Rassie Reconsidering The Springbok Captaincy

May require a changing of the guard

Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus has dropped a bombshell by revealing he is reconsidering the Springbok captaincy in light of Siya Kolisi’s move to France.

Speaking to the media on Tuesday, Erasmus said a Springbok captain being based overseas is a “unique situation” that might require a changing of the guard, as he would prefer his captain to be based in South Africa.

Siya Kolisi (captain) of South Africa with Duane Vermeulen (Pic – Steve Haag/Gallo Images)

However, he was quick to stress that Kolisi is still performing at the top level and is very much part of their plans.

“Siya is playing some of his best rugby, but I prefer to have my captain locally based as that allows for more interaction,” Erasmus told reporters on Tuesday.

“This is a unique situation, and I think he (Kolisi) will play some test matches; he certainly wants to, but we are not sure about the captaincy.”

Kolisi recently put a timeline on his potential retirement and his plans post-rugby. While he previously suggested that he would hang up his Test boots after the 2023 World Cup, he has had a change of heart and is eager to add to his 83 Test caps.

Erasmus also hinted that the Boks are due for a bit of a refresh before the next World Cup in 2027, and some of the older players will have to make way for new blood.

When he was appointed director of rugby six years ago, Erasmus and his coaching staff outlined a roadmap for each Springbok player and for many of those players, their task now is to prepare the next generation of Boks coming through.

“In 2018, we had a roadmap for the players, and we said, ‘Where will this guy be in 2019, 2023 and 2027?’ We know exactly which players can only last another year, and we have given them the task to help the youngsters before they leave,” he added.

“But it is a challenge to tell a player, ‘OK, you must stop now.’ We have guys in their 30s who believe they can win another World Cup.”

With preparations beginning for the next World Cup cycle, Erasmus also warned that he will be giving youngsters opportunities, which will result in defeats as he targets a three-peat.

“Building a squad means giving young guys an opportunity and making sure we always improve on depth,” he said.

“By doing that, you will lose a few test matches, but then we will have the answers when we get to the World Cup.

“I would rather win the World Cup than sit at an 85 per cent win rate in between.”

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