Springbok squad for UK tour

October 28, 2012
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The Springboks will travel to the Northern Hemisphere next weekend with five uncapped players but without their all-time leading try-scorer and most experienced player, Bryan Habana.

Habana was the latest key player to be added to a long injury list when he sustained a knee injury in Saturday’s Absa Currie Cup final. Scans on Sunday confirmed he will miss the tour of Ireland, Scotland and England.

South Africa Under-20 winger Raymond Rhule, who was part of the squad that won the IRB Junior World Championship in Cape Town earlier this year and who has shone for the Toyota Free State Cheetahs in the Absa Currie Cup, was named in the squad along with uncapped Jano Vermaak, Franco van der Merwe, Lionel Mapoe and Arno Botha.

Of the five, only the 19-year-old Rhule has not been part of a Springbok squad yet this year, but his inclusion forms part of Meyer’s plan to blood promising youngster for the future.

Rhule is one of five wing options with the fit-again JP Pietersen, Francois Hougaard, Lwazi Mvovo and Mapoe. Pietersen, Rhule and Mapoe can also be used at centre, while Hougaard can also play at scrumhalf.

Two Springboks currently based in Europe, Schalk Brits (hooker) and Gurthrö Steenkamp (loosehead prop), have also been recalled to the national squad. Due to the significant injury toll, the national selectors will only decide on a 32nd player to be added to the squad at a later stage.

A total of five uncapped players were included in the squad. They are Rhule, Mapoe, Arno Botha (loose forward), Franco van der Merwe (lock) and Jano Vermaak (scrumhalf). Only the 19-year-old Rhule has not been part of a Springbok squad yet this year, but his inclusion forms part of Meyer’s plan to blood promising youngster for the future.

Two Springboks who missed the entire Castle Rugby Championship because of injury, Pietersen and Chiliboy Ralepelle, are back in the squad.

Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer, whose squad assembles in Cape Town on Wednesday, said it was not easy to select the squad in the light of the high number of players unavailable due to injury.

Injured players that had been part of the Springbok squad thus far this year, but were not considered for selection, are Coenie Oosthuizen, Bismarck du Plessis, Tiaan Liebenberg, Andries Bekker, Siya Kolisi, Jacques Potgieter, Pierre Spies, Johan Goosen, Frans Steyn and Habana. Furthermore, Schalk Burger, Juan Smith and Heinrich Brüssow are still out injured.

“We’ve got a settled core of players that did the job during the England series and The Castle Rugby Championship and we decided to stick with them,” said Meyer.

“Obviously losing so many players to injury, the latest being Coenie, Tiaan, Andries, Jacques and Bryan during the Absa Currie Cup, makes it difficult, but this now provides opportunities for other players.

“Gurthrö and Schalk are experienced front rankers who have played for South Africa before and know the conditions in the Northern Hemisphere. This tour provides a good opportunity to assess them as we plan ahead. Arno, Lionel, Franco and Jano have all been part of our squad earlier in the season.

“Raymond put up his hand for the Junior Boks and the Cheetahs and I’m very excited to see what he can do. It’s also great to have JP and Chiliboy back from injury as they bring a lot of experience to the squad.”

Meyer said he expected three extremely difficult Tests: “Although the Springboks won on their last visit to Dublin (in 2010), they lost three in a row before that,” he said.

“In 2010, we lost to Scotland in Edinburgh. They beat the Wallabies in Australia earlier in the year, so it won’t be easy there.

“And in June we’ve experienced first-hand how difficult and opponent England are. They will be fired up at Twickenham and it will be a challenging Test to end the tour with.

“Our aim is to end the season on a positive note. We set ourselves high standards and we want to improve with every Test, but we have a team that is still gaining valuable experience as we strive to constantly be amongst the top sides in the world. We know we’re not there yet, but we’ve laid a foundation in the first nine Tests this year and we will build on that.

