Port Elizabeth – Danie Craven said you pick your tighthead prop first and then your tighthead reserve before you start picking the rest of a rugby team.
So, if Heyneke Meyer subscribes to Craven’s theory, Jannie du Plessis’ name is the first one on the Springbok team sheet. But who is the reserve tighthead?
Du Plessis was far from his best last year, but many challengers for his Bok No 3 jersey have fallen by the wayside. Frans Malherbe is still injured, Pat Cilliers was injured but has come back strongly in recent months, while Lourens Adriaanse is Du Plessis’ understudy at the Sharks.
And the man who is the reserve Bok tighthead is Coenie Oosthuizen, who will be starting at loosehead prop in Saturday’s Test against Scotland at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
Oosthuizen has seldom convinced observers that he is a proper tighthead, as he made his name as a brilliant loosehead.