Springboks

Keep eye on France, Heyneke!

Shaun Sowerby (Twitter)
Shaun Sowerby (Twitter)
Cape Town - Former Springbok No 8 Shaun Sowerby says Bok coach Heyneke Meyer should keep his eye on the South African players in France.

Sowerby, who was recently named as one of the EP Kings' assistant coaches, played club rugby in France for 10 years.

The 36-year-old played a single Test for the Springboks in 2002 but was a stalwart for the Sharks, before moving to France in 2004 when he joined Stade Francais.

He also had a stint at Toulouse and finished his playing career at Grenoble.

In an interview with Die Burger's website, Sowerby said there are heaps of layers in France good enough to play for the Springboks.

"I wouldn't dare voice my opinion over Heyneke's team selections, but there are definitively a lot of players who could play for the Springboks."

Players in France were not considered for Meyer's first training squad named on Monday, but could come into consideration for the final squad on May 31.

Top SA players currently plying their trade in France include Robert Ebersohn (Montpellier), Rory Kockott (Castres), JC Janse van Rensburg (Bayonne), Louis Ludik (Agen), Juandré Kruger (Racing Metro), Wynand Olivier (Montpellier), Joe Pietersen (Biarritz), Dewaldt Duvenage (Perpignan), Morné Steyn (Stade Francais), Schalk Ferreira, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Gurthrö Steenkamp, Jano Vermaak (all Toulouse), Joe van Niekerk, Michael Claassens, Danie Rossouw, Bryan Habana, Craig Burden and Juan Smith (all Toulon).

Sowerby said South African rugby is privileged to have so many good players. Once a top player retires, another good one will emerge, Sowerby mentioned.

It remains to be seen which of the above-mentioned players will be called up by Meyer for the June Tests.

The Springboks start their year with a game against the World XV at Newlands on June 7, followed by two Tests against Wales (Durban, June 14 and Nelspruit, June 21) and one against Scotland (Port Elizabeth, June 28).
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