Rudolph Jacobs
Rugby Journalist
1 minute read
23 Nov 2013
11:30 am

Meyer: It’s not a big risk

Rudolph Jacobs

Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer doesn't believe he took a big risk by naming just two backline reserves for tonight's final Test of their season against France at Stade de France.

FILE PICTURE: Heyneke Meyer. Photo by Duif du Toit/Gallo Images.

With cold and rain forecast, six of his eight reserves are forwards with only two backs, scrumhalf Jano Vermaak and flyhalf Pat Lambie.

“It’s not something I normally do but I believe the risk is more in the forwards with both flankers Willem Alberts and Francois Louw coming off injuries,” explained Meyer.

“I am not totally convinced they can both go for the full 80 minutes.”

He named two locks on his bench in Bakkies Botha and Pieter-Steph du Toit, while Siya Kolisi is seen as the back-up ground specialist to Louw.

While he will be forced to keep No 5 lock Flip van der Merwe as he has been running the lineouts with great effect, Botha could keep the intensity if he has to replace Eben Etzebeth in the last quarter.

“We will need Bakkies’ impact in the final 20 minutes of the game, while Pieter-Steph can easily slot in at the No 7 position if we have to take Willem off,” said Meyer, referring to Alberts, who has been battling with a shoulder injury.

With fullback Willie le Roux equally at home at wing and wing JP Pietersen also covering the midfield position, Meyer says they are well served.

“Pat can also come on and cover the 10 and 15 positions,” said Meyer.

Flyhalf Morne Steyn said he expected a vocal reception from the crowd even though he plays for Stade Francais.

“It will be interesting as this week I play for the Boks and next week again for Stade Francais,” said Steyn.

“I don’t expect a friendly reception, but it will be also interesting to be playing alongside Ruan Pienaar again,” said Steyn, who also has former Lions and WP lock Anton van Zyl and former Sharks utility back Meyer Bosman alongside him at the club.