JOHANNESBURG – Players that did not feature for the Springboks in their last four Tests are unlikely to crack the nod for the 31-man squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup squad.
Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus intimated it was unlikely he would call up hopefuls like Damian Willemse, Warren Whiteley or Aphiwe Dyantyi.
Erasmus said it would be difficult for players returning from injury to slot into the Springbok fold at the World Cup. Springbok captain Siya Kolisi was one of the only players that have been ‘fast-tracked’ with the inspirational leader making his return in the Green and Gold after only a few minutes playing for Western Province.
“Certain guys you just fast track, we fast-tracked Siya in a big way from 15 minutes of Currie Cup into Test match rugby,” Erasmus said.
“We know what we have in him and he is our captain so it is a special case. But with other guys, it is just tough to go from one game against Griquas into Test match rugby to playing against the All Blacks.
“I just see it tough for those guys to hop from that level to the next. Potential wise they are world-class it is just a timing thing.”
Erasmus was reluctant to discuss the make-up of his team ahead of the squad announcement on August 26.
But the Bok mentor did mention a few positions where he had already had his mind made up while the players that featured in the Rugby Championship matches against New Zealand and Argentina would be part of his plans.
“There are certain names that are obvious considering the 17 or 18 players we rested if you include Herschel Jantjies who got concussed during the week,” Erasmus said. “You can make conclusions out of what we have done.”