Blanco: Don't pick Kockott

2014-08-07 07:43

Johannesburg - Rory Kockott’s dream of playing Test rugby could well be in tatters if it is up to former French great Serge Blanco, the website reports.

Blanco appears to have put the wheels in motion to block Kockott - who has starred for Castres over the past few seasons and becomes eligible for France later this year - from being selected for the French team.

With their leagues infested with foreigners, there is a slow backlash forming in French rugby, especially as it seems to have reduced the French national side’s ability to compete with the top nations of the world.

Blanco, who is also the vice-president of the FFR, has vowed to support coach Philippe Saint-Andre by getting more involved.

And this is where Kockott comes in, as the French great told newspaper Le Figaro that he is against Kockott being called up to the French squad.

A number of South Africans - including Brian Liebenberg, Antonie Claasen and Bernard Le Roux - have played for France before, but Blanco isn’t keen on the former Sharks and Lions scrumhalf.

"It would be serious to wait for one player like that," he said. "I'm much more interested in our style of play."

Another player likely to face Blanco’s axe is French flyhalf Frederic Michalak, who has not been a big hit with Blanco.

"If a player chooses to play in a club where he is guaranteed to play (it's a problem)," he said. "We don't want players who only come on for the last ten minutes anymore."

Earlier this week Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer decided not to choose Kockott as the third scrumhalf. He then indicated he would only stick to those either currently in the squad, or used recently in his term, meaning Kockott’s chances of making the Bok squad are virtually zero.


  • Redge Norr - 2014-08-07 07:49

    Dom urk!

      Johannes Smid - 2014-08-07 08:49

      Yep, Nie presies asof Frankryk 'n slegter span kan wees nie.

      Johannes Smid - 2014-08-07 11:36

      @Green Difference is England can't pick a Drogba or Suarez. France has the opportunity to pick Kockott and he 'should' play for them, just as Tendai Mtawarira plays for SA.

      Patrick Starkey - 2014-08-07 15:21

      I believe there are currently 58 SA Players in France alone now for the 2014 season & well over 200 playing overseas ! No wonder we can't make a Super Rugby Final. Whether or not France picks him, we should.

      Izzi Max - 2014-08-07 18:32

      "I'm much more interested in our style of play." Yea Kockett plays far too well to be considered anything remotely related to the french style of rugby... aka surrendering a victory.

  • donavan.boshoff - 2014-08-07 07:50

    Hard luck Rory, you are international quality.

      Craig Frau - 2014-08-07 08:18

      We need a good scrum half in SA .Meyer must use him

      Gerrit Viljoen - 2014-08-07 10:00

      LOL where did the 120 likes come from?

  • frankvankaapstad - 2014-08-07 07:56

    How can Kockott be available for Springbok selection this year, but next year suddenly become available for French selection? Surely a player switching nations must go through a lengthy "ineligibility period", meaning they cannot be selected for any nation? You can't have your bread buttered on both sides. Nothing against Rory, he is a great player, I'm simply confused by the rules in general.

      Fester Addams - 2014-08-07 07:58

      Skool was nooit jou vriend nie, nê?

      Andre Venter - 2014-08-07 08:11

      Dear Frank, If what you are saying should happen then most of the bokke will not be elligable to play since they play oversees. If Rory is selected for France and not for the bokke then why not is his carreer and it is a "promotion" of note!

      Fester Addams - 2014-08-07 08:30

      No, I also say that the Bulls have 3 Super cups.

      Skrap Nel - 2014-08-07 08:43

      It's quite simple. If you are playing in a foreign country, besides all the permits and citizenship criteria, you start a "waiting period" of something like 4 years before you can play for your adopted country. You are still eligible for your country of birth. If your country of birth picks you in those 4 years, you'll have to start the 4 years all over. And probably the citizenship application as well.

      Chris Smith - 2014-08-07 09:26

      I disagree Fabricante. I think that it's a good situation as it will strengthen the Island nations and make the World Cup more of a spectacle.

      Tatum Tates - 2014-08-07 10:03

      Its really simple. If you have citizenship or passports for two different countries (sometimes have to wait 3-5 years to gain citizenship) you are eligible to play for either country ONLY if you are uncapped. If you end up with one cap for either country, you can only ever play for that country. So if Kockott gets picked for the boks and makes his debut, he can never play for France again. And vice versa

      Pierre De Villiers - 2014-08-07 13:51

      Frank you very confused , what is so difficult about it. Fester you spot on.

      Pierre Fourie - 2014-08-07 13:55

      @Tatum - No you are wrong!!! Look at Tiaan Strauss(rugby) and Kepler Wessels(cricket), who played for SA and Aus. You're eligibility depends on the nation you want to play for and their criteria to gain citizenship. You will always be eligible to play for your country of birth no matter what country you "adopted".

