Few questions regarding Bok Captaincy
Heyneke Meyer was quoted saying a few things regarding who will be the Springbok Captain. Sport 24 Reported here (http://www.sport24.co.za/Rugby/Springboks/Meyer-Skipper-for-short-term-20120528) that he is looking for a short term solution.
Reading his comments, the following got my attention:
“I want my captain to be able to hold his place in the team. That is why the captain will be a short-term appointment, just for the three Tests against England.”
It seems he is not sure yet who will be his captain in the long run, and that he envisaged his current captain to only play for a few tests. Distinguish between Heyneke’s captain, the long term one, and the captain, the short term one.
A player that can hold his place in the team is surely a player that is out and out the best player in his position if you select on merit. There are not many options when we look at players who’s names are already written on the team sheet going forward after the England tests, but then one also need to consider the fact that some players will suit the Springboks envisaged style better than others who we might think are better.
Looking longer term, one could imagine a the following players being able to “hold their place in the squad”:
Pierre Spies; merely based on the fact that he has been the nr 8 for quite some time, is currently the leader of the Bulls and plays the style Heyneke most probably envisaged for the Springboks.
Adriaan Strauss; A player who can certainly make the Bok nr 2 jersey his own. Exemplary discipline record, accurate in the lineouts, a strong scrummer and brilliant in the loose. A very good leader for the Free State and a payer who seems to have the respect of the players in other sides. The only problem here is the public perception that Bismarck is the better hooker.
Morne Steyn; Also perhaps a player who is already on the team sheets of every test for the next 4 years barring he gets injured. But does he have the leadership qualities required from the Bok captain?
Certainly, looking to the long term, its difficult to see who the captain will be until we know who the core of the squad will be. Looking at the 3 test matches against England, you can have Jean de Villiers as captain with even Keegan Daniel and Spies as options to stand in as vice captains.
But Jean will most likely not be the long term captain.
My money would be on Spies.