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Jano VermaakDewald PotgieterThe Blue Bulls Company on Thursday confirmed the departure of scrumhalf Jano Vermaak and flanker Dewald Potgieter.

Potgieter decided not to renew his contract which expires at the end of the current Vodacom Super Rugby competition and instead will join the Yamaha Rugby Club in Japan, whilst Vermaak has asked to be released from his contract to join Toulouse in France.

Blue Bulls Media Release

Vermaak’s request to leave after the completion of the Vodacom Super Rugby tournament will be discussed by the Blue Bulls Company, as his contract only expires at the end of October 2013.

According to Xander Janse van Rensburg, the BBC High Performance Manager, Potgieter, who played in 58 Absa Currie Cup, 63 Vodacom Super Rugby matches and represented South Africa in six tests and two tour matches, decided to rather go overseas to experience a different lifestyle and culture.

“We had numerous talks with Jano and at one stage it looked successful, but he finally decided to accept the Toulouse offer. We are very sad to lose these two players, as they have massive experience and are part of our leadership core, but one cannot compete with the exchange rate at the moment” Janse van Rensburg said.

Meanwhile, the Blue Bulls Company have also announced that some promising Blue Bulls young stars have extended their stay at the Blue Bulls:

A number of the most promising rugby players in South Africa, as well as four senior Vodacom Bulls players renewed their contracts with the Blue Bulls Company, it was announced on Thursday.

Current Springbok squad members Arno Botha and JJ Engelbrecht signed on till 2016, Louis Fouchè, Hencus van Wyk, Jono Ross, Basil Short and Deon Stegmann till 2015 and Handrè Pollard till 2017.

A number of players currently playing for the Junior Springboks in France has also penned extensions.

Flanker Roelof Smit, prop Andrew Beerwinkel and lock Jannes Kirsten signed on till 2015, while current Junior Boks captain, Ruan Steenkamp, signed on till 2014.

According to the High Performance Manager at the BBC, talks are on-going to sign flanker Jacques du Plessis, who is currently contracted till 2014, for another couple of years.

“It is great to see the vote of confidence in the company and our structures and teams by so many leading players,” Janse van Rensburg said.

Engelbrecht indicated that enjoyment as well as the drive to win tournaments made his decision an easy one.

“I am very happy in Pretoria, where a great work ethic and professional outlook is paramount.

I feel I have developed so much as a player since joining the Bulls and want to keep on improving, something I know will happen here. The coaches here are brilliant and one can really develop as a player and as a person,” Engelbrecht said.

20 Responses to Bulls exodus continues with Jano & Dewald leaving but some youngsters extend their stay

  • 1

    OK, looking at those who have signed elsewhere, what would the Bulls look like in 2014, maybe a starting 15 like this:

    1 Morné Mellett / Frik Kirsten
    2 Willie Wepener / Bongi Mbonambie
    3 Marcel van der Merwe / Werner Kruger
    4 Flip van der Merwe / Mike Williams
    5 Grant Hattingh / Paul “Vet Baba” Willemse
    6 Deon Stegmann / Jean Cook
    7 Arno Botha / Jacques du Plessis
    8 Pierre Spies / Ruan Steenkamp
    9 Francois Hougaard / Rudy Paige / Ruan Snyman
    10 Louis Fouche / Willie du Plessis / Handré Pollard
    11 Bjorn Basson / Sampie Mastriet
    12 Jan Serfontein / Francois Venter
    13 JJ Engelbrecht / Dries Swanepoel
    14 Akona Ndungane / Cornall Skosan
    15 Jurgen Visser

  • 2

    Still not too bad, but a middle of the table finish is likely, not near a win or a Conference win.

  • 3

    Still better off than the Southern Kings & MTN Lions… not too far off the Cheetahs and Stormers both on quality and depth…. bit behind on the Sharks as far as depth is concerned.

  • 4

    The big problem will be hooker, flyhalf and fullback… but an additional hooker & fullback can be bought. I would try and sign Hansie Graaff or George Whitehead as fullback… and I would try and sign Demetri Catrakilis (should the Lions get back into Super Rugby at the expense of the Southern Kings). I would additionally try and sign Wimpie van der Walt and / or Vleis Engelbrecht…. and maybe Cheslin Kolbe for right wing.

    At hooker I would try and keep Kallie Visagie who was loaned from the Lions.

  • 5

    3 @ grootblousmile:
    The Sharks? ROTFLMFAO!

  • 6

    Whereas I’m sad to see these and the other stalwarts go overseas, the Bulls cannot let the Pound, Euro and Yen dictate their salary caps…. well one simply can’t compete with those offers.

