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Ken Borland



Alignment camps and no bubbles means Nienaber in no rush and will name squad after URC 0

Posted on July 04, 2022 by Ken

The success of the alignment camps and the likelihood that there will not be any Covid bubbles to negotiate means Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber is in no rush to name his squad for the incoming series against Wales in July and will wait until the URC plays itself out.

Nienaber, speaking at SA Rugby’s announcement of a three-year initiative with Betway called Next Phase, which will develop the women’s game through growing coaching capacity, said his squad has not even been chosen yet. Wales announced their touring group on May 18.

“I’ll announce the squad only after the players have completed their commitments with their franchises,” Nienaber said in Rosebank on Thursday. “They don’t need to hear from the national coach now, just their franchise coaches.

“We haven’t yet had our selection meeting, although there is a certain group that we are looking at. We know who we’re looking at, we’ve had alignment camps, but we’ll let the teams play their URC playoffs first.

“The Welsh teams are already all out of the URC, so Wales can already be in camp, but it’s going to be more staggered for us, with players joining us as their teams fall out. The overseas players are in the same position.

“Last year it was very tough to plan, almost impossible, you’d have 10 different scenarios and see what pans out. This year looks like normal and hopefully there won’t be any bubbles to contend with,” Nienaber said.

While only a handful of players from the UK tour last November will be nervous about the beul’s axe hanging over their heads, Nienaber said he was heartened by the performances of the South African teams in the United Rugby Championship.

“I was encouraged by all four teams, all of them have played excellent rugby. Even the Lions did well with their comeback, they had a great winning streak here.”

Nienaber, who helped out with the coaching of the Springbok women’s team in 2014/15, said Next Phase came from an epiphany that their approach was wrong back then.

“Women’s rugby is on another development level and we probably made a mistake trying to foist a men’s programme on them back in 2014/15. The basics are not necessarily there with the girls because they start playing so late.

“You need to build the basics and then put the next layer in, which is adding the creative plans. I became a better coach through my involvement with them,” Nienaber said.

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    John 15:16 – “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.”

    Our Christian experience begins when the Holy Spirit starts working in our imperfect lives. An inexplicable restlessness and a feeling that nothing can give you the satisfaction you yearn for, could be the Spirit working in you.

    Even when God calls you and chooses you to serve him, there may be inner conflict and confusion because you are not always willing to do what God is asking of you.

    But this inner struggle is part of spiritual life … Commit yourself to God and open yourself to the inflowing of the Holy Spirit.

    It is by great grace that you were chosen by God to serve him and to live to the honour and glory of his name. Surrender unconditionally to the Lord and you will discover that your life gains new meaning and purpose.



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