Rugby World Cup-winning utility back Frans Steyn said he is unlikely to play for South Africa again while Peter de Villiers is coach and accused him of being ‘disrespectful’.
Steyn, speaking ahead of his club Racing Metro’s Round Eight Top 14 match against Biarritz on Saturday, revealed that De Villiers had again failed to turn up for a meeting with the French club and Steyn himself to resolve the ongoing club-versus-country dispute.
Now, Steyn hinted, he may have to put his international career on hold and focus on his French club duties only.
Steyn, a key member of the 2007 World Cup-winning side, hit out at De Villiers for skipping the meeting they were supposed to have had last week.
“He was supposed to come to Paris on September 18,” Steyn told French rugby paper Midi Olympique.
“He [De Villiers] cancelled the meeting.
“It’s not the first time he has done that.
“It’s a lack of respect for Racing Metro, a lack of respect for me,” Steyn continued, adding that he felt he was no longer wanted by the Boks – despite answering an SOS during the Boks’ home leg of the Tri-Nations.
“I don’t expect anything from the Springboks anymore,” he added, “I have moved on.”
The 23-year-old utility back, who was moved to fullback by Racing this season at the request of the Bok coaching staff, has had several previous run-ins with De Villiers – once famously walking out of a meeting.
Earlier this year De Villiers caused an outcry when he questioned whether Steyn still had the heart to play for his country.
However, rugby365.com later revealed that the problem was an administrative blunder by the South African Rugby Union, who failed to file the necessary documentation on time to have the player released from club duty.
Steyn was left out of the Springboks’ squad for the Australasian leg of the Tri-Nations, but was then recalled for the home leg of the tournament after an injury crisis and then featured at fullback in the 44-31 victory over Australia on August 28.
Steyn, who is still keen to participate in next year’s World Cup in New Zealand, said he hoped that things would change in the months to come.
“It is too soon to say that I will not be there,” he said of the World Cup.
“But it is certain that I will accept Racing’s decision. You play the World Cup to face the best players in the world,” he told Midi Olympique.
“Here in the Top 14, I play against [Yannick] Jauzion… and I will also play the Heineken Cup and face [Brian] O’Driscoll, so it’s about the same.”
Courtesy of Rugby 365Tweet