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Calling all Armchair Selectors

With all the attention shifting to the Rugby World Cup in September in England, my colleague André Marais recently invited a few of us to put on our thinking caps about a possible first choice Springbok 15.

Interestingly, he invited us to select our own team, and then predict which players would find favour in the eyes of Heyneke Meyer, but did not specify whether the selection should be for the RWC or the Rugby Championships.

With three months to go before the big one, and past and future injuries likely to play a large role in who will be picked, we invite readers to share their own thoughts on who will be in the final squad for the World Cup.

Please do not copy my colleague André who, in predicting the Bok coach’s starting line, picked the entire Bulls squad, only including other players where the Bulls player was seriously injured.

A Supersport article provided the following pointers which may guide you in your choices:

The final squad is only set to be selected at the end of August, when the chosen 31 will be revealed to the country for the showpiece tournament in England. But one thing is clear, while competition will be tough between players, only the best 31 in Meyer’s mind will be selected, meaning a number of top players may well miss out.

We start with the forwards this week. Please also let us know if there are players you think should be included, but were omitted from the list.

Please click here to access the survey and select the squad you think will bring back the Cup. We will compare the combined intellectual capacity of our readers to Heyneke’s choice and see how we fared. If things do not work out the way we want it, we can at least say:

“I told you so.”

Next week we look at a possible world beating backline.

Dad’s Army?

The New Zealand Herald published an interesting article titled All Blacks not the oldest squad around. Not surprisingly, Victor Matfield’s picture appears next to the article. It speculates on what percentage of players in the various squads will be over 30. Some of the interesting statistics, based on players regarded as certain choices, are:

 

South Africa – 37%: Rugby Championship squad – 35 players: 13 over 30

All Blacks 30%: Rugby Championship squad – 37 players: 11 over 30

France 26%: Six Nations squad – 42 players: 11 over 30

Ireland 23%: Six Nations squad – 43 players: 10 over 30

England 16%: Six Nations squad – 43 players: 7 over 30

Australia 16%: Rugby Championship squad – 43 players: 7 over 30

Wales 14%: Six Nations squad – 37 players: 5 over 30

While it may be slightly skewed, it will be very interesting to see whether youthful exuberance can triumph over experience.

Wat my herinner aan die twee bulle wat op die koppie staan en kyk het na die trop koeie onderaan die bult.

Die jong bul stamp so aan oue en sê: “Oom, kom ons hol hier af en gaan dek ‘n koei.”

Die ou bul kyk hom diep in die oë en sê: “Boet, kom ons stap rustig hier af en dek die hele kudde.”

 

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