KSA Shark Β©

Pietersen, Muller stay in loop

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark Β©)

Posted in :In the news, Springboks on 29 May 2008 at 06:57

JP Pietersen and Johann Muller remain part of the long-term planning for the South African rugby team even though they have not been included in the Springbok squad of 30 to play Wales and Italy next month.

Stephen Nell writes in Die Burger that Springbok coach Peter de Villiers says there are problems with Pietersen’s conditioning and Muller could be in the squad for the Tri-Nations tour of Australasia.

“JP is a fantastic player but there were other things that we considered,” De Villiers said after the squad was announced here on Wednesday. “I think something is wrong with his conditioning.

“We’d like to get his conditioning right and make him more competitive with a view to next year’s British and Irish Lions tour and the Tri-Nations.”

His absence from the current squad does not mean Pietersen won’t be considered for tours, De Villiers added.

Turning to Muller’s position, he said the selectors felt Danie Rossouw could add more value because the Bulls had dropped out of the Super 14 competition before the Sharks did.

“Johann is still getting over the disappointment of the Sharks’ semi-final defeat.”

Another 2007 World Cup Springbok, centre Wynand Olivier, was not selected for the squad.

Believe in all the players

The door opened for the more dynamic Adrian Jacobs, and Gcobani Bobo was rewarded for his good Super 14 form.

Akona Ndungane, another member of the World Cup squad, also missed out but his twin brother Odwa, who has more flair, was selected.

“I believe in all the players who attended the training camp,” De Villiers said. “Everyone will do well on any given day. The guys who were here showed in the Super 14 they could do what we require.”

De Villiers also provided some insight into the role of the loose forwards.

“We have two specialist eighthmen, Ryan Kankowski and Pierre Spies. That is the only position in which they will play.

“Joe van Niekerk and Danie Rossouw will have versatile roles.”

Luke Watson, the only fit open-side flank in the squad, probably has a good chance of being included in the run-on team. Juan Smith is likely to be the other flank.

De Villiers has only two hookers in his squad, Springbok captain John Smit and Bismarck du Plessis. Schalk Brits was sent back to Western Province but remains part of the coach’s plans.

“There is many unfortunate players, but what would you have done if you were the coach, with John and Bismarck at your disposal? It’s hard to keep everyone happy,” De Villiers said.

“We decided to be honest. Schalk (Brits) and all the others who were sent back are still in our plans.

“We brought them here so that they will understand what our plans for the next four years will be.

“The most difficult thing for me was to send players back. One grows with the players and most of them are just as good as the ones who made the squad.”


  • Interesting they don’t give Muller a ‘break’ the man has been playing with injuries all season…

  • Comment 1, posted at 29.05.08 07:22:11 by bryce_in_oz Reply
  • @bryce_in_oz (Comment 1) :

    Maybe that’s just what they are doing – giving his injury a chance to heal properly.

  • Comment 2, posted at 29.05.08 11:07:50 by Nessa Reply
  • @Nessa (Comment 2) :

    JP is going on a strict conditioning program and has been pardoned from CC… a bit OTT… especially for the Sharks… Muller needs the rest more… although not for the entire CC season…

  • Comment 3, posted at 29.05.08 11:17:47 by bryce_in_oz Reply
  • @Nessa (Comment 2) : he might conceivably play a fair bit of Currie Cup rugby now πŸ˜‰

  • Comment 4, posted at 29.05.08 11:20:26 by robdylan Reply
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  • @bryce_in_oz (Comment 3) : there’s no way the Sharks will accept JP being withdrawn for the duration of the Currie Cup. He’s just started to find form now as well

  • Comment 5, posted at 29.05.08 11:21:44 by robdylan Reply
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  • Hope so…

  • Comment 6, posted at 29.05.08 11:31:53 by bryce_in_oz Reply

  • @bryce_in_oz (Comment 6) : Muller’s availability for the Currie Cup is a MASSIVE boost to our campaign. If we can use him and JP, together with Waylon, Jannie and the rest, I think we can win the thing.

    We’re still short of a good 7/8 and another wing/fullback, though.

  • Comment 7, posted at 29.05.08 11:48:39 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 7) :

    Botes at 8, Keegan at 6 and Deysel at 7. Remember Botes has played at 8 before, and I still believe the opensider and 8 should be first to breakdown, similar roles that way, and we all know that Botes can carry the ball with the very best of them, best combination for an 8. Just wish he had more height to be a factor in the lineouts.

    As for the other wing….do you mean other than JP and Henno? I know JP will miss at least some of the CC so perhaps we are short a wing. Waylon on wing, Strauss on outside centre and Freddie at 10. I still think Barritt is a fantastic 12 but not as strong a 10.

