News24

Bekker closing in on Matfield

2010-04-19 22:31

Stephen Nell

Cape Town – Andries Bekker or Victor Matfield?

That is just one of the tough questions Springbok coach Peter de Villiers will probably have to confront in the coming months following the revival at the Stormers.

Bekker is coming off an exceptional two weeks with the Stormers in New Zealand and will again be a key player in Friday’s Super 14 match against the Reds in Brisbane.

Matt Proudfoot, a former team-mate of Matfield that now coaches Bekker at the Stormers, again waxed lyrical about the Stormers man on Monday.

“I don’t think we have seen the best of Andries yet,” Proudfoot said in an interview from Surfers Paradise on Australia’s Gold Coast.

“He is psychologically intimidating opponents and New Zealand will have sleepless nights about him in the Green and Gold. Andries is commanding the same kind of respect there now as Schalk Burger.

“Victor took lineout play to a different level, but Andries will take it to a new level in the coming years.”

De Villiers is the man who will have the dilemma of choosing between the two. He can, of course, also exploit the situation to South Africa’s advantage by rotating them in a year where the Boks are set to play 15 Tests.

Even if he decided to pick the experienced combination of Matfield and Bakkies Botha in big Tests this year, Bekker will still be an exceptional bench option.

“It’s not going to be an easy decision, but our job is to create those problems to the benefit of South African rugby,” said Proudfoot.

Bekker’s first priority is now to help the Stormers finish their tour on a high.

Proudfoot on Monday praised the senior players for the manner in which they have kept the focus on the Reds game.

“It’s not seen as the last tour game, but as one of four matches that we have left. The senior players are superb in that respect and ensure that the right information is passed down to the rest of the team,” said Proudfoot.

The Stormers are set to keep their starting line-up unchanged, though it will be interesting to see if they pick Fabian Juries on the bench.

“It’s a short week (with the Stormers playing on Friday) and we will stick to what works,” said Proudfoot.

Meanwhile, the Reds have contracted 33-year-old former Brumbies and Wallaby lock Radike Samo.

This follows the injury that veteran lock Van Humphries sustained against the Bulls last week. The Reds are also without the services of injured lock and captain James Horwill.

While the Reds’ forwards are unsung, they are a physical side and their success is down to much more than just a gifted halfback pairing of Will Genia and Quade Cooper.

They even managed to get the better of the Bulls at the scrums.

“The Reds beat the Bulls with their speed on the engagement. I’m satisfied with our speed on the engagement,  but would like to see that we do more in the scrums after the engagement,” said Proudfoot.

“There is a lot of hype about the Reds here. That excites our players because they are keen to show what they can do."

Sport24

Comments
  • blou bul - 2010-04-19 22:56

    Matfield raak ongelukkig so cool dat hy afkoel. Te veel in beheer dat hy begin dood gaan van cool in beheer wees. Niks kan hom opgewonde of entosiasties maak nie.Hy praat nou so stadig soos Pres Zuma.

  • Jannie - 2010-04-19 23:02

    Victor has never in his life played the quality of rugby that Bekker has been playing so far this season, he has been unbelievable!

  • bulawayo-based-bok - 2010-04-19 23:13

    I think First choice would be Bekker and Bakkies......with Sykes/Matfield and Rossouw also used for Tests this year!!! i have a feeling that Bekker might get injured or be fatigued for the Bok Matches and he won't be able to reach the "ENORMOUS" heights he is at the moment!!! he really amazes me because i always think he is too skinny and too upright in the contact to do anything, but he is immensely strong and has a ridiculous turn of speed for a 6ft 10 oke!!!!!

  • Spyker - 2010-04-19 23:16

    Die rugby wat Bekker gespeel het 0/13 is beter as wat matfield al ooit in sy lewe gespeel het,matfield is n sak bene wat kan spring in n lyn staan dis al, verder doen hy niks op die veld nie. Hulle kan net sowel mametsa kaptein maak van die bulle,daar gaan nie n groot verkil wees nie.

  • hein Cent - 2010-04-19 23:16

    Ag Twak man. Matfield is so fiks dat hy nie eers moeg is na die game nie.

