Fourie rules out Springboks return
April 19, 2012
Jaque Fourie will remain in Japan rather than turning out for South Africa © Getty Images
Springboks centre Jaque Fourie has ruled out a return to Test rugby for the time being.
The 69-cap outside centre is currently turning out for the Kobe Steel Kobelco Steelers in Japan and has made the decision to remain fully committed to his club side instead of turning out for the Boks against England this summer.
"In light of recent speculation linking me with a return to international rugby with the Springboks I would like to clarify my position," Fourie said. "I have immense pride and amazing memories of my time as a Springbok representing South Africa.
"After the World Cup I decided to a pursue a new chapter in my rugby life and I want to give the same commitment I gave the Boks to my new team Kobe Steel Kobelco Steelers, therefore I will not be making myself available for Springbok selection whilst contracted to Kobe.
"South Africa has some incredibly talented centres at their disposal and it is their time now."
South Africa coach Heyneke Meyer has backed the centre's decision and has also claimed he is hopeful that Fourie will be back in the international reckoning before the next World Cup. Meyer, who has just unveiled his second planning squad, has also announced that he will name his new captain prior to the first Test with England.
"There've been a lot of injuries - guys like Schalk Burger, Juan Smith and Jean de Villiers are all out of action - while there's been speculation about Victor Matfield playing again," Meyer said. "I'll announce the captain the week before the first England Test and he'll be captain only for those three Tests."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
As Ray McLoughlin prepares to celebrate his 75th birthday, Huw Richards pays tribute to the man and the selectors who had the wisdom to bring him into the Ireland fold
John Taylor argues the world's best XVs players must be given a chance to play in the Olympics to increase the appeal of the game
The All Blacks' form is not a peaking issue, but Hansen must threaten to wield his axe, to demand improvement, Craig Dowd writes
"It has been the World Cup that smashed down the gender barriers of the sport." Tom Hamilton looks back at a remarkable tournament