Kriel to get Bok start?

Date published: June 20 2016

Springbok coach Allister Coetzee says there could be a shake-up in the loose-forwards after injuries to Duane Vermeulen and Warren Whiteley. 

Coetzee stated that Duane Vermeulen has been suffering with an elbow injury, while Warren Whiteley has been dealing with a knock to the shoulder. The injuries took place against Ireland in the Springboks' 32-26 comeback victory over the Irish in Johannesburg last Saturday.

With Vermeulen and Whiteley potentially crocked for the weekend, this leaves the Springbok coaching staff without any specialist number eights. The former Stormers boss said Sikhumbuzo Notshe, who was exceptional for the SA 'A' side, and Lions star Jaco Kriel could then be added to this weekend's match 22. 

Coetzee added that if Whiteley and Vermeulen cannot play over the weekend, Notshe would likely start off the bench while Kriel would start at six accompanied by Siya Kolisi or Francois Louw filling in the rest of the loose forward positions.

"If Duane and Warren are not available, Notshe and Jaco will be considered to fill the gaps," said Coetzee.

"Jaco has X factor and has to be tested at this level. That’s why he’s here. Should he get the opportunity, I’m confident he will be up for it. Notshe has played number eight before.