  • FitMike - 2010-04-19 23:21

    @ Jannies: AMEN!!! Bekker is on a diffrent level to both Victor and Bakkies. But I dont think this artcile shoudl have been between bekker and Victor, but Bekker and Bakkies as I think Victor and Bekker would make a good pair, but bakkies is now 3rd in row for the bok shirt as far as I am concerned.

  • blou bul - 2010-04-19 23:29

    Jannie of Pietertjie, wat low nam ookal is. Matfield is op sy dag darm die beste in die wereld. Wag vir die Nuweland game , dan praat ons weer. Bekker hou daarvan om na die goeie beweging kop te verloor en die bal wild weg te gooi, en om daarmee ook n strafskop af te staan en dan sy gesig eers skeef te te trek . Gee hom nog kans.

  • Sharks!@! - 2010-04-19 23:40

    People are getting carried away with Bekker after 2 months. Yes, he is playing excellent rugby, but there are a huge difference between super 14 and Tests. Bekker has had good seasons before and could not cut it at test level. It might be different this time, but still, you can not compare the s14 to testrugby. Matfield and Bakkies has been there, done that at the highest level. Bekker still has a long way to go.

  • BokkeTheBest - 2010-04-19 23:44

    Sien jullevergeet gou hoe Victor in n wereldbeker finaal 7 lynstane gesteel het en hoe hy laasjaar in die Drie Nasies 5, 6 keer die Aussies en All Blacks se balle in die games gesteel en al 8 jaar op toetsvlak die opposisie uitoorle het. Bekker kan na die wereldbeker oorneem.

  • Pieter - 2010-04-19 23:54

    Matfield and Bakkies. Bekker on the bench.

  • Blue Bull expert - 2010-04-20 01:14

    I would just like to remind my Stormer friends that the S14 is won in May and not in April. To underestimate the Bulls would be an exercise in futility. They have a proud tradition of knowing how to win. There is good reason why they are the only S.A side with S14 silverware. Make them underdogs to your own peril. They have experience, tradition and the will to win on any day. Just ask the Reds and the chiefs about last years games

  • Arrie - 2010-04-20 01:41

    Matfield was 'n briljante speler maar het my gladnie beindruk met die game tussen die Bulls en die Chiefs nie. Ek het hom fyn dopgehou vanaf die 2 ry heel voor. Ek dink sy tyd is verby. EK glo dat Bekker nou die beter opsie is. Ek hoop net nie hulle hou vir Matfield in die span vir sy leierskap soos John Smit. Dit kan die span kos. Hopenlik sal Matfield 'n briljante afrigter en motiveerder word as hy sy stewels ophang maar sterkte aan albei die manne, Bekker en Matfield.

  • mike - 2010-04-20 02:15

    Victor is one of the greatest Springboks of all time, how quick we are to tramble the players and hero's of the game we love so much. Bekker is playing great rugby but come now, Super 14 is hardly Test match or World Cup rugby. If he can take his game to the test level then lets talk, Victors done it and can still do it, Bekker needs to prove he can in the Green and Gold cause to date his been average at best in the Springbok jersey.

  • Wat!? - 2010-04-20 04:52

    "Closing in on Matfield"...??????? Is dit wat n ou dit noem as jy 100% beter as poppie Matfield is?Grap!Nou wil ouens hier kots omdat Bekker nog net 2 maande goed speel.Jul gebrekkige rugbykennis is n joke! Snorre sal nie Bekker voor showpony Matfield kies nie want die tweetjies is dan saam in besigheid en hy het mos die maan en sterr aan Matfield belowe destyds.Ja jou aap Matfield het n great 2007 gehad maar dit is 3 jaar gelede aap.Bakkies Botha en Matfield speel op hul name soook Steyn en Spies + natuurlik "ek is n 1,2 en 3" Smit.Met daai overrated spelers in die span kan ons vergeet om volgende jaar die WB te wen.In NZ,die span wat weer gewen moet word om die beker te wen,staan 3 Bokname uit tussen die voorspelers....Burger,Bekker en Juan Smith.Die ouens lag vir dom Bakkies!

