Former Springbok and Bulls captain Victor Matfield could come out of retirement, but only if Heyneke Meyer is unveiled as the new Springbok coach on Friday, the Cape Times newspaper reported on Thursday.
Matfield retired at the end of last year after an illustrious career with the Springboks and Bulls but said he would consider a return to the field if Meyer called on him to do so.
“Everyone knows what I think about Heyneke but we must wait until Friday before we talk about it,” the former lock told the newspaper.
“Let’s wait and see what happens, we will see, we will talk. Everything has consequences. Playing, I don’t know … but we will see. It depends if he wants me. I really don’t know, it is difficult to say,” Matfield said.
Matfield (34) is certain to feature in Meyer’s management structure in the Springbok team if he is not asked to return as a player — probably as a technical adviser or a lineout consultant, a role Matfield currently holds at the Bulls.
Matfield, who is the most capped Springbok with 110 caps, captained the Bulls to a Super 14 and Currie Cup title under Meyer’s mentorship.
A return to rugby by Matfield is likely to lure the likes of Fourie du Preez, Bakkies Botha and Gurthro Steenkamp back into the national team after their departure overseas.
If Matfield is to return under Meyer, it would probably be for a season or two just for Meyer to get to grips with the structure at national level and it would also solve the next big dilemma of who the next Springbok captain will be.
The Blue Bulls Company said on Wednesday that the South African Rugby Union had approached it for the services Meyer, the club’s executive for rugby.
Talks between the two parties were took place in Cape Town on Wednesday. — Sapa