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Springbok Team: What the Past Coaches Think 

by Sean Wilson on June 6th, 2012

The Springbok match 22 has been selected to face England in the first test in Durban on Saturday. Here’s a list of the 22, along with comments made by some past Springbok coaches.



-Jake White:  “Lambie is very unlucky not to make the starting team. Big call from Heyneke.”

-Nick Mallett: “Bad selection. He tries to join the backline too much, he can’t kick with his left foot and he clearly doesn’t use Lambie’s shampoo enough.”

-Andre Markgraaf: “I hate him.”

-Peter de Villiers: “Most of us were expecting him to pick Lambie, but it seems Heyneke has pulled a bull out of a hat. But Heyneke must be careful, because pulling a bull out of a hat is not magic. That is why God made rabbits.”


14. JP Pietersen

-White: “Has been the classiest, most consistent right wing in the country for years.”

-Mallett: “Bad selection. He’s been playing at centre too much this year, he doesn’t communicate enough and sometimes he wears coloured boots that puts his teammates off”.

-Markgraaf: “I hate him.”

-De Villiers: “Hopefully he’ll get some ball that will enable him to attack, because attack is the best form of defence. Except tackling, of course. That’s much better defence.”


13. JEAN DE VILLIERS (Captain)

-White: “Was one of my most trusted senior players and he fully deserves to be captain.”

-Mallett: “Too much of a maverick to be captain and even though I haven’t seen him play outside centre for 10 years, I know he’s too slow for the position.”

-Markgraaf: “I like him.”

-De Villiers: “I’m happy for him. He has the same surname as me and people often ask if we are related. That makes Jean laugh. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because I’m much shorter than he is.”



-White: “Heyneke’s just copying my World Cup selection.”

-Mallett: “Bad selection. What if he tries one of those huge drop kicks that hits the post, bounces back so far it lands in our 22 and puts us under pressure? Liability.”

-Markgraaf: “I like him.”

-De Villiers: “We had our differences when he wanted to stay in France. I told him that if God wanted us to live in France, why can you buy croissants at Checkers on a Sunday?”



-White: “I taught him everything he knows about wing play.”

-Mallett: “His peripheral vision is not up to scratch, he doesn’t cover his fullback on defence and he eats too many carbohydrates on match day.”

-Markgraaf: “I hate him. Wait… I like him. Wait… ag, I don’t know. They must bring back the Race Classification Council because some of these ohs are bladdy confusing.”

-De Villiers: “People have been critical of him in the past because they expect so much of him. I told him not to worry, because people also expected us to win the World Cup, and look how that turned out. It just goes to show that sometimes people are wrong.”



-White: “He’s been playing well and has a history of kicking well under pressure.”

-Mallett: “His defence is shocking, his distribution’s appalling and I’ll bet that if you tell him his faults, he’ll cry just like Gaffie did.”

-Andre Markgraaf has been forcibly removed due to his inappropriate outbursts

-De Villiers: “People say that the way he plays isn’t pretty. But beauty is only skin deep. Ugly goes right down to the bone.”



-White: “Can’t find any fault with his play.”

-Mallett: “I can. His box kicks aren’t effective enough. One day he’s going to drop the ball during one of his ’swallow dives’ over the tryline. Too many tattoos.”

-De Villiers: “Has had to bide his time, but good things come to those who wait, and if you wait long enough for delivery, the pizza will be free.”



-White: “Magnificent athlete.”

-Mallett: “His tackling is weak, his running with the ball is mindless and he gets homesick.”

-De Villiers: “I treated him like a bull in a china shop. He didn’t understand why we were talking about Bulls in China when he wants to talk about the Bulls playing inJapan. He has a lot to learn.”



-White: “Has all the attributes fill the void left by Juan Smith.”

-Mallett: “He’s too slow, he doesn’t link with the backs and the players don’t know whether to speak English or Afrikaans to him.”

-De Villiers: “He was disappointed that I kept picking Schalk Burger ahead of him. I told him that if he wanted to play in a Springbok team without Schalk in it, then he better buy a tutu and play in a ballerina outfit. Then he understood, and told me that he didn’t like the Bulls away strip either.”



-White: “Sorry, I didn’t hear you. Who’s the other flank? I was too busy asking Heinrich to fetch me a beer.”

-Mallett: “Earlier I said he would be my pick, but it’s different now that he’s actually been picked. Bad selection.”

-De Villiers: “Heinrich is very unlucky. That’s the way the ball bounces sometimes. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, but it doesn’t make the ball rounder. That’s why he’s been dropped.”



-White: “I hope they’ve updated the line-out calls. ‘Een, twee, drie, Victor!’ isn’t going to work any more.”

