Just two years after playing Craven Week rugby for Eastern Province, Curwin Bosch has been handed a gilt-edged opportunity to prove he belongs on the big stage.
The 20-year-old, who displayed maturity beyond his years playing for the Sharks in Super Rugby, now faces a Springbok debut against Argentina at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Saturday.
When he named his team, Bok coach Allister Coetzee showered praise on the back-division star who was born in Alexandria, about 100km northeast of Port Elizabeth.
Coetzee said Bosch had slotted well into the Springbok environment during his almost two-week stay with the squad.
"Curwin is a young player with huge potential and a bright future. He showed in the very tough Super Rugby competition that he is a skilful player and a prolific goalkicker.…
"I think first and foremost, it is the coach’s responsibility to manage him properly," he said.
"Having watched him at a camp, he is quite mature for a 20-year-old. We can see there is a sense of confidence and we need to unlock that more in order to give direction."
Coetzee stressed the importance of Bosch being able to cover fullback and flyhalf.
"We had that luxury with Frans Steyn as the back-up No10 and also the goalkicker. Therefore, a player like Curwin is an ideal selection on the bench. It is a must. Who else should we have selected?"
"In June, [we had] only one flyhalf standing. [Patrick] Lambie and Handre Pollard were out injured. Now we have three with Elton Jantjies back again and Pollard back in the mix … probably in a crisis situation, I would have looked at selecting him."
"But there is another two weeks for Pollard to even condition better. His sharpness is getting back, so in two weeks … he will be ready for selection."