‘Victor obvious choice for captaincy’

Four former players on who should replace Jean de Villiers as Springbok captain for the remainder of the World Cup.

Corné Krige (former Bok captain and flank)

'There's a whole lot of senior players capable of leading the team, with four serious contenders in Duane Vermeulen, Schalk Burger, Victor Matfield and Fourie du Preez. Of the four, Victor is most secured of a place in the starting XV and he has led the Springboks before. Duane is still working his way into the thick of things after the neck injury and I don't think Heyneke Meyer will put extra pressure on him. Victor is the obvious choice, if only for the World Cup.'

André Joubert (former Bok fullback)

'Definitely Victor Matfield. Jean is a huge loss and his absence will be felt, but those are the cards we've been dealt. Victor is the most experienced man in the team now and proved against Samoa just how valuable he still is. If it was up to me, he'd be captain.'

André Pretorius (former Bok flyhalf)

'Heyneke Meyer is spoilt for choice. Victor is shutting everybody up with his performances and Fourie du Preez is a class act. But I wouldn't look past Schalk Burger. Week after week he puts his body on the line for the good of the team and I reckon he will make an excellent captain. In saying that, Jean is irreplaceable. People only see the man leading on the field, they don't see Jean playing table tennis in the team room with the younger guys, they don't see him making everyone coffee after dinner or cracking a joke in the tough times. He is a character and that will be missed most. Schalk is closest to bringing that type of character to the team in a leadership role.'

Garry Pagel (former Bok prop)

'Schalk Burger is best suited to take over the captaincy. Matfield is another realistic candidate, but leadership in the crunch games later in the tournament will be quite vital and I don't know if he has it in him to play for 80 minutes against the more established sides. Unless Heyneke appoints two co-captains, which is becoming a trend these days. If not, Schalk should be our next captain.'

Meyer's captaincy poser

Photo: Anne Laing/HSM Images

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