Schalk Brits believes he has already proved himself and does not need to use a possible duel with Adriaan Strauss to prove any point to anyone.
Stephen Nell writes in Die Burger that these two Springbok hookers will be up against each other in Saturday’s Currie Cup match between Western Province and the Cheetahs.
Strauss used the few minutes he was given as a substitute in South Africa’s Test against Australia in Perth to move past Brits in the Springbok hooker queue.
In the meantime Brits has had kidney stones removed and unfortunately spoiled an otherwise good performance against the Blue Bulls by landing himself in the sin bin as a result of unlawful play.
Brits has nothing but respect for Strauss. “It will be very nice. Adriaan is a superfriendly guy,” said Brits.
“But I’m now beyond trying to prove a point. I have already tried to prove who I am, what I can do and how well I can scrum.
“Together with JC Kritzinger and Wicus Blaauw I gave as good as I got against the Blue Bulls scrum last weekend. What do I have to prove to who?
More experienced tighthead
“I am now playing for Rassie Erasmus and Allister Coetzee (the Stormers and WP coaches respectively). As far as the weekend goes, it’s always nice to play against the Cheetahs.”
Even though Kritzinger acquitted himself extremely well against the Bulls, Brits could have a more experienced tighthead prop next to him in Brian Mujati for the game against the Cheetahs.
Mujati, who started at tighthead prop in South Africa’s record 53-8 defeat of Australia last weekend, could be included in the WP starting side along with several other Boks.
“We must try and give ourselves another chance to qualify for the semifinal round,” said Brits.
“It’s going to be difficult, but the Springboks and Sireli Naqelevuki (Fijian threequarter) are back.”
A player that may possibly not be in the WP squad is 35-year-old AJ Venter, who is plagued by a shoulder injury.
He is contracted as a lock, but has frequently been used as a loose forward, with WP under pressure to plug holes in the absence of Luke Watson and Schalk Burger.
“Rassie actually contracted AJ as a lock. We were short on experience,” said Coetzee.
Venter was sent to the sin bin as a result of blatant unlawful play against the Bulls in front of referee Mark Lawrence.
“There is no excuse for it. It doesn’t matter how frustrated a player may be. But I still think he has the skills to play lock.”Tweet