PRETORIA – Springbok scrumhalf Embrose Papier not only proved that he is up to playing Test rugby with his polished performance against Scotland, but has also leapfrogged Ivan van Zyl to become second choice after Faf de Klerk.
While Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus may have had his hand forced in selecting Papier, it resulted in a win-win scenario for both.
Having been handed his first Test cap in June against Wales in Washington, Papier has been given crumbs when it comes to game time and has spent most of his time with the Springboks sitting on the bench.
In fact, there have been fears that Papier’s inactivity was only serving to hamper his obvious talents. But Papier proved that class is permanent and he has plenty of it with a polished and measured performance in his first start for the Springboks.
So effective was Papier that Erasmus kept him on the field for almost the entire match with Van Zyl coming on in the last few minutes.