South Africa squad for November Internationals

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Bakkies Botha is the headline inclusion in Heyneke Meyer’s South Africa squad for the November tests, as the imposing second row is recalled to the national squad for the first time since the 2011 World Cup. Two other veterans, centre Jacque Fourie and winger JP Pietersen, have also been included in the squad.

There are four uncapped players, in the shape of Siyabonga ‘Scarra’ Ntubeni, who is new to the squad, and Frans Malherbe, Pieter-Steph du Toit and Louis Schreuder, all of whom have been involved with the national team before.

Gio Aplon and Johan Goosen are also recalled to the squad after missing out in the past months through injury.

“Scarra’s inclusion, like that of Gio, is also just-reward for continuous great form,” said Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer.

“He’s still young and will learn a lot from our two front-line hookers, who both rate amongst the best in the world, on this tour. I want to expose him to this environment and the Springbok ethos and I’m very excited to work with him.

“It will be great to have Bakkies, Jaque and JP in the squad – all of them are really excited to play for the Springboks again, they have heaps of experience and are world-class players. Pieter-Steph missed a large part of the season because of injury but has been exceptional since his return to the playing field last month, while we’ve always rated Frans very highly and look forward to working with him again.

“And Louis has always been on our radar – he is only 23, fits in with the way we want to play and was impressive when he worked with us in June. Since then he’s established himself as first-choice at DHL Western Province, starting in nine of their 12 Absa Currie Cup matches, and I believe he will learn a lot on this tour, improving even more.”

“We’ll play in conditions we’ve not yet encountered this year, but we want to keep our positive mind-set on the field and hopefully keep on scoring tries,” said Meyer. “We’re up for the challenge. I know the players are keen to finish 2013 off on a high.

“The Welsh have won the Six Nations the last two seasons. It’s our first Test against them since the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand and they will be fired up at the Millennium Stadium. This year Scotland finished third in the Six Nations and in our two Tests against them in the last two seasons, they have been a tough nut to crack. We’re not expecting anything different at Murrayfield this year.

“We finish off against France at the Stade de France, where the Springboks lifted the Webb Ellis Cup in 2007. But we’ve not beaten Les Bleus in France since 1997 and will have to be sharp and focused for this last Test of a challenging season.”

Injuries to Arno Botha, Pierre Spies, Francois Hougaard and Jaco Taute meant they were not considered for selection.

South Africa squad for tests in Wales, Scotland and France:
Backs: Z Kirchner, G Aplon, W le Roux, JP Pietersen, B Habana, JJ Engelbrecht, Jaque Fourie, Jean de Villiers, J Serfontein, Morné Steyn, Johan Goosen, Pat Lambie, Fourie du Preez, Ruan Pienaar, Louis Schreuder

Forwards: Duane Vermeulen, Siya Kolisi, Francois Louw, Willem Alberts, Marcell Coetzee, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Eben Etzebeth, Flip van der Merwe, Bakkies Botha, J du Plessis, F Malherbe, C Oosthuizen, G Steenkamp, T Mtawarira, B du Plessis, Adriaan Strauss, Scarra Ntubeni

6 thoughts on “South Africa squad for November Internationals

  1. It does have its ups. But why did he chose Zane Kirchner, Louis Schreuder, Jannie du Plessis, Bakkies Botha, Jaque Fourie and Ruan Pienaar????

    1. I agree with Maiheveldt15, There are enough young players coming thro. Put them ito the pressure situations and see how the perfrom. Better to find out now than in 2015!

  2. If this is building for the next WC, then my arse is a peach. Kirchner is not International class. Goosen is too prone to injury, Schreuder proved on Saturday he cannot play behind a pack that is not going forward, Ntubeni is not ready for the step up.

    The big problem is at tight head. we do not yet have a quality prop to replace Jannie.

    And if we are looking to the future why bring the old ballies back? Oh, I get it, we are not playing enough like the Bulls yet.

  3. Seems like some are never happy with a squad, but I guess that is what opinion is about. The coach only has to win every game, and the debate about who is the right choice remains simply a debate.

    Sounds much like the continual England debate about Foden, Brown or Goode, as though individual players overrule team dynamics.

  4. The important thing is sustaining a strong squad so that players can be rested without letting the team’s overall performance drop. Rugby these days is way more demanding on the body than ever. Give deserved credit to the Boks for the heroic and entertaining performances in the 2013 Castle Rugby Championship.

  5. This tour comes at the end of a tough season. I would select as many players outside of SA and send as many of the possible springboks (not probable). This tour is a money making tour.

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