Brisbane - Springbok flank Marcell Coetzee
says he’s thriving in the national set-up thanks to the mentorship from senior
players and the exciting opportunities given to him.
Coetzee was one of the standout performers
when the Springboks beat the World XV 46-10 at Newlands last Saturday.
He featured in a new-look loose trio
alongside Francois Louw and Warren Whiteley, who combined well in the absence
of Duane Vermeulen and Willem Alberts.
On attack, Coetzee built good momentum by
getting over the gainline, while he displayed notable physicality on defence,
making some big tackles. This has seen him retained in the Springbok team to
face the Wallabies in Brisbane this weekend.
“We were very happy with our performance
against the World XV. We will have to rectify certain areas, but we will go
into the game against the Wallabies with confidence,” Coetzee told
“It’s great to play in this team as the
players around you are like a bunch of brothers. I can turn to the experienced
guys like Jean (de Villiers) and Bryan (Habana), and that’s always helpful.
They manage to bring calm to the team, especially in pressure situations.”
Coetzee confirmed that his preferred
position is openside flank (the No 6 jersey), but stressed that he’ll play
wherever he’s needed.
“It’s tough without guys like Duane
Vermeulen and Willem Alberts as they offer a lot of physicality. However, we
have great structures in the national squad. If one guy has to fall out, the
next guy is always ready to take over and fulfil the jersey. And we have great
players in the squad to do so,” said Coetzee.
“Every player wants to play their role for
the Springboks. From an individual perspective, I enjoy the physical side of
the game and I will always be willing to add value in any position the coach
picks me… whether it’s 6, 7 or 8… even at 12 if they need me to compete with
Jean!” he quipped.
“My preferred position is at openside, and
this is where coach Heyneke believes I can play a long-term role. However, in
this World Cup year, I’ll be available to play in any position for the
Kick-off for Saturday’s clash at Suncorp Stadium is scheduled for 12:05 (SA time).
Israel Folau, 14 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Matt
Giteau, 11 Rob Horne, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 Scott
Higginbotham, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Will
Skelton, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Stephen Moore (captain), 1 James Slipper
16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 Scott Sio, 18 Greg Holmes, 19 James Horwill,
20 David Pocock, 21 Nick Phipps, 22 Matt Toomua, 23 Drew Mitchell
Willie le Roux, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Damian de Allende,
11 Bryan Habana, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Schalk Burger, 7
Marcell Coetzee, 6 Francois Louw, 5 Victor Matfield (captain), 4 Eben
Etzebeth, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Beast Mtawarira
16 Adriaan Strauss, 17 Heinke van der Merwe, 18 Frans Malherbe, 19 Lood
de Jager, 20 Oupa Mohoje, 21 Cobus Reinach, 22 Pat Lambie, 23 Lwazi
For more exclusive player content, check out MyPlayers.co.za