WP eager to use all 7 Boks
Allister Coetzee (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Western Province coach Allister Coetzee
is eager to include all seven of his returning Springboks for their clash against the Free State Cheetahs at Newlands on Saturday.
They head into the final round-robin clash looking to secure a semi-final spot, and Coetzee is not willing to take any chances, especially as they could yet finish bottom of the log if they lose and other results go against them. That would mean a promotion-relegation match against the EP Kings, which would be a disgrace for a union of WP's magnitude.
"I have to pick the strongest possible team," he told Die Burger
. The match is of huge importance. Not one of them indicated any form of tiredness or not wanting to play."
And the coach is confident that all of Jean de Villiers, Tiaan Liebenberg
, Eben Etzebeth
, Andries Bekker
, Duane Vermeulen
, Juan de Jongh and Bryan Habana
will be available this weekend.
Deon Fourie and Bok skipper De Villiers both sat out training on Monday with hamstring niggles but are expected to be available whilst a question mark still hangs over Gio Aplon who has completed his rehabilitation on his ankle injury.
Coetzee said De Villiers has a "realistic chance" to play. Should that be the case he will also lead the team ahead of Fourie.
"It is normal protocol for the one who was appointed captain for the season to take over if he returns from Bok duty," Coetzee said.
"Deon has led the side very well, considering he had a side with very limited resources."
The clash against the Cheetahs kick off at 17:05 on Saturday.