Cape Town - Former Springbok captain Jean de Villiers feels the national team’s captain should play his rugby in South Africa.
The Springboks will have a new leader in 2017, after Adriaan Strauss opted to retire from international rugby at the end of last year.
De Villiers, who captained the Boks between 2012 and 2015, on Wednesday spoke to Netwerk24 at SuperSport’s headquarters in Randburg, where the new Super Rugby season was launched.
“It’s simply too tough to consider someone playing overseas as captain. It won’t work,” De Villiers said.
The captain should be someone certain of his position in the Springbok starting team, De Villiers said, which makes it tough for him to see Lions No 8 Warren Whiteley being made captain.
Handre Pollard (Bulls), Pat Lambie (Sharks), Francois Venter (Cheetahs) and Siya Kolisi (Stormers) could become candidates for the position in 2017, De Villiers reckons.
Players like Duane Vermeulen (Toulon, France), Bismarck du Plessis (Montpellier, France) and Francois Louw (Bath, England) have in the past been mentioned as possible candidates for the Springbok captaincy, but the fact that they ply their trade abroad makes it a tough probability.
While SA Rugby is yet to make an official announcement, the expectation is that Allister Coetzee will be retained as Springbok coach.
Coetzee endured a torrid first season in charge in 2016, winning just four of 12 Tests.
His first assignment in 2017 will be a three-Test series against France in June.
The first Test is scheduled for Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria on June 10, the second for Kings Park in Durban on June 17, while the third and final match will be held at Ellis Park in Johannesburg (June 24).