The national rugby squad will begin training camp this week in preparation for two important tournaments this year. As world champions, it is critical to prepare thoroughly for Jacques Nienaber’s team because all eyes will be on them. When the Boks take part in the Castle Lager Rugby Championship, a competition between South Africa, Australia, Argentina, and New Zealand, preparations for the Rugby World Cup will officially start.
The Boks will spend two weeks in the camp in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. The coach called up 15 players altogether. There are no DHL Stormers players among those called because they need to prepare for a Vodacom United Rugby Championship match.
Australia will be the Springboks’ opponent in their opening match of the much-awaited Rugby Championship on July 8 at Loftus Versfeld Stadium.
“With the Rugby Championship games approaching, we felt it was appropriate to gather the players in camp to ensure that all players are ready to play,” said Nienaber, who will step down as Springboks coach after the World Cup.
“We want to deal with everything important in the camp before the Rugby Championship games in July.
“What we are doing is a continuation of the camp that we held in Cape Town and Stellenbosch at the beginning of the year, but it was primarily geared at the players competing here at home. Three games remain before the World Cup and the Rugby Championship is quickly approaching.
“For us to successfully defend our title in France, we must put in a lot of effort. We’ll do everything we can to build a strong team,” Nienaber added.
Injured players such as Siya Kolisi and Eben Etzebeth will also attend camp. Kolisi’s absence from the World Cup caused alarm, but with recent surgery, it appears that there is cause for optimism.