International stars from around the world, Wallabies Matt Giteau, James O’Connor, Drew Mitchell and All Blacks Hosea Gear, Carl Hayman, Andrew Hore and Jimmy Cowan are all included in the Samsung World XV’s 23-man squad to play South Africa at DHL Newlands on Saturday 7 June. Joining them will be France’s French Top 14 highest point’s scorer Francois Trinh-Duc and back row forward Alexandre Lapandry. Five players from Toulon’s double winning European Cup and French Top 14 side will also feature in the squad, including Steffon Armitage from England, who was recently voted European player of the year.
The squad has 621 international caps to their name from nine countries; Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, France, England, Ireland, Samoa, Tonga, and Georgia giving a truly global feel to the squad. Taking charge of the squad’s preparations will be former player, National Springbok and Italy coach Nick Mallett, assisted by Alan Solomons. Nick Mallett commented, “As well as assigning an international flavour to the Samsung World XV squad, it was also decided by the coaching and management team, to give both a number of international and on form non-international South African club players, currently excelling overseas and nationally, the opportunity to play in the Test Arena on their beloved home soil against the Springboks. These Internationals include Alistair Hargreaves (Saracens), Juandré Kruger (Racing Metro), Wynand Olivier (Montpellier). And non-Internationals Rory Kockott (Castres), Craig Burden (Toulon), Schalk Ferreira (Toulouse) and the Lions young prop Julian Redelinghuys.”