Trevor Nyakane (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Loosehead is his preferred position, but Springbok prop Trevor Nyakane does not mind helping out on the other side of the scrum.
Nyakane has recently displayed his ability to play at tighthead, with the Bulls often banking on his services in the No 3 jersey during this year’s Super Rugby competition.
This versatility was likely a key factor in the 26-year-old making the final 31-man Springbok squad for the Rugby World Cup.
Nyakane was speaking at a press conference in Eastbourne on Tuesday as the Boks prepared for their first World Cup game against Japan.
“I feel like it’s a nice thing to be able to do for your team. The shift was there, but for me it was just all about being able to be on the field, adapting as quickly as possible,” he said when probed about his recent exertions at tighthead prop.
“I wouldn’t mind playing either side of the scrum, as long as I work hard on it and it goes well. It was a bit of a game changer for me at a time when I had to just move over, it was a little bit difficult, but as time went by I adapted and started to do it very well.”
While playing tighthead is no problem, Nyakane said loosehead still remained his preferred position.
“I would say maybe I am a versatile one, but obviously you want to specialise in one (position), you want to concentrate on something you know you’re good at.
“So, No 1 (loosehead) is my thing, but if I’m asked to play on the tighthead, then I’ll have no problem with it.”
Nyakane, who has 16 Test caps to his name, also stressed that he felt privileged to be part of a tournament of such magnitude.
“It’s been a dream, we’ve been working hard for it. One wants to play in a World Cup, this is the biggest stage of it all when it comes to rugby.
“At this point in time, I’m very excited and can’t wait for myself to get the opportunity to be able to run onto the field and play.”
Saturday’s clash at Brighton Community Stadium is scheduled for 17:45 (SA time).