“The Rugby World Cup in 2015 also takes place in England, so we will use this tour to see how our players adapt to the conditions as we look ahead to that very important tournament.”

The Springbok squad will assemble in Cape Town on Wednesday and depart to the UK from Johannesburg on Saturday. They will return to South Africa on Monday, 26 November.

The Springbok squad for the Castle Outgoing Tour to Ireland, Scotland and England:

Name Province Position Test Caps
Willem Alberts The Sharks Loose forward 17
Arno Botha Vodacom Blue Bulls Loose forward 0
Schalk Brits Saracens, England Hooker 3
Pat Cilliers MTN Golden Lions Prop 3
Marcell Coetzee The Sharks Loose forward 9
Juan de Jongh DHL Western Province Centre 12
Jean de Villiers (captain) DHL Western Province Centre 81
Jannie du Plessis The Sharks Prop 39
Eben Etzebeth DHL Western Province Lock 8
Francois Hougaard Vodacom Blue Bulls Scrumhalf / Wing 24
Elton Jantjies MTN Golden Lions Flyhalf 2
Zane Kirchner Vodacom Blue Bulls Fullback 21
Juandré Kruger Vodacom Blue Bulls Lock 5
Pat Lambie The Sharks Fullback 17
Francois Louw Bath, England Loose forward 14
Lionel Mapoe MTN Golden Lions Wing / Centre 0
Tendai Mtawarira The Sharks Prop 41
Lwazi Mvovo The Sharks Wing 7
Ruan Pienaar Ulster, N Ireland Scrumhalf 60
JP Pietersen The Sharks Wing / Centre 45
Chiliboy Ralepelle Vodacom Blue Bulls Hooker 21
Raymond Rhule Toyota FS Cheetahs Wing 0
Gurthrö Steenkamp Toulouse, France Prop 38
Morné Steyn Vodacom Blue Bulls Flyhalf 41
Adriaan Strauss Toyota FS Cheetahs Hooker 18
Jaco Taute MTN Golden Lions Utility back 2
CJ van der Linde MTN Golden Lions Prop 73
Flip van der Merwe Vodacom Blue Bulls Lock 20
Franco van der Merwe MTN Golden Lions Lock 0
Jano Vermaak Vodacom Blue Bulls Scrumhalf 0
Duane Vermeulen DHL Western Province No 8 4

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20 Comments

  1. avatar Boertjie says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 2:23 pm

    Morne Steyn.
    :shake:
    What more must Lambie do?
    He may as well start looking for
    a contract whilst in Europe, because
    he will again be carrying the tackle
    bags.

  2. avatar Boertjie says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    Mbalula will still moan, but I count
    7 African blacks and 3 people of colour.
    Not too shabby, Nige.

  3. avatar DavidS says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    Jis we are thin at scrumhalf…

    Reinach and Broom are the future though.

    And thin in midfield. Who else thought that Paul Jordaan was pretty good in a losing situation. Broke the line and changed angle in his runs.

    Still not impressed with Lambie. In that final handling situation with the breakout it was Lambie who fluffed McLeod’s pass.

    Glad for Franco VD Merwe… probably been the “sleeper” lock of the season regards to form.

    Arno Botha and Jacques Potgieter… manlove for Bulls loosies…

    Derrick Minnie of the Lions?

    But on the whole we can select a highly competitive team for the NH…

  4. avatar Craven says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 6:56 pm

    “We’ve got a settled core of players that did the job during the England series and The Castle Rugby Championship and we decided to stick with them,” said Meyer.

    What job would that be Heyneke? One good half against England and two wins in the Championship?

    Not setting the standard very high are we? :wink:

  5. avatar Craven says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 6:58 pm

    Bulls: 8
    Sharks: 7
    Lions: 6
    WP: 4
    Cheetahs: 2
    Overseas: 4

  6. avatar Craven says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    In general I am happy with this squad, if Heyneke would just stop selecting hangers on for the only reason that they have been there before this year.

