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Brits happy to support Springboks in any capacity

Veteran hooker Schalk Brits says he is more than happy to support the Springboks in whatever capacity he finds himself in ahead of the World Cup in Japan next year.

FILE: Springbok hooker Schalk Brits (left) during training at the Cape Town Stadium on 19 June 2018. Picture: Bertram Malgas/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Veteran hooker Schalk Brits says he is more than happy to support the Springboks in whatever capacity he finds himself in ahead of the World Cup in Japan next year.

Brits, now 37-years-old, was convinced by Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus to return to the playing field after he had announced his retirement from professional rugby after a successful tenure with Saracens in England.

Erasmus’s selection of Brits for his first series as Bok coach for the June internationals against England came as a surprise to many Bok supporters. Brits says that the arrangement was initially for a short period, but Erasmus was keen on keeping the skillful hooker in the mix to play a mentoring role for the younger members of the squad.

“The call was unexpected, I was sipping cocktails with the Mrs. in Ibiza, celebrating a career and the sacrifices my family made for me to go to the UK. To be back in the Springbok mix with great players and guys with an attitude of just want to grow was fantastic.

“My role wasn’t just to mentor the hookers but the whole team. I want to see the team reach their potential and if I can help in any small way that is enough for me.”

Brits will, however, push for Springbok World Cup selection next year in the colours of the Blue Bulls in Super Rugby, something the man who played 52 times for the Stormers in Cape Town thought would never happen.

“Let me be honest, I never thought I’d play for the Bulls. I was a Stormer through and through. But meeting the Bulls guys in the Bok camp and speaking to them made me so excited. I am meeting with Pote Human and the Bulls coaching staff soon and I’m just looking forward to adding value to the Bulls.”

Game time with the Bulls will undoubtedly serve Brits’ chances of earning selection for the Springboks’ condensed Rugby Championship campaign next year and he will look to add to his 11 Test caps for South Africa.

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