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Herewith the Sharks squad members and contenders for Super Rugby 2013:

 

Props:

Jannie Du Plessis:

Position Prop (TH)
Height 1.88
Weight 121 kg
Date of Birth 16 November 1982
Place of Birth Bethlehem
Provincial Debut Free State (2003-2007) KwaZulu-Natal (from 2008)
Provincial Caps 43(FS) and 33(Sharks)
Provincial Points 10(FS) and 15(Sharks)
Super Rugby Debut 2006 for the Cheetahs and from 2008 for the Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 26(Cheetahs) and 70 (Sharks)
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 7 July 2007 vs Australia in Sydney, aged 24
Test Caps 44
Test Points 5

Jannie Du Plessis

Jannie has been a real stalwart for the Sharks in the last 2 years as Tightheads of international standard have been hard to come by. He started his rugby career in the Free State where he was captain of the Eastern Free State Craven Week team in 1995 and then represented the Free State at under 18 and 19 level.

He studied medicine at the University of the Free State and became a qualified doctor, making him one of the few players in the professional era of rugby union to have a career outside of the sport whilst playing professionally. He then went on to make the Free State senior team in 2003 and continued playing for the Cheetahs through the 2007 Currie Cup. Du Plessis was also named to a South African squad that faced a World XV at Ellis Park in 2006.

He was selected for the Springbok squad for the first time during the 2007 Tri-Nations, making his debut in the starting XV on 7 July against Australia during the Boks’ home leg. The match was significant for him in another way, as his younger brother, Bismarck, made his Springbok debut as a substitute in the same match while he was still on the field. This made the Du Plessis brothers the 23rd set of brothers to earn Springbok colours.

Jannie du Plessis in 2008 made his move to the Sharks where he currently still applies his trade as a professional rugby player and has represented the Sharks in all competitions on 103 occasions and has probably been at his best this past year where even having played a total of 36 matches for the year, inbetween where possible he also still performs his duties as a medical doctor. Very few people give this man credit for what he has and still achieves.

This is the kind of man doctor Jannie Du Plessis is – he received an unexpected opportunity to use his medical skills in the wake of a 2009 tragedy. In the early morning hours of 29 March, Brumbies lock Shawn Mackay was hit by a car outside a Durban nightclub, suffering a paralyzing injury. Du Plessis was at the scene because he was helping Brumbies players get back to their hotel after their match with the Sharks. He helped Mackay breathe and contacted emergency services, who stabilized him and rushed him to a hospital. However, despite all medical efforts, Mackay would die from complications of his injuries several days later.

 

Tendai Beast Mtawarira:

Position Prop (LH)
Height 1.87
Weight 118 kg
Date of Birth 1 August 1985
Place of Birth Harare, Zimbabwe
Provincial Debut 2007 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 38
Provincial Points 15
Super Rugby Debut 2007 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 76
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 2008
Test Caps 41
Test Points 10
Tendai Mtawarira

Tendai “Beast” Mtawarira is a Zimbabwean-born South African rugby union player, is fondly known by friends and fans as “The Beast”. Roars of “Beast” are shouted by spectators and fans of the Natal Sharks team whenever Mtawarira attains possession of the ball or makes a big tackle. Mtawarira was selected as part of the Springbok team and made his debut playing against Wales in a test match on 14 June 2008.

He completed his schooling at Peter House in Marondera, Zimbabwe after which he was accepted into the Sharks academy in Durban, where he started to play loosehead prop as he had played in the looseforward position at school.

Tendai did not have the greatest 2012 season due to injuries as well as a season ending minor heart operation, after which diagnosis was that all was successful and that he should be ready to perform his duties come February 2013.

 

Wiehahn Herbst:

Position Prop (TH)
Height 1.80
Weight 114 kg
Date of Birth 5 July 1988
Place of Birth Klerksdorp
Provincial Debut 2009 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 59
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut 2010 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 22
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Wiehahn Herbst

Wiehahn went to school at Klerksdorp High where he played hooker and then made the Leopards Under 18 Craven Week side and the SA Schools side in 2006, after which he moved to the Sharks academy and since then has the following portfolio:

IRB Under 19 World Championship – 2007, ABSA Under 19 Competition – 2007
IRB Junior World Championship – 2008, ABSA Under 21 Competition – 2008
MTN test – 2009, Vodacom Cup – 2009, Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – 2009, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2009, ABSA Under 21 Competition – 2009
Vodacom Super 14 – 2010, Vodacom Cup – 2010, Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – 2010, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2010
Vodacom Cup – 2011, Vodacom Super Rugby – 2011, Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – 2011, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2011
Vodacom Super Rugby – 2012, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2012

Wors, as he is known at the Sharks, is a very underrated prop and is well known for a good work ethic in general play and is very seldom dominated by any opposing prop. He is sure to make more impact next season as player rotation will surely be more appropriate due to the long grueling season that teams face.

