Springboks

Boks to 'wing it' out wide?

2017-05-23 21:57
Courtnall Skosan (Gallo)

Cape Town - The Springboks will have a new captain, a new feel and, in all likelihood, a new pair of wings when they take on France in three Tests in June. 

Coach Allister Coetzee announced his 31-man squad for the series on Tuesday, and while there are some experienced faces returning to the side - Frans Steyn, Duane Vermeulen, Francois Hougaard - there are also eight uncapped players in the squad. 

In the official squad list from SA Rugby, Coetzee had listed three wings in his group - Courtnall Skosan, Dillyn Leyds and Raymond Rhule

While there are other players who can play on the wing, these three are considered the specialist finishers in the group. 

While they have all been successful in Super Rugby this season, the concern is that they have a combined ZER0 Test caps. 

A noticeable omission from the squad is veteran Bryan Habana, furthering speculation that this could be the end of a 124-Test career for the 33-year-old. 

JP Pietersen was another who was being tipped for selection before the France series, but he too was not called up. 

Pietersen is 30 and has 70 Tests to his name. 

Coetzee could still use Francois Hougaard or Jesse Kriel on the wing, but Hougaard is a natural scrumhalf and Kriel has not played at wing all year. 

On form this season, Skosan and Leyds probably edge out Rhule, who has had some major defensive issues in 2017. 

Whatever Coetzee decides to do, he is likely to be blooding new talent in the No 11 and 14 jerseys against France. 

Springbok squad:

Forwards

Lood de Jager, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Ruan Dreyer, Eben Etzebeth, Steven Kitshoff, Siya Kolisi, Jaco Kriel, Frans Malherbe, Malcolm Marx, Bongi Mbonambi, Oupa Mohoje, Franco Mostert, Tendai Mtawarira, Lizo Gqoboka, Coenie Oosthuizen, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Duane Vermeulen, Warren Whiteley (captain)

Backs

Lukhanyo Am, Andries Coetzee, Ross Cronje, Damian de Allende, Francois Hougaard, Elton Jantjies, Jesse Kriel, Dillyn Leyds, Rudy Paige, Raymond Rhule, Jan Serfontein, Courtnall Skosan, Frans Steyn

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