Several top rugby players that left the Eastern Cape could return on Youth Day to play for an Invitational side against the British and Irish Lions.
A Coastal XV will play the Lions at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on 16 June.
Michael Green writes for Die Burger that the team will apparently be picked from players from Eastern Province, Border, Boland, Griquas and South Western Districts.
Cheeky Watson, president of Eastern Province, said on Thursday the team would be strengthened by extending invitations to players from elsewhere.
“It is also the unveiling of the new Eastern Cape regional side and the plan is to bring back players that moved from here,” said Watson.
He did not want to speculate about names and said players would be identified and then there would be a negotiation with their unions.
Luke Watson of Western Province, Akona Ndungane, Rayno Gerber and Tiger Mangweni of the Blue Bulls, and Odwa Ndungane of the Sharks are among the players that could be approached.
“We won’t hesitate to ask the Springbok coach, Peter de Villiers, whether he wants somebody to get an opportunity against the Lions,” added Watson.
He said the coach of the team would have a major input in the selection of the team.
He did not want to comment on who the coach might be, but said it would not necessarily be the regional side’s permanent coach.
Watson only smiled when Heyneke Meyer’s name came up.
“We will make the announcements in due course,” he said.
He also said the new Eastern Cape franchise does not make provision for South Western Districts.Tweet