Tue 21 Jun 2022 | 05:13

Bok coach prefers players to be based in SA

Bok coach prefers players to be based in SA
Tue 21 Jun 2022 | 05:13
Bok coach prefers players to be based in SA
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REACTION: Springbok head coach Jacques Nienaber says it’s a massive positive having players returning to local franchises after their stints overseas.

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Nienaber believes having players based locally assists with player management, which would help the Springboks’ cause going forward.

There have been several stars returning to SA in the last couple of years and they have made a massive impact at franchise level.

Marcell Coetzee (Bulls) and Deon Fourie (Stormers) are prime examples.

They were two of the best performers in the United Rugby Championship and they are both in the national set-up for the upcoming international season.

“I think it’s good for us and I think it’s good for the fans as well when players decide to come back from a stint abroad,” Nienaber said.

“It is nice having them in our environment because we can obviously look at them in terms of player management.

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“From a player welfare point of view, we have a little more control over the players.

“When they play abroad, we hope that there is some goodwill between the Springboks and the clubs, that they get some player welfare and look after the assets.

“It just makes it a lot easier when they are in South Africa.

“It’s a good thing if they want to come back.

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“We will always wait for them with open arms.”

Players missing

Meanwhile, the Springboks are currently in the third week of their preparation camp for the three-Test series against Wales, which gets underway next week.

The camp welcomed players from the Stormers and the Bulls after their epic United Rugby Championship Final this past weekend.

However, several overseas-based players will only arrive next week, which will just be a couple of days before the first Test.

“Handre [Pollard] is still going to play [in the Top 14 Final] this coming weekend, but we also don’t have any of our Premiership players,” Nienaber explained.

“They are only being released according to regulation 9 of World Rugby, which is a week before the Test match, so they will only join us on Monday.

“We are fortunate to get the Japan-based players.

“The Japanese clubs agreed that the players can start working with us a little bit earlier.

“Sometimes the national unions and the clubs agree to that and sometimes they stay strictly with regulation 9.”

@rugby365com

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