Boks latest – PdV survives axe

Keo.co.za brings you the latest from the Springboks’ end-of-year tour.

PdV survives axe – Saru president Regan Hoskins says Peter de Villiers’s job as Springbok coach is safe.

De Villiers will remain in control until the end of the 2011 World Cup, although he will be assisted by a technical committee made up of, among others, former Bok coaches Harry Viljoen, Carel du Plessis and Rudolf Straeuli. Heyneke Meyer and Rassie Erasmus are also set to offer input.

De Villiers will be subject to a post-tour review on his return to South Africa, but Hoskins has said that the victory in England bodes well for the coming year.

Matfield to miss tour finale – Springbok captain Victor Matfield has broken a rib and will play no part in the fixture against the Barbarians.

The lock sustained a broken rib in the tackle on England wing Chris Ashton, but still managed to complete the game. Matfield won’t, however, be able to soldier on for the last game of the season.

‘It was a hard match, and there were lots of bumps and bruises out there. I have a broken rib to prove how hard it was.

‘I injured myself in the clash with Ashton. It was painful, but I resolved that I would have to play through the pain as it was important for us to win this game. I just tried to avoid contact as much as I could, but that wasn’t always possible.’

Juan Smith will lead the Boks in Matfield’s absence.

Frans Steyn (Racing Metro) and Ruan Pienaar (Ulster) return to their European clubs as Saturday’s match falls outside the November international window. The Blue Bulls trio of Pierre Spies, Morné Steyn and Deon Stegmann have also been released to return to South Africa, while Jean de Villiers is unavailable because of a groin injury.

The squad has been reduced to just 23 players.

Bok squad – Backs: Gio Aplon, Francois Hougaard, Adi Jacobs, Elton Jantjies, Zane Kirchner, Patrick Lambie, Charl McLeod, Lwazi Mvovo, Odwa Ndungane.
Forwards: Willem Alberts, Bakkies Botha, Keegan Daniel, Jannie du Plessis, Bismarck du Plessis, Alistair Hargreaves, Ryan Kankowski, Bandise Maku, Tendai Mtawarira, Coenie Oosthuizen, Juan Smith (c), Adriaan Strauss, CJ van der Linde, Flip van der Merwe.