Richard Ferguson

Oh Captain, my Captain…

Written by Richard Ferguson (Richard Ferguson)

Posted in :Original Content, Springboks on 23 Sep 2010 at 09:00
Tagged with : , , , , ,

With John Smit definitely ruled out of the End of Year Tour, we have a look at some of the players who might be asked to step up and fill very big boots.

The first and obvious choice is Victor Matfield, having just one less cap than existing captain John Smit, as well as having won his fair share of Super Rugby titles, it seems really easy. But, Victor is no young gun, and is this not the ideal opportunity to blood the captain to take us from 2012 and beyond? Let us look at a few obvious and a few left field selections to make it really interesting:


– Current vice-captain, and already experienced in leading the Boks
– Winner of three Super Rugby titles

– Matfield played every single minute of the 2010 Tri Nations, and could do with a bit of a rest himself.
– Aside from that win in Dunedin in 2008, he hasn’t been the most successful captain.


– Another leader by example, he tends to lead from the front, and is a cool character under pressure.
– He has the respect of his teammates – having been there and done it all in a Bok jersey.

– Your best player doesn’t always make the best captain – will the weight of one of the toughest jobs in South African rugby affect his game?
– Captaining Free State and captaining the Springboks are two very different jobs!


– He was a decent captain to the Stormers in their best Super Rugby finish tin 2010, leading to the final.
– He likes leading by example, and takes the captaincy in his stride.

– He is a walking yellow card.
– He also needs rest after a very, very long year.


– Yes, he is a pick from left field, but his great work with Western Province indicates that he is one of the best captains in the country.
– Fresh ideas and a fresh face could just be what the doctor ordered!

– Is he good enough to warrant a starting spot in the Bok line-up?
– No Springbok experience – his first Test in charge would also be his debut for his country


– He has done the job before and is a player who has been earmarked as a potential Springbok captain in the future.
– Ralepelle thrived under the leadership role at age-group level and has all the qualities to do a great job.

– Can he really keep in form Bismarck du Plessis out of the Springbok starting line up.
– Can his body hold up? Will he finish the tour – unlike last year when he limped home early?


– He has captained the Springboks successfully before, doing a great job.
– He has done a great job at the Sharks, learning from the best in the country, John Smit.

– Can he hold down a starting spot?
– He is currently not in the country, and he is not young enough to be around for a long time.

So what do you think? Anybody have another idea? Some more left field selections? Anybody for some Luke Watson?


  • Jean de Villiers?

    Good communicator (with refs), captained Stormers before, surely a starter?

  • Comment 1, posted at 23.09.10 09:07:04 by Morné Reply
  • @Morné (Comment 1) :

    Took over Bok captaincy when Victor left the field in the win in House of Pain test.

  • Comment 2, posted at 23.09.10 09:08:57 by Morné Reply
  • ME?? 😛 I can and will do an awesome job of obtaining and retaining all the trophies that’s available 😛

  • Comment 3, posted at 23.09.10 09:10:05 by Jarson Reply
    Competition WinnerCompetition WinnerCompetition Winner
  • Damn.. forgot about him..

    Good points mentioned by Morne..

    Bad – Slightly injury prone.. Captaining Stormers and captaining the Boks very different jobs.. Does he have the right attitude and personality to take that responsibility?

  • Comment 4, posted at 23.09.10 09:10:45 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
    Richard Ferguson
  • @Morné (Comment 2) :

    I reckon he is a good call.. Does he want the job though?

  • Comment 5, posted at 23.09.10 09:11:33 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
    Richard Ferguson
  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 4) :

    Schalk and Juan are not great communicators specifically with referees which is why I do not like them as choices at international test level.

    If all senior players are indeed rested my pick would be Jean.

  • Comment 6, posted at 23.09.10 09:13:18 by Morné Reply
  • On the first Sharskworld podcast i called for DeVilliers and got laughed at

  • Comment 7, posted at 23.09.10 09:17:58 by Clayton(PJLD) Reply
  • @Clayton(PJLD) (Comment 7) :

    So you are a genius Claytie?!

