Coach Nick Mallett believes his 23-man World XV squad will put the Boks to the test at Newlands on Saturday. Photo: Duif du Toit

Cape Town – Former Sharks player Alister Hargreaves and All Black Hosea Gear arrive at Cape Town International Airport on Tuesday, as part of coach Nick Mallett’s 23-man World XV squad.

Mallett, at the Table Bay Hotel on Tuesday, said it would be a competitive game for the Boks at Newlands on Saturday.

Mallett, a former Springbok and Italy coach, was addressing journalists at the Table Bay Hotel.

“This is a good team. We are trying to make it a competitive game for the Boks.”

Questioned on Victor Matfield, the interim Bok captain, Mallett said it would be a challenge for him.

“At age 37 it is a big challenge. He keeps himself fit and there is a lot of leadership in that team.”

Australian player James O’Connor said he loved playing against the best teams in the world. “The world international field is where you want to be.

“Kiwis, South Africans and all these guys are getting together.

“It is a privilege to play.”

Juandré Kruger, a former Bulls and Bok player who now plays for French club Racing Metro 92, said it felt wonderful to be in Cape Town, and he was “looking forward to the match”.

He said he was enjoying playing for Racing Metro 92, and learning a great deal.

“I’m speaking French too.”

Asked whether he would consider returning to play for the Boks, he said it was too early to make such a decision.

“I have a two-year contract left. South Africa is a special place and it’s difficult to make that decision.

“I still have a few years of rugby left and it depends on where the coach wants you.” – The Argus