Former Blitzbok and Western Province outside back Cheslin Kolbe, currently playing in France, has earned a surprise call up to the Springbok squad ahead of their Australasian trip.
Kolbe will be the only uncapped Springbok player in the squad, heading into their tests against Australia and New Zealand in Brisbane and Wellington on the 8th and 15th of September respectively.
The versatile outside back is among 5 other players called up by Erasmus to the touring squad. These players include Schalk Brits (hooker), Sikhumbuzo Notshe (loose forward), Ross Cronje (scrumhalf) and Jesse Kriel and Damian de Allende (centres).
Erasmus believes the players called up add some necessary experience as well as allowing the Springboks to continue building squad depth ahead of the 2019 World Cup.
De Allende returns from Injury while Ross Cronje comes in a straight swap for Ivan Van Zyl who will return to play Currie Cup.
Of Kolbe Ersamus said, “Cheslin has certainly grabbed his opportunities for his French club and he has earned his spot in the squad. He is in good form and we are delighted have him in the group.”
He went on to explain, “Damian was close to full fitness during our recent training camp, while Ross, Jesse and Notshe got some valuable game time while playing for their provinces in the Currie Cup last weekend.”
De Allende and Wilco Louw have been released to feature in the Currie Cup for Western Province on Friday evening to subsequently link up with the Bok squad on the Saturday for departure,
Other players from the squad released to play Currie Cup include Ivan Van Zyl, Lwazi Mvovo, Lionel Mapoe, Marvin Orie and Akker van der Merwe.
Erasmus explained, “We would like to ensure these players remain match fit and the Currie Cup is the ideal place for them to ensure they don’t get rusty, which is why we decided it would be in their best interest to return to their provinces so that they can be considered for selection.”
Springbok Squad for Australasian leg
Schalk Brits (Hooker, Unattached, 11, 5 – 1t)
Pieter-Steph du Toit (Lock / loose forward, Western Province, 38, 20 – 4t)
Thomas du Toit (Prop, Sharks, 5, 0)
Eben Etzebeth (Lock, Western Province, 69, 15 – 3t)
Steven Kitshoff (Prop, Western Province, 29, 5 – 1t)
Siya Kolisi (captain – Loose forward, Western Province, 33, 25 – 5t)
Francois Louw (Loose forward, Bath, 59, 45 – 9t)
Wilco Louw (Prop, Western Province, 8, 0)
Frans Malherbe (Prop, Western Province, 21, 0)
Malcolm Marx (Hooker, Golden Lions, 16, 15 – 3t)
Bongi Mbonambi (Hooker, Western Province, 18, 5 – 1t)
Franco Mostert (Lock, Gloucester, 22, 5 – 1t)
Tendai Mtawarira (Prop, Sharks, 103, 10 – 2t)
Sikhumbuzo Notshe (Loose forward, Western Province, 4, 0)
RG Snyman (Lock, Bulls/Honda Heat, 4, 0)
Marco van Staden (Loose forward, Blue Bulls, 1, 0)
Warren Whiteley (No 8, Golden Lions, 19, 15 – 3t)
Lukhanyo Am (Centre, Sharks, 5, 5 – 1t)
Ross Cronjé (Scrumhalf, Golden Lions, 10, 10 – 2t)
Damian de Allende (Centre, Western Province, 30, 15 – 3t)
Faf de Klerk (Scrumhalf, Sale Sharks, 16 , 10 – 2t)
Aphiwe Dyantyi (Wing, Golden Lions, 5, 15 – 3t)
André Esterhuizen (Centre, Sharks/Sanix Blues, 4, 0)
Elton Jantjies (Flyhalf, Golden Lions, 26, 215 – 2t, 41c, 41p)
Cheslin Kolbe (Outside back, Toulouse, 0, 0)
Jesse Kriel (Centre, Blue Bulls, 32, 45 – 9t)
Willie le Roux (Fullback, Wasps, 46, 55 – 11t)
Makazole Mapimpi (Wing, Sharks, 3, 15 – 3t)
Embrose Papier (Scrumhalf, Blue Bulls, 3, 0)
Handré Pollard (Flyhalf, Blue Bulls, 31, 254 – 3t, 46c, 46p, 3d)
Damian Willemse (Flyhalf, Western Province, 2, 0)