Springboks

BJ scrumming world class

2011-01-18 22:24
Hendrik Cronjé

Bloemfontein – BJ Botha’s scrumming technique is still world class and it will be a huge mistake if Springbok coach Peter de Villiers does not give serious consideration to including him in the World Cup squad.

That is the view of Eduard Coetzee, who was Botha’s direct opponent for Biarritz in a Heineken Cup match against Ulster at the weekend.

Ulster won 9-6 in trying weather conditions.

“BJ is a good friend of mine and is up there among the tightheads with the best technique in world rugby,” said Coetzee.

“I believe Peter should seriously consider him. Apart from his scrumming, his work-rate is very high. Another South African tighthead performing well in the Heineken Cup is Brian Mujati of the Northampton Saints. They have one of the stronger scrums in the Heineken Cup.”

Coetzee said that the above mentioned players are, in his view, better for the exposure they have had in Europe “and can certainly add value to the Boks in the build-up to the World Cup”.

Mujati, who last played for the Stormers in South Africa prior to heading for England, has played for the Boks before.

De Villiers will have the tough task of picking his tightheads from Botha, Mujati, the seasoned CJ van der Linde and the hardworking Jannie du Plessis.

Coetzee said that Saracens hooker Schalk Brits, Bath flyhalf Butch James and No 8 Luke Watson often make the headlines for good performances. The same applies to Ulster lock Johann Muller and scrumhalf Ruan Pienaar.

Coetzee hopes to finish off his career in South Africa one day. He has played for Biarritz for the past six seasons and stands in as captain when Imanol Harinordoquy is injured or not available due to national commitments.

He was previously a solid campaigner for the Sharks.

“I’m enjoying my rugby in France a lot. The tough forward play and focus on the scrums are what I particularly enjoy,” said Coetzee.

“Scrumming is a passion here. My strength previously was with the ball in hand, but I believe I’m a more complete player after the years in France.

“I’m 31 years old now and would like to finish off my career in South Africa. That’s if the right opportunity presents itself at the Sharks or Western Province.”

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