Everybody is waiting to see who SARU appoints as the new Springbok coach to take over from Meyer, but an interesting question was asked on social media yesterday….who should be the captain?
With both Jean de Villiers and Victor Matfield retiring from international rugby last year the Springboks will not just have a new coach to take them to 2019 but also a new leader on the field. In my days the team came together and they picked the player they believed must lead them but that was in the days when rugby was played differently.
Today your captain and more so your national captain is not just the person making the call on the field but is the one person that represent the team, management and the country.
It is easy to just pull a name out of the hat and say you go and run with it but a captain is more than just the pretty face in front of the cameras.
I liked the idea what Cricket South Africa did with Smith and appointed him as a young up and coming player to be with the team and grow with it. Beside the fact that cricket ball is different the game is a total different ball game and players have longer careers than rugby players, but no reason to take that thought and run with it when deciding on the new captain.
A captain must be the number one choice in his position, so who should be considered for the position?
Patrick Lambie…..Lambie has shown that he is a great person and player in the team and not just his teammates but also the media and supporters like the guy. As an outsider it seems that he is not one of those captains that get much fired up on the field and looks rather than a cool and calm customer.
Personally I do not like a captain to be in the backline, history will show as well that the best Springbok teams was led by a captain upfront. Off course one would have to wait and see who the number one 10 will be between Lambie and Pollard but Lambie can show his worth in the Super Rugby as he will lead the Sharks this year.
Handre’ Pollard…..Pollard have done it throughout his young career and has been earmarked since school days to lead his country one day. He is one of the exciting players in South Africa and have lead the Junior Boks as well and got the player of the tournament accolade as well. If you want to pick a young player then maybe Pollard is the man that can lead South Africa for a long time. His been Meyer’s first choice the last year and between him and Lambie they wil fill the number 10 jumper for a long time.
Duane Vermeulen ….. Don’t know if the new Bok coach or SARU will want a Springbok captain playing outside of South Africa but Vermeulen is one of the great players in the Springboks and have lead the Somers well last year without it effecting his play. Cannot see anybody really taking the number eight position away from Vermeulen so definitely a choice for captaincy.
Jaco Kriel….. Jaco has been the most exciting player in South African rugby the past two seasons and he is a player that put down everything on the park. He also led the Lions to an unbeaten season in last year’s Currie Cup which shown us not just his ability as a leader but also his character. Many believe he was supposed to be in the World Cup squad and that he is what the Springboks need to evolve in the next 4 years. With so many loose forwards in the country one need to see firstly if the new coach and his selectors believe he is firstly a good enough player for a permanent spot in the team.
Adriaan Strauss…. Adriaan had a 50/50 first season at the Bulls last year but got his mojo back once he pulled that Springbok jumper over his head. He is a proven great leader and will lead the Springboks will greatness. Strauss is also one of that people that lead by example and players look up to him. The one thing that count against Adriaan is his age and also the fact that there are plenty of young hookers coming through the ranks that can take that Springbok number 2 jumper.
Finding the right captain is as important than finding a the right coach and great coaches make sure that they have a leader that they can work with and can trust. Uncle Kitch had Francois Pienaar, Nick had Gary in that 17 in row victories and White had John.
Who would you want to have as the Springbok captain?