Grewcock and Krige on course for Perth collision in World Cup

Clive Woodward would not have wanted it this way, given the depth of his disgust at South Africa's ultra-violent approach to last November's Test match with England at Twickenham, but for 24 hours, the two countries were at one in glossing over the physical excesses of their most troublesome forwards. Woodward, the England coach, named Danny Grewcock of Bath in a 37-man party for next month's tour of New Zealand and Australia, while Rudi Straeuli, his Springbok counterpart, confirmed Corne Krige as his captain for this autumn's World Cup.

Given that Grewcock had recently been dismissed for punching an international colleague, Lawrence Dallaglio, during the Parker Pen Challenge Cup final, and that Krige was still struggling to live down a reputation for calculated thuggery earned during his ill-fated appearance in London before Christmas, neither decision would have been welcomed by those who refuse to buy the argument that rugby is inherently a violent game. Woodward, at least, understood the delicacy of his position, hence his knowing laugh as he described Grewcock's record as "exemplary".

Yesterday, the England coach switched horses and decided to leave his Lions lock at home for the duration of the summer tour, rather than fly him all the way the New Zealand for a few training sessions. Woodward had expected Grewcock, banned for two weeks by a European Rugby Cup disciplinary committee, to appeal against his suspension. When the player and his club decided an appeal was more trouble than it was worth, he opted to cut the cord and take Tom Palmer, the gifted young Leeds second row, instead.

Straeuli, meanwhile, is unlikely to countenance any similar about-turn. Krige, currently recovering from a knee injury that will prevent him facing Scotland in a two-Test series next month, has been officially annointed as his country's leader, and if fit come October, he will renew hostilities with England in a highly significant World Cup pool match in Perth. Grewcock may well be there too, in which case the crowd will expect to be issued with hard hats.

It may well be that Palmer, capped as a replacement against the United States almost two years ago, will be asked to confront the New Zealand Maoris in Taranaki on 9 June - a match that has "nightmare" written all over it. It will certainly amount to a learning experience for the 24-year-old line-out specialist, given the presence of Greg Feek, Dan Braid, Troy Flavell and Taine Randell in the Maori pack. Palmer could then find himself on a plane to Vancouver, where England's shadow side are to play Canada and the United States in the inaugural Churchill Cup tournament. If that is the way of it, the Yorkshireman will join up with Alex Codling, the Saracens-bound Harlequin, who was called into the second-string yesterday.

Having pre-selected Grewcock for World Cup duty - "All things being equal, Danny will definitely be involved," he said this week - Woodward will expect him to remain somewhere near peak fitness over the next seven weeks, in preparation for a warm-weather training slog at the end of July. Grewcock will then play at least one, probably two, of the warm-up matches against Wales and France before taking his place in the 30-man elite party bound for Perth.

Meanwhile, Gloucester have named James Simpson-Daniel, their one serious injury doubt, in their 22 for this weekend's Zurich Premiership final with Wasps at Twickenham. The England wing is likely to form a potent back-three partnership with Thinus Delport, the former Springbok full-back, and Marcel Garvey.

News
peoplePair enliven the Emirates bore-draw
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark episode 8, review
News
Britain's opposition Labour Party leader Ed Miliband (R) and Boris Johnson, mayor of London, talk on the Andrew Marr show in London April 26
General electionAndrew Marr forced to intervene as Boris and Miliband clash on TV
Arts and Entertainment
Ramsay Bolton in Game of Thrones
tvSeries 5, Episode 3 review
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

Aviation history is littered with grand failures

But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

Fortress Europe?

Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

Never mind what you're wearing

It's what you're reclining on that matters
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence