Heyneke Meyer has named a 31-man squad for the third and final Springbok planning camp in Cape Town, which will only include Stormers players.
This is the final leg of Meyer’s first initiative as Bok coach, as he has already spent time with Cheetahs, Lions, Bulls and Sharks players at the first two planning camps over the past fortnight in Pretoria. Meyer will now spend time with a selected group of Stormers players in Cape Town from next Tuesday until Thursday.
The Stormers can afford to release their players as they enjoy a bye during the following weekend, but this camp will coincide with WP’s preparations for the Vodacom Cup quarter-finals. Meyer hopes a balance can be arranged.
‘We know that a number of these players will feature for WP in the Vodacom Cup quarter-finals next weekend, but we would like to work with them at some stage during next week. When they are needed for provincial duty they will, of course, attend those sessions,’ said Meyer. ‘The value of these camps can’t be underestimated. During the first two camps in Pretoria we not only had the opportunity to go through all our plays and game plans with the players, but we also had one-on-one talks with every single player in attendance and also assessed them medically.
‘The wealth of information we’ve built up on the best players in South Africa is invaluable. At the end of next week, we would’ve worked with more than 100 players and although only 22 can feature in the first Test against England, all of them know where they stand in the national set-up.’
Meyer also added that this camp will allow the Bok medical team to assess several players’ injury situations.
‘We know that guys like Schalk Burger, Jean de Villiers, Andries Bekker, Duane Vermeulen and Gio Aplon, to name but a few, have been struggling with injuries and there has been a lot of speculation about the seriousness of these injuries, but after next week we’ll have a better idea of where they are in terms of fitness levels.’
Third Springbok planning camp squad:
Forwards – Andries Bekker, Brok Harris, De Kock Steenkamp, Deon Carstens, Deon Fourie, Duane Vermeulen, Eben Etzebeth, Frans Malherbe, Nick Koster, Nizaam Carr, Quinn Roux, Rynhardt Elstadt, Schalk Burger, Siya Kolisi, Steven Kitshoff, Tiaan Liebenberg, Wicus Blaauw.
Backs – Burton Francis, Bryan Habana, Danie Poolman, Dewaldt Duvenhage, Gary van Aswegen, Gerhard van den Heever, Gio Aplon, Jean de Villiers, Joe Pietersen, Juan de Jongh, Louis Schreuder, Marcel Brache, Nick Groom, Peter Grant.