  • Comment 8, posted at 23.09.10 09:20:43 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
    Richard Ferguson
  • Earl Rose has more chance of captaining the Bok’s than Anton Van Zyl.

    Juan Smith all the way. He can tackle and run wiff da ball too.

  • Comment 9, posted at 23.09.10 09:23:55 by Oubaas2009 Reply

  • @Richard Ferguson (Comment 8) : You better recognise

  • Comment 10, posted at 23.09.10 09:27:36 by Clayton(PJLD) Reply
  • @Jarson (Comment 3) :

    And you wouldn’t mind the 75K match fees for each test!! 😈

  • Comment 11, posted at 23.09.10 09:34:59 by wpw Reply
  • @Clayton(PJLD) (Comment 10) : :mrgreen: 😆

  • Comment 12, posted at 23.09.10 09:37:29 by wpw Reply
  • @wpw (Comment 11) : Most definitely not 😳 :mrgreen:

  • Comment 13, posted at 23.09.10 09:38:18 by Jarson Reply
    Competition WinnerCompetition WinnerCompetition Winner
  • @Clayton(PJLD) (Comment 7) :
    We laugh at you all the time; had nothing to do with JDV. 😉

    Good call that though: I nominate JDV or Smith.

  • Comment 14, posted at 23.09.10 09:39:02 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • @Big Fish (Comment 14) : Go ride your bike

  • Comment 15, posted at 23.09.10 09:45:41 by Clayton(PJLD) Reply
  • How about Allie Hargreaves???he getting better with every game and has the pedigree.

  • Comment 16, posted at 23.09.10 09:58:42 by ruggabugga Reply

  • 1. Jean de Villiers – If he is 1st choice centre.
    2. Juan Smith – If he is 1st choice flank.
    3. Chilliboy Ralapelle – If he is 1st choice hooker.
    4. Schalk Burger – If he is 1st choice flank.
    5. Fourie du Preez. – Did a crap job as captain of the Bulls. Their worst season ever. So no, I can not “Give. Him. Another. Chance.”

    What if none of these guys are first choice?

    Juan de Jong is not a captain.
    Neither is Brussouw.
    Neither is Dewald Potgieter (Yet).
    Neither is Bismark du Plessis.

    So who does that leave us with? One seriously tired and over worked Victor M.

  • Comment 17, posted at 23.09.10 09:59:24 by rugbypedia Reply

  • Hi everyone.

    I’m a big fan of the sharksworld site.

    My captains pick has to be the big man Alistair Hargreaves.

    Extremely successful age group captain.
    In the form of his life.
    Toured with the boks already for the EOYT.
    And young enough for the future.

  • Comment 18, posted at 23.09.10 10:01:32 by BB Reply

  • @BB (Comment 18) : Welcome to the site BB

  • Comment 19, posted at 23.09.10 10:03:29 by Clayton(PJLD) Reply
  • @BB (Comment 18) :

    Welcome BB! I hope you enjoy the site..

    I agree with you, but I can’t see him holding down a regular spot..

  • Comment 20, posted at 23.09.10 10:03:45 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
    Richard Ferguson
  • Muller for definite. Natural leader.

    Matfield would be de Villiers pick..why..because de Villiers goes with what has happened in the past and sticks with the safest options. Thinking outside the box is an alien concept to Snor.

  • Comment 21, posted at 23.09.10 10:04:32 by Predawn Reply

    Great White Shark
  • Watson would be a definite as he is also a natural leader, but he keeps tripping over his mouth which would hinder his game..

  • Comment 22, posted at 23.09.10 10:07:43 by Predawn Reply

    Great White Shark
  • @Clayton(PJLD) (Comment 15) :

  • Comment 23, posted at 23.09.10 10:16:20 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • @BB (Comment 18) : I presume BB doesn’t stand for Blue Bull? Welcome!

  • Comment 24, posted at 23.09.10 10:18:31 by Oubaas2009 Reply

  • @Oubaas2009 (Comment 24) : Hell no, I could think of nothing worse.

