Wellington - South African Rugby Union chief executive Jurie Roux says 21 Springboks said to be injured and unable to play in Tri-Nations matches in Australia and New Zealand are not at a secret training camp as South African media have reported.Click to BUY the Springbok kitchen recipe book
Roux made an
angry rebuttal on Thursday of South African media reports that the
reportedly injured players, ruled out of matches against Australia last
weekend and New Zealand on Saturday, are training at Rustenburg under
Springboks technical director Rassie Erasmus.
Peter de Villiers was also confronted with the accusation that South
Africa may be resting top players ahead of the World Cup, when his team
arrived in Wellington from Sydney on Wednesday. De Villiers dismissed
the reports as "mischief."
"We know that the long Super 15 season
is the cause of this and we just have to abide by that," De Villiers
said. "They're not training. It (the report) doesn't surprise me because
there's always mischief everywhere."
Roux was more impassioned,
insisting that the injured players - who may return to the Springboks
squad for the home leg of the Tri-Nations tournament — had gathered to
"I'm not denying that they're at Rustenburg.
I'm denying the fact that there's a secret training camp," he said.
"I've got my players in a single high performance entity being
rehabilitated - that's it.
"It is very simple, it is a unique thing to me that people are worried about this at all.
run a multimillion rand corporation where my biggest asset are my
players. They're injured, I need to do something to get them ready for
the World Cup."
No criticism has been raised in Australia or New
Zealand about the Springboks decision to leave behind 21 top-line
players. The Wallabies and All Blacks have also rested some players in
the opening tests of their World Cup season.
Roux appeared to find the allegations against the Springboks personally offensive.
do you do with an injured player?" he said. "You don't send them off to
Bali or Mauritius to have a holiday. You put him into your high
performance center, you put him with the best doctor you can find ...
and you put him on a program to rehabilitate him to get back to the
World Cup. What more would you expect?
"I don't understand the
conspiracy, I don't understand the confusion. This is a simple thing, if
I don't put him on a medical program, don't have him rehabilitated for
the World Cup I need to come to New Zealand for a job, which is the last
thing I want to do."