 

Dale Micheal Chadwick:

Position Prop (LH)
Height 1.83
Weight 114
Date of Birth 20 June 1989
Place of Birth Durban
Provincial Debut 2009 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 36
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut 2012 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 10
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Dale Chadwick

Dale went to school at Westville Boys High and has had a very successful junior rugby career where he achieved the following:

2005 – Natal U16 Grant Khomo Week
2007 – Kwazulu Natal U/18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, 2007 – SA Schools
2008 – Sharks U19.

His senior career although still in infancy has been a bit worrying as he seems to be brilliant one game and then seems to be asleep in the next. There is no doubt he has the talent and maybe he is a slow starter and will grow as a player as he gains experience. He really does have the pedigree and maybe he needs to really believe it himself.

His profile at the Sharks is as follows:

Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – 2009, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2009, ABSA Under 21 Competition – 2009
Vodacom Cup – 2010, ABSA Under 21 Competition – 2010
Vodacom Cup – 2011, Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – 2011, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2011
Vodacom Super Rugby – 2012, Vodacom Cup – 2012, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2012

 

Julian Redelinghuys:

Position Prop
Height 1.76
Weight 110
Date of Birth 11 September 1989
Place of Birth Pretoria
Provincial Debut 2010 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 16
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut 2012 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 0
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Julian Redelinghuys

Julian is still very young and has a few Currie Cup matches for the Sharks under his belt and did have a fairly good junior career which shows as follows:

2001 – Lions U12 Nike All Stars
2002 – Lions U13 Craven Week
2005 – Golden Lions U16 Grant Khomo Week
2006 – Golden Lions U18 Craven Week, 2006 – SA Schools
2007 – Golden Lions U18 Craven Week, 2007 – SA Schools
2008 – Sharks U19 Currie Cup

Since joining the Sharks academy he has the following achievements:

ABSA Under 19 Competition – 2008
IRB Junior World Championships – 2009, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2009, ABSA Under 21 Competition – 2009
Vodacom Cup – 2010, ABSA Under 21 Competition – 2010
Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – 2011, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2011
Vodacom Super Rugby – 2012, ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2012

Again not much is known about this young player and he will surely only be used in and when the need arises as in the case of injuries, when playing in the Currie cup he did not do to badly but CC and SR are two very different ball games so time will tell.

 

Names of the other Props in the extended squad:

Nick Schonert: (TH) although he has played on the LH side.
HEIGHT: 189 cm
WEIGHT: 118 Kg
BIRTH DATE: 20 September 1991
BIRTH PLACE: Durban
SECONDARY SCHOOL: Maritzburg College
TERTIARY EDUCATION: Sharks Academy

He was a member of the South African Under-20 team that played in the 2011 IRB Junior world Championships.

2007 – KZN U16 Grant Khomo Week 2008 – Kwazulu Natal U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week 2009 – KZN U18 Craven Week 2010 – Sharks U19 2012 – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup

 

Allan Dell:
Date of Birth: 16 March 1992
Place of Birth: Humansdorp
Height: 185 cm
Weight: 112 kg
School: Queens College

Playing Position: Tight Head Prop 2005 – U/13 Border Craven Week 2008 – Border U16 Grant Khomo Week 2009 – Border U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week 2012 – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup 2012 – SA U20 IRB JWC

Allan is a very mobile and strong up and coming young prop and has already at age 20 played for the Sharks in the Currie Cup. He was also a member of the victorious South African Under-20 team at the 2012 IRB junior world championship, including playing in the final against New Zealand Under-20.

 

Starters:

Once again injuries will play a roll as some players are still recovering from injuries or correction to injuries during the off-season, but one can safely assume that the Sharks will start with their Springbok props in Jannie du Plessis and Beast Mtawarira, with Dale Chadwick and Wiehahn Herbst again filling the bench spots or getting starts where and as rotation takes place.

The Sharks have good depth in their Junior ranks at prop and although some might raise an eyebrow because they are still young, these props have serious pedigree and will no doubt grow within the next season to achieve higher honours within the Sharks ranks.

As we have seen, the tendency in the modern game is that players are climbing the ladder at a much younger age as in the case of Steven Kitshoff and Eben Etzebeth. This is not the norm with props, but things seems to have changed.

 

 

Hookers:

Bismarck Du Plessis:

Position Hooker, 1 match at prop
Height 1.89
Weight 114 kg
Date of Birth 22 May 1984
Place of Birth Bethlehem
Provincial Debut 2005 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 36
Provincial Points 50
Super Rugby Debut 2005 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 100
Super Rugby Points 65
Test Debut 7 July 2007 vs Australia in Sydney, aged 22
Test Caps 46
Test Points 30
Bismarck du Plessis

Bismarck is probably one of the biggest names right now in world rugby and his present injury is and was a huge setback for the Springboks and the Sharks. The Sharks lost a final where their lineouts was a total shambles as the reserve hookers struggled to find their jumpers and although in the Springbok matches it was not felt as badly, as backup hooker Adriaan Strauss was solid.

