Sir Ian McGeechan has called for a seventh team to be added to the Six Nations in the near future.
Although there has been a lot of fans calling for relegation to be introduced to the competition, McGeechan would rather add the world champions and keep the current closed shop format.
“The obvious next step is for some sort of integrated season which sees the Springboks join the Six Nations to make it the Seven Nations,” wrote McGeechan.
“Financially it is in the interests of everyone, and it will also be beneficial in terms of raising standards for England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and Italy.
“The example of the British and Irish Lions shows it also has the potential to be embraced by supporters as well, with fans travelling down to South Africa for a long weekend.
“I have to admit that I’m biased and that it’s a prospect which excites me. I love South African rugby, and think it brings so much to the game. I’d love to see those links grow stronger still, although I can imagine it’s not a prospect that will be greeted enthusiastically in Auckland and Sydney.”
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No room for Jonny Wilkinson in Sir Ian McGeechan’s dream rugby XV
Fullback: JPR Williams (Wales) – “Not a staggeringly original choice, I’ll admit. But to my mind the only one. If I’m going to be picking a dream XV over the next few days then I want JPR at the back. No question.”
Left-wing: Jonah Lomu (New Zealand) – “Illness and injury ultimately slowed him down. But his performances at the 1995 World Cup, just as the game was turning professional, will never be forgotten. The game needed a superstar, and it got one in Lomu. He was brilliant for rugby.”
Right-wing: John Kirwan (New Zealand) – “He had an all round game; he could carry the ball through heavy traffic, he could offload, he was like an extra back-rower at times. Plus, he had natural effortless pace. He ended up scoring 35 tries for the All Blacks and was instrumental as they went through their unbeaten spell of games between 1987 and 1990.”
Outside-centre: Brian O’Driscoll (Ireland) – “His ability to get back on his feet after tackling to compete for the ball was extraordinary, and ensured he always had an impact on the game, whatever type of game it was. He was such a natural talent.”
Inside-centre: Philippe Sella (France) – “Sella and O’Driscoll were powerful men. They could stop a forward in his tracks. I think as a pair they would dominate any midfield and I like the thought of them together.”