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Springboks to consider Steyn


Francois Steyn

Francois Steyn

Francois Steyn

South Africa will mull over making changes to their backline to face Wales on Saturday after Francois Steyn joined up with the Springbok squad on Monday.

Coach Peter de Villiers will name his team on Tuesday and, with centres Wynand Olivier, Jaque Fourie and Juan de Jongh among an injury list that stretches to 13 players, he may opt to include the Racing Metro back in midfield.

Steyn, a World Cup winner with the Springboks in 2007, missed the 23-21 win over Ireland in Dublin as Racing were not obliged to release the 23-year-old with the Test falling outside the International Rugby Board's designated window.

Zane Kirchner, normally a full-back, filled the midfield void in Dublin but assistant coach Dick Muir hinted that Steyn may get the call for Saturday's Millennium Stadium contest.

"We miss him when he is not with us," said Muir. "He covers a number of positions and gives us lots of options in selection, especially with so many centres currently unavailable through injury.

"He can play 10, 12 or 15 and like Jean de Villiers is pretty flexible. I could see them playing together in the centres but we'll have to weigh up all our options in selection.

"I thought Zane slotted in well there, it's one of the more difficult positions defensively and he was not tested too much in that area, but we were happy with his contribution."

Jean de Villiers is an injury concern for South Africa as he missed training on Monday with the groin injury that limited him to 60 minutes of action at the Aviva Stadium, but team doctor Craig Roberts is confident the former Munster three-quarter will be fit to train on Tuesday.

"It is an acute muscle strain - not a tear - and it's just a bit sore," said Roberts. "We have to be clever in how we manage him and he should be fine to train."