Cape Town - Brendan Venter has given more clarity on what will transpire when the Springboks face Italy in Rome later this year.
Venter was earlier this week confirmed as the Springboks’ defence and exit coach on a consultancy basis.
But it also emerged that he remained contracted to Italy until the end of the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan.
He has been working with Italy since the beginning of the November internationals in 2016 and was considered instrumental in orchestrating their 20-18 win over the Springboks in Florence.
Venter is, however, only expected to report back to Italy ahead of the November internationals, so could potentially help the Springboks for large parts of the 2017 season.
Italy play against a yet-to-be-determined Tier 2 side on November 11, Argentina on November 18 and South Africa on November 25.
Questions were asked whether Venter would be in Italy’s camp when they tackle the Springboks and the 1995 World Cup winner took to Twitter on Tuesday to reassure the South African rugby public that he would not be coaching against the Boks.
"Lots of speculation regarding my appointment with the Springboks," Venter wrote.
"One thing is for certain. I won't coach against the Boks again."
In an interview with Netwerk24 on Wednesday, Venter gave more clarity on the matter: “I will head back to South Africa for that week. I told the Italians that despite the victory last year, it was not a pleasurable experience coaching against the Boks. Italy completely understand it,” Venter said.
Venter will be working with the Boks ahead of their three Test matches against France in June and his future role with the team will be re-evaluated after that series.
He could potentially stay on for the Rugby Championship, which gets underway in mid-August, but will be back in the Italian camp ahead of the November internationals.
“I’m not going to talk to South Africa or Italy about each other. I was initially approached to help the Boks for the June series against France and agreed to do it. There were no talks about what could happen afterwards. It’s not something I do for the money, I’m helping because Allister (Coetzee, Bok coach) is a friend and because I’m patriotic.”