But Bismarck is more than just a lineout throwing Hooker, he beings far more to the table as a player. The Sharks lost the man that is not only their fetcher but he is the player that seems to put fire in the belly of the Sharks pack and also is the one hitting rucks with venom.

His return to the team in 2013 will surely be a huge injection for the Sharks.

 

Craig Burden:

Position Hooker
Height 1.84
Weight 100 kg
Date of Birth 13 May 1986
Place of Birth Durban
Provincial Debut 2006 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 82
Provincial Points 146
Super Rugby Debut 2006 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 34
Super Rugby Points 20
Test Debut 2008
Test Caps 41
Test Points 10
Craig Burden

Craig is probably the most perfect bench Hooker one can find. He started his career in Pietermaritzburg where he was schooled at Maritzburg College, but he started at center / wing and even went on to represent Natal and the Sharks at center / wing. He too has come through the Sharks academy.

It was the then coach at the Sharks, Dick Muir, who convinced him to convert to Hooker where he now applies his trade. Muir in his conversion of Craig sent him to New Zealand where he spent 3 months in special training at the Murray Mexted academy.

Since returning Craig has played and grown into the position of Hooker and is a very dangerous replacement as he tears defenses to shreds with speed and power. His one shortcoming however still seems to be at times is finding his jumpers at the lineout. Now we can put all the blame on the hooker, but we know a combination is just that and to be honest, yes he partly is to blame, but I feel part of the blame goes to the Locks and their calling of lineouts.

Natal Club – Berea Rovers Honours
Natal Absa Under 20 2004
Natal Under 21 2005
Sharks Super 14, Natal Wildebeest, Vodacom SA Under 21 in 2006
Sharks Currie Cup 2008

He also earned a call up from the Springbok coach in 2012 for the Castle Rugby Championships.

 

Kyle Cooper:

Position Hooker
Height 1.78
Weight 109 kg
Date of Birth 10 February 1989
Place of Birth Johannesburg
Provincial Debut 2010 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 49
Provincial Points 15
Super Rugby Debut 2012 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 1
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Kyle Cooper

Kyle was schooled at Glenwood High in Durban and from there went to the Sharks academy. He too has a very good junior background and has steadily grown as a player. He is a very strong ball carrying Hooker, his achievements from junior to senior level are as follows:

Club:Rovers
Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – 2011
Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition, Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – 2010
Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition, South Africa IRB Junior World Championships – 2009
Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition – 2008
Kwa-Zulu Natal Under 16 Coca Cola Grant Khomo Week – 2005
EP Under 13 Craven Week – 2002

Kyle has all the attributes to be a top class hooker but seems to have the one problem in his armoury and that’s the same as Craig Burden in finding the Lineout jumpers as we saw in the Final of the Currie Cup recently, something the coaching staff will surely have to rectify as Bismarck is still in the recovery phase after his knee surgery and is only due back mid March 2013, thus leaving the void to be filled by either Burden or Cooper.

 

Monde Hadebe:

Position Hooker
Height 1.77
Weight 102
Date of Birth 20 June 1989
Place of Birth Durban
Provincial Debut 2009 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 36
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut 2012 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 10
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Monde Hadebe

Another young Hooker with a rich youth pedigree that has come through the ranks and like Burden and Cooper still are just short of the experience as a player to lift them onto that higher platform. He is another Glenwood High School boy that is destined for higher honors and only time will tell if he is able to lift himself and play consistently well enough to play for the Sharks.

His portfolio is as follows:
Club: College Rovers
Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – 2012
Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – 2011
Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition, South Africa IRB Junior World Championships – 2010
Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition – 2009
Kwazulu-Natal Under 18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, Under 18 Elite Squad – 2008
KZN Under 18 Coca-Cola Craven Week – 2007
Natal Under 16 Coca Cola Grant Khomo Week – 2006

 

Franco Marais:

Position Hooker
Height 1.86
Weight 94
Date of Birth 23 September 1992
Place of Birth Vereeniging
Provincial Debut 2010 Valke/Falcons U21
Provincial Caps 1
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut 0
Super Rugby Caps 0
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Franco Marais

Franco is a player schooled in Vereeniging at Transvalia High where he played Hooker and Flank, he went from school to the Falcons where he at the tender age of 18 got selected for the Falcons Under 21 side and played 1 match before making his way down to Durban where he settled in at the Sharks academy.

