HomeSportRugbyTreu adds speed, experience to his squad

Treu adds speed, experience to his squad

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JOHANNESBURG — It may not be a squad of superstars, but Springbok Sevens coach Paul Treu can announce a squad of virtual all-sorts to mould into a World Cup-winning rugby team.

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Springbok 15s coach Heyneke Meyer may have let the cat out of the bag on the big name in the squad — Sharks No 8 Ryan Kankowski — but Treu has assembled a few wild cards in his squad at Stellenbosch to start the slog towards Moscow at the end of June.

Cheetahs winger Rayno Benjamin, Blue Bulls speedster Sampie Mastriet, IRB Junior Player of the Year nominee Shaun Adendorff and forgotten Blitzbok star Stefan Basson — who has just returned from club rugby in Italy — will all form part of an extended squad that will test their mettle at the Rome Sevens before the final World Cup squad for Moscow is announced.

Also up for selection is Sibusiso Sithole, who was the hero in the Edinburgh win two years ago but was plucked back by the Sharks and then received almost no game time at the union.

But just because Treu has named them in the extended squad, does not mean they are a shoo-in for World Cup selection and being the coach he is, Treu has set some high standards for the 15s players to adapt to if they are to make the grade.

With injuries ruling out Frankie Horne and Paul Delport from World Cup selection, and former captain Kyle Brown in a race against time, Treu also has to contend with injuries to Stevie Hunt, Branco du Preez, Cecil Afrika and Stephan Dippenaar, which has hampered preparations thus far.

On top of this, he has given up two players to the SA under-20s — Seabelo Senatla and Justin Geduld — both of whom are expected to fly straight from France to Moscow to join the team when they finish their IRB Junior World Cup duties.

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