Jake White has reiterated his faith in Pat Lambie and Frans Steyn as a 10-12 combination as Super Rugby looms large on the horizon.
The Cell C Sharks Director of Rugby Jake White nailed his colours to the mast in supporting the Springbok pair to forge a spectacular flyhalf-centre combination.
“Pat Lambie will play at flyhalf for 80 minutes of every game,” White told the Sharksrugby website, “and Frans Steyn will play 12 for me. It gives Pat Lambie a massive amount of confidence having Frans play beside him.”
White was bullish with his comments saying that he will do what's best for the Sharks in creating a combination that could become the best in the competition.
“We will play what’s important for the Sharks. Not that we won’t work together with anybody, but at the same time we have shareholders and stakeholders and supporters, and along with us as a group, there are expectations, we need to be true to them.
“We have a philosophy about how we want to play and if it means those two play next to each other for the whole season, then we will make them the best 10-12 combination in Super Rugby.”
White also feels that he is uniquely placed to get the best out of the Frans Steyn who suffered a tricky time with form and injury in 2013. As Springbok coach he handed Steyn his debut as a 19-year-old and went on to win the Rugby World Cup in France with Steyn playing a vital role at inside centre.
“I’ve known what makes Frans tick, since he was a schoolboy at Grey College; I know how he thinks,” White said.
“His whole life has changed, he has a child now, his value system has changed, and I’m sure that will have an impact on the way he plays and prepares.
“Last year he went through three coaches before the year ended. He likes stability, he likes to be guided without force. He is a prodigy, a sensational player, a freak. He was spoken about as the guy who could change rugby. That’s what’s so exciting.
"I sat him down and told him I really need him to show everyone what I think he can do. That’s important, because when he’s next to Pat, you will see a much better Pat Lambie. He’s still a work in progress. He came back here and had a knee op, so he’s not 100% yet, but everyone knows what his 80% is and that’s better than most people when they’re 100%”