Rassie Erasmus has suggested that he isn’t likely to look beyond the current overseas-based player contingent unless there are injuries ahead of the 2019 World Cup.
There are currently six permanently overseas-based players in the Boks’ end-of-year squad: Faf de Klerk (Sale Sharks), Vincent Koch (Saracens), Willie le Roux (Wasps), Franco Mostert (Gloucester), Francois Louw (Bath) and Cheslin Kolbe (Toulouse).
Although Bismarck du Plessis and Frans Steyn were two other France-based players named in the first Bok squad of the year, the duo’s national recall never materialised, while Pat Lambie, Cobus Reinach and Jan Serfontein are some of the other names that have been bandied about when discussing players who could aid the Springbok cause.
When chatting to the media in Paris ahead of Saturday’s Test against France, Erasmus provided some clarity around his thinking just a few Test matches away from the highly anticipated World Cup in Japan.
‘We have generally had about 34 or 36 players in our squad, but we are obviously keeping an eye on the World Cup … where you can only take a squad of 31. A few guys will have to fall out, and we still have a couple of guys back home who are injured.
‘I do have my eyes on a few [overseas-based] guys in key positions if we have to bring someone in [if there are injuries]. A guy like Pat Lambie or Bismarck du Plessis, you know what you have in them, but unless we have big injuries, I don’t think we will have more overseas guys involved than what we have currently in our team.’
Photo: Gordon Arons/Gallo Images