Centre Jean de Villiers is the lone casualty in the Springbok camp which has assembled in Cape Town to prepare for their upcoming end-of-the-year, which gets under way against Wales, at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, on Saturday November 8.
New Springbok media manager Anthony Mackaiser announced at Wednesday’s media conference that De Villiers had come down with a stomach bug.
Wednesday’s conference also re-launched the career of Arthob Petersen as the Springbok team manager. A few weeks ago, the South African Rugby Union President’s Council appointed Petersen to the post on a temporary basis for the end-of-year tour only. Petersen, 55, has vast experience in the position and has served under past Springbok coaches such Carel du Plessis, Nick Mallett and Jake White.
In his address, Petersen said all the players had been in camp since Tuesday and the squad had its first engagement on Wednesday morning when the players were put through their paces at a gym session. “The players are in good shape, even though some of them have just come off a really hard Currie Cup final,” said Petersen. “There was no evidence of mental fatigue at the gym and the players are braced for tough encounters against the United Kingdom teams.
“The players realise that conditions will be very different and, therefore, they’re expecting a very hard tour.
“We (the management) have put everything in place to make sure that this will be a very successful team, without trying to detract from the performances that our opposition will put up.
“There is great excitement in the ranks and we’re sure that everything will go according to plan.”
After the Test against Wales, the Springboks will be up against Scotland and England on successive Saturdays.
The Springbok team will leave for London on Friday.