England in SA
Kruger lauds mentor Matfield
Cape Town - New Springbok lock Juandré Kruger has lauded the impact former lock Victor Matfield has had on his career.
Coach Heyneke Meyer on Wednesday picked three new caps to take on England in Durban on Saturday, with locks Eben Etzebeth and Kruger both set for their first Test, with flanker Marcell Coetzee the third uncapped player.
Kruger, 26, told Die Burger
that Matfield was instrumental in shaping his career when they were team-mates at the Bulls.
"Victor played a huge role in my development as a player. He helped stimulate my thought processes and how to analyse opponents," said Kruger.
"There are a lot of players in the Bok squad that could learn from him. He is always willing to share his knowledge and I'll always be thankful for what he's done for me."
Kruger is also not worried about the relative short time he and Etzebeth has had to prepare for the lineouts.
"There was good intensity in our preparation earlier this week.
"We are well prepared to compete (in the lineouts) and also to win our attacking lineouts. The planning camps that were held also helped," said Kruger.
The first Test in Durban kicks off at 17:00 on Saturday, followed by Tests in Johannesburg (16 June) and Port Elizabeth (23 June).Teams:South Africa:
15 Zane Kirchner, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Jean de Villiers (captain), 12 Frans Steyn, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Pierre Spies, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Marcell Coetzee, 5 Juandré Kruger, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Beast Mtawarira
Substitutes: 16 Adriaan Strauss, 17 Coenie Oosthuizen, 18 Flip van der Merwe, 19 Keegan Daniel, 20 Ruan Pienaar, 21 Pat Lambie, 22 Wynand OlivierEngland:
15 Mike Brown, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Manu Tuilagi, 12 Brad Barritt, 11 Ben Foden, 10 Owen Farrell, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Ben Morgan, 7 Chris Robshaw (captain), 6 Tom Johnson, 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Mouritz Botha, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Dylan Hartley, 1 Joe Marler
Substitutes: 16 Lee Mears, 17 Paul Doran Jones, 18 Tom Palmer, 19 Phil Dowson, 20 Lee Dickson, 21 Toby Flood, 22 Jonathan JosephNew Springbok lock pairing Juandré Kruger and Eben Etzebeth (Gallo Images)