  • Comment 25, posted at 23.09.10 10:22:20 by BB Reply

  • @BB (Comment 25) : 🙂 Good man

  • Comment 26, posted at 23.09.10 10:28:50 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Rob,

    Any idea which senior Springboks are not going to tour?

  • Comment 27, posted at 23.09.10 10:29:12 by dawj Reply

  • what about gary botha ? (bulls)
    bok experience
    leads bulls well
    has nh exposure

  • Comment 28, posted at 23.09.10 10:33:11 by prgdad Reply

  • @dawj (Comment 27) : there was an article a few weeks ago 🙂

  • Comment 29, posted at 23.09.10 10:33:34 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @dawj (Comment 27) :

    John Smit
    Victor Matfield
    Schalk Burger
    Morne Steyn
    Fourie du Preez

    There was one more but I cant seem to recall..

    Brussouw won’t be going on tour either..

  • Comment 30, posted at 23.09.10 10:39:31 by Richard Ferguson Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
    Richard Ferguson
  • Here’s one from the left field for you…
    Francois Hougaard?

  • Comment 31, posted at 23.09.10 10:48:03 by Crock Reply

  • @prgdad (Comment 28) : You wouldn’t play him before Bismark would you, and then behind him in the coaches ranking is Chili and Maku.

  • Comment 32, posted at 23.09.10 10:50:36 by lostfish Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Competition Winner
  • @Crock (Comment 31) :

    What are you smoking Crock??? :mrgreen:

  • Comment 33, posted at 23.09.10 10:56:04 by Pink Ice Reply
    Competition Winner Ice
  • Totally left field for a captain but what about Joe van Niekerk. He is good enough to play for the Boks and is doing a sterling job of captaining Toulon.

  • Comment 34, posted at 23.09.10 10:56:46 by lostfish Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Competition Winner
  • Andries Bekker anyone?

  • Comment 35, posted at 23.09.10 11:49:28 by MerckZ Reply

  • Alistair Hargreaves is not a bad call. But same must apply, is he the 1st choice lock? Bakkies, Matfield, Flip and Bekker all seem to be ahead of him. Cant have a captain who is fifth in the pecking order now can we?

  • Comment 36, posted at 23.09.10 11:50:13 by rugbypedia Reply

  • IMO we need a youngster, capable of walking a few miles with the Boks.
    However, perhaps for the next 2 or 3 seasons, we can do with an interim captain, oone of the senior guys, a regular first choice player.
    So, who will this be?
    Schalla, Juan, Jean? All possible candidates…
    What an important decision to leave up to Snorre! I’m sure he’ll stuff it up, no matter what.

  • Comment 37, posted at 23.09.10 11:51:39 by Crock Reply

  • Chilliboy Ralepelle – can he keep Bismark out of the Staring XV?
    Alistiar Hargreaves – a little too inexperienced?
    Johann Muller – out of the country and not a young buck.
    Victor Matfield – time for a rest for the veteran.
    Schalk Burger – a break for Burger is on the cards too.
    Juan Smith – can he captain at Test level?
    Joe Van Niekerk – overseas, and is he even on the cards for 2011?
    Fourie Du Preez (if avialable)- he’s a great player but is he a captain?
    Jean De Villiers – injuries?

  • Comment 38, posted at 23.09.10 11:55:31 by The Sharks Sharkie Reply
    The Sharks Sharkie
  • @MerckZ (Comment 35) :

    No – he is ruled by the wrong head = not sure he will be able to think when he needs to…

  • Comment 39, posted at 23.09.10 12:00:40 by Pink Ice Reply
    Competition Winner Ice
  • Dewald Potgieter anyone? With Schalk out, he will be in the starting 15 and is the Bulls captain when fit.

  • Comment 40, posted at 23.09.10 12:10:09 by dawj Reply

  • @dawj (Comment 40) :

    Check comment 2.. 😉

  • Comment 41, posted at 23.09.10 12:12:07 by Pink Ice Reply
    Competition Winner Ice

Add Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.