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In years past, this was a position the Cheetahs could make their team selections with their eyes closed. With legends like Juan Smith in particular, giving yeoman service.

Long term injuries and player movements has temporarily thrown the proverbial spanner in the works, resulting in Naka having to recall Hendro Scholtz out of retirement to have a fit flanker in the 2012 Currie Cup.

However the emergence of a few young stars has restored order. Marnus Schoeman has started delivering on the hype anticipated when he was still a junior with the Blue Bulls. Lappies Labuschagne and Justin Downey have grown in their positions, which leaves Naka Drotske spoilt for choice.

 

 

 Loose Forward Contenders:

 

heinrich_brussowHeinrich Wilhelm Brüssow: 

Age: 26 years – 21 July 1986

Vital Statistics: (H) 181 cm (W) 104 kg

“Ratel” as he is sometimes affectionately named was born in Bloemfontein, and is a Grey College old boy. He has represented the Free State at all levels, and has been an integral part of their high paced game plan. He made such an impact, as “fetcher” that he made his Super rugby debut in 2007, aged only 20. He has since racked up 55 Super Rugby caps for the Cheetahs. He made his Bok debut in 2009, vs the British and Irish Lions, and quickly established himself in the team. Since his debut Brüssow has 20 Springbok caps to his name, scoring 1 try. Injuries have disrupted his international career, but he will look to remind Bok coach Heynecke Meyer of his unique skillset in 2013.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2004 – Free State u/18 Craven Week.
  • 2005 – SA u/19 (Free State).
  • 2006 – Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2007 - Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Super 14 Rugby).
  • 2008 - Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Super 14 Rugby),  Springboks (Vodacom Outgoing Tours – EOYT).
  • 2009 - Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Super 14 Rugby), Cheetahs (British & Irish Lions, Springboks (British & Irish Lions Tour).
  • 2010 -  Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Super 15 Rugby), Springboks  (Castle Tri Nations).
  • 2011 - Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Super 15 Rugby), Springboks  (Castle Tri Nations).
  • 2011 - Springboks (IRB World Cup – New Zealand)
  • 2012 – Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Super 15 Rugby)

 

 

Marnus_SchoemanMarnus Schoeman: 

Age: 24 years – 09 February 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 178 cm (W) 96 kg

Born in Edenvale, Marnus attended Hoërskool Waterkloof in Pretoria. He represented the Blue Bulls at school, junior and senior rugby.  In 2009 he was selected for the Junior Springboks who contested the IRB Junior World Championship. In 2011 he was signed by GWK Griquas and in 2012 he started delivering match winning performances as a fetcher. He certainly caught the eye, with his incessant pilfering during the Currie Cup for Griquas, reminiscent of another player of similiar ilk, Heinrich Brüssow.

 

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2005 – Blue Bulls (Coca Cola Grant Khomo u/16 Week)
  • 2006 – Blue Bulls (Coca Cola Craven u/18 Week ), SA Schools u/18.
  • 2007 – Blue Bulls (Coca Cola Craven u/18 Week ), SA Schools u/18, Blue Bulls (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2008 – Blue Bulls (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2009 – Tuks (Varsity Cup), Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Blue Bulls (ABSA u/19 Competition), Blue Bulls (ABSA u/21 Competition), Junior Springboks (IRB Junior World Championship).
  • 2010 – Tuks (Varsity Cup), Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Blue Bulls (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2011 – Tuks (Varsity Cup), Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).

 

 

Justin_DowneyJustin Downey:

Age: 26 years – 11 November 1986

Vital Statistics: (H) 191 cm (W) 106 kg

Born in Johannesburg, Justin was schooled at Northwood High, and then furthered his studies at the Sharks Academy. Justin started his representative rugby with the Sharks. He made his Super Rugby debut for the Sharks in 2009 but moved to GWK Griquas in 2010. He became a regular in the Cheetahs Super Rugby team in 2012 (12 caps), and will look to do the same in 2013. His surfer image belies a hard working player.

 

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2006 -  College Rovers (Fidentia Club Championship).
  • 2007 – Sharks (Absa u/21 Competition).
  • 2008 – Wildebeest (Vodacom Cup).
  • 2009 – Sharks XV (Vodacom Cup), Sharks (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Sharks (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2010 – Sharks XV (Vodacom Cup), Sharks Invitational XV (ABSA Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2011 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

Pieter_LabuschagnePieter Hermias Cornelius (Lappies) Labuschagne:

Age: 24 years – 11 January 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 189 cm (W) 106 kg

Born in Pretoria, Lappies – as he is nicknamed, is another Old Grey player. He represented the Free State at various levels. He made the SA Schools Academy side in 2007. He made his Super Rugby debut in 2012 (3 caps). He has looked quite at home and has quickly become a regular in the Cheetahs Currie Cup team, either side of the scrum.

