Habana declared fit

2013-11-05 00:00

SPRINGBOK wing Bryan Habana, who has been sidelined for the past month with a torn hamstring, has been passed fit to play in Saturday’s Test against Wales at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.

Habana has been out of action since damaging his hamstring after scoring two early tries against the All Blacks at Ellis Park early in October.

Springbok team doctor Craig Roberts said in Cardiff early yesterday that Habana had made his debut for Toulon against Bordeaux at the weekend and played for 63 minutes.

“He did well. He played 63 minutes. It was his first game back from that hamstring injury that he pulled. He came through nicely and we are happy where he is. We can see at out training session exactly where he is, but it’s looking good at this stage. Everyone is fit to play.”

Coach Heyneke Meyer said that he would be blooding some of his young players on the tour as he looked ahead to the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

“Next year we will pick the best team and try to get them playing together for as many games as possible, but right now, two years out from the World Cup, I want to find out if some of the guys can make it,” said Meyer.

“You still want to win games now, but I would rather see mistakes now than at the World Cup. You need to give guys opportunities [to show what they can do]. If I remember last year’s tour to the north, we learned a lot about the players. Some aren’t with the team any more, while others have gone from strength to strength.

“Some players will get a chance against Scotland and by the end of the tour we should know at least 25 of the players who will go to the World Cup.”

The Welsh are in confident mood after many of their players featured in the

Lions’ win over the Wallabies earlier this year.

There were 10 Welsh players in the Lions’­ starting team that won the decisive third Test 41-16, while their coach Warren Gatland was also in charge of the touring squad.

Gatland boasts an excellent record and Wales have won two Grand Slams and three Six Nations titles since he took over as coach in 2008.

However, Wales’s record against the Boks is dismal and they have won only one of their 25 Tests.

Following their Test against the Welsh, the Boks also face Scotland in Edinburgh (November 17) and France in Paris (November 23).

Kick-off in Cardiff is at 7.30 pm (SA time) on Saturday and Irishman Alain Rolland will be the referee.

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