Franco was the Hooker for the Junior Boks when they won the Junior World Cup earlier this year and was very prominent. He is still lacking in bulk but no doubt as he is only 20 will still add weight as needed. He is a very skillful footballer and dare one say it – could go on the play like Uli Schmidt of old? His portfolio since joining the Sharks are as follows:

ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – 2012ABSA Under 21 Competition – 2012IRB Junior World Championship – 2012Vodacom Cup – 2012
ABSA Under 19 Competition – 2011
ABSA Under 21 Competition – 2010

 

Starters:

Bismarck would start every match no matter the team he played for, so normally we wouldn’t even give who starts a thought, but he is in recovery phase after surgery and thus it leaves the Hooker birth open for the fringe Hookers to fight it out for. Again many would say the Sharks have a problem at Hooker, I do not believe that for one minute, all four backup Hookers have a fantastic pedigree and will never let the team down. I am sure the lineout throwing is something the coaching staff would have given a lot of thought and no doubt will be rectifying this issue.

As to who will start with Bismark out? My gut feel is Burden will start with Cooper off the bench, you might also find the two rotating depending on opponents until such time as Bismarck returns from injury.

As for Hadebe and Marais, I feel they will be playing Vodacom Cup during the Super Rugby period, both are still very young and can only grow from the experience.

 

 

Locks:

Anton Bresler:

Position Lock
Height 1.98
Weight 112 kg
Date of Birth 16 February 1988
Place of Birth Windhoek Namibia
Provincial Debut 2009 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 40
Provincial Points 5
Super Rugby Debut 2011 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 23
Super Rugby Points 5
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Anton-Bresler_20-12-2012

Anton “Ants” Bresler was schooled at Durban High School and has come through the ranks at the Sharks starting with the academy, having played the following:

  • Natal U18 Academy Week, Sharks U19 – 2007
  • SA U20 Trials, Varsity Cup – 2008
  • Sharks U21 – 2009 to 2011
  • Sharks Vodacom Cup, Sharks Super rugby and Currie Cup – 2011 to 2012

He had a good season for the Sharks, considering he in many games had to carry the line-out burden alone when things went wrong. His work ethic in general play has also been outstanding but the one thing still lacking is for him to be a bit more dominant over opposing locks and winning ball on their throw-in’s.

 

Jandré Marais:

Position Lock
Height 1.98
Weight 118 kg
Date of Birth 14 June 1989
Place of Birth Welkom
Provincial Debut 2009 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 51
Provincial Points 15
Super Rugby Debut 2012 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 7
Super Rugby Points 5
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Jandre-Marais-20-12-2012

Jandré was schooled at Welkom Gymnasium, and went on the represent the Griffons at Craven Week and in the ABSA Under-19 Tournament in 2007 and 2008, after which he joined the Sharks academy.

His portfolio to date is as follows:

  • CLUB – Collegians
  • 2012 – Sharks Super Rugby and Natal Sharks Currie Cup
  • 2011 – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup, Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2010 – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup, Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2009 – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, South Africa IRB Junior World Championships, Sharks XV Vodacom Cup, Sharks U19 ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2008 – Griffons U 19 ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2007 – Griffons U 18 Coca-Cola Craven Week
  • 2002 – Griffons U 13 Craven Week.

He has had quite an illustrious junior career and much is expected of him. He made his way into the Sharks senior side this year and although he had a solid season his line-out prowess seemed to be a bit below par, something the Sharks coaching staff no doubt will work hard on during the off season.

 

Pieter-Steph du Toit:

Position Lock
Height 2.00
Weight 115 kg
Date of Birth 20 August 1992
Place of Birth Cape Town
Provincial Debut 2010 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 5
Provincial Points 5
Super Rugby Debut 2012 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 6
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 2012 South Africa Under20
Test Caps 5
Test Points 5
Pieter-Steph-Du-Toit-20-12-2012

Pieter-Steph is one of the most promising up-and-coming juniors (Lock / Flanker) in South African rugby. He was schooled at Swartland High School in Malmesbury, just outside Cape Town.

Although only 20 years old he has had many a tongue wagging as he made his way from school to the Sharks academy.

A short portfolio at junior level he has, this being because his level of play is of a very high standard as he has already represented the Sharks at senior level as well as his super performances for South Africa in the Junior World Cup victory earlier this year.

Being a very skilled footballer he has played for the Sharks and Junior Springboks at Lock and Flank. He still attends the academy and has the following portfolio:

  • 2010 – Boland U 18 Craven Week
  • 2012 – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup, SA U 20 IRB Junior World Cup, Sharks Super Rugby and Currie Cup.