-Mallett: “Doesn’t do enough in the tight loose, isn’t strong enough in the scrums and he doesn’t understand why South Africa has three capital cities.”

-De Villiers: “On debut, you must put your hand up and come to the party. The coach must tell him that even if the fans are expecting him to turn water into wine, he must relax because everyone’s drinking Powerade.”



-White: “Awesome physical power.”

-Mallett: “It’s wrong to have two locks on debut. His work at the line-outs is weak and he’s too young to remember when I was coach.”

-De Villiers: “He’s a huge lock, like the tower of Babel, which is why the coach must speak different languages to him. At first you speak English, and he’ll understand. Then you speak Afrikaans, and he’ll understand. Then you speak to him in Xhosa, and then he won’t understand. That’s when you say ‘That is why I am the coach.’.”



-White: “I only picked tighthead props with initials instead of first names.”

-Mallett: “His discipline is poor, he should get murdered at the scrums and there’s a risk he’ll undermine the team doctor.”

-De Villiers: “I used to tell him that even though he’s a doctor, laughter is the best medicine. Unless you have a headache, then laughter is just a moersa lotta kak.”



-White: “They should have brought back John Smit.”

-Mallett: “Him and his brother are a 5-penalty package. I would never have picked a hooker with such bad discipline. James Dalton was a saint.”

-De Villiers: “He would always get upset that I didn’t start him. I told him that there’s no difference between starting and being on the bench, except that starting feels better. It didn’t cheer him up.”



-White: “On track to being the new Os.”

-Mallett: “He’s not lifting his jumpers at the kick-offs properly. He’s doing it just to show off his strength to the crowd. When the crowd shouts his name it makes me jealous…I mean, it makes the players jealous.”

-De Villiers: “He was always my first name on the teamsheet, because I started the team with ‘Number 1′.”










-White: “Well, I hope he’s got the team right. If he hasn’t and we lose the series, I’d like to coach South Africa again. If he gets it wrong and they give England a hiding, I would like to coach England. We’ll see, because I’d also like to coach Australia, but my loyalty is with the Brumbies.”

-Mallett: “There’s not enough positions covered on the bench. Wait, I’m getting an sms from Andre Markgraaf… it says ‘I like the whole bench.’”

-De Villiers: “It’s not the team I expected. Fool me once, and shame on me, but if the little boy who cried wolf leads the horse to water, I shall not drink. For I am not a sheep. I am the walrus.”

16 Responses to Thought you lot would enjoy this

  • 1

    This was sooo funny, Especially Divs comments!!!! ENJOY GUYS!

  • 2


    Good one Tripples!

  • 3

    Hond snaaks!

  • 4

    As usual, I agree completely with Mallet and Pdiv’s comments provide a lot of food for thoughting… or thinking… or …flok, whatever youse thoughting is whatever youse think, so whats the blerrie difference!

  • 5

    I had a good chuckle. I could just imagine Mallet or White doing the pre and post match analisys, and making these comments.

  • 7

    Right, now that both sides have been announced, we can do a head-to head comparison. As most regular bloggers know, I am well known for my objectivity and even-handedness when it comes to this sort of thing so without any further ado, let’s compare the players in each position . . .

    1. Prop – Beast Mtwarira (loosehead) vs Dan Cole (tighthead). You’ll still find Yarpies gushing about the manner in which Mtwarira got the upper hand over Phil Vickery in the first test of the Lions tour but what they forget is that Mtwarira then started to believe the hype. Vickery had Beast’s measure in the 2nd test and then gave him a right royal rogering in the third test. The myth of Mtwarira has been shattered and Dan Cole only has to reproduce his 6N form (which included a man-shaming of the highly rated Cian Healy) to administer yet another beasting to the Beast. England 1.

    2. Hooker – Bismarck du Plessis vs Dylan Hartley. This promises to be one of the better match-ups on the day. Both are fiery characters who inspire their team mates. Bismarck probably has more physical presence but he’s also more prone to giving away stupid penalties while Hartley is the better thrower. I’m going to score this one even. Steroid-Boks 0.5, England 0.5.

    3. Prop – Jannie du Plessis (tighthead) vs Joe Marler (loosehead). In yet another injury blow, Alex Corbisiero – who was immense for England during the 6N campaign and gave every tighthead he came across a sound thrashing – has injured a bicep and will be replaced by Joe Marler of Harlequins. Even though Marler is only up against the flabby and unfit Jannie du Plessis who will be wheezing after about 20 minutes, experience does count in the front row and Corbisiero’s injury is a big blow to England’s chances. Steroid-Boks 1.

