Naas: Jake must go

Naas Botha would fire Jake White “next week” if he was in charge of South African rugby.

Botha, who was White’s manager with the 2002 World Cup-winning SA U21 side, let rip on Boots & All.

“The only time you blame a coach is when he selects players out of position and leaves players at home who should be on tour,” said the former Bok flyhalf. “Jake played players out of position against Ireland and look what happened. Now he’s selecting guys [Kabamba Floors] who weren’t good enough for the [original] squad.”

Botha, who was ironically White’s first-choice candidate for the Bok manager job this season, said the opening defeat in Dublin was a disgrace to the jersey.

“If we weren’t going to take the Ireland game seriously, then we shouldn’t have played in those centenary jerseys. We should have just accepted that it was a marketing gimmick and worn the normal jerseys.”

Botha also slammed the Boks capitulation against England last weekend, saying they should never have lost to a team that had suffered seven consecutive Test defeats.

“That was a bad England team and we should have beaten them comfortably even with a young team,” he said. “Yes, there are 82 000 people at the stadium and all that, but at 18-6 we should never have lost. Saying England is a good team is like saying the Valke are a good team in the Currie Cup.”

While White insists the Boks are making progress ahead of the World Cup, Botha said that was certainly not the case.

“We were four minutes away from being ranked No 1 in the world last year, now we are ranked No 5. When Jake took over [in 2004] we were No 6. We are in big trouble.”