  • G.R.Conradie - 2010-04-20 05:22

    Bekker en matfield is baie goei spelers .Wat my aanbetref het Matfield n klein bietjie meer ervaring as Bekker. Alhoewel bekker ook ervaring het,sal hy nog op die bank moet sit as n reserwe.Bekker het dit alreeds bewysdat hy die vermoee het om Matfield se plek vol te staan.ervaring tel in die geval.

  • Johan - 2010-04-20 06:38

    Matfield vs Bekker? Mense kom ons vergelyk Appels met Appels. Albei die twee spelers speel tans Super 14 rugby en dit is waaraan hulle gemeet moet word. Omdat Schumaker 7 keer wereldkampioen was kan ons hom mos nie nou in ons span kies nie of hoe? Ag nee wat vergeet wat was en kyk wat is. Wanneer laas het Matfield twee opponente lynstaanballe gewen? Ja dit is reg verlede jaar. Verlede jaar is verby en daar is nuwe horisonne. Verlede jaar was n ou hardebaard nog Natal se heelagter vanjaar is daar nuwe lewe. Die wat Matfield so aanhangers betref hulle lewe in ontkenning en en neem swaar afskeid van n geliefde speler. Ek het ook nog drie jaar na die tyd spelers met Charel du Plessis, Danie Gerber en ander vergelyk.....sorry hulle was goed maar die jonges het oorgevat...... Moedig liewer vir Bekker op sy huidige vorm aan as om simpatiek met Matfield se swak spel te he Wees opjektief en kyk wat daar gedoen word op die veld. Verlede week het Bekker voor halftyd reeds 11 tackles gemaak meerr as wat Matfield in 5 wedstryde doen en dit is nie wat ek se nie, dit is wat die manne wat die stats byhou se. Lekker dag ou Grote.

  • mark - 2010-04-20 06:44

    Im a born bred Province supporter but Matfield is still King....no doubt about it. Bekker for 2012.

  • Blou oog - 2010-04-20 06:53

    This singing praise of Bekker is getting to either a PR stunt or they are trying to build an ora around him. When understanding the bok set up, Victor will play. His input is immense. Read John Smits book. Victor is a legend and I am putting my nek out to say, Bekker is a late bloomer and Victor was already king at Bekkers age.

  • se net - 2010-04-20 07:14

    Bekker is already past Matfield....

  • chimsoro - 2010-04-20 07:32

    Bekker before bakkies and matfield as first choice..then earl rose as the other lock because with bekker there you don't need a second lock...Sykes maybe the second best these days.... bring in new blood , the opposition knows vic and bakkies well now...

  • Mike from Sharkland - 2010-04-20 07:50

    Matfield & Bekker, Bakkies on the bench.

  • Blue Bull Hater/Anti-Blue Bull - 2010-04-20 07:54

    It MUST be BEKKER! Thank you BIG VIC you have done your job for SA rugby, now it's time for you to assist ANDRIES from the bench. You must admit that on 2010 form he is BETTER than you. Thank you, for understanding and please understand that i've got the GREATEST respect for you. GOED, BETER, BEKKER!!!!!

  • Joe - 2010-04-20 07:55

    Bekker has been playing good rugby before he got injured. he is playing excellent rugby now. Matfield is excellent in the lineouts, but when tough opposition is encountered, much like Steroid Spies, he fades. One must gige credit to Proudfoot for turning the Stromers tight five into a real tight five. They now have that mongrel in them and not that look of mall rats

  • Bulla - 2010-04-20 07:55

    Victor is nou te oud en te stadig. Hoe gouer hy op hou speel hoe beter.

  • Carl Muller - 2010-04-20 07:55

    Soos Naas altyd gese het, "Kyk na die scoreboard". Ons sal maar kyk as die manne teen mekaar speel.

  • Molefe - 2010-04-20 07:56

    @BBB, I have to disagree. I do not think that Sykes or Rossouw are in the same class. I would rather see Flip vd Merwe in tere with Matfield, Botha and Bekker. Rossouw is an excellent utility forward to have on the bench. But I personally believe that your tight 5 should be specialists! Then to all th epeople saying that Matfiled should be dropped? This man is still the best reader of a lineout in the world! Matfield is THE reason that non of the teams want to take us on in the lineouts. So think a little bit before you make statements like that ok. Bekker is good, and a fantastic futire prospect. But two or three good games does not mean that he is the best in the world. And as to NZ being petrified of Becker? Who here can remember how much smoke the blew up Mr Watsons @ss? It is called mind games people.......

