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Bok No.8 Jasper Wiese backed into corner on overseas question

By Chris Jones
Leicester Tigers Head Coach Steve Borthwick greets Jasper Wiese of Leicester Tigers following the Gallagher Premiership Rugby Semi Final match between Leicester Tigers and Northampton Saints at Mattioli Woods Welford Road Stadium on June 11, 2022 in Leicester, England. (Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images)

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Jasper Wiese has returned to South Africa as a Premiership title winner with Leicester and one of the most destructive ball carriers in European rugby and takes that power into the Springboks first test with Wales.


Asked by local media if he thought a Springbok starting place could have been secured if he had opted to remain with the Bloemfontein Cheetahs franchise rather than join his brother Cobus – who plays for Sale Sharks – in England, Wiese said: “That’s a difficult question. You’ve put me in the corner here! I don’t think I could say whether I would’ve been here or not.

“I can’t go back in time and change anything or determine if things would’ve worked out if I stayed in South Africa or gone overseas. Everyone who is here goes through a selection process and at the end it is the call of the coaches to make, but if you are playing well in Japan, England, France or SA the coaches will see the hard work you put in.”

Video Spacer

Wales captain Dan Biggar previews the first Test of a three-match series against the World Cup champions Springboks on Saturday
Video Spacer
Wales captain Dan Biggar previews the first Test of a three-match series against the World Cup champions Springboks on Saturday

There has been considerable debate over the No8 Springbok jersey Wiese will wear against a Wales team featuring his Leicester team mate Tommy Reffell who is making his test debut.

Wiese, who was uncapped when he joined Leicester in 2020, added:”The coaches and everyone involved in selection process are the people to make that call. If you play well overseas – we’ve seen it with all the guys – regardless of where, you probably deserve to at least come into contention, but it’s up to the coaches to have the final say.


“I hope I can take my form into the Test matches. With fans back into stadiums and restrictions having been relaxed a bit, it definitely helps us a team a bit more.


“I want to take the opportunity this weekend and hopefully make the most of it. I will do everything to the best of my ability for the team. When you have about 60,000 people cheering you on in the stadiums helps a lot. The quality we have among loose forwards is so high that if you don’t perform someone is going to take your spot. You can’t sit back and think the position is yours. You have to continuously work hard to keep your position.”

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