    4. Lock – Eben Eztebeth vs Mouritz Botha. I’ve heard a lot of hype regarding this Eztebeth chap but I can’t say he impressed me all that much the few times I’ve seen him in Rugby Lite and he seems to get subbed quite early in most games. Botha has been quite a find for England this season and even though he may be lacking in skills, he makes up for it with a lot of effort. I’m going to be generous here and score this one even, although Eztebeth still needs to live up to all the hype. Steroid-Boks 0.5, England 0.5.

    5. Lock – Jaundre Kruger vs Geoff Parling. The Steroid-Boks were always going to struggle to replace Victor Matfield and the injury to giant Andries Bekker won’t have helped their cause. Parling is no world-beater but he’s a solid enough chap and he’ll have the measure of this Kruger rookie who looks like he’s just a stop-gap solution until Bekker returns. England 1.

    6. Flanker – Marcell Coetzee vs Tom Johnson. England have been rocked by injuries to Tom Croft and Tom Wood while James Haskell has not been considered due to jetlag. This means England are down to their 4th choice flanker. Johnson is by no means a bad player and you chaps will be surprised by his pace . . . but I must confess, I like what I’ve seen of this Marcell Coetzee fellow and I do think he’s one of Heineken Meyer’s more prescient selections. Coetzee looks one for the future. Steroid-Boks 1.

    7. Flanker – Willam Alberts vs Chris Robshaw. A classic contest of power vs guile. Alberts is a big man and a powerful runner with ball in hand but he hasn’t been in the best of form this season for the Sharks. By contrast, Chris Robshaw has shone for England, not just with his leadership but with his tireless hunting for the ball and harrying of the opposition. Not the most one-sided of the contests but I am going to give it to Robshaw based on this season’s form. England 1.

    8. Number 8 – Pierre Spies vs Ben Morgan. This is one of the easier ratings to make. Ben Morgan is coming off a magnificent 6N campaign where he had a claim to being England’s best player of the tournament. By contrast, Spies has done absolutely nothing to dispel the commonly-held belief that he’s nothing more than a roid-guzzling flat-track bully. England 1.

    9. Scrumhalf – Francois Hougaad vs Ben Youngs. Hougaard was one of the more impressive Steroid-Boks at the last RWC and as long as he doesn’t kick too much, he’ll be a handful for the English defence. Scrumhalf has been something of a problem position for England with all of Youngs, Dickson, Care and Wigglesworth demonstrating limitations to their game in recent months. Steroid-Boks 1.

    10. Flyhalf – Morning Stain vs Owen Farrell. I know you Yarpies tend to rate flyhalves based exclusively on their place-kicking ability – and Morning Stain is indeed a world-class kicker – but he’s a very average player with the skills of a donkey and a weak defence. Farrell may not have Stain’s reputation as a kicker (not yet anyway) but he has a great step, excellent ball skills and he can tackle. England 1.

    11. Left wing – Bryan Habana vs Ben Foden. I don’t like this idea of playing Ben Foden out of position and I think Lancaster should have rather gambled with Jonathan Joseph at left wing. Ben Foden is a class act but he’s a fullback. Still it’s not all doom and gloom because, while Bryan Habana has tons of experience, I think everyone knows his best days are behind him and he’s not the feared winger he was in his day when he had a wicked step and heaps of speed. I’m going to call this one even. Steroid-Boks 0.5, England 0.5.

    12. Inside centre – Francois Steyn vs Brad Barritt. Now here is a match-up that reflects the characteristics of both backlines. On the one hand you have the big and uncomplicated Frans Steyn with the massive boot and the hard straight-running style, while on the other hand you have the sublime backline management skills and rugby nous of the smaller and quicker Brad Barritt. It’s an interesting one but two things swing it Barriit’s way, Steyn’s tendency to hog the ball and Barritt’s fearless defence. England 1.

    13. Outside centre – Jean de Villiers vs Manu Tuilagi. I’m probably going to get criticised for this particular rating because Jean de Villiers is an experienced and astute player who reads the game better than any of the other Yarpie backs, but he is playing out of position and he is starting to get a little long in the tooth. Manu Tuilagi is one of the most incisive runners in world rugby and I’m not sure De Villiers has the pace or the defensive technique to cope with him. England 1.

    14. Right wing – JP Peterson vs Chris Ashton. Chris Ashton made a welcome return to form during the latter stages of the 6N and he was definitely back to his brilliant best for England against the Barbarians two weeks ago. There is no substitute for pace and Ashton has it in spades. JP Peterson only seems to be dangerous when given lots of space. I don’t see him getting that kind of space against a resolute English defence while his own defnce is suspect as he tends to go in too high most of the time. England 1.

