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Bakkies calls it a day

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Springboks on 24 Nov 2014 at 10:21
Tagged with : , , ,

The Springboks will need to make do without all of their foreign-based players for this weekend’s test match against Wales, but in the case of one stalwart, Bakkies Botha, that withdrawal will be more than a temporary measure.

Botha took the opportunity to announce his retirement from the international game in the wake of the side’s 22-6 victory over Italy at the weekend, in which he did not feature. His cameo against England off the bench the week before was thus the big lock’s 85th and final test appearance for his country.

With many of the current crop of “old Boks”, hanging in grimly for one last World Cup campaign, Botha’s motivation seems to have been different. He spoke of his frustration at being forced into what he considered a premature departure from the test arena following an Achilles injury sustained at the 2011 Rugby World Cup. His subsequent renaissance as a Toulon player led to a surprise recall last year and the time spent on the field since has allowed Botha, as he puts it, to leave the test arena on his own terms, which he feels he has now done.

He intends to see out the European season with Toulon, before hopefully playing Currie Cup rugby in 2015 as his last campaign. Botha will retire as one of the most decorated players the sport has ever seen, having won Super Rugby, the Tri-Nations, the Heineken Cup, the Currie Cup and the French domestic league title, in addition to the World Cup.


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