 

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2007 – Free State (Coca Cola u/18 craven Week), SA Schools Academy u/18, Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2008 – Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2009 – Shimlas (Varsity Cup), Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2010 – Shimlas (Varsity Cup), Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2011 – Shimlas (Varsity Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – Shimlas (Varsity Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

Boom_PrinslooJohannes (Boom) Prinsloo:

Age: 24 years – 12 March 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 184 cm (W) 106 kg

Born in Bloemfontein, Boom is better known for his Springbok Sevens’ appearances, but has since decided to concentrate on the 15-man code. He is another Old Grey player. He was a team mate to Lappies Labuschagne in the 2007 Free State Under 18 Craven Week side. He also represented the Free State at all levels, and made his Super Rugby debut in 2012.

 

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2007 – Free State (Coca Cola u/18 craven Week).
  • 2008 – Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2009 – Shimlas (Varsity Cup), Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2010 - Shimlas (Varsity Cup), Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition), Vodacom Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division) Springbok Sevens (HSBC Sevens World Series).
  • 2011 - Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Springbok Sevens (HSBC Sevens World Series).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Springbok Sevens (HSBC Sevens World Series), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

T DanillerTertius Daniller: 

Age: 23 years – 04 August 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 195 cm (W) 106 kg

Born in Paarl and a product of Paarl Gymnasium, Tertius is the younger brother of Cheetahs fullback Hennie. He was a stalwart for Maties in the Varsity Cup. He has also represented Western Province at various levels, bar Super Rugby. He was lured to the Cheetahs at the end of 2012.

 

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2008 – Vodacom Western Province (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2009 - Western Province (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2010 – Maties (Varsity Cup), Western Province (ABSA u/21 Competition), Western Province (Vodacom Cup).
  • 2011 – Maties (Varsity Cup), DHL Western Province (Vodacom Cup), DHL Western Province (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – Maties (Varsity Cup), DHL Western Province (Vodacom Cup), DHL Western Province (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).

 

 Davon_RaubenheimerDavon Stephanus Raubenheimer:

Age: 28 years – 16 July 1984

Vital Statistics: (H) 195 cm (W) 100 kg

Born and raised in picturesque Knysna, Davon has been around the block a few times since representing the Eagles in 2003. In 2005 he was selected for the Junior Springboks to contest the IRB Under 21 World Championships. He continued to represent SWD in the Vodacom and Currie Cup till 2009, when he was signed by GWK Griquas. He has played Super Rugby for the Cheetahs (20 caps) and at the end of 2011 he was signed by the Cheetahs from GWK Griquas.

 

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2003 – Eagles (ABSA u/20 Section B).
  • 2004 – Vodacom Eagles (ABSA u/20 Section B).
  • 2005 – Eagles (ABSA u/21 Competition), SWD Eagles (Vodacom Cup), Eagles (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Junior Springboks (IRB u/21 World Championship).
  • 2006 - Eagles (Vodacom Cup), Eagles (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2007 – SWD (Vodacom Cup), Eagles (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2008 – SWD (Vodacom Cup),Eagles (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Emerging Springboks (IRB Nations Cup).
  • 2009 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Royal XV (British & Irish Tour), Springboks (Outgoing Tour).
  • 2010 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State XV (Vodacom Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

Philip_van_der_WaltChristoffel Phillipus (Phillip) van der Walt: 

Age: 23 years – 14 July 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 194 cm (W) 113 kg

Born and raised in Adelaide in the Eastern Cape, Phillip represented the EP Under 8 Academy team in 2006, and the Under 18 Craven Week team in 2007. He was then signed by the Cheetahs whilst studying at University of the Free State. Phillip has represented the Cheetahs at all levels from Under 19 in 2008, making his Super Rugby debut in 2010 (23 caps). Phillip is growing in stature as a skillful No.8 and he will hope to have a strong season in 2013.

 

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2006 – Eastern Province CD (u/18 Academy Week).
  • 2007 – Eastern Province (Coca Cola u/18 Craven Week)
  • 2008 – Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2009 – Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2010 – Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition), Free State (Vodacom Cup), Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2011 - Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

 Leon_KarremakerLeon Karemaker:

Age: 28 years – 18 May 1985

Vital Statistics: (H) 191 cm (W) 100 kg

Born in Cape Town, this Belville High pupil has overcome a serious degenerative eye disease, to follow his dreams as a professional rugby player.  He started his representative rugby with WP Under 18 Craven Week in 2002, and also made the SA Schools squad. In 2003 he represented WP Under 20, and was selected for the Junior Springboks for the Under 19 FIRA World Championship as well as the following year for the IRB Under 19 World Championship. He continued representing WP at Under 21, Vodacom Cup, and Currie Cup. In 2008 he stopped playing rugby to get his eyes seen to and made a comeback with GWK Griquas in 2010. He made his Super Rugby debut for the Cheetahs in 2011 (2 caps). He is a strong, skillful No. 8, and will add valuable depth.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2003 – Investec WP (ABSA u/20 A Section), Junior Springboks (IRB FIRA-AER u/19 World Championship)
  • 2004 – Investec WP (ABSA u/20 A Section), Junior Springboks (IRB u/19 World Championship).
  • 2005 – Investec WP (Vodacom Cup), Investec WP (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2006 - Vodacom WP (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom WP (ABSA u/21 Competition) Vodacom WP (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2007 – Vodacom WP (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom WP (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2010 – Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2011 – Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).

