'No-nonsense' Etzebeth growing as leader

Eben Etzebeth (Gallo)
Eben Etzebeth (Gallo)

Cape Town - Coach Allister Coetzee believes that Eben Etzebeth is the perfect fit as captain of the Springboks. 

With the injured Warren Whiteley having been ruled out of action for the entire Rugby Championship, Coetzee has turned to Etzebeth to be his leader. 

The 25-year-old lock also captained the Boks in the third Test against France back in June, but this tournament will test him on a new level.

But, after his announcing his side in Port Elizabeth on Thursday ahead of Saturday's tournament opener against Argentina, Coetzee said that Etzebeth was performing well in his role as captain. 

"Our whole philosophy is about clarity and simplicity," Coetzee explained.

"The captain that we have has a 'no-nonsense' approach. There are no grey areas and that is how we want to make decisions.

"When the decisions are limited the execution will come.

"Eben's personality and mindset suits the DNA of the team very well. He's been good off the field and on the field."

Coetzee also pointed to the senior players in the side and said they all took some of the weight of Etzebeth's shoulders. 

"The captain has to make sure that he manages the referee very well and that will be a challenge," said Coetzee.

"But he's got Jaco Kriel, Siya Kolisi, Elton Jantjies and Beast Mtawarira around him so hopefully he will be able to make the right decisions and adjust the game plan if needed."

Kolisi will serve as vice-captain.


South Africa

15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Raymond Rhule, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronjé, 8 Uzair Cassiem, 7 Jaco Kriel, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Eben Etzebeth (captain), 3 Coenie Oosthuizen, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Beast Mtawarira

Substitutes: 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Trevor Nyakane, 19 Pieter-Steph Du Toit, 20 Jean-Luc du Preez, 21 Francois Hougaard, 22 Curwin Bosch, 23 Damian de Allende



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