Vodacom Stormers coach Rassie Erasmus admits that the competition for places in his squad is intense, as the team look forward to the opening match of the 2008 Vodacom Super 14 less than 6 weeks away.
“The competition in the different positions is tough. I can single out very few positions where players are not playing for places.”
The five South African Super 14 coaches, their CEO’s and two National Selectors will sit down on Monday 14 January to put forward their 30 man squads.
Whilst the franchises will be required to put forward 30 names, Erasmus says that this would not mean that the players who do not make the cut will be out of contention. Putting forward 30 names is simply a way of registering those players, but it won’t limit the coach from making use of other players in his bigger squad during the tournament.
It is also at this meeting where negotiations will begin whereby the pool of players who had not made the cut into the squad of 30, could be made available to other teams. All three parties have to agree – the player, his current team, as well as his future team, for the move to take place.
Erasmus will still make use of two pre season training matches against Boland in Wellington on 19 January and against a Vodacom WP XV at Newlands on 2 February to test combinations ahead of the opener against the Bulls on 16 February at Newlands.
So even if players do not see their names on the list put forward on Monday 14 January, it won’t be game over just yet.