 

Franco Van der Merwe:

Position Lock
Height 1.98
Weight 116 kg
Date of Birth 15 March 1983
Place of Birth Paarl
Provincial Debut 2009 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 36
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut 2012 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 10
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Franc-Van-Der_Merwe-20-12-2012

Franco was schooled Hartswater High School and is on loan to the Sharks for the 2013 Super Rugby season, his rugby portfolio is as follows:

2012 – South Africa Castle Outgoing Tours squad, MTN Golden Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, South Africa Castle Incoming Tours squad, MTN Lions Vodacom Super Rugby

  • 2011 – MTN Golden Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, MTN Lions Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2010 – Xerox Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Lions Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Auto & General Lions Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – Xerox Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Xerox Lions Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Xerox Golden Lions British & Irish Lions Tour, Emerging Springboks British & Irish Lions Tour, Auto & General Lions Vodacom Super 14, Golden Lions Vodacom Cup, Lions MTN test
  • 2008 – Xerox Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Xerox Lions Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Golden Lions Vodacom Cup, Auto & General Lions Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – Golden Lions XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies, Golden Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Lions Vodacom Super 14
  • 2006 – Impala Leopards Vodacom Cup, Impala Leopards ABSA Currie Cup First Division
  • 2005 – Impala Leopards ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division, Leopards ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round, Impala Leopards Vodacom Cup
  • 2004 – Leopards ABSA Currie Cup First Division, South Africa IRB U 21 World Championships, Leopards Vodacom Cup
  • 2003 – Leopards ABSA U 20 A Section
  • 2002 – Leopards U 19 U19 Competition

 

Peet Marais:

Position Lock
Height 1.99
Weight 115 kg
Date of Birth 31 October 1990
Place of Birth Welkom
Provincial Debut 2011 Sharks
Provincial Caps 19
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut 0
Super Rugby Caps 0
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Peet-Marais-20-12-2012

Peet, like older brother Jandré, was schooled at Welkom Gymnasium and has pretty much the same junior career that his brother had, they also both play No4 lock and it will be interesting to see which of the two ends up with the better career. Peet is slightly taller and Jandré is slightly heavier.

Peet is also a product of the Sharks academy and his portfolio is as follows:

  • 2007 – Griffons U 18 Craven Week
  • 2008 – Griffons U 18 Coca-Cola Craven Week
  • 2009 – Griffons U 19, Elite Squad U 18
  • 2010 – SA U19 Trials 2010
  • 2012 – SA U 20, Sharks XV Vodacom Cup, Sharks Currie Cup

 

Starters:

The Lock position, having been a problem area for the Sharks, will make it interesting to see which combination coach John Plumtree starts with, and how and if he will rotate them during the season as it unfolds.

I for one, feel that the coach will start with the most experienced Locks he has at his disposal, that being Anton Bresler and Franco van der Merwe, with the two Marais brothers as backup and rotation. For me the question however it is going to be when does he bring Pieter-Steph du Toit into the picture, as the latter is potentially the best Lock at the Sharks and potentially one of the best in SA! Du Toit is also the tallest Lock at the Sharks and the most mobile.

Of course the Locks are not always to blame for poor line-outs, as much depends on their partnership with the Hooker in the team. Also no doubt with the line-out calling problems, the coach will use the skills of 8th man Ryan Kankowski in calling line-outs.

 

 

Loose Forwards:

Keegan Daniel:

Position Flank / 8th Man
Height 1.88
Weight 100 kg
Date of Birth 22 March 1985
Place of Birth East London
Provincial Debut 2006 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 92
Provincial Points 160
Super Rugby Debut 2006 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 55
Super Rugby Points 65
Test Debut 2010
Test Caps 5
Test Points 30
Keegan-Daniel_20-12-2012

Keegan Daniel started his education at Gonubie Primary School before moving off to one of South Africa’s best known rugby nurseries, Dale College Boys High School, where he played Craven Week for the Border rugby team in 2003 and was recruited afterwards by the Sharks Rugby Academy.

Keegan Daniel arrived on the provincial scene in the Super Rugby competition, which earned him a place in the South African Under 21 team. He played well in the tournament with the South African Under 21 team at the IRB Under 21 World Cup in France where South Africa lost in the final. He was nominated for player of the tournament and went on to claim the South African Under 21 player of the year for 2006. He has the ability to play openside or blindside flanker, 8th man, wing, flyhalf and fullback because of his blistering speed and good kicking ability.

Since 2006, Daniel has starred for the Sharks at Super Rugby level. In the 2008 season he earned Man Of The Match awards in consecutive games against 2007 winners (Vodacom Bulls) and the high-flying Auckland Blues, scoring 3 tries in the process. His first try against the Blues came after just 16 seconds in that game – a record at Super 14 level.

On 30 October 2010, Keegan was selected to tour with the Springboks in their November tour of England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. He was not selected as a part of the initial squad of 39 but was later added after his performances in the Currie Cup semi-final and final.