      Tatum Tates - 2014-08-07 14:22

      @ Pierre. That was BEFORE ICC, IRB, FIFA put that into their eligibility policy.

      Pierre Fourie - 2014-08-07 14:43

      @Tatum - With FIFA, IRB and ICC you can change nationality in terms op eligibility once in your career but there are certain criteria that needs to be met in order to do that, so you can play for two different nations in your career.

  • Edrich Hunt - 2014-08-07 07:58

    I agree with Blanco. U either play for your OWN country or u dont. We want to play against the french...not a french barbarian team. Dont follow the path of English cricket. Whenever they won everyone talked about the south african english cricket team. Nah man,..keep your own identity!!

      Anton Anton - 2014-08-07 08:24

      If Rory becomes a French national citizen he is eligible to play, and that he can becomes by the end of the year

      jacques.potgieter.313 - 2014-08-07 08:52

      What about foreign players playing for SA? Tonderai Chavanga, Beast, Adrian Garvey, Corne Krige and Gary Teichmann. They all come from Zim

      Bootman Wpfan - 2014-08-07 14:43

      @ JJ...........if SA had a "B" team who also played regular matches, imagine what that would do to the CC Cup. @ JP..........they never represented Zim at international level (or any level for that matter)

      Adriaan van Wyngaard - 2014-08-07 14:53

      Accepted, but with HM as coach who prefer slow, useless scrumhalves he will never be chosen.

  • Alistair Main - 2014-08-07 08:44

    FACT - Heyneke Meyer has to be desperate or have a crowd of 60000 people chanting "Lambie Lambie" before he will even contemplate picking a 'Soutie'

      Fester Addams - 2014-08-07 08:53

      You say it like it's a problem.

      Alistair Main - 2014-08-07 10:33

      Not a problem (there is no problem with an international winning record of 70%), simply an observation! We short of a quality scrumhalf past du Preez so I think Heyenke should consider various options to build depth for the WC. I am just questioning an apprach whereby" He then indicated he would only stick to those either currently in the squad, or used recently in his term, meaning Kockott’s chances of making the Bok squad are virtually zero".

      Desiree Collins - 2014-08-07 11:52

      Alistair on Main - the problem Fes is sarcastically referring to, is the assumption(you state as a fact) you make on Heineke not selecting "Souties". Which in fact is wrong, excuse the pun. Any who - Lambie is a "Sweetie"

      Alistair Main - 2014-08-08 11:38

      Yip, I made the wrong FACT, Heyneke doesn't pick many who aren't Blue Bulls. The Lions have gone as far as to change there colour to blue to try and get just one selection:-)

  • Gert Hendrik Kromhout - 2014-08-07 11:20

    Let's be clear I am not a big fan of Kockett. However he is playing great rugby at the moment, and he can be a game breaker when it comes to the tight games. I don't understand why is HM using guys like Pienaar that is not om form. Come on guys give this poor guy a home to play Test rugby, guys like this will win you a World Cup...

      Herman Wagener - 2014-08-07 20:16

      Stem saam met jou GHK

  • Willem Kotzé - 2014-08-07 11:37

    Rory must be throwing stuff around in the changing room out of frustration after hearing this. What more must this oke do to get selected to play test rugby?? Not wanted by Heyneke Meyer, not wanted by Serge Blanco, where to now?

  • Hamish Leslie Drake - 2014-08-07 12:32

    So an immigrant from Venezuela, who played for France, doesn't want other immigrants to play play for France. Ohhh

  • Russell Netherlands - 2014-08-07 14:18

    I think that the comments made by Mr Blanco are rather short "sighted". I would like to believe that foreign players add a little "magic" to a teams performance, as that magic is missing, otherwise the teams would not include the foreign players in there selection. The current Bok coach clearly has his preferences (all aging gracefully) and is blinded by those preferences and will continue to use them to give him a shot at the rugby world cup, never mind anything after that. (would never fit in the shoes of Jake White). Its a great pity that Kockott wont have an opportunity, based on his consistent performance... Short sighted coach... As for English soccer, you cant blame English Poor Performance on foreign players, they are just a very poor side and still live in 1966 era and the reason English premier league soccer is good, is due to foreign players... Anyhow thats my view

  • Herman Wagener - 2014-08-07 20:09

    Kockott verdien n kans,hy is baie beter,vinniger agter die skrum as Pienaar,hy is meer nippy,Pienaar is n beter opsie as heelagter ,indien jy hom moet kies.Ek is n Stormer maar asb,enige provinsie koop asb Schreuder,HM sal help betaal

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