Cope: Give EC players a shot
Port Elizabeth - Rugby players from the Eastern Cape should be given more of an opportunity to showcase their skills at international level, Cope leader Mosiuoa Lekota said on Saturday.
Lekota said he had been misquoted by the media earlier in the week, with reports suggesting he was not pleased with Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer's team selection.
"My comments in a statement on Friday were not aimed at the national squad," Lekota said.
"I was criticising the structures of rugby in the country.
"We believe that between 43-48 percent of young rugby players in South Africa are from Border, Port Elizabeth and the surrounding areas, and South West Districts."
Lekota said players who did not compete for Super Rugby unions were not given fair chance at international level.
"All young people that excel should be considered for the national squad, not only players from Super Rugby teams."
He felt it was a long-term issue, and he had no criticism for Meyer's selection ahead of three home Tests against England.
"I wish the team well, as these are the best players we have at the moment," Lekota said.
"We must win these matches, which is important, but this concern should be addressed in the long run."