Boks Excited About New Era
New Springbok captain Jean de Villiers said the squad is excited about Saturday’s first of three Tests in the Castle Incoming Tour against England in Durban.
The Boks had a good week of preparation in Durban, with the players looking sharp at training sessions.
De Villiers, the first Springbok captain from Paarl Gymnasium, said the squad is focused ahead of the first Test.
“We’ve had a good week here in Durban and the weather has really played along as we got through a heap of hard work on the training field and the team room,” said De Villiers.
“The four uncapped players in the match 22 have brought some energy, but it’s the first Test of the year and I sense all the guys are keen to get to the match.
“We realise it won’t be easy - England have been together for a while now and they’ve brought a team of good players to South Africa, but we’ve been concentrating on what we want to achieve this weekend and have worked really hard.”
Locks Eben Etzebeth and Juandré Kruger, as well as Marcell Coetzee (flank) will make their Springbok debut against England, while the uncapped Coenie Oosthuizen (prop) is on the bench.
It’s the first time since the second Test against France on 3 July 1993 at Ellis Park, when Hannes Strydom and Nico Wegner played in their first Tests together, that two Test rookies will start as a lock combination.