WP carefully managing Jean
Jean de Villiers (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Western Province coach Allister Coetzee
says they will carefully manage the workload of Springbok captain Jean de Villiers in the coming weeks.
De Villiers - who has played a substantial amount of rugby this year - was on Wednesday included on the WP bench for their Currie Cup encounter against the Sharks in Durban on Saturday.
Coetzee picked all his other returning Springboks - Juan de Jongh, Duane Vermeulen
, Siya Kolisi
and Eben Etzebeth
- in the starting team for the crucial top-of-the-log encounter.
In an interview with Die Burger's website
, Coetzee said De Villiers faced big physical and mental challenges during the Rugby Championship and he has therefore decided to rather play him off the bench.
De Villiers could start in next week's semi-final at Newlands.
"If you look how Jean is practicing then you'll see that there's nothing wrong with him. It's not only about the 80 minutes he plays in every game, but also how he practices during the week. We're carefully managing it. Jean had Monday and Tuesday off. He feels refreshed," said Coetzee.
There is also an outside chance that WP could be forced to start De Villiers on Saturday as De Jongh is struggling with a hamstring injury, but Coetzee is confident that the centre will recover in time to tackle the Sharks.
Kick-off at Kings Park is at 19:10 on Saturday.Teams:
15. SP Marais, 14. Odwa Ndungane
, 13. Tim Whitehead
, 12. Heimar Williams
, 11. Lwazi Mvovo
, 10. Fred Zeilinga
, 9. Charl McLeod, 8. Keegan Daniel
(captain), 7. Jean Deysel
, 6. Marcell Coetzee
, 5. Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4. Peet Marais
, 3. Jannie du Plessis, 2. Bismarck du Plessis, 1. Tendai Mtawarira
Substitutes: 16. Kyle Cooper
, 17. Wiehahn Herbst
, 18. Stephan Lewies, 19. Jacques Botes, 20. Cobus Reinach
, 21. Patrick Lambie
, 22. Louis Ludik Western Province:
15. Gio Aplon, 14. Gerhard van den Heever, 13. Juan de Jongh, 12. Damian de Allende, 11. Cheslin Kolbe, 10. Demetri Catrakilis
, 9. Louis Schreuder, 8. Duane Vermeulen
, 7. Siya Kolisi
, 6. Deon Fourie
(captain), 5. De Kock Steenkamp, 4. Eben Etzebeth
, 3. Pat Cilliers, 2. Scarra Ntubeni, 1. Steven Kitshoff
Substitutes: 16. Frans Malherbe, 17. Brok Harris
, 18. Michael Rhodes
, 19. Schalk Burger, 20. Nic Groom, 21. Kurt Coleman, 22. Jean de Villiers