  • Comment 8, posted at 29.05.08 16:13:22 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • If 46 can be an effective 8 with his diminutive size in the Super 14, then surely Botes can be an effective 8 in the CC.

  • Comment 9, posted at 29.05.08 16:14:55 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • I am just not sure why Waylon was invited to the camp for one day and now is apparently not in the loop?

  • Comment 10, posted at 29.05.08 16:16:43 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • Strauss ain’t quick enough for 13, IMO

  • Comment 11, posted at 29.05.08 16:27:54 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 11) :

    OK, I can see that Rob, but what do you think of my loosie combo?

  • Comment 12, posted at 29.05.08 16:47:10 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • Bobo rewarded for good form!??!

    What S14 that this dude been watching….

  • Comment 13, posted at 29.05.08 16:49:25 by Hmmm Reply

  • Any excuse given why Mujati made it ahead of Heinke!??!

  • Comment 14, posted at 29.05.08 16:49:54 by Hmmm Reply

  • I fear our front row is going to be on the week side if CJ and Mujati scrum together!??!

    BJ is over rated…

    Beast is the only one that has held his own this year and is also the stand out in general play….

  • Comment 15, posted at 29.05.08 16:51:04 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 14) :
    Mujati is a bad tighthead prop, Heinke is a very good loosehead prop. Different positions Hmmm, the question should be why did Mujati make it ahead of Jannie DuPlessis.

  • Comment 16, posted at 29.05.08 16:54:46 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Hmmm (Comment 13) :

    The same one you’ve been watching, apparently I am better at analyzing backline players than you are though! πŸ˜†

  • Comment 17, posted at 29.05.08 16:56:43 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 16) :

    Oh ok..

    But Heinke is ahead of any SA prop….he outscrummed everyone….so the question should be…why did anyone make it ahead of him!??!

  • Comment 18, posted at 29.05.08 17:01:40 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 17) :

    Are you Stephen Nell!???!

    Well I disagree….I have shown on several occasions how Bobo screwed up a move in the Stormers backline…

    He has no hands…cannot step….is slow…and only partially stops an attacker until the cross defense arrives….

    He is useless….

  • Comment 19, posted at 29.05.08 17:04:30 by Hmmm Reply

  • Heinke is the best scrummaging loosehead in South Africa, I think the Beast is second best, and is probably slightly better than Heinke in open play. CJ is a decent loosehead and tighthead scrummager (not great) and quite good in open play.

    BJ is the best scrummaging tighthead in the country, with Jannie second. They are probably much the same in open play.

  • Comment 20, posted at 29.05.08 17:05:02 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 17) : @Hmmm (Comment 19) :

    Motivate why you say he is on form….what exactly has he done that is even ok never mind stand out!??!

  • Comment 21, posted at 29.05.08 17:05:18 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 20) :

    I just donno what the poor dude has to do to get a place in the Bokke side!??!

  • Comment 22, posted at 29.05.08 17:06:28 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 19) :

    I have not seen your analysis of Bobo hmmmm so can’t speak to that.

    Now, apologize for saying I am Stephen Nell!!!!!!!!!!! You’re not making any friends with comments like that pal. 😯 πŸ˜›

  • Comment 23, posted at 29.05.08 17:07:02 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • I was referring to the article in my comment 13 asking what S14 this guys has been watching…

    You replied the same one as me just better at analysing backline play!??!

    You called yourself Stephen Nell or you wrote the article and KSA posted under the wrong name….

    You tell me!

  • Comment 24, posted at 29.05.08 17:10:22 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 22) :

    I agree, at a minimum Heinke should be the loosehead with Beast. I think it is ridiculous that Gurthro makes it before him. Gurthro didn’t even play that much in the Super 14 this year. Beast shoved Mujati’s head up his arse when he scrummed against him this year. I have never seen a scrum go backwards like the Stormers did in that game. Mujati has to be the most overrated player in the world right now, and I am sick, really sick he will get a green and gold jersey.

  • Comment 25, posted at 29.05.08 17:10:37 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Hmmm (Comment 24) :

    Tongue in cheek Hmmm, it was a joke….don’t take me too seriously.

  • Comment 26, posted at 29.05.08 17:11:48 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 25) :

    Many players scrummed Mujati up his arse…
    And him getting Green and Gold is a disgrace for the colours….

