As we head towards the Rugby World Cup in Japan next month there comes the inevitable braai-side, gym side, golf-side debate about who should be IN and who should be OUT. Never is a debate about a seat on a plane so vigourous.
The problem for Rassie Erasmus – and its a good problem to have – is that everyone is playing well and there have been so few injuries in the lead up.
“I thought the guys would be injured at this stage, but they fought on and are all playing well,” said Rassie as he announced the team for the final test before the RWC against Argentina.
Not only is competition for places extremely tight but its also very difficult to calculate the correct split between forwards and backs in the squad and even within the forwards for example. Do you take 6 props and 5 loosies? Or 5 props and 6 loosies? In the backline do you take 3 scrum halves or does Cheslin Kolbe double up as a back up third choice – very risky.
MyTwoCents analysed Rassie’s thought processes ahead of the big announcement on Aug 26 and came up with the following squad:
HOOKERS: Malcolm Marx, Bongi Mbonambi, Schalk Brits
PROPS: Beast Mtwarira, Trevor Nyakane, Steven Kitshoff, Frans Malherbe, Lizo Gqboka
LOCKS: Eben Etzebeth, Franco Mostert, RG Snyman, Lood de Jager
LOOSIES: Siya Kolisi, Duane Vermeulen, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Francois Louw, Kwagga Smith
SCRUMHALVES: Faf de Klerk, Herschel Jantjies, Cobus Reinach
FLYHALVES: Handre Pollard, Elton Jantjies
CENTERS: Damien de Allende, Lukhanyo Am,
WINGS: Cheslin Kolbe, Makhazole Mapimpi, S’bu Nkosi
FULLBACKS: Willie Le Roux, Warwick Gellant
UTILITY BACKS: Frans Steyn, Jessie Kriel
Have we got it right? Let us know if you have read Rassie’s mind and we have missed something!