Springboks: Duane Vermeulen left out as eight uncapped players named in 43-man squad

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 Credit: PA Images
Credit: PA Images

Ulster number eight Duane Vermeulen was the surprise omission from South Africa’s squad for the upcoming Test season.

Vermeulen has consistently been seen as the first choice at the base of the ruck, but a number of younger players have produced fine performances over the past year.

Two of those, Evan Roos and Elrigh Louw, have both been included while Marcell Coetzee, who can operate across the back-row, has earned a recall.

There is also no place for Frans Steyn due to injury with Andre Esterhuizen back in the squad following a fine couple of years at Harlequins.

Warrick Gelant is another to return to the Springbok set-up, while Kurt-Lee Arendse has been rewarded for his form at the Bulls.

Young players putting their hands up

“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 head coach Jacques 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.”

Nienaber added: “The players laid a solid foundation for us to build from last week, and we are looking forward to taking things up a notch next week.

“Every training session and gym session will count as we look to get our structures well in place for the season ahead and to meet the standards we have set for ourselves by the time the Castle Lager Incoming Series kicks off.”

South Africa’s 43-man squad

Forwards: Thomas du Toit, Steven Kitshoff, Vincent Koch, Frans Malherbe, Ntuthuko Mchunu, Ox Nche, Trevor Nyakane, Joseph Dweba, Malcolm Marx, Bongi Mbonambi, Lood de Jager, Eben Etzebeth, Salmaan Moerat, Ruan Nortje, Marvin Orie, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Marcell Coetzee, Siya Kolisi, Elrigh Louw, Evan Roos, Kwagga Smith, Jasper Wiese, Rynhardt Elstadt, Deon Fourie, Franco Mostert

Backs: Faf de Klerk, Jaden Hendrikse, Herschel Jantjies, Cobus Reinach, Grant Williams, Elton Jantjies, Handre Pollard, Lukhanyo Am, Damian de Allende, Andre Esterhuizen, Jesse Kriel, Aphelele Fassi, Warrick Gelant, Cheslin Kolbe, Willie le Roux, Makazole Mapimpi, Kurt-Lee Arendse, Damian Willemse

READ MORE: United Rugby Championship: Stormers win at the death in Cape Town to advance to the final

The article Springboks: Duane Vermeulen left out as eight uncapped players named in 43-man squad appeared first on Planetrugby.com.

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