  • Pine Tree - 2010-04-20 07:56

    In typical Peninsula fashion the Bergies are getting carried away again.Chaps,slow down.Once you have some silverware in your cabinet can you obtain bragging rights. Let nobody accuse you fags of been fast learners.Sorry my friends but your arrogance will be your downfall,once again.Victor Matfield will make you choke on your snoek and vommit in your papsak.Stormers supporters deserve their reputation as the most uneducated,bad mannered and downright boorish supporters in the S14.

  • Neptune - 2010-04-20 07:57

    Clearly Stephen Nell drinks his bath water to coin a phrase "one swallow does not make a summer" the Stormers have for the first time "so far" delivered and are playing decent rugby and suddenly all their players are world beaters, who are sprinbok contenders. Please folks few weeks to go still. But has Bekker really played that well - the new laws have made the game a bit more like rugby league - and allows forwards to spend more time in the backline - something Bekker seems to like as at over 2.0m tall he does stand out - yes he has good skills, but I fear when they again change the laws he will be exposed. Bekker has improved in the last 2 years but does he really compare to Victor Matfield - yes in some instances but Victor Matfields ability to read the game anticipate the opposition is unrivalled So those from the fair Cape congrats for finally stepping up and playing to the palyers down on paper, but the season isnt over yet

  • EarlR - 2010-04-20 08:04

    Miskien moet Pieter vir Earl probeer op Lock. Ek dink hy sal perform!lol

  • Chev - 2010-04-20 08:04

    Has anyone noticed the form of the New Zealanders - what is ominous is the fact that normally they dominate all competitions between the world cup, only to fall short This time thinhs are different and I suspect we may just have a different New Zealand next year come their home world cup Twakkie is right to some degree I think the top 6 teams are all sort of evenly matched and we require something else to ensure a good defence of the cup

  • Lance - 2010-04-20 08:07

    since when has Pretoria been given access to news 24??? go watch kyknet or something

  • Marius - True Blue - 2010-04-20 08:08

    Hierdie "Malema" uitlatings teen die Bulle, Ai, hoe pateties kan sommiges nou nie wees nie. Becker is goed, maar hy sal nooit bereik wat Matfield bereik het nie. Victor is een van die mees gerespekteerde spelers in wêreld rugby, gerespekteer deur die opposisie, nie idiote wat glo hulle weet alles van rugby en wat ook net weet hoe om negatiewe uitlatings oor proffesionele sportmanne te maak. Jy kan sien die uitlatings teen ons Bulls span kom van "Die Son" lesers af.

  • @BokkeTheBest - 2010-04-20 08:09

    al wat ek hoor is 'het' 'het' 'het' 'het' dis die hele probleem...

  • Jack - 2010-04-20 08:15

    Tough question? Please... There is no substitute for the experience and technical ability of Matfield. Its good to know there is an able replacement once the line out king steps down.

  • Zolani - 2010-04-20 08:16

    This is a great Thing to have, we now have a young up-comming lock, to replace our 2 long standing heros.when they retire

  • Allan - 2010-04-20 08:19

    Neee Kerels julle praat almal n groot pot K@K. Ek is n groot Bekker ondersteuner, maar wat ons almal uit die gesig verloor is waar was Andries Bekker toe Victor Matfield wedstryde gehelp wen het..... aan sy ma gesuig...?? Ek dink wat ons almal ook vergeet is dat Andries by Victor leer, daar is baie wat ons nie weet nie. Kyk na die twee se spel patrone en sien die ooreenkomste, ja Victor raak oud maar hy is puik en n absoluut moet in die Springbokke, bring vir Andries in as inpak speler en maak hom mooi groot........

