Fourie opens up the Bok door

2013-10-21 19:00
Jaque Fourie (Getty Images)
Johannesburg - Springbok midfielder Jaque Fourie may have extended his contract with Japanese club Kobelco Steelers, but he could well be back in a Bok jersey soon after inserting a clause that would make it possible for him to turn out for the Springboks again.

According to the supersport.com website, Fourie, who is easily the in-form player in the Japanese league at the moment, is highly rated by Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer and while it seems unlikely he will feature in the November tour squad, the chances of him turning out again for the Boks is much more likely next year with the clause in his contract.

Fourie is enjoying his time in the Far East, and while he last played for the Springboks in the 2011 Rugby World Cup, the return of the likes of Fourie du Preez has spurred his desire to wear the Green and Gold again.

The midfielder made himself unavailable for the Springboks in 2012, deciding to focus more on his new club, but now has set his sights on playing in a fourth Rugby World Cup in 2015.

"I have signed another two-year contract that will see me through to 2016," Fourie told Kyodo News on Sunday following Kobe's loss to Suntory Sungoliath in the Top League.

"But there is an option that allows me, if selected, to go back and play for my country."

Fourie has discussed a possible return to the Boks with his club.

"I made sure the club was 100% behind my decision and they were very happy to agree," Fourie said.

"So come next year if all goes well I will be playing test-match rugby.

"The World Cup in 2015 would be my fourth and I set myself a goal of playing in it when I came here.

"It's a goal I am working towards and I want to be in the best possible condition."

The utility back, who has played fullback, wing and centre in his 69 Tests for the Boks, praised the Japanese system for giving him a new lease on his career.

"My goal when I came here was to prolong my career and give myself another two or three seasons," he said.

"We play 20 to 25 games a year here not 40.

"So it's much easier to keep your body fresh as Fourie (du Preez) and George (Smith) proved."

"I aim to be in the best possible condition of my life come 2015."

The Boks will also have JP Pietersen available for the November tour as his clause makes him available for the June and November Tests, but not the Rugby Championship.

Read more on:    springboks  |  jaque fourie  |  johannesburg  |  rugby

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