Africa-Press – South-Africa. Bulls director of rugby Jake White believes his captain Marcell Coetzee only needs to remain patient in order to get the Springbok call-up his performances warrant.
Coetzee was imperious again in the Bulls’ 29-24 win over Munster at Loftus on Saturday, adding to growing calls for the No 6 to be included in Jacques Nienaber’s next Springbok team.
Coetzee, who can cover all three back-row positions, failed to make the cut on numerous occasions last year when the Boks lost Duane Vermeulen for the British & Irish Lions series as well as when Pieter-Steph du Toit got injured in that series and missed the rest of the year.
While injuries have often curtailed the former Ulster and Sharks forward, he has been in the best nick of his career since his Sharks heydays.
The 30-year-old last featured for the green and gold against Argentina at Loftus in August 2019, just before missing out on that year’s Rugby World Cup through injury.
“He was outstanding on Saturday again, wasn’t he?” White remarked last Saturday.
“His time will come. I’ve said to him his time would come.
“There’s a lot of rugby still to be played and the only way you’re going to make it is if you keep banging the door down like he does every week and then the door will open.”
Coetzee carried with authority and neutralised his compatriot Chris Cloete at the breakdown against Munster.
He also offloaded wondrously for wing Madosh Tambwe for the Bulls’ first score of the afternoon.
Tambwe also put in a pleasing performance that earned him plaudits all around.
He might have had more than one try after skinning his opposite number Calvin Nash and finished brilliantly, only for referee Ben Whitehouse to chalk the try off for an infringement in the Bulls build-up.
However, White was pleased with his team’s attacking impetus in the match, although they had to survive Munster pressure in the second half after losing Bismarck du Plessis to a red card.
“You don’t really get your wish when you don’t finish those things off,” he said.
“But I must say, I’m sure anyone who watched that game saw it was quite an exciting game of rugby.
“There were times when I thought we played really well. We didn’t go into mauling or go into our shells.
“We were probably a little conservative when we got into the 22 and we probably need to look at stretching the defence a little.
“But I was pretty happy with the way we played, the shape of the game, and the intensity.
“And when you get a Man-of-the-Match (Tambwe) on the wing for a Bulls team against Munster, you’ve got to be doing something right.”