On 16 January 2012, Sharks’ coach John Plumtree appointed Keegan Daniel as the Sharks captain for the 2012 Super Rugby season and again he showed his class as a player and a leader, no doubt he will again captain the team in 2013. His playing career to date is as follows:

  • 2012 – South Africa The Castle Rugby Championship – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa Castle Incoming Tours – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – 2011
  • 2010 – South Africa Outgoing Tours – Springboks Outgoing Tours – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 -
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Sharks British & Irish Lions Tour – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – Sharks MTN test
  • 2008 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2006 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa IRB under 21 World Championship – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – KZN U21 ABSA under 21 Competition
  • 2005 – Natal ABSA under 21 Competition

 

Ryan Kankowski:

Position 8th Man
Height 1.95
Weight 108 kg
Date of Birth 14 October 1985
Place of Birth Port Elizabeth
Provincial Debut 2006 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 59
Provincial Points 80
Super Rugby Debut 2006 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 75
Super Rugby Points 80
Test Debut Test debut: 24 November, 2007 vs Wales in Cardiff, aged 22
Test Caps 22
Test Points 5
Ryan-Kankowski-20-12-2012

Ryan Kankowski, or Kanko as he is known in some circles, was schooled in Port Elizabeth at St Andrew’s College and directly after school his parents moved to Port Shepstone in Kwa-Zulu Natal where he was accepted to the Sharks Rugby Academy. He went on to build a very impressive career at the Sharks, where he still applies his trade, although he is on a 6 month contract in Japan for Toyota Verblitz at the moment from which he will return at the end of January 2013.

Kanko is a tall, strong, yet pacey and skilled Number Eight. He is also capable of playing as an Openside Flanker. He has a natural flair on attack, breaking the line with powerful runs from the back of the scrum, whilst he is unrelenting on defense. He is also an incredibly dangerous runner in open play. His game is reminiscent of that of Zinzan Brook and with maturity and leadership qualities that belie his age.

Kanko was first selected to represent South Africa during the Springboks’ 2007 End Of Year Tour to Wales & England. He made a try-scoring Test debut on the tour, as a substitute during South Africa’s resounding 34–12 victory over Wales at the Millenium Stadium on 24 November 2007.

He received one of his nicknames, “Definite”, from his close friends as they believed he would definitely be a Springbok rugby player at some stage, but one must say, depending on which side of the fence one sits on regarding him as a player, he possibly should have played many more Tests than is the case.

His Career portfolio is as follows:

  • 2012 – South Africa Castle Incoming Tours – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2012 – Springboks Outgoing Tours – South Africa Outgoing Tours – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours
  • 2009 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa British & Irish Lions Tour – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2008 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tour – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2070 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tour – Springboks XV Vodacom Outgoing Tour – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – SA Emerging IRB Nations Cup – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2006 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup
  • 2005 – Natal ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2004 – Kwa-Zulu Natal ABSA U20 Competition Section A

Willem Alberts:

Position Flank / 8th Man / No 4 Lock
Height 1.92
Weight 119 kg
Date of Birth 10 February 1989
Place of Birth Pretoria
Provincial Debut 2005 – 2009 Golden Lions and 2010 – Present Sharks
Provincial Caps Lions – (21) and Sharks – (18)
Provincial Points (35) – (20)
Super Rugby Debut 2005 – 2009 Golden Lions and 2010-Present – Sharks
Super Rugby Caps Lions (37) and Sharks – (42)
Super Rugby Points (20) – (30)
Test Debut 13 November 2010 vs Wales in Cardiff aged 26
Test Caps 21
Test Points 25
Wilhelm-Alberts-20-12-2012

Willem was schooled at Monument High in Johannesburg and is a remarkably strong man, known as “The Bone Collector”, not without reason. He started his rugby career at the Golden Lions from junior level to senior level until 2009 when he decided to join the Sharks and immediately made a huge impact.

Alberts is a total team player and always puts the team before his own interests and thus has found himself playing in various positions for the Lions, Sharks and the Springboks and the season of 2013 we head into will be no different as Alberts will no doubt be playing wherever the team needs him.

