Steenkamp backs Sharks props

2015-07-09 15:22
Jannie du Plessis (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - The impressive performances of Vincent Koch and Frans Malherbe in Super Rugby this season, combined with the struggles of the Sharks, have led to much debate over what the composition of the Springboks' front row should look like at the 2015 Rugby World Cup. 

Should faith be placed in the tried and tested Sharks front row of Beast Mtawarira, Bismarck du Plessis and Jannie Du Plessis? Or should the likes of Koch, Malherbe and Adriaan Strauss be given a look in? 

Former Bok loosehead Gurthtro Steenkamp, in Cape Town with the World XV ahead of Saturday's clash against the Springboks, has offered his thoughts. 

"Being an experienced player myself I would always opt for experience," Steenkamp said. 

"I think I would definitely go for Beast on the loosehead and Jannie on the tighthead.

"There's nothing much to choose between Bismarck and Adriaan Strauss."

Steenkamp added that it was important to give youngsters a chance, but how exactly they were phased into the setup would be crucial. 

"It's important to get the young guys on the field and slowly and surely give them 20 minutes here and there. Eventually, when the coach feels right, give the guys a start.

"I think that's important because it keeps the experienced guys on their toes so they don't go into a comfort zone."

Steenkamp added that he had been impressed with what he had seen from Koch so far. 

"I haven't seen a lot of Super Rugby but Vincent Koch has really impressed me," he said. 

"I think it's important to show confidence in these players and have patience with them."

Saturday's match kicks off at 17:00. 



15 Willie le Roux, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Marcell Coetzee, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Victor Matfield (captain), 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira

Substitutes: 16 Adriaan Strauss, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Oupa Mohoje, 20 Schalk Burger, 21 Cobus Reinach, 22 Pat Lambie, 23 Jean de Villiers

World XV:

15 Delon Armitage, 14 Lachlan Turner, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Maxime Mermoz, 11 David Smith, 10 Mike Harris, 9 Luke Burgess, 8 Luke Whitelock, 7 Steffon Armitage, 6 Jordan Taufua, 5 Bakkies Botha (captain), 4 Ali Williams, 3 Carl Hayman, 2 Craig Burden, 1 Gurthro Steenkamp

Substitutes: 16 David Roumieu, 17 Alexandre Menini, 18 Petrus du Plessis, 19 Flip Van der Merwe, 20 Louis-Benoit Madaule, 21 Maxime Machenaud, 22 Andrew Horrell, 23 Rudi Wulf


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