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Erasmus reveals hilarious reason why Wyatt Crockett is leading the Barbarians

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Barbarians captain Wyatt Crockett. Photo by Steve Bardens/Getty Images for Barbarians

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Barbarians coach Rassie Erasmus shed light into his strategy ahead of this weekend’s test against Argentina at Twickenham.


The current Springboks head coach picked 13 South Africans in his match-day squad, with former All Blacks prop Wyatt Crockett set to lead the team.

When asked in an interview on the Barbarians Facebook page why Crockett was handed the captain’s armband, Erasmus delivered a witty response.

“We just took the oldest guy and said, ‘you’re the captain’. He’s been a great player and he’s finishing up and he’s not only done so much for New Zealand rugby, but also world rugby,” Erasmus said of 35-year-old Crockett.

Loosehead prop Crockett won a World Cup and amassed 71 tests for the All Blacks from 2009 to 2017, and sits atop the all-time leaderboard when it comes to Super Rugby caps.

He made 202 appearances for the Crusaders between 2006 and 2018 – capturing three titles with the side – and earlier this year became the first player to eclipse the 200-cap mark.

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Erasmus also touched on the difficulties of preparing the squad with such little time to work with.

“It’s tough to get the structure going in one week, but we know the open play will work with the amount of talent we have here,” he said. “It would be stupid to try and over-coach with silly sessions. I think every player here has got some X-factor, something that is his point of difference.

“I would like to see that come out, we will have a basic structure that will just allow them to try and do that. But while saying that, winning your scrum, getting your lineouts, getting your kick-offs… that’s vital if you want to perform against a team like Argentina”.

Saturday’s match will be Erasmus’ third meeting with Argentina this year, having lost to the side in Argentina during the Rugby Championship before toppling the Pumas on the return fixture in Durban.


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