Springboks

Bok coach explains Bismarck omission

Bismarck du Plessis (Gallo Images)
Bismarck du Plessis (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Springbok coach Allister Coetzee believes preference should be given to local players when selecting the national team.

Coetzee was responding to questions why France-based Bismarck du Plessis was not included in the Springbok squad to face France in a three-Test series next month.

After naming his squad on Tuesday, Coetzee included Malcolm Marx (Lions), Bongi Mbonambi (Stormers) and the Chiliboy Ralepelle (Sharks) as his three hookers.

Earlier media reports indicated that Du Plessis may crack the nod for the Springbok squad and when probed on his decision-making, Coetzee told Netwerk24:

“I took note of his performances in France, but I just felt that in Malcolm Marx I have a hooker here at home who is delivering top-notch performances and showed he will definitely not let the team down.”

Coetzee did include four overseas-based players: prop Steven Kitshoff (Bordeaux Bègles, France), Duane Vermeulen (Toulon, France), Francois Hougaard (Worcester Warriors, England) and Frans Steyn (Montpellier, France).

Kitshoff though is set to return to the Stormers full-time after completing his French duties.

The Springboks will face France on Saturday, June 10 at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria, followed by Tests at Kings Park in Durban (June 17) and Ellis Park in Johannesburg (June 24).

Springbok squad:

Forwards

Lood de Jager, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Ruan Dreyer, Eben Etzebeth, Steven Kitshoff, Siya Kolisi, Jaco Kriel, Frans Malherbe, Malcolm Marx, Bongi Mbonambi, Oupa Mohoje, Franco Mostert, Tendai Mtawarira, Lizo Gqoboka, Coenie Oosthuizen, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Duane Vermeulen, Warren Whiteley (captain)

Backs

Lukhanyo Am, Andries Coetzee, Ross Cronje, Damian de Allende, Francois Hougaard, Elton Jantjies, Jesse Kriel, Dillyn Leyds, Rudy Paige, Raymond Rhule, Jan Serfontein, Courtnall Skosan, Frans Steyn

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