Burger in Bok squad for French test

PUBLISHED: June 7, 2010

Vodacom Stormers captain Schalk Burger has on Monday been included in a Springbok squad of 27 players for the one-off Test against France at the weekend.

The squad includes 17 players from the match 22 that did duty in the 34-31 victory over Wales in Cardiff last weekend. The excluded players are fullback Frans Steyn, wing Odwa Ndungane, centre Meyer Bosman, No 8 Joe van Niekerk and prop CJ van der Linde.

Butch James, who was withdrawn from the starting XV against Wales for contractual reasons, is retained in the squad as is overseas-based prop BJ Botha.

Nine players have been added to the group – Bakkies Botha, Wynand Olivier, Pierre Spies, Gurthrö Steenkamp, Morné Steyn and Flip van der Merwe of the Vodacom Bulls, Schalk Burger and Bryan Habana of the Vodacom Stormers and Munster’s Jean de Villiers, who was originally selected for the Welsh Test but withdrew with an injured shoulder. De Villiers led the Vodacom Stormers last season.

Bulls lock Van der Merwe is the only uncapped player in the squad.

The squad excludes scrumhalf Fourie du Preez, who is to have shoulder surgery on Tuesday.

“Fourie is very important to us but so is his welfare and the time is right for him to sort this injury out,” said coach Peter de Villiers. “We will miss him but it is important that he is available and fit at the world cup next year. We have adequate cover in the scrumhalf position too.”

On the opposition, de Villiers said: “France are the Six Nations champions and they beat us last year so this is a big match. We know they can be dangerous and this will be a tough, tough Test.”

The match 22 to face France at Newlands on Saturday will be named on Tuesday.

Springbok Squad: Bjorn Basson, BJ Botha, Bakkies Botha, Schalk Burger, Juan de Jongh, Jean de Villiers, Jannie du Plessis, Jaque Fourie, Gio Aplon, Bryan Habana, Alistair Hargreaves, Butch James, Ricky Januarie, Ryan Kankowski, Zane Kirchner, Francois Louw, Victor Matfield, Wynand Olivier, Ruan Pienaar, Dewald Potgieter, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Danie Rossouw, John Smit (captain), Pierre Spies, Gurthrö Steenkamp, Morné Steyn, Flip van der Merwe.