'Fight for green and gold jersey'

New Springbok coach Peter de Villiers believes that no World Cup winning Springbok is assured of his place in his team.

New Springbok coach Peter de Villiers believes that no World Cup winning Springbok is assured of his place in his team.

And the chilling message for those who are playing overseas is that they will be considered but will have to prove themselves more than local players.

The new coach, who was appointed as the first black Springbok coach last Wednesday, revealed this in the Afrikaans tabloid Sondag, for whom he previously was a columnist.

De Villiers told the newspaper that he believed no player had a destined place in the squad, and that each player would have to prove themselves on the field to be part of the national team.

De Villiers said he had no plans to keep the same core group of players through the next few years if they didn't warrant their places.

"No player is assured of their place in the squad," he told Sondag.

" I want it to be that every time a player pulls a green and gold jersey over his head, it has to be a deserved selection. There has to be passion and pride. I am not emotionally tied to any player in this country and if players give their best, then they will stay in the team."

With much uncertainty over his selection policies, De Villiers tried to reassure players that they do not have to worry about him turning the national team into a political pawn for transformation.

"Players never have to fear about what is happening," he added.

De Villiers did, however, deliver a message to the Springbok players based at European clubs, saying they would have to prove themselves more than local players. - Sapa

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