Habana back, but Smit struggles

Springbok flyer Bryan Habana looks set to start on the left wing in the second Test against Scotland.

“Bryan really looked sharp and he’d love to play,” assistant coach Allister Coetzee said in Die Volksblad.

Keo.co.za has learned that Andre Snyman will start at outside centre against Scotland and Habana is likely to slot into the wing position, with Breyton Paulse the other winger.

Jake White has resisted recalling De Wet Barry and will play Wynand Olivier at inside centre and Snyman at outside centre.

He could also have opted for Wayne Julies at inside centre and Olivier in the No 13 jersey, but he wants to give Olivier test exposure as a No 12.

Two other players who rejoined the squad in Port Elizabeth following injury – CJ van der Linde and Albert van den Berg – will also be involved but probably only as replacements.

Bakkies Botha, though will be given another week to recover from a lower calf injury and will only be back for the one-off Test against France in Cape Town next weekend.

It will allow Danie Rossouw another chance to impress after a superb effort in the first Test in Durban. He will partner Victor Matfield who will not be rested.

According to Die Volksblad this may be because captain John Smit had to sit out half of yesterday afternoon’s training session. Coetzee later described it as a precaution, saying the hooker was experiencing some stiffness. “It would be senseless to push him,” Coetzee added.

Flank Juan Smith stayed in bed on Tuesday after contracting ‘flu.

As a result, White used Schalk Burger, Pedrie Wannenburg and Joe van Niekerk as the loose-forward combination, giving Jacques Cronjé a run as well. Cronjé may, therefore, play a substitute’s role on Saturday.

White will announce his 22 for the match later on Wednesday.