You feel for those who might miss out
Western Province coach Allister Coetzee will welcome back his returning Springboks for the crucial clash against the Sharks in Durban on Saturday.
The stakes can hardly be higher this weekend with the battle at Kings Park set to determine which of the coastal sides will finish the regular season at the top of the table and earn a possible home Final.
As a result, Coetzee on Monday confirmed that he’ll call on his international stars - all of whom are fit and available for selection.
He said he faces a “healthy selection headache” and would settle on what he believes is the best matchday 22.
“To be honest, it will never be easy,” Coetzee said on Monday.
“If you look at how the players have put their bodies on the line and represented this Western Province side you feel for those who might miss out, but on the other hand you get your Springboks back.
“We’ll always play our best possible side and what’s an important aspect of our culture is there’s honesty and integrity - the players don’t guess, they know exactly where they stand with management, and that makes it easier for me.
“It’ll never be about the individual, it’s about the team and the team comes first and that’s key to our success.”
Coetzee added that there’s no lack of motivation among the returning Test stars and although he kept his cards close to his chest, he suggested that forwards Siya Kolisi and Eben Etzebeth may be among those who feature in the starting line-up.
“Everyone is able, available and willing to play mentally and physically. I had a chat with them this [Monday] morning and they all want to be a part of this,” he said.
“Some of the Springboks will definitely start and some will start on the bench. A guy like Siya [Kolisi] hasn’t played a lot of rugby and I think Eben [Etzebeth] also, but I’ll sleep on that.”