Frans Steyn will start at flyhalf on Sunday when the Springboks take on a World XV in Leicester.
Speaking to Die Son’s Adnaan Mohamed after Tuesday’s practice, Bok coach Jake White believes the 19 year old will flourish alongside Sharks team-mate Ruan Pienaar.
“It will be really nice to see the two play together,” he said. “Ruan didn’t play much rugby [on the European tour] and will get an opportunity to play. Frans is familiar with the flyhalf position and it will be interesting to see how the two of them combine.”
White has brought in an old hand in De Wet Barry to act as a babysitter for the new duo, and believes the Western Province midfielder still has a purpose to serve. Barry has only played one Test this year against France.
“A player like De Wet Barry has lots of Test experience at centre that can help a guy like Steyn. Players like Jean de Villiers, Monty [Percy Montgomery] and Breyton Paulse will not be there. To give players like Ruan and Frans an opportunity with a guy with 40 Tests behind his name can only give them more confidence,” explained White.
Manager Zola Yeye confirmed that White’s absence has not had an adverse affect on the charges remaining in England, and are currently being marshalled by assistant coaches Gert Smal and Allister Coetzee.
White is currently in South Africa attending a President’s Council meeting, where his future as a Springbok coach is being assessed. Regardless of the outcome of this meeting, he will fly back to England in the next 24 hours and have the final say on the match 22.
“Saturday’s victory against England at Twickenham has given the guys a boost and put them into a positive frame of mind, and has relieved the pressure on them considerably,” explained Yeye. “The heat on the Boks is now off and they can now relax a bit this week.”
With John Smit already back in Durban, White will be forced to pick a new captain for this fixture. Sources suggest that Wikus van Heerden is the favourite to lead the Boks against the World XV team.