Brüssow: Juan's loss is massive

2011-08-25 16:11

Johannesburg - Provincial pride has nothing to do with Heinrich Brüssow's concerns that he will not have his Free State skipper at his side during the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.

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Brüssow, a player Springbok coach Peter de Villiers believes will be central to his plans, said this week that the absence of Juan Smith was a far bigger setback than most people realised.

"We are going to miss having an influential player and leader like Juan at the World Cup," said Brüssow.

"He makes a huge impact on the field, and although we will all be giving it our best from the word go, he is one of those players that is also a great role model and someone I have a lot of respect for."

Nonetheless, while the facial scars Brüssow has to show for last week's 18-5 victory over the All Blacks serves as evidence of his commitment on the field, he was quick to point out that the men selected to replace Smith are no different in that regard.

"Willem (Alberts) and Flo (Francois Louw) are also great players and they too know what will be expected from them," he said.

In a squad that features no less than 18 World Cup winners, the slightly greener Springbok loose-forwards had noticeably broader smiles when SARU president Oregan Hoskins presented them with their ceremonial World Cup caps in Johannesburg on Tuesday.

For the baby-faced assassin of world rugby, it was a very proud moment, even though it could not be compared to his debut at Twickenham in 2008.

"Running out in a Springbok jersey for the first time is definitely the highlight of my career to date, so receiving that cap was very special, but in a different way," said Brüssow.

"Playing in a World Cup is every player's dream from a very young age."

Leading up to the world spectacle, the South African rugby fraternity held their breaths as Brüssow had to recover from a knee ligament injury that kept him out of action for more than a year.

He then made his return for the Cheetahs during this year's Super Rugby competition, but was soon sidelined with a hamstring injury.

Finally, after another frustrating stint on the sidelines, he was included in the Free State squad's Currie Cup team that - with his help - secured an emphatic 28-22 victory over Western Province in Bloemfontein earlier this month.

The fetcher made his return from the bench and his usual ball-stealing abilities were a prominent feature of the final 20 minutes of the match.

The following week he was selected to start against the Wallabies in Durban, and his class was again a key ingredient to the Springboks' final Tri-Nations match of the year in Port Elizabeth.

It is also interesting to note he has yet to lose a match against the mighty All Blacks in four outings.

Despite steadily stealing the spotlight from some of the more seasoned Bok flankers, Brüssow would still not be told that his place in the starting line-up for the team's opening match against Wales was guaranteed.

"I don't know what the loose-trio combination for the first game will be, but that is irrelevant because I have played many matches with Schalk (Burger), Willem (Alberts), Pierre (Spies) and even Danie (Rossouw)," said Brüssow.

"My first priority is to ensure that I do what the team expects of me when I get the opportunity."


  • Erasmus - 2011-08-25 16:15

    Ag nee wat. Stegman se loss is massive. Kan nie glo hulle kies hom nie. Maak die Bulle almal Bokke! Brannas en Coke! Jaaaaaaaaa!

      Rugby Fan - 2011-08-25 16:22

      @ Erasmus Dont agree, Stegman is a bit of a penalty machine and Juan is a Titan in comparison to him. Flo needs to prove his inclusion by showing everyone that he can do the job. Looking forward to the Boks bring home the title

      BringITon007 - 2011-08-25 17:34

      @Erasmus - They did with away leg, didn't come off...ROFLMAO

      Henry7007 - 2011-08-25 18:00

      Wat rook jy dude?

      Nikki - 2011-08-25 18:15

      ...van 'n stoere Bul ondersteuner: Stegman is nie in dieselfde lig-jaar as Brussow of Juan Smith nie! Respect!

      jan du preeaz - 2011-08-25 18:23

      ag nee erasmus, jy maak ons bulls supporters se naam tottie met jou simpel post. Steggie is goed, maar hy is a walking yellow card

      Johann - 2011-08-25 20:46

      Ruil jou Blou brille vir Groen brille Erasmus, dit maak mens siek!! Ons praat Springbok-rugby hier. En as Stegman of enige ander 'n van franchise verander?? Ja dan word hy skielik k*k in jou Blou brille. Juan se verlies is huge man maar die Bokke sal die ding deurtrek. - 2011-08-26 07:50

      Naaa, we dont want to end up 7th in the World cup.