Willem’s career portfolio is as follows:

  • 2012 – South Africa Castle Outgoing Tours – South Africa The Castle Rugby Championship – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa Castle Incoming Tours – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – South Africa IRB Rugby World Cup – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2010 – South Africa Outgoing Tours – Springboks Outgoing Tours – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – Xerox Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Xerox Lions Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Xerox Golden Lions British & Irish Lions Tour – Auto & General Lions Vodacom Super 14 Lions MTN test
  • 2008 – Xerox Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Xerox Lions Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies -
  • 2007 – Auto & General Lions Vodacom Super 14 – Golden Lions XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Golden Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Lions Vodacom Super 14
  • 2006 – University of Johannesburg Fidentia National Club Championships
  • 2005 – Golden Lions ABSA Under 21 Competition – Lions ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round – Golden Lions Vodacom Cup
  • 2004 – Golden Lions ABSA U20 Competition Section A

Marcell Coetzee:

Position Flank / 8th Man
Height 1.91
Weight 108 kg
Date of Birth 8 May 1991
Place of Birth Potchefstroom
Provincial Debut 2011 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 25
Provincial Points 20
Super Rugby Debut 2011 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 23
Super Rugby Points 5
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 12
Test Points 5
Marcell-Coetzee-20-12-2012

Marcell, the “Wonder Child”, was schooled at Port Natal High School in Durban where one wonders if scouts ever check for talent there. This is asked as Marcell came from nowhere to be a Springbok in a very short space of time and a very good one at that. He did not play Craven Week or Natal Schools yet he made his way into the Sharks Rugby Academy and the rest is history.

Marcell is like the “Energizer Bunny” as he speeds around the field and makes tackle after tackle, but he is more than just a tackler as his ball carrying skills are very good as well and his interplay and offloading in tackles et cettera and in some of his Springbok games he has been given the arduous task of playing at blindside flank which is not his normal position, still the player excelled and at his tender age whilst is still learning his trade.

This being the case, he is still growing with experience. This young man can become a true legend but it is all about belief and how he is handled as a player. I for one can only see him going from strength to strength.

We should not forget that he is only 21 years old.

His Portfolio is as follows:

  • 2012 – South Africa Castle Outgoing Tours – South Africa The Castle Rugby Championship – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa Castle Incoming Tours – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2010 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition

Jean Deysel:

Position Flank
Height 1.91
Weight 114
Date of Birth 5 March 1985
Place of Birth Virginia Free state
Provincial Debut 2005 – 2007 Golden Lions and 2008 – Present Sharks
Provincial Caps Lions – (11) and Sharks – (58)
Provincial Points (5) – (35)
Super Rugby Debut 2008 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 43
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 21 November 2009 vs Italy in Udine aged 24
Test Caps 4
Test Points 0
Jean-Deysel-20-12-2012

Jean Deysel was schooled at Hentie Colliers High School in Virginia in the Free State. He is a similar player to Willem Alberts as they are both strong ball carrying flanks who defend with big hits and hit rucks with venom. The one thing Jean Deysel does have in his favor is his fetching ability, which often gets overlooked.

He too came to the Sharks via the Golden Lions and has since always been a crowd favorite at the “Shark Tank”. He at last seems to have overcome his injury problems, which used to hamper him, no doubt had he not had such poor luck with injuries he surely would have played many more Tests for the Springboks and I have a feeling 2013 could be a big year for the strongman.

His career portfolio is as follows:

  • 2010 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2010 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Emerging Springboks British & Irish Lions Tour – Sharks British & Irish Lions Tour – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – Sharks MTN test
  • 2008 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – The Sharks Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – Sharks XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Lions Vodacom Cup
  • 2006 – Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Lions Vodacom Cup – Golden Lions ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2005 – Golden Lions ABSA Under 21 Competition – Lions ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round – Golden Lions Vodacom Cup
  • 2004 – Golden Lions ABSA U20 Competition Section A
  • 2002 – Griffons U/19 U19 Competition – 2002

 

Three Loose-forwards to mention that will be called on depending on where and if they are needed:

Jacques Botes:

Date of Birth: 28 November 1980
Place of Birth: Johannesburg
Position: Flank / 8th Man
Height: 182 cm
Weight: 98 Kg
Clubs: Glenwood Falcons
  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2010 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Emerging Springboks British & Irish Lions Tour – Sharks British & Irish Lions Tour – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – Sharks MTN test
  • 2008 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – The Sharks Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2006 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2005 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round – Natal Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super 12
  • 2004 – @lantic Pumas Vodacom Shield – Pumas ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2003 – @lantic Pumas ABSA Currie Cup – Premier Div. -@lantic Pumas Vodacom Shield
  • 2002 – Pumas Bankfin Currie Cup – Mpumalanga SA ‘A’ SA Cup

 

Lubabalo Mtembu:

Date of Birth: 09 December 1990
Place of Birth: East London
Position: 8th Man
Height: 187 cm
Weight: 100 Kg
  • 2008 – Border Under 18 Craven Week
  • 2010 – Elite Squad
  • 2011 – SA Under 20, Sharks XV (Vodacom Cup)

Francois Kleinhans

Date of Birth: 07 January 1991
Place of Birth: Parklands, Durban
Position: 8th Man / Flank
Height: 184 cm
Weight: 96 Kg
Clubs: Collegians
  • 2012 – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2011 – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2010 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition, KZN Under 18 Coca-Cola Craven Week
  • 2008 – Kwazulu-Natal Under 18 Coca-Cola Craven Week, Under 18 Elite Squad (Elite Squads)
  • 2007 – KZN Under 16 (Under 16 Coca-Cola Grant Khomo Week)

 

Starters:

This is where I do not want to be the coach, there is always going to be a player just as good but for various reasons that player is going to either miss out or be on the bench. I mean it’s inconceivable to think a player of Jacques Botes’ skills may not get much game time in 2013.

