CAPE TOWN – Damian Willemse’s World Cup debut against Canada is what excites me the most about a match the Springboks will win easily today.
Canada, awful against Italy, were brave against the All Blacks, but still conceded 63 points. They also failed to score a point against the defending champions.
I am expecting Willemse to cause havoc from fullback. Canada won’t have an answer to his attacking flair and it is this kind of X-factor that could see Willemse leapfrog Elton Jantjies when it comes to finalising the Boks’ matchday squad for their quarter-final.
Willemse offers greater versatility in being able to play at fullback, flyhalf and inside centre. Flyhalf remains his best position, but he is no less dangerous when playing at fullback.
Willemse was unfortunate to miss out on the original World Cup selection because of a lengthy injury lay-off. Bok coach Rassie Erasmus, at the time, said Willemse would be one of the first backline players put on the official standby list.