  • DeepBlue - 2010-04-20 08:20

    No doubt Matfield is a world class lock, he should be the first choice lock in every international team........ except the Springboks! Matfield NEVER played better than Bekker at this moment. Everyone in the rugby community is saying (even Naas, Kiwi’s and Aus) he is taking second row play to the NEXT level (higher than Matfield’s best level) and is currently the best lock in the world. Everyone except the Bulls supporters! Just wake up please!

  • Bloutrein - 2010-04-20 08:24

    Haha LOL: Bekker is good, but you cannot say he is better than Matfield after 2 good performances against forward packs worn down by the Bulls. Matfield performs consistent for +- 30 games every year. Bekker still has to proof that he can be a consistent performer. Can't wait for 15 May when Victor and Bakkies again show the Stormbarians at Newlands who is boss.

  • Trinity - 2010-04-20 08:25

    Rugby is about running with the ball and scoring tries, something that Matfield just cant do. Bekker is everywhere, cleans rucks, does well in the lineouts and has the ability to play great running rugby. Go Bekker!!!!!

  • CapeTownJunk - 2010-04-20 08:26

    How's this for an experiment - keep Matfield and Botha at lock, and try using Bekker at eighthman? It's not entirely unheard-of - think back to South Africa's two World Cup-winning teams, which had Mark Andrews and Danie Rossouw playing number eight. And yes, I know Pierre Spies is playing extremely well at the moment. Bekker at eighthman is an experiment I'd like to see being considered for the June tests against France and Italy.

  • delboy - 2010-04-20 08:31

    SA rugby is extremely fortunate that we can discuss this as well as the New Zealanders discussing it, Matfield, Bakkies, Bekker, Van der Merwe, Rossouw, plus plus. The big issue is to keep Matfield fit for world cup and then to retain his services after that to teach the young guns all the street wise stuff of being a lock - Bekker is and will be great for many years to come maar die vernif, skill. still lies with Victor !

  • werner - 2010-04-20 08:32

    Matfield is definately the best lineout forward in world rugby, Unfortunately there is more to rugby than lineouts. Being a glorified jumper (contributes very little otherwise) shouldn't make him a sure selection for the Boks

  • ed-fan - 2010-04-20 08:32

    Matfield is a hasbeen, and it is time that he retired. After the shaocking game against the reds, he proved that his leadership abilities are similar to Zuma's. He panicked and his team cracked. Matfield should be regulated to the bench in the Bulls team and bring back Bakkies. Bakkies has always been the stalwart of the Bulls team but has been sidelined.

  • The Spear - 2010-04-20 08:38

    Bekker is better than Matfield in all aspects off the game, even at inside centre and wing.

  • RAMA - 2010-04-20 08:44

    Wel Bekker het tyd aan sy kant wat MAtfield nie het nie so ek dink dat wanneer jy die manne roteer dat ons veilig is vir die toekoms van die Springbok lynstaan. Matfield het die maatstaf geplant en Bekker het n kans om dit te verbeter. Ek rate Bekker hy het goeie vorm geslaan

  • Jaxi - 2010-04-20 08:56

    Sou graag wil sien hoe Bekker op agsteman speel. Hy het Saterdag baie goed gekombineer met Schalk burger en sy los-spel en spoed is goed...Spies bly no.1 op agsteman maar dalk net nog n opsie om te oorweeg want Bekker moet in die Bok span. Sal graag wil hoor wat dink julle eksperts....?

  • Jaz - 2010-04-20 09:01

    Flip van der Merwe and Andries Bekker together will probably be a better combo than the Matfield/Botha paring.

  • Etienne - 2010-04-20 09:02

    As a bulls supporter I have to say, if bekker can steal balls like matfield, then he is the complete package. That is all he needs. In my opinion he has passed matfield in every aspect of the game except line outs

  • Weepee - 2010-04-20 09:15

    Problem solved Andries Bekker spends so much time on the wing he can replace the out of form JP Pietersen

  • Peanut - 2010-04-20 09:23

    O please, give me a break!!! Two good games and suddenly this centre/wing is the best lock. What a joke! I don't think Bekker knows what a lock should be doing on the field. It's fine when your forwards have the upper hand to be in the backline but the when the game is tight Bekker is a huge liability.

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