S African selection surprises

Click to follow
Garry Pagel, a loose-head prop who was banned for the season in 1993 for stamping on the face of the then French captain, Jean-Franois Tordo, during a tour match has been included in the 26-man South African World Cup squad announced yesterday.

Pagel is one of four uncapped players: the others, all forwards, are Robbie Brink, Marius Hurter and Krynauw Otto.

Pagel probably owes his selection to a fine performance for Western Province against a shadow Springbok side on Saturday. He is also able to operate effectively on either side of the scrum.

Brink was preferred as a back-row selection to his Western Province captain, Tiaan Strauss, an experienced international.

Pagel and Hurter have been selected ahead of the Western Province tight- head Tommie Laubscher, who played against Wales and Scotland last year, while Northern Transvaal's Otto has been on two tours.

Transvaal provide both hookers in James Dalton and Chris Rossouw, while Northern Transvaal's captain, Adriaan Richter, has forced his way into the five-man back-row group with outstanding recent form.

The selections among the backs are much as expected.

Squad, Sporting Digest, page 32