Birthday boy Coetzee visits Stormers
Cape Town - There was a familiar face at the Stormers’ High
Performance Centre in Bellville on Monday.
Allister Coetzee, celebrating his 53rd birthday on the day,
was in Cape Town with members of his Springbok management team to meet with
coach Robbie Fleck and his players.
It was the last stop of the new Bok coach’s national
‘roadshow’ that has seen him visit all six of South Africa’s Super Rugby
franchises, but the Cape Town visit provided an element of nostalgia given how
long Coetzee spent at Western Province and the Stormers.
“Allister has a lot of history here. The boys enjoyed
themselves. It was his birthday today and we sang him a song,” Stormers hooker
Bongi Mbonambi told reporters on Monday.
“He told us some good jokes and he was good company. It was
really nice to have him here.”
But catch-ups aside, Coetzee’s visit provided the Stormers
players with a lot of clarity as to what Coetzee is looking for in his Bok
“Allister made it quite simple today that he is looking to
throw the net out wide and obviously he told the players what he’s looking
for,” said Mbonambi.
“Personally also, you have to look at yourself and look at
what coach Allister is looking for, and maybe tell yourself what you need to
work harder on.
“He came in here and actually spoke to us as a team and also
as individuals. He put a list down what he was looking for and it’s up to the
Mbonambi has dislodged Scarra Ntubeni as the first-choice
hooker at Newlands this season and he will be an outsider to be included in
Coetzee’s first training squad ahead of the June Tests against Ireland.
Coetzee will name that squad on Saturday.