Currie Cup

Naas: Pollard, JJ must play

2014-10-08 11:27
Naas Botha
Cape Town - Former Springbok flyhalf Naas Botha says both JJ Engelbrecht and Handre Pollard should be playing in the latter stages of the Currie Cup.

The South African Rugby Union's (SARU) decision to not allow the 20 contracted Springboks play Currie Cup has created a strange scenario at the Pretoria-based team.

After losing his place in the Springbok squad, Engelbrecht played Currie Cup rugby this year, but because he is still a contracted Springbok, he will now be forced to miss the last round and playoffs.

Pollard, on the other hand, has featured for the Springboks during the Rugby Championship, but because he is not a contracted Springbok, the Blue Bulls are allowed to utilise him, something they plan on doing.

It was reported on Wednesday that Pollard will be in the Blue Bulls' squad for their final round-robin clash against Griquas in order for him to be allowed to feature in the playoffs.

Botha, in an interview with the SA Rugymag website, says SARU should consider releasing Engelbrecht and he also does not have a problem with Pollard getting game time.

Botha says Engelbrecht desperately needs game time and sending him to a Springbok camp in Stellenbosch is not going to help his cause. Playing rugby is the only way he can regain form, according to Botha.

The legendary Bok flyhalf also says he doesn't have a problem with Pollard playing because he hasn’t had as much game time compared to other Springboks.

Botha says flyhalf is also a "less gruelling position" so he sees "no harm" in Pollard playing Currie Cup.

If the Bulls beat Griquas at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday, they will finish fourth and play Western Province at Newlands in the semi-finals.

Botha also said Western Province should be allowed to field Damian de Allende, who "needs game time in order to keep improving himself as a player".

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