The Springboks could blood a new captain when they take on Scotland in their second end-of-year Test against Scotland at Murrayfield on Saturday.
Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer on Monday said he is considering resting skipper Jean de Villiers as the veteran centre has had minimal time off and is carrying a hamstring niggle.
Meyer said the Edinburgh encounter would also be a good opportunity for De Villiers’ Stormers team mate Juan de Jongh to return to the run-on side.
“I am thinking of giving Jean a rest this week as he has been struggling a bit with that hamstring injury that has been bothering him recently,” Meyer said.
“I definitely want to give Juan a chance. The reason I left him out last week was just because I wanted to keep changes to a minimum from the perspective of what we needed on defence.
“I haven’t made up my mind completely about this yet, and I still need to talk to a few people, but I would like to institute a rotation policy in the midfield.
“I thought Jaco Taute played his best Test so far against Ireland, so it is a case of whether we play Jaco and Juan together in the midfield, or whether we pair up Juan with Jean.”
Meyer hinted at the former combination, saying, “I still believe fullback is Jaco Taute’s best position, and would love to play him there now, but I don’t want to make too many changes for the Scotland game.
“I think we should be looking to build momentum, and we did not play well last time out against Ireland. I have a lot of respect for Scotland.
“They may have lost heavily to the All Blacks but it was mainly in a period of 10 minutes that the All Blacks did most of the damage. Scotland scored three tries, which is not something we or Australia have managed against New Zealand this year.”
Meyer also confirmed that Pat Lambie will be retained at flyhalf.
“He didn’t have much opportunity to stamp his authority on the game in the first half but he showed some nice touches in the second and Pat also knows he is capable of better so I would like to back him and give him a chance to gain confidence going forward by building on his performance,” said Meyer.
More to follow …
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