      Louw - 2011-08-26 09:07

      @Erasmus Wil voorkom of jy alreeds gesuip is.Stegman is n gemiddelde cb speler.

  • Nikki - 2011-08-25 18:21

    ...stem 110% saam. Die feit dat Juan nie daar gaan wees nie gaan 'n BAIE groter impak he as wat mense besef. Moenie verkeerd verstaan nie...Frans Louw is goed...maar hy is geen Juan Smith nie. Bokke gaan maar net 'n brug moet bou en oor dit kom - enter Willem Alberts jou lekke deng! Doen die ding Willem en Heinrich...ons maak staat op julle! Bokke for life! ;-)

  • Tiger - 2011-08-25 20:42

    Gewis...Smith is 'n great speler en ons gaan sy fisieke teenwoordigheid mis. Ek glo egter Flo sal sy man kan staan...dink net watter vernietigende rol hy en Brussow saam op die losballe kan speel!!! Stegman? Wie is dit? Jammer, nog nie gehoor van hom nie...

      jan du preeaz - 2011-08-25 21:03

      ou tier, kyk op die fotos waar die bulle die super rugby trofees oplig, steggie is daar ou tjom. ek wag al 10 jaar om n' weepie foto te sien waar die span met ENIGE bekers pose....geniet die papsak

  • Raymond - 2011-08-25 21:29

    No man is indespensable but,the quality that you lose is very difficult to replace,and there is no substitute for quality,like in this case.To lose a player of this calibre is surely a huge setback for the team.Juan-no frills and fancy things,just a highly rated world class loose forward.

  • Kleinboet - 2011-08-25 21:44

    You cannot talk of a loss if he never were in the picture due to injury. Granted, he would have been a massive boost to our chances to win the cup, but so would Duane Vermeulen and Andries Bekker have been. They simply are not available and they are not indispensable. Concentrate on what we have and look forward.

      GraemeBB - 2011-08-25 22:54

      @Klienboet - I dont agree with you. Smith adds more than you realise. Duane and Andries may well have been selected, but arent the game winners you make them out to be - or perhaps the Stormers would have a S15 title. Bok team is fine.

      Kleinboet - 2011-08-26 01:06

      If you read me correctly, I said that Smith would have given our hopes a massive boost. I agree the Bok team is fine. What I said, with which you apparently do not agree, is that we should not cry over spilt milk. Well, if you want to - go ahead and cry!

  • Tiger - 2011-08-25 21:50

    @jan balsak Is dit die ou met die lang hare?

      Nikki - 2011-08-26 07:16

      ...nee die ou met die moerse smile op sy gesig.

  • Ditsimzn - 2011-08-26 08:14

    And what about a player like Keegan Daniel, he might be smaller than most other flanks, but his work rate and commitment can never be questioned and he is very good at attack and defence.

  • reinert.wentzel - 2011-08-26 10:22

    Brussow is one of the best loose forwards in the world. He will make a MASSIVE impact in the world cup, he has to start every game. Him and Bismarck on the breakdown, its going to be chaos! Brussow has passion and heart and ability, that all combined makes him pretty much unstoppable(except for injuries)

      BlueSperm - 2011-08-26 13:48

      What did you smoke? Brussow is a useless softy. Pierre Spies is the best loose forward in the world. Ja may be second best behind Luke Watson. Hell, I hate his guts, but he is so good!

  • BlueSperm - 2011-08-26 13:38

    Who needs the useless Juan Smith. He is totally overrated and a useless player With Pierre Spies in the squad we need neither Smith nor Brussow.

      Kleinboet - 2011-08-26 15:28

      Is it the brannas that coloured your sperm blue? Maybe it also ate away your brain! Schalk Burger, Brüssow and Bismarck (if he is allowed onto the field) will bring back the cup!

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