  • Comment 27, posted at 29.05.08 17:12:52 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 26) :


    So were you making a jkoke that you are or that you are not….LoL

  • Comment 28, posted at 29.05.08 17:13:32 by Hmmm Reply

  • I am making a joke because I played Hooker all my life, so my analysis of backline play should be taken with a grain of salt. What do I know, other than Bismark can’t seem to hit his jumpers. Now I can give you a good analysis of that if you would like, and it is probably spot on, but seriously, are you going to take a hooker’s analysis of backline play seriously? πŸ˜€ πŸ˜†

  • Comment 29, posted at 29.05.08 17:15:40 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 29) :

    LoL oh ok…now I am with you…

    Well I was a center….but inside though…still closer than you….LoL

  • Comment 30, posted at 29.05.08 17:25:37 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 30) :

    I did play hooker, flank and 8th man in primary school….LoL

  • Comment 31, posted at 29.05.08 17:26:12 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 30) :

    OK then I defer to your superior knowledge of center play, even outside center play. Bobo is worthless. So as an inside center, what do you think of Barritt?

  • Comment 32, posted at 29.05.08 17:27:22 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Hmmm (Comment 31) :

    I played my first 3 games of rugby as a child at flank, my dad was most disappointed since he was a hooker and thought I should be as well. From my fourth game on, I played hooker, until I got old and my eyes were not good enough to see my jumpers and then I moved to tighthead prop for a couple of seasons. πŸ˜† πŸ˜†

  • Comment 33, posted at 29.05.08 17:29:15 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 32) :

    Was never fond of him….but must say he has been good this year…not standout but good….
    I think Steyn made the Bokke side as centre only on his WC form…
    I have no idea why he sucked so bad this year…maybe cozz dick dicked him around every second game…

    Donno if I would make Barrit a Bok as yet….but would have at least called him up to the training squad…

  • Comment 34, posted at 29.05.08 17:32:26 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 34) :

    On that…what the heck was Murray doing there!??!

  • Comment 35, posted at 29.05.08 17:32:46 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 35) :

    Agree, why call him up for a single day of training camp and then release him. No sense. I think he made it because he is the one of the few PDIs playing center.

    As for Steyn, I agree he was screwed around by Muir, but I think it was because Muir was in love with Steyn and wanted him on the field no matter what. That was a huge mistake, and I believe that Steyn has developed an attitude problem as a result. His coach has told him he will play no matter what, so he feels he can take any risk he wants on the field and there is no payback. A bad situation for a young player. Dick should have benched Steyn for a few games, I think that would have done a world of good for his attitude. He has all the talent in the world, just has an attitude problem at the mo.

  • Comment 36, posted at 29.05.08 17:37:18 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 36) :
    Yes I agree…but he has actually been like that since last year…
    And I don’t necessarily think it is a bad thing…

    He should just learn to keep his kool (level head)…and not just react out of passion or feeling on the field but react with skilled experience…

    Sure you can teach that off the field!??!

  • Comment 37, posted at 29.05.08 17:42:03 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 37) :

    My opinion Hmmm is that he does not react with a cool head because he doesn’t have to. He can make mistakes knowing he will not be benched or punished. If he knew his position was at risk, he would be more cool headed, believe me.

  • Comment 38, posted at 29.05.08 17:44:34 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 38) :

    I don’t think so….remember this dude just turned 21….and if we saw any other 21 year old doing it we would not have said anything….we do expect a lot from the man…

    But I do believe they can teach him how to keep a level head in training…sure there are exercises they can think up that will help with that….

  • Comment 39, posted at 29.05.08 17:50:45 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 39) :
    I just want to see one “solid” performance from Steyn, nothing special, no mistakes, just good solid rugby.

  • Comment 40, posted at 29.05.08 17:54:07 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 40) :

    His first game at 10 in very bad conditions against WP when he was 19….that was stand out…

    Then he had a few solid performances in teh WC…great def and the only SA player breaking the line in some games!??!
    And he saved our arses with his long range penalties he slotted!??!

  • Comment 41, posted at 29.05.08 17:58:06 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 41) :

    I agree with all that. There is no question about his capabilities and abilities. He is an incredibly talented youngster, but even his stand out games had mistakes and over-zealousness. That is why I just want to see one game where he is not great, but good and no mistakes.

  • Comment 42, posted at 29.05.08 18:01:01 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Hmmm (Comment 41) :

    Don’t forget about the stupid drops he attempted from his own half that were never on. His long range kicking is both a blessing and a curse.

  • Comment 43, posted at 29.05.08 18:01:47 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 43) :

    Yeh cozz he saved our asses against Aus in the 3N last year with his long range kicks…
    And he won a Sharks game or two last year with the same kicks…
    But he does not know when to and when not to…

    No one gets every drop over…not even Carter or Merthens…
    But they also know their capabilities better…and when not to go for it….

  • Comment 44, posted at 29.05.08 18:04:52 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 42) :

    He did have 1/2 of those in the WC last year…he is a much more reserved player under Jake and had a much better success rate with his attempts….

    Think Dick does not know how to coach him!???!

