PdV puts his foot in it

Peter de Villiers’s comments are being lapped up by the English press, this time for calling Danny Cipriani the wrong name.

When De Villiers was asked yesterday about the possibility of the Boks attacking the 10-12 channel where the Wallabies successfully exploited the English defence, the Bok coach replied: “It won’t be bad this Saturday. We know [Riki] Flutey as we played against him a lot in the Super 14. And we all know Capriati is not a bad player.”

De Villiers obviously mistook England’s young flyhalf Cipriani for former tennis star Jennifer Capriati.

Rugby writer for The Independent James Corrigan called the above comment “deeply embarrassing” and then continued to highlight De Villiers’s indecipherable responses. “An audience with Peter de Villiers is not what one would term ‘a predictable experience’. Indeed, for the uninitiated there is the danger of being bamboozled to the point of inertia,” wrote Corrigan.

On the topic of whether an English-based prop could be called in to cover for the Boks in an injury crisis, De Villiers’s response was: “There are South Africans playing well everywhere over here,” he said. “It goes on and on. South Africans are taking over England and that’s a worrying factor for the Englishman.”

Corrigan describes De Villiers’s rugby philosophy as simple enough but then it “descended into fatalistic incomprehension”.

This is what De Villiers had to say: “My style is to empower the players. I believe in my players, trust them and I just hope that on the day the ball bounces for then,” he said. “You know you don’t have any control over winning and losing, but you can control how you play the game.”