 

 

JuanJuanne Hugo (Juan) Smith:

Age: 31 years – 30 July 1981

Vital Statistics: (H) 196 cm (W) 110 kg

Born in Bloemfontein, and a pupil of JBM Hertzog, Juan has had a stellar professional rugby career. He is to my knowledge the only remaining player to have played Super 12 rugby. He made his debut for the Free State Under 21 side in 2002 and in the same year made the Junior Springbok team that contested the IRB Under 21 World Cup. He made his Super Rugby debut for the Cats in 2003 (31 caps) and has 47 Super Rugby caps for the Cheetahs. Juan has been a talismanic presence for the Cheetahs for the past number of years. He made his Springbok debut in 2003 against Scotland in Durban. Since then he has had 69 Springbok caps, scoring 12 tries and winning a World Cup Winners medal in 2007. He has also captained the Cheetahs and has been a true servant of Cheetahs and SA rugby. A serious achilles tendon injury has sidelined the great player for the past two years and he will hope to be able to go out on his own terms. If he does return, it will be a major boost for the Cheetahs.

Rugby Career:
  • 2002 – Free State (Bankfin u/21 Competition), Vodacom Free state Cheetahs (Bankfin Currie Cup),IRB u/21 World Cup).
  • 2003 – Cats (Vodacom Super 12), South Africa A (Vodacom Incoming Tours), Springboks (Vodacom Tri Nations), Springboks (IRB World Cup – Australia).
  • 2004 – Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Cats (Vodacom Super 12), Springboks (Vodacom Incoming and Outgoing Tours).
  • 2005 – Vodacom Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Cats (Vodacom Super 12), Springboks (Vodacom Tri Nations), Springboks (Vodacom Incoming and Outgoing Tours), Springboks (Nelson Mandela Challenge).
  • 2006 – Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Springboks (Vodacom Tri Nations), Springboks (Vodacom Outgoing Tour).
  • 2007 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Springboks (Vodacom Tri Nations) Springboks (Vodacom Incoming and Outgoing Tours), Springboks (IRB World Cup – France).
  • 2008 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Springboks (Vodacom Tri Nations) Springboks (Vodacom Incoming and Outgoing Tours).
  • 2009 – Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Springboks (Vodacom Tri Nations) Springboks (Vodacom Incoming and Outgoing Tours).
  • 2010 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Springboks (Vodacom Tri Nations) Springboks (Vodacom Outgoing Tours).
  • 2011 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

Depending on the fitness of key players, Naka Drotske won’t look much further than his proven stars. Heinrich Brüssow at openside, Juan Smith at blindside (should negotiations bear fruit) and Phillip van der Walt at No 8. That said, Marnus Schoeman showed his value in the Cuirrie Cup and will be keen to take it a level higher. Should Juan Smith break down or play in France, Lappies Labuschagne and Justin Downey have shown themselves to be able replacements. Leon Karemaker is an able replacement for Phillip van der Walt.

9 Responses to Super Rugby: Cheetahs squad contenders – Loose Forwards

  • 1

    Certainly no Looseforward problem for the Cheetahs…. but injuries to Heinrich Brussow and the possibility that Juan Smith might still not play for them (signing up North), and suddenly one has to review that situation.

    Marnus Schoeman will be an able replacement for Brussow and a suitable replacement for Juan can be taken from either Justin Downey or Lappies Labuschagne… and there would stiil be some depth remaining.

  • 2

    @ grootblousmile:

    Correct Rudi, they don’t have a problem, unless injuries occur, that’s when the depth issues might occur, time will tell, If Smith and Brussow play and stay injury free?? Cheeths will klap a few teams for sure, amd obviously they also need Goosen to stay injury free.

  • 3

    @ GBS,
    Agreed, and the fact that Karemaker, Raubenheimer, and Boom Prinsloo (to a lesser degree) hace Super Rugby experience always helps. Should Juan not be a consideration, Naka could always play any of Downey, vd Walt, or Raubenheimer @7, and karemaker at 8.

  • 4

    Lots of work horses and only 2 stars.
    Loosehead likes this!

  • 5

    Boom Prinsloo, great name.
    Bom Louw is another great named player.

  • 7

    @ Cheetah4eva:
    Between me and you boet I think Loskoppie has been smoking the heavy shit Overjoy Overjoy Overjoy Overjoy Overjoy Overjoy

  • 8

    7 @ Sharky,
    He should share it’s obviously good shit Tounge-Out



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