With the World Cup in New Zealand looming next year, senior Springboks will be rested for the end-of-year Grand Slam tour.
The Times online reports that under-fire Springbok coach Peter de Villiers revealed in an exclusive interview with the Sunday Times this week that he had had a change of mind and would rest the players – who include captain John Smit, vice-captain Victor Matfield, Schalk Burger, Bryan Habana, Danie Rossouw, Jaque Fourie and Morne Steyn – for the matches against the Home Nations: Ireland, Wales, Scotland and England.
De Villiers had long resisted calls for the senior players to be omitted from the end-of-year tour to allow them to rest. But he now appears to have recognised the error in this thinking.
SA kicks off its Grand Slam tour against Ireland in Dublin on November 6 followed by Wales on November 13 at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Scotland at Murrayfield on November 20 and England at Twickenham on November 27.
De Villiers – who is under intense scrutiny following three consecutive losses during the Tri-Nations – also blamed over-confidence for the Boks’ recent poor form.
SW Note: This article was originally posted in the Sunday times of 15 August and seems to have gone by completely unnoticed.Tweet