in Wales.

De Villiers played in every minute of every Stormers match during this year’s Super 14 competition and also bore a heavy load during the international season.

But when Western Province failed to reach the Currie Cup semifinals, the star centre received a few weeks’ rest.

He was in fine form in the home Tests against Wales but expects a stronger challenge from the Dragons in Cardiff.

“We played at home and the Welsh did not have their best team on tour. Now they will be playing for positions in the British and Irish Lions squad,? he said.

“The Welsh have a lot of international experience. Our Test against Scotland may be the easiest of the three but it is never easy to play away from home. And it’s always tough to play England at Twickenham.?

De Villiers says the tour is of major importance for South Africa. The Springboks will also be playing for selection for next year’s Test matches and they would like to get the psychological upper hand in their tour.

“If we can win these Tests it will prove we are ready for the Lions. The tour may therefore have a major influence on our preparations,? De Villiers said.

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