Caution urged on Matfield

2014-01-14 00:00

CAPE TOWN — Former Springboks Mark Andrews and Kobus Wiese have offered Bok coach Heyneke Meyer advice in the wake of Victor Matfield’s rumoured return.

Speaking to Die Burger’s website, Andrews said he hoped that sentimental reasons would not factor in Meyer’s decision whether or not to include Matfield in the Springbok squad.

“If [Victor] can play as he has in the past, it will be good news for South African rugby, but at his age it just gets harder and harder to compete at the same level and the 2015 Rugby World Cup is a long way away.

“It will be very unfortunate if he is picked on the basis of his past achievements whilst promising players are coming through.”

Andrews said there would be high expectations of Matfield, and said he would have the added pressure of knowing his reputation was on the line.

Former Springbok lock Wiese was also sceptical about Matfield’s return and believed it would be short-sighted to pick him again for the Springboks.

“Once a player retires, he should stay retired. In addition, the Springboks don’t have a crisis at lock. It is important that a player like Pieter-Steph du Toit gets as much playing time as possible now.”

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