Mon 12 Sep 2022 | 08:05

Boks downplay flyhalf concerns amid scandal

Boks downplay flyhalf concerns amid scandal
Mon 12 Sep 2022 | 08:05
Boks downplay flyhalf concerns amid scandal

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Springbok assistant coach Deon Davids has backed Damian Willemse to alleviate any flyhalf concerns ahead of their penultimate Rugby Championship match against Argentina.


The Springboks face the Los Pumas in Buenos Aires on Saturday.

The fixture comes during a testing time for the camp, which has been hit with a major scandal that saw Elton Jantjies having to depart BA.

Media reports claimed that veteran flyhalf and the team’s dietician, Zeenat Simjee, had an affair during a Springbok training camp in the build-up to the Rugby Championship match against All Blacks in Nelspruit.

No replacement has been called up for Jantjies.

Speaking to reporters, Springbok assistant coach Davids has revealed that there are no flyhalf concerns – despite the limited options.

The coach backed Damian Willemse for the role and also listed Frans Steyn and Faf De Klerk as suitable candidates.


“Damian played at flyhalf against Australia in Round Four while Elton Jantjies was injured and he had a really good game, so we are quite happy at where we are with him in that position,” Davids said.

“We are also lucky to have an experienced guy like Francios Steyn who has played [at No.10] before.

“Faf has also played some games at No.10 [for his premiership club Sale Sharks], so as a team we adapt based on the circumstances.

“We did it two weeks ago and a couple of games ago.”


Regarding the Jantjies incident, the coach said: “We’ve dealt with the situation in a professional manner as a team and we understand where our focus needs to be.

“And I can assure you that it is on the big challenge that awaits us against Argentina.

“In the past, we had a lot of mixed results here [in Buenos Aires] and they are a tough team to beat and all our focus is on getting a positive result.”

Aside from Jantjies’ absence, Lukhanyo Am, Handre Pollard and Cheslin Kolbe are all still unavailable due to injuries.

Springbok hooker Bongi Mbonambi joined the squad on Monday however will not be available for this weekend.

However, Davids revealed that Pieter-Steph du Toit is up for selection.

The flank sustained a knee injury and he missed the clash against Australia in Sydney.

He has recovered and is expected to feature in this weekend’s crucial encounter.

Bok coach Jacques Nienaber is set to name his team on Tuesday.


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