Coetzee backs Januarie

Ricky Januarie will start against Griquas this Friday whether a Bellville magistrate finds him guilty of drinking and driving or not.

The Springbok and WP scrumhalf was arrested on Sunday morning and detained from 2:30am until 8:30am. He is due to appear in the Bellville magistrates’ court on Wednesday.

Allister Coetzee told keo.co.za this hearing will have no bearing on Januarie’s selection for the Griquas fixture. The Western Province coach confirmed there would be no internal investigation either.

“As far as I’m concerned, what happens in Ricky’s private life is his own business. Whether Ricky is playing well or not is my only concern.

“As his coach I feel it is my duty to support Ricky through this ordeal.”

Januarie was suspended for bad behaviour ahead of the Boks’ season-opener against Wales. The specifics were never confirmed, but inside sources said alcohol abuse was the reason for Januarie’s suspension.

Coetzee refused to comment on this incident, as it was never clarified whether Januarie was banned for alcohol abuse.

The WP coach did say the side that beat the Valke last Saturday will remain intact. Januarie trained with the squad as did injury concerns Schalk Brits and Wicus Blaauw. Sireli Naqelevuki sat out due to knock on the bicep, but is expected to be ready for Friday’s game.

The Province team will be announced on Tuesday.

By Jon Cardinelli