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Peter de Villiers in line for shock Springbok return? - reports

By Ian Cameron
Rassie Erasmus and Peter de Villiers

It has been reported in South Africa this morning that highly successful yet divisive former Springbok coach Peter de Villiers could be in line for a return to a Springbok coaching ticket.

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A report in the Weekend Argus suggests De Villiers could be drafted back in some capacity under the stewardship of new South African director of rugby, Rassie Erasmus.

What role De Villiers would take is as yet unclear. The former coach has not been directly involved in rugby since exiting the Springbok job in 2011.

The Springboks won 30 of their 48 matches under the helm of De Villiers and had a 62.5 percent win percentage, boasting a 47 percent win percentage against the All Blacks, having played them 11 times and losing six matches.

De Villiers is the first Springbok coach since Nick Mallet to have a 100 percent win record over the All Blacks in a single year (2009) and was also the first coach since Nelie Smith to have secured a series win over the British and Irish Lions.

This week Deon Davids, the current head coach of Pro14 side the Southern Kings, has been tipped to be Coetzee’s successor and is believed to be highly rated by Erasmus.

In 2008 Davids coached the Emerging Springboks, before becoming an assistant to Eric Sauls with the Junior Boks when they finished third at the 2009 Junior World Championship.

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Since then, he has spent time with the Golden Lions and the SWD Eagles before being appointed head coach of the Kings in 2016. It is believed that Erasmus, who was head of the SA Rugby Mobi Unit at the time, played a role in Davids’ appointment at the Kings.

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Shaylen 6 hours ago
Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma

These guys will be utility players Nick it cannot be helped because coaches cannot help themselves. Rassie looks at players like these and sees the ability to cover multiple positions without losing much. It allows the 6-2 or 7-1. He wont change his coaching style or strategy for one player. At provincial level players like these are indispensable. If there is an injury to your starting 12 but your back up 12 is a bit iffy then a coach is going to go with the back up 10 who is gold and who can play a good 12. Damian Willemse for the Springboks is an obvious case, for the Stormers its the same. Dobson plays him at 12 or 15, with Gelant in the team he plays 12 but if Gelant goes down he doesnt go for his back up 15, he just puts Willemse there. With Frawley its the same at international and provincial level. He just slots in wherever. Frans Steyn made a career out of it. He was much maligned though as a youngster as he never fully developed into any role. He then went to Japan and France to decide for himself what kind of player he was, put on muscle and retained his big boot, ran over players and booted the ball long and came back into the Springboks after about 3 years away and was then certain about how he wanted to play the game no matter what position. Coaches cannot help themselves because they only want what is best for their teams and that means putting your most talented players on even if it means you cause them some discomfort. Sometimes players need to decide how they want to play the game and then adapt that to every position and let the coach decide how they want to use them.

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