Super Rugby

'Bullet' on Jake: Do we really want someone who's going to clash with Rassie?

James Dalton (Gallo Images)
James Dalton (Gallo Images)

Former Springbok hooker James Dalton says he's not sure whether the Bulls would make the right call to bring former national coach Jake White on board.

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White has been in talks with the Bulls and reports have suggested that he is the favourite to be appointed as Alan Zondagh's successor as director of rugby.

White and Dalton's history dates back to Jeppe High School for Boys, where the former played in the first team coached by White.

"It's worrying that they're considering bringing White back (to South Africa). Our rugby is healthy at the moment and do you really want to bring someone into the system who's going to clash with Rassie (Erasmus, SA Rugby's director of rugby) and the new structures, just because he thinks he's Jake White who won the World Cup in 2007?" Dalton said, as quoted by Netwerk24.

"Jake is not a people's person. He's an autocrat. I'm not saying he's not a good coach, but if you look at the World Cup group of 2007, then there are probably only about six players that [still] want something to do with him. You'd think here is a coach who will be admired for his achievements, but the players from that generation want nothing to do with him," Dalton stressed.

Dalton, who played 43 Tests for the Springboks between 1994 and 2002, added that he felt South African rugby was in a good space following the World Cup win last year.

"I'll put my head on a block to say with the structures we've got in place, and with the local and international players we've got, that South African rugby is in a very strong position. I'd even go as far as saying that I believe South Africa can also win the next World Cup."

Dalton was speaking in Cape Town at an event promoting his autobiography, Bulletproof: The James Dalton Story.

- Compiled by Sport24 staff

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