Springboks turn to Venter for defence

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    03 Apr 2017     Getty Images

South Africa will host France for their June internationals ahead of the Investec Rugby Championship later in the year.

A member of the World Cup-winning Springboks side at the 1995 tournament, Venter, a doctor, has coached in South Africa, England and Italy.

Beleaguered Springboks coach Allister Coetzee, who was putting his international squad through their second camp of the year at Stellenbosch over the weekend, said he was delighted to be able to call on Venter, who was also at the camp.

"We know each other well since our time together at the Stormers, and we share the same values. He will be responsible for defence and 'exit' strategies," he said.

"Brendan is passionate about Springbok rugby, and wants to help turn things around. He was part of my plans in 2016 already but, unfortunately, he was not available because of commitments elsewhere," he said.

A delay in the confirmation of his appointment was left because of his involvement in Italy's Six Nations campaign, however, it had no impact or interruption on their background planning, Coetzee said.

Venter coached initially with the Stormers in 2008 before joining Saracens in 2009 and helping to lead them to the 2010 Premiership final.

In 2012 he was an assistant coach with the Junior Springboks and in 2013 was coach of the Sharks in the Currie Cup. He joined London Irish as technical director in 2016 before joining Italy as defence coach for the Six Nations.

Venter replaces JP Ferreira who was one of several defence coaches during last year's run of eight losses in 12 Tests by South Africa.