Traille may trip up Boks
23 Jun 2006
De Wet Barry admits new French No 10 Damien Traille is an unknown factor to the Springboks.
Traille, an established international centre, was the surprise selection in the French starting XV, after coach Bernard Laporte dropped Thomas Castaignede to the bench for Saturday’s Test. Castaignede, who is usually a fullback, wore the No 10 jersey against Romania last weekend.
Because Traille has never played Test rugby at 10, the Boks aren’t quite sure what to expect at Newlands.
“I’ve never seen Traille at flyhalf, I don’t think anybody has,” Barry told the Cape Times.
“He’s a big physical guy and he’ll probably attack the line a lot more. He’s a ball player … a centre … he has good boot, so I assume they will use him. But the guy is playing out of position so maybe it’s an advantage to us.
“I think any back can play flyhalf. It’s just about whether you can handle the pressure. He’s a good player and won’t become poor in one match. He may just play very well.”
French manager Jo Maso said Traille could become a similar player to former Bok flyhalf Henry Honiball.
“We need to find a back-up to [Ferederic] Michalak,” he told the media. “We looked at Castaignede, and now we are looking at different options.
“Traille is a strong runner, a kicker, a passer, he has everything. He is a lot like Honiball. If he turns out to be as good, we will be very happy.”