  • Comment 45, posted at 29.05.08 18:06:17 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 44) : Percentages Hmmm, know your capabilities and don’t attempt a drop unless there is better than a 50/50 chance you will make it. But at least he didn’t attempt any drops from inside his own 22 like Long Drop Jaco. πŸ˜†

  • Comment 46, posted at 29.05.08 18:08:24 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Hmmm (Comment 45) :
    Yes, I think Dick does not do a good job of man management. Examples, the way he has handled both Barritt and Steyn, (Barritt should have gotten a break earlier in the Super 14), Starting Epi in the final, replacing Barritt with Steyn in the semi. Those were all very poor man management decisions. And in my defense, I said all these things very early on, I was the first to post that even having Epi on the bench over Keegan, and then starting him, as well as bringing in Steyn.

    Barritt, I believe, set the defensive lines.

  • Comment 47, posted at 29.05.08 18:11:31 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 46) :

    As I said….he had less attempts and a better sucess rate under Jake….lets hope PdV has the same effect….
    He always seems to play his worst rugby at the Sharks….

    LoL…..and at that Long Drop could not even lift the ball from the ground…

  • Comment 48, posted at 29.05.08 18:11:37 by Hmmm Reply

  • Perhaps Dick will be a good backline coach for the Boks, assuming that PdV does a better job of man management than Dick has done.

  • Comment 49, posted at 29.05.08 18:12:45 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 47) :

    I agree….just too many sporadic decisions from Dick…I believe that is why the Sharks have a poor record in finals/semi’s…

  • Comment 50, posted at 29.05.08 18:13:59 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 48) :

    Sorry shouldn’t have even brought up the long drop thing.

  • Comment 51, posted at 29.05.08 18:14:28 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 49) :

    Yeh lets hope so…and lets hope PdV stands his ground and brings level headedness into it when Dick goes bananas….

  • Comment 52, posted at 29.05.08 18:14:57 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 51) :

    LoL….don’t think any one will ever forget….

  • Comment 53, posted at 29.05.08 18:15:30 by Hmmm Reply

  • @Hmmm (Comment 50) :

    He didn’t make the mistakes last year Hmmm, so I don’t think you can really blame Dick for the Sharks inability to win the Super 14. He did all he could last year, and honestly set the Sharks up for a win as any good coach should. Unfortunately the players and the ref let him down. I think Dick made a lot of mistakes this year.

  • Comment 54, posted at 29.05.08 18:15:57 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Hmmm (Comment 52) :

    Right, good point, I had forgotten about Dick’s outburst at Ellis Park. That was so stupid of him, accusing the match official of being a cheat, that was completely uncalled for. He really did make a lot of mistakes this season, actually surprising the Sharks made the semis with him as coach. Does show the level of talent at the Sharks though doesn’t it?

  • Comment 55, posted at 29.05.08 18:18:07 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 54) :

    Agreed….but the players were also better last year…but when he needs to get the standard to where it should be with ordinary or sub-standard players…then he lacks any ability to get results….

  • Comment 56, posted at 29.05.08 18:20:07 by Hmmm Reply

  • I don’t know Hmmm, it seems to me he didn’t make the same man management mistakes last season that he has this season. My opinion anyway.

  • Comment 57, posted at 29.05.08 18:21:26 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 55) :

    Won’t say the “Sharks”….but would say your forwards…and on that you won a good few games or got within 7 thanks to Kanko….
    Your forwards got you in the semi’s…your backs did nothing…all useless…except Adi…

  • Comment 58, posted at 29.05.08 18:21:45 by Hmmm Reply

  • I wish I had some of my posts from early in the season. I said the Sharks backline was incredibly predictable this year. They didn’t run any angles, they simply shoveled the ball out to the wings. Their backline had to be one of the easiest to defend against because they were so predictable. I think this was a problem with the coach not setting up plays that would be less predictable. I wouldn’t blame the backline as much as the coaching for that.

    Kanko was incredible this season wasn’t he? He has beefed up a bit, and is playing with so much confidence.

  • Comment 59, posted at 29.05.08 18:24:42 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 59) :

    I disagree…the players seemed ordinary and had no individual brilliance at any time (no one beat oppo players/broke def/etc)

    Yes he was and is….

  • Comment 60, posted at 29.05.08 18:27:13 by Hmmm Reply

  • Speak to you soon!??!

  • Comment 61, posted at 29.05.08 18:27:30 by Hmmm Reply

  • :lol:@Hmmm (Comment 60) : Stop disagreeing with me!

  • Comment 62, posted at 29.05.08 18:28:17 by Dancing Bear Reply
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  • @Dancing Bear (Comment 62) :

    I will not….LoL

  • Comment 63, posted at 29.05.08 18:30:57 by Hmmm Reply


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