  7. avatar Bekke says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 7:09 pm

    Craven, I agree – Meyer is a moron. But we have said enough – let he die by his own sword. Morne Steyn?????? :poop:

  8. avatar Duiwel says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 10:53 pm

    Good to see britsie there
    I think Morne can do with carrying the tackle bags
    For a bit

  9. avatar Americano says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 11:25 pm

    Surely a nation weeps for the tragedy that is Messerschmitt-Willie LeRoux getting hard-done yet again.

    But I have supreme confidence that Andre Joubert’s brother from a different mother will use this to power into 2013.

    When the Messerschmitt does finally get his green and gold perhaps a nickname change will be in order:
    Lazarus?
    Nahhh. Givem’ Hell Willie!

  10. avatar Americano says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 11:30 pm

    On the other hand….who isn’t dancing a jig when it comes to Schalk Brits?

    Woo – Hoo ! :wave:

    The Brits selection shows that HM’s creative constipation is beginning to break.

  11. avatar biltongbek says:
    October 28th, 2012 at 11:36 pm

    Reply to Americano @ 11:30 pm: Not entirely, Morne Steyn is still there, and if he gets to play, I will shit myself.

  12. avatar Americano says:
    October 29th, 2012 at 1:31 am

    Reply to biltongbek @ 11:36 pm:

    :applause:
    Biltongbek – “I will shit myself” :D

    Love it. Viscerally descriptive and efficient.

    I’m going to start using that as a reply to any old thing really – with my phone text messages (:

  13. avatar Mug Punters Organisation of South Africa says:
    October 29th, 2012 at 3:37 am

    What did you expect from a coach with a 44% win ratio.

    He is still trying bash the square peg in the round hole. He is a destroyer and not a creator and Lambie must just be shaking his head.

    If think Lambie is not up to it lay off the crack pipes. Rusty and he outplays the incumbents. Really WTF HM and those doubters.

    Then Jean. Really the oke is so out of form he keeps passing the ball forward, missing tackles and just been kak.

    I see kick and chase bash rugby on the cards and players to get 5 minute cameos just for carrying bags.

    Aaai and I thought things could not get worse under Streuali?????

    Happy about Franco, Rhuhle(would have gone for others first.

    Mapoe wont last 45 minutes with all the strapping. Waste.
    Bandiso is unlucky too.
    Elton will get drilled by the Nothern hemisphere sides.

    Reply to Americano @ 11:30 pm: at centre of course.

  14. avatar Craven says:
    October 29th, 2012 at 11:08 am

    I see Francois Louw is injured.

  15. avatar Pokkel says:
    October 29th, 2012 at 11:11 am

    Reply to Craven @ 11:08 am:

    That’s bad news!

  16. avatar Craven says:
    October 29th, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    Indeed, we do not have an adequate like for like replacement for him in the squad. I rate Marcell massively, one of my favourite players this year, but he is not the ideal replacement for Francois I feel.

  17. avatar The Year of the Cheetah says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Up until such time that we choose a young new captain i will not have any faith in this team getting better.

    Jean is out of form, semi-injured and slow. Yet he captains the team. To me that smells of damage control.

  18. avatar bryce_in_oz says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:33 pm

    Reply to The Year of the Cheetah @ 10:04 am:

    He is the quickest over 40m at Western Province with Shreuder…

  19. avatar bryce_in_oz says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 1:37 pm

    Bok loosies are simply too slow…

    I read today Jake White has already started his pre-season speed, strength and conditioning exercises with the Brumbies at the Australian Institute of Sport…

    Michael Hooper’s record over 10m was equalled by new recruit David Pocock…

  20. avatar Boertjie says:
    October 30th, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    Reply to bryce_in_oz @ 1:37 pm:

    Bok loosies are simply too slow…
    ——
    :agree:

    Or is Coetzee quick enough at 6?

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