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22 May 2013

Teen creates site where Springbok supporters can select their dream team

Have you ever argued with a friend or family member about which rugby players should be in the Springbok squad? It was just such a discussion with her dad that inspired Rouxvé Meyer (14) of Somerset West in the Western Cape to start her own website, SA Select, which enables rugby enthusiasts countrywide to play Springbok selector.

“I wanted to prove to my dad there are many supporters who feel like I do about specific players,” says Rouxvé, a Grade 8 learner at Parel Vallei High School. That was in October last year. She enlisted the help of her older brother Francois (18) and used his IT knowledge to help her with the website’s design and programming.

It’s a simple concept. “Supporters can register and vote for their favourite position. The website then comes up with the 15 players who get the most votes.” The selectors must also specify which South African team they support. “For instance, you can see how the Stormers supporters team compares with that of the Bulls.”

It’s not always easy to be a passionate rugby supporter if you’re a girl, Rouxvé says. But she obviously knows her rugby. As a staunch Stormers supporter she has some advice for the struggling team. “The touchline coach, Robbie Fleck, should be fired immediately. And the team’s mindset must change. We can’t have the same style of play as the Bulls because we don’t have players who are as good with the boot. We have a good touchline but the style of play doesn’t suit the players.”

As the Stormers have very little chance of being crowned Super Rugby winners she’s hoping the Cheetahs win the series. “I like the way they play. It’s an exciting style and it’s good to see it’s paying off eventually.”

At this stage SA Select is too small to make money from advertising, nor is this Rouxvé’s immediate aim. “We’ve had several suggestions to improve the site and things we can add to it. When Francois comes back from his gap year in America he’s going to help me implement the changes.”

Rouxvé is thinking of studying IT or business after matric. “But I haven’t decided yet. Who knows? Perhaps I’ll become the manager of a rugby team – that would be fun!”

And who’s the most popular player according to SA Select’s selectors? Lock Eben Etzebeth is the clear winner: 954 of the 1 358 registered selectors voted for him to play forward.

Do you agree? To vote go to sa-select.co.za and register.

Rouxvé saam met John Smit

Rouxvé Meyer

-  Suzaan Hauman

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