Meyer: I back the youngsters

2013-06-01 23:07
Heyneke Meyer (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer says he is happy with his new squad and confident the youngsters will step up to the plate.

Bulls centre Jan Serfontein is one of nine uncapped players in a much-changed Springbok squad for the four nations tournament against Italy, Scotland and Samoa starting next week.

The 20-year-old captained South Africa to the IRB Junior World Championship last year and, along with another inclusion from that side, loose-forward Pieter-Steph du Toit of the Sharks, is viewed as one of the bright young things of South African rugby.

"It's good to see Jan and Pieter-Steph make the step up from the junior levels. I've always rated them and they've shone this year for the Bulls and Sharks," Meyer told a press conference on Saturday night.

Among the other uncapped players, four have not been part of the national set-up before. They are the Cheetahs quartet of front-rowers Lourens Adriaanse and Trevor Nyakane, flank Lappies Labuschagne and winger Willie le Roux.

The other three remaining uncapped players are Stormers flanker Siya Kolisi and the Bulls pair of loose-forward Arno Botha and scrumhalf Jano Vermaak.

Meyer has also selected overseas-based scrumhalf Ruan Pienaar from Ulster and Bath flanker Francois Louw, but maintains he prefers to pick players plying their trade in South Africa.

"I have always said I want to pick the guys in South Africa first. Ruan and Francois are the only overseas we have considered for the moment," Meyer said.

"If there are injuries then we might have to look at more guys overseas and there are some quality guys there.

"I am very happy with this squad, there are a lot of youngsters coming through and you have to back them and the other guys playing in South Africa."

The Springboks open their Incoming Series against Italy in Durban next Saturday, before a meeting with Scotland in Nelspruit on June 15.

There will be a final round of matches in Pretoria on June 22, with the fixtures to be determined by results on the opening two weekends.

Springbok squad:

Forwards (19): Tendai Mtawarira, Lourens Adriaanse, Trevor Nyakane, Jannie du Plessis, Coenie Oosthuizen, Adriaan Strauss, Bismarck du Plessis, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Eben Etzebeth, Flip van der Merwe, Juandré Kruger, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Siya Kolisi, Francois Louw, Marcell Coetzee, Willem Alberts, Arno Botha, Lappies Labuschagne, Pierre Spies.

Backs (15): Jano Vermaak, Ruan Pienaar, Francois Hougaard, Pat Lambie, Morné Steyn, Jean de Villiers, Juan de Jongh, Jan Serfontein, JJ Engelbrecht, Bryan Habana, Lwazi Mvovo, Bjorn Basson, Gio Aplon, Zane Kirchner, Willie le Roux.

HAVE YOUR SAY: What's your take on the new Springbok squad? Are you happy with the 34 players named? Or are there a few unlucky guys who missed out? Send your thoughts to Sport24.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

20 August 2016
South Africa v Argentina, Nelspruit 17:00
27 August 2016
Argentina v South Africa, TBA 00:00
10 September 2016
Australia v South Africa, Brisbane 00:00
17 September 2016
New Zealand v South Africa, Addington, Christchurch 00:00
01 October 2016
South Africa v Australia, Pretoria 17:00
08 October 2016
South Africa v New Zealand, Durban 17:00
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Irrespective of the result of the Springboks' bronze medal match against Argentina, should coach Heyneke Meyer be offered a contract extension?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


30 of the world's greatest golfers will be heading to the Gary Player Country Club for this year's Nedbank Golf Challenge - now in its 35th year. For all the latest news, player profiles, hole-by-hole descriptions and past winners, be sure to check out Sport24's dedicated section.

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.