    15. Fullback – Zane Kirchner vs Mike Brown. Pffffffffhahahahaha! This one is the biggest joke of the lot! The fact that anyone could think the hopeless Zane Kirchner might be better than Patrick Lambie is nothing short of hilarious. I don’t agree with the splendid Ben Foden being switched to the wing but even the relative newcomer Mike Brown beats Kirchener in every department. He’s faster than Kirchner, he’s braver than Kirchner, he defends better than Kirchener, he kicks better than Kirchner and his positional play is better than Kirchner’s. I should really score England two for this position but I’ll be generous and leave it at one, even though this is the biggest mismatch on the card. England 1.

    Right, so let’s total up the points . . . I make it Steroid-Boks 4.5 and England 10.5. A very fair reflection of the talent in the two teams even if I say so myself. I know some of you Yarpies will complain about one or two of my ratings but really, leaving out splendid chaps like Pat Lambie and Keegan Daniel, you only have yourselves to blame.

    From this analysis we can conclude that if the Steroid-Boks do manage to sneak a win on Saturday, it’ll be because of something like biased refereeing interpretations, gold watch bribery or else insufficient testing for performance-enhancing substances before the game.

    Let’s all hope there’s none of that malarkey and the better team wins. Come on England!

  • 8

    @ superBul:
    That is a guy called Kitcheners blog posting , is this guy crazy?

  • 9

    8@ superBul:
    Hello superBul thanks for clearing up whose ‘analysis’ that was you posted just before, for a moment while reading it I thought you had gone crazy or someone else was posting with you nick. Who is this guy, certainly not the kind who we should be giving ‘airtime’ to. Not sure if he is trying to be funny but to me I detect a certain element of nastiness about that, especially the 2nd last paragraph, that could be seen as libelous, am sure GBS will have a better understanding from his legal background as to whether it is or not. Maybe can get his details and forward them to the IRB and SARU. I know you are a staunch supporter of freedom of expression man but to me with that freedom comes responsibilty and knowing where to draw the line, something I don’t think the person who wrote exercises.

  • 10

    Bullscot wrote:

    I know you are a staunch supporter of freedom of expression man but to me with that freedom comes responsibilty and knowing where to draw the line, something I don’t think the person who wrote exercises.

    here is a link to this guys blog
    The blog is hosted by Sport24 and that is where i also found Met uysh and McLook and other great current R-T authors and invited them. Dont think Kitchener will ever be invited, not even by me but i posted it to show the extreme biased England view. Wouldnt it be nice to shove every word back to him.
    With your objection here i would not be surprised if the post are taken of, that would be just as extreme again and add fuel to what this site is accused off.
    I do not like his name for the boks, Steriod-Boks, if you have time go to that link and read the comments on his own blog.

    These guys having the conviction to start their own blogs and maintain it is interesting, at RT we were a lot of people who started this together and many tasks was shared but with private blogs all work is done by one person. This Blog ( is older than us here, so imagine the time this person spends to bring out his views.And of course wath his counter reaction to Kitchener.

  • 11

    @ superBul:I think it’s great that the poms can put together such an intellectual, well thought out and insightful summary of the two teams. It must be said however, that Kitchener is pot smoking alcoholic with the intellectual capacity of a frog. A man who lives in a world of fairies and goblins, and a man who lives with his head up his own backside, only coming out for a breath of air every now and then. I know this, because I saw someone just like him flying past with some polar bears once.

  • 12

    Brakpan chick: “I’m so in laf wiff my Blackberry Pa!!”
    Father: “Jy’s fokken mal! There are NO way you are dating a black guy!
    You tell Barry its fokken over!”

  • 13

    I don’t think I have ever seen so much rain. Almost 80mm in a day and a half, and still pouring down. I see Fenton-Wells has signed for Sarries. Not surprised really, when WPRU can’t be bothered to give him a contract, especially after they offer one to Jebb Sinclair. Apparantly they only offered Armand one after he too had been offered a contract by Saracans. I don’t know if it’s true, but I read that it’s only for 6 months though.

  • 14

    Hi JFK, interesting news about your players there you don’t sound too impressed, did you rate Fenton-Wells and Armand, don’t know much about these guys so not sure if they youngsters who may have had big future at Province or would they have generally been players to fill a gap in the case on injury like you have at the moment. Sounds very wet your side, is the rain welcome on the farm this time of the year or has it become too much now? cheers for now.

  • 15

    Hi Bully, yes, I really think that Fenton-Wells has a great future. Good ball player with lots of heart and good leadership skills as well. I know we have a few loosies around the place at the moment, just injured, but there is no way that he is any worse than Sinclair. What kind of message did the signing of Sinclair send to the up and coming WP players? No wonder they bugger off! Such a shame, and incredibly short sighted of WP.

  • 16

    Just For Kicks wrote:

    Kitchener is pot smoking alcoholic with the intellectual capacity of a frog

    you feeding the mnki, that what this guy thrives on. But remember he has thrown the gauntlet down, now the Springboks must make him eat his words.


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