Handre Pollard Boks

Boks flyhalf star Handre Pollard. Photo: Archives

LATEST: Boks still waiting for final contingent of players

The Boks will only have all their players in camp from next week, just days before the opening Test against Wales.

Handre Pollard Boks

Boks flyhalf star Handre Pollard. Photo: Archives

The Boks will kick off their 2022 season with three Tests against Wales in the Incoming Series on 2, 9 and 16 July respectively before launching into the Rugby Championship, where they will line up against the All Blacks in back-to-back home Tests, which will be followed by a tour to Australia and Argentina. They will then return home for their final Test against the Pumas in Durban in September.

An extended group of players are currently in training, but coach Jacques Nienaber and his management group will only be able to start working with some players from next week.


With the English clubs having strictly enforced Regulation 9 of World Rugby, Leicester Tigers star Jasper Wiese, Saracens prop Vincent Koch, and Harlequins centre Andre Esterhuizen will only be able to join up with the team from Monday.

Meanwhile, flyhalf Handre Pollard also still has to contend with a Top14 final this weekend, and so it will be interesting to see whether the Boks may opt to start with Elton Jantjies in the opening Test.

“Handre is still playing. Their final is only over the weekend. We don’t have any of our Premiership players,” Nienaber said at a press conference on Tuesday.

“They are only being released according to Regulation 9 of World Rugby, so they will only join us on Monday. We are fortunate to get the Japanese-based players. The Japanese rugby union said the players could start working with us a little bit earlier.

“The national unions sometimes agree with that, and sometimes they stay strictly with Regulation 9, so we have to abide by that. We will only get our Premiership players on Monday.”

The Boks’ full group of 43 players features eight uncapped players. These players are No 8 Evan Roos (Stormers), and flank Elrigh Louw (Bulls), locks Ruan Nortje (Bulls) and Salmaan Moerat (Stormers), utility forward Deon Fourie (Stormers), fullback Kurt-Lee Arendse (Bulls), scrumhalf Grant Williams, and prop Ntuthuko Mchunu (both Sharks).


With the Bulls and Stormers having competed in the United Rugby Championship final, Nienaber called up Roos, Fourie, Warrick Gelant (fullback) who makes a return to the national set-up for the first time since the 2019 Rugby World Cup, Moerat and Marvin Orie (both locks), Steven Kitshoff, Frans Malherbe (both props), Herschel Jantjies (scrumhalf) and Damian Willemse (utility back) from the Cape-based franchise, while Coetzee, Louw, Nortje and Arendse join from the Bulls.

Despite the absence of injured Duane Vermeulen and Frans Steyn, the Boks named a formidable squad

Nienaber’s squad also includes a group of older hands in Eben Etzebeth (Sharks), Lood de Jager (Sale Sharks – both locks), Pieter-Steph du Toit (Toyota Verblitz), Rynardt Elstadt (Tououse), Franco Mostert (Honda Heat – all utility forwards), , Damian de Allende (Munster), Andre Esterhuizen, Jesse Kriel – both centres), Vincent Kock (Sarancens), Trevor Nyakane (Racing 92 – both props), Faf de Klerk (Sale Sharks scrumhalf), Joseph Dweba (Bordeaux hooker), Elton Jantjies (NTT Docomo Red Hurricanes), Handre Pollard (Montpellier – both flyhalves), Cheslin Kolbe (Toulon), Willie le Roux (Toyota Verblitz – both fullbacks), Malcolm Marx (Kebota Spears hooker), and Jasper Wiese (Leicester – No 8).

Johan Goosen (flyhalf) – who joined Cobus Reinach in the opening week – will also remain with the squad until of the conclusion of the camp to continue his rehabilitation, with Reinach set to remain with the group.

“Building squad depth is one of the key areas for us, and it is great to see the number of young players who have put up their hands this season, and we are delighted to invite them to the national squad environment,” said Nienaber.

“It is also good to welcome back some of the experienced players who have been part of our structures for a few years now, and I’m confident they will slot back into set-up with ease.

“We obviously have to wait a little longer for some players to be released from their club commitments, but we are pleased to be able to announce the squad with exactly three weeks to go before our opening Test against Wales.”