Lions coach backs calls for stronger cup squads

The Times (South Africa) - - Sport - By LIAM DEL CARME

● Calls for match-day squads in the Cur­rie Cup to be in­creased from 22 to 23 play­ers are in­ten­si­fy­ing af­ter Golden Lions coach Swys de Bruin added his voice to the de­bate yes­ter­day.

Western Prov­ince coach John Dob­son voiced con­cerns at SA Rugby’s pol­icy to have one less player in match-day squads than the pre­scribed num­ber set by World Rugby, the sport’s gov­ern­ing body.

“I’m with Dobbo 100%. I agree. It should be the same as Su­per Rugby.

“It should be a safety fac­tor. It is just much bet­ter for the team in the event of in­juries,” said De Bruin.

Cur­rie Cup coaches can se­lect only seven in­stead of eight sub­sti­tutes, which af­fects the num­ber of front rankers they can ear­mark for the bench.

World Rugby wants teams to have a full com­ple­ment of front rankers on the bench, but Cur­rie Cup coaches of­ten se­lect just one prop as they strug­gle to plug holes else-

“I'm with Dobbo 100%. I agree. It should be the same as Su­per Rugby”

SWYS DE BRUIN Golden Lions coach

where among their re­serves.

“It will be great if we can get 23-man squads,” re­minded Lions for­wards con­sul­tant Vic­tor Mat­field.

De Bruin added that the change pro­foundly af­fected how coaches as­sem­bled their teams.

“You will box to­tally dif­fer­ently in your se­lec­tions,” he said.

De Bruin has in­cluded full fron­trow cover on the bench for the match against the Blue Bulls at El­lis Park to­mor­row.

It in­cludes fit-again Dy­lan Smith, who sus­tained a se­ri­ous shoul­der in­jury in Buenos Aires dur­ing the Su­per Rugby cam­paign.

Lock An­dries Fer­reira re­turns af­ter the birth of his daugh­ter last week.

In a change on the bench, Shaun Reynolds comes in for Branco du Preez, who re­joins the Bl­itzbokke.

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