  • 7

    6 @ grootblousmile:
    What is your opinion about this?
    Have the Bulls spent too much money contracting a huge [and talented] squad, and cannot sustain the salaries of the youngsters and keep the stalwarts? Or have they contracted a hugely talented pool of youngsters and are willing to let the stalwarts go?

  • 8

    7 @ Loosehead:
    I think a bit of both, perhaps.

    But looking at the probable squad for next year, it is still not bad, considering the amount of players leaving.

    I certainly know the budget is only so big, but I must say at the same time that I’m extremely worried about the work that Xander Janse van Rensburg is doing or supposed to be doing after Ian Schwartz left to take up a position at the Bokke. Ian had a knack not only at identifying talent and signing the right ones, but also the knowledge and personality to keep the stalwarts interested and to stay.

  • 9

    O KAK, there has been a ref change for the Bokke / Samoa game, and we have a Frenchie again, Pascal Gauzère.

    Was he the oke who blew the Springboks / Italy game?

    If so, still better than Poite, who was abysmal last weekend!

  • 10

    Will the Bulls be the champions this year, and then also-rans next year?

  • 11

    At fast count, the Bulls have now already lost 9 Stalwarts, of which 8 are Springboks, 4 Springboks of 2013:

    Chiliboy Ralepelle
    Juandré Kruger
    Wilhelm Steenkamp
    Dewald Potgieter
    Jacques Potgieter
    Jano Vermaak
    Morné Steyn
    Wynand Olivier
    Zane Kirchner

    The biggest loss, no doubt, is Morné Steyn, for the simple fact that it leaves a hell of a void at flyhalf, such an important position… and points machine.

  • 12

    10 @ Lion4ever:
    I could live with it if the Bulls win it this year… should they become also-rans next year.

  • 13

    @ Loosehead:
    @ grootblousmile:

    Helloooo manne!

    At the end of the day, this the professional era of rugby.
    Think back when you were still 26 years old with a professional qualification, practising as let’s say a lawyer. Would you sit in a crummy little office in Parow because you have a beautiful view of Table mountain, doing mostly pro bono work, trying to convince yourself that earning R300k p.a. is patriotic and that you are being a true follower of passion for the legal profession, while driving a battered old Mazda and your peers who barely scraped through their bar entrance exams are flashing by in their SUVs, doing corporate work abroad for R2 mil plus?

    That’s the choice these boys have.

    How would you as a father advise your son in such a situation, given the present circumstances in SA(exchange rate, political uncertainty, etc.)?

  • 14

    13 @ Pietman:
    No, the choice is a simple one at the end.

    My question is this though, why so many Bulls compared to Sharks, Stormers, Cheetahs, Southern Kings and even Lions players.

    The Bulls percentage is much higher!

  • 15

    @ Pietman:
    And don’t underestimate the influence of wifes and girl friends!

  • 16

    @ grootblousmile:
    @14 Too many Bulls in Petoorsdorp, maybe? They had no less than 90 players contracted last time I checked (including the academy).
    Take a boytjie like Wilhelm Steenkamp from a modest Hantam (Calvinia) farming background as an example, or WP Nel fom Loeriesfontein. Hard to ignore a couple of R mil and the experience of playing overseas if you are not even in the running for a regular spot in your own provincial team, not to mention national colors.

  • 17

    14 @ grootblousmile:Perhaps it is because of the huge number of contracted players.The seniors are worried about their future and the juniors wanting game time.

  • 18

    13 @ Pietman:
    You are so right Piet. Shame our money is not worth much, but that is a fact. Also a shame we don’t have sponsors that could sponsor some of the bigger players and keep them here. The older players let them go it is the young players that make me worry that leave our shores.

  • 19

    @ grootblousmile:
    If the rumours are true that the Bulls decided to offer a lot of senior players a cut in salary or leave, then I am not surprised.

  • 20

    Die taktiek om al die jeug te try opkoop begin backfire as hul die senior spelers verlaagde kontrakte aanbied en dan waai van die jonge manne any case want hul kry nie speelkans nie
    Pasop Bulle pluk ‘n lat vir hul eie gat. Soos die ryk laaitjie wat net al die nuwe speelgoed kry en nie meer aandag gee aan die goeie maar oueres nie

    Nog manne het gisteraand anngekondig hul waai – Jano Vermaak en Dewald Potgieter

    Morne Steyn, Zane Kirchner, Juandre Kruger, Chiliboy Ralepelle, Jacques Potgieter (“Stand by me” song word nou verkrag jou verraaier), Jano Vermaak, Wilhelm Steenkamp en Dewald Potgieter

    Ja, dit gaan seker weer goedgepraat word op n manier, maar bly ‘n bekommernis, die is nie gesonde besigheid nie


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