Frans almost like Juan - coach

2011-09-25 22:33

Taupo - Their relationship may have had its ups and downs, but after comparing Frans Steyn to South Africa's Juan Smith, Peter de Villiers has shown a new-found respect for the utility back.

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"Frans has brought a new dimension to our backline play," said De Villiers.

"He actually came in and filled the boots of a Juan Smith to a certain extent."

Smith, recognised as an influential loose-forward on the international stage, withdrew from the national squad prior to the tournament because of an Achilles injury.

After a run at fullback, Steyn was moved to centre, where he has played most of his rugby for his club Racing Metro.

His impressive performances in midfield, in place of the injured Jean de Villiers, has left the Bok coach with a few tough decisions to make in the upcoming weeks.

De Villiers is expected to be available for selection after missing out on the last two games because of a rib cartilage injury sustained in the opening match against Wales.

Getting back into the proverbial saddle is going to be harder than anticipated for De Villiers given Steyn's performances.

"What we lost there (in Smith’s absence), we gained with Frans," said the coach.

"But then again, we will just want to look at who we are playing, and what they offer to us and then make the decisions around Jean and Frans.

"While Jean has all that flair, Frans isn’t short of it, but Jean isn’t that physical at the moment."

Another option for the Bok coach is to stick with Juan de Jongh as back-up to the chosen number 12.

Whichever way the Springbok coach decides to go, there will be a number of disappointed players.

De Villiers said he had a few tough decisions to make as far as injured players like Butch James and Bakkies Botha were concerned.

He said he would like for his match-22 to be settled as they approach the playoffs and is expected to give his final verdict on Monday.

"I think this is now the time of the tournament where you need a full squad, because it will keep me on my toes," said De Villiers.

"It will bring the bad part of my job to the fore, where I have to go to eight players and say 'You will now sit out for the next two or three weeks', but if you don’t have that, it would make the job easy and we don’t want the job to be easy."

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  • A.K - 2011-09-25 22:42

    no comments??

      odysseus - 2011-09-26 05:28

      trying to figure out the logic in comparing a utility back with a loose forward....... or I suppose we should assume he means the players' value to the team is on par... a bit daft when comparing apples with oranges..... As for the selection decisions, they are pretty straight forward to most of us by now... The real challenge will be for Divvy to renege on his loyalties and put certain individuals on the bench that just one month ago, he had planned should play for 60 or 80 minutes.

  • charl - 2011-09-25 22:48

    This is just a direct copy of an article that was earlier on R365

      Herman - 2011-09-25 22:59

      It's because it comes through the wires from SAPA as it is credited just above here. Rugby 365 is also subscribed to SAPA. That's the reason. It's not copied from R365.

  • marco - 2011-09-25 23:38

    This is the same Frans Steyn that PDV said looks "being overweight,too slow and a liability to the Boks" after their 14-9 lost to the Wallabies in Durban this year.What's changed since that crap day in Durban?I thought his Fabio-type locks,which he had since sheared off,was the real problem and reason he was out of sorts back then.A new hairstyle brings out a new Steyn right!!!!!! No 12 is the preferred position for Frans Steyn I reckon.Steyn gives the Boks another dimension at 12,just like he does when playing at fullback.You can play him in either position and he is a threat to the opposition.Just don't play him at flyhalf.

  • Clark Kent - 2011-09-26 01:39

    Cant wait for him to face up to the Nonu , Sonny Bill combination if your guys can make it past Australia. They will cut him to shreds

      Henry - 2011-09-26 04:43

      You need to clean your glasses Clark, what about Steyn and Fourie cutting past Nonu and Who? Besides it's that time of the tournament for you guys - Choking Time . . . Again!

      landieman - 2011-09-26 04:46

      your cage is going to be rattled my boy,and you don't even see it coming.

      odysseus - 2011-09-26 05:35

      Hey superman....I think most of the All black team, being the sportsmen they are, would not encourage your particular brand of smug premature arrogance on this site...

      RandomDude - 2011-09-26 05:43

      You folks must be new here , it's not interesting in a Rugby discussion . It will start bringing race into the "discussion" as soon as a couple of people bite. Plz just ignore it, it's only here to annoy people .

  • Andrew - 2011-09-26 03:24

    Miskien moet ons Afrikaans praat sodat hierdie aap nie kan verstaan nie.

      RandomDude - 2011-09-26 04:40

      Dis reg Jaco , as niemand bite sal hy verveeld raak en waai

  • Karoobloed - 2011-09-26 03:52

    I admire and respect JdV, but feel that Frans Steyn, Jaques Fourie and Juan de Jong are our top 3 centres based on present form. However, JdV should not dispair - if the Boks play very well there is still a lot of rugby to play and injury to any of the aforementioned 3 could be to his benefit this time around. On the other hand, if the Boks do not play exceptionally well, they will not see the final anyway.

      Neilson - 2011-09-26 05:24

      I disagree with your assessment of out best centres. There are at least 6 centres back in SA that I will chose any day over de Jongh. I guess you must be a Stormer supporter to even name his name. No other team supporter can have any time for him.

      Karoobloed - 2011-09-26 05:39

      No I do not wear biased glasses - it was just my opinion. And JdV is a Stormer too.

  • Neilson - 2011-09-26 05:20

    Not difficult decision at all, play Frans, put dee Villiers on bench and send de Jongh back home. Problems solved.

      odysseus - 2011-09-26 05:40

      tend to agree... But I'm more concerned about the selections up front.... these will more directly challenge Divvy's loyalties to certain players...

      odysseus - 2011-09-26 05:51

      and on wing....

  • Ya Beauty! - 2011-09-26 05:36

    Frans all the way cause he runs straight needs two guys to take him down hence space out wide something the Boks have been missing since the last world cup.......

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