Butch James has been given the weekend off and won’t play against Italy, in the interests of keeping the star pivot fresh for the upcoming Tri-Nations.
Reports from the camp indicate that Butch has been sent “home”. I’m not sure if this means he’s gone back to Bath, or if he’ll be spending the next week in Durban. I wonder what he’s doing on Friday night, if it’s the latter… It’s a move that probably makes sense, given the state of Butch’s knees and his value to our upcoming Tri-Nations campaign. Expect either Peter Grant or Francois Steyn to start in the Number 10 jersey against the Italians.
In other squad developments, it seems Pierre Spies has been sent back to his specialist friend for a “routine check-up” following his blood clot problem. I wonder if there was perhaps a specimen taken at some stage that didn’t pass muster? Not that it really matters. Spies was pants against the Welsh and would surely have been dropped for Kankowski anyway.
Danie Rossouw had to have an ingrown toenail surgically corrected, so he wont be available either. I guess the chances are pretty good that Joe van Niekerk will be named on the bench. CJ van der Linde and Schalk Burger are both possibles, depending on how their recoveries progress after knee injuries.
As reported earlier, JP Pietersen has been sent back to the Sharks and should be available for the Currie Cup game on Friday night. The odds are apparently looking better for Odwa Ndungane to make his long-awaited test debut at right wing in place of the defensively inept Tonderai Chavanga.Tweet