I'm the captain ! Rikus Bothma comes face to face with Bosch's Robert Jankielsohn
(Photo: Peter Murphy)
The Western Province High School rugby selectors announced the names of the players to represent the province at the 2013 Craven and Academy Weeks at lunchtime on Tuesday 28 May 2013.
Hot-Under-The-Collar Advisory Note: The following comments are not intended to detract from the players as individuals. Their selection is only their fault insofar as they opted to play rugby and enrolled at particular schools. Good luck to them – they can sleep well. Some other people might not.
The first striking problem is that it transpires that JD Schickerling suffered a broken arm during the Rondebosch game last weekend. A plate will be inserted on Wednesday 29 May and the plaster should be off within three weeks.
Of course, certain selectors, if not the whole schools at which they are employed, have good reason to be laughing at the expense of the perennial forgottens of the southern suburbs.
Initially expected to be a major talking point, the selection of Burger van Niekerk – relieved of the captaincy of the Paarl Boys’ High 1st XV, subsequently relegated to their 2nd XV, where he played in the side that was annihilated by some seventy points by its Grey College counterparts last Saturday – becomes just one of several controversial choices.
Several players can count themselves lucky to have gained selection despite having had little recent game time. Paul Roos centre Daniel du Plessis, Brett Paulse of Rondebosch and Saud Abrahams (Bishops) have all spent an unhealthy amount of the season being, er, unhealthy.
The front row choices contain a few slaps in the faces for trials hopefuls. Boys’ High’s Ruan Brits (reserve Craven Week hooker) has played very little rugby, being involved in national athletics endeavours; an excellent game at trials notwithstanding, François van der Merwe was one of those dropped to the 2nd XV by his coaches, both of whom are selectors, some weeks ago as were Matthew le Roux, Dewald Naudé and Damian Stevens.
Lanky flyhalf Aidynn Cupido is not always the first choice in this position at his school and it is something of an eye-opener that there are two Excelsior players in the squads, but on the positive side, the bold move to reward HHH’s Adriaan Carelse for an outstanding game against Boland does give some cause for hope.
In closing, one wonders why the team announcement gives Edwil van der Merwe’s school as Boishaai. I think he’s still quite happy at Paul Roos ! Then again, maybe the convenor knows something I don’t.
CRAVEN WEEK TEAM
ACADEMY WEEK TEAM
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