Now who to start with? I have a feeling that John Plumtree may well start with Willem Alberts, Ryan Kankowski and Keegan Daniel but depending who the Sharks are facing, I think combinations are going to be paramount for the Sharks and that the coach might very well have two Loose Forwards as reserves on match days. His past history shows that John Plumtree favors that route.

Honestly, the last two Loose Forwards in Lubabalo Mtembu and Francois Kleinhans should probably resign themselves to the fact that they will be used more during the Vodacom Cup time, it is even possible that Jacques Botes will play Vodacom Cup, but in saying all of this, the glaring fact still is the lack of an out-and-out Fethcer in the squad.

In this instance, WHO WANTS TO BE JOHN PLUMTREE?

 

 

Scrumhalves:

Charl Mcleod:

Position scrumhalf
Height 1.80
Weight 88 kg
Date of Birth 5 August 1983
Place of Birth Johannesburg
Provincial Debut 2005-2006 WP, 2007 Lions, 2007 Valke, 2008 to present- Sharks
Provincial Caps 0-WP, 6-Lions, 9-Valke, 67-Sharks
Provincial Points 100
Super Rugby Debut 2008 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 41
Super Rugby Points 15
Test Debut 7 July 2007 vs Australia in Sydney, aged 22
Test Caps 1
Test Points 0
Charl-Mcleod-20-12-2012

Charl was born on 5 August 1983 in Johannesburg, was schooled at Wonderboom High School in Pretoria and after a short stint at Western Province, the Lions and the Valke, the Sharks lured him to Durban where he has been since, and although a very good scrumhalf, Charl has had his up’s and down’s as form let him down from time to time.

On 18 November 2010, whilst the Springboks were already two matches into their November tour of Ireland, Wales, Scotland and England, Charl received the call to join the squad. This was after an extremely successful Currie Cup campaign where the Sharks were the deserved champions, many might feel this wa just reward.

On form though he is a very good player and plays with a lot of fire and is a dangerous runner that can at times tear the defending team’s defenses to shreds.

His career portfolio is as follows:

  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2010 – South Africa Outgoing Tours – Springboks Outgoing Tours – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Sharks British & Irish Lions Tour – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks MTN test
  • 2008 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – The Sharks Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – Golden Lions XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Valke ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Golden Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Valke ABSA Currie Cup Qualifiers – Lions Vodacom Cup -
  • 2006 – Maties Fidentia National Club Championships – Vodacom Western Province ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Vodacom Western Province Vodacom Cup
  • 2005 – Investec Western Province ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round – Investec Western Province Vodacom Cup

Kobus Reinach:

Position Scrumhalf
Height 1.75
Weight 83 kg
Date of Birth 7 February 1990
Place of Birth Bloemfontein
Provincial Debut 2011 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 31
Provincial Points 20
Super Rugby Debut 2012 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 1
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Kobus-Reinach-20-12-2012

Cobus is the son of the late Springbok flyer and national 400m sprinter, Jaco Reinach, and boy can one see his son in him! Cobus was schooled at Grey College in Bloemfontein and like his father has a very good rugby brain and all the attributes to one day follow in his father’s footsteps in wearing the Green and Gold.

This young man has been hugely impressive so far for the Sharks and the likes of Charl McLeod and Conrad Hoffman will really have to lift their game. Cobus is hungry to play and advance his game and will not be making it easy for any other player to replace him, also with the likes of Patrick Lambie, Frans Steyn and Paul Jordaan alongside him, 2013 could be a bumper year for him.

His career portfolio is as follows:

  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2010 – ABSA Under 21 Competition – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2008 – Free State U18 Academy Week

Conrad Hoffmann:

Position Scrumhalf
Height 1.81
Weight 86 kg
Date of Birth 9 November 1987
Place of Birth Worcester
Provincial Debut 2007-2010 WP, 2011- Present Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 42-WP, 15 Sharks
Provincial Points 62
Super Rugby Debut 2008- Stormers, 2011- Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 1-Stormers, 11-Sharks
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Conrad-Hoffrman-20-12-2012

Conrad was schooled at Paarl Boys High and played Craven week for Western Province and made SA trials at Under 19 level, sadly though this promising young player was hampered by many injuries and has never really had the chance to show his true ability. He is known to be a very versatile player and although he mainly plays scrumhalf, he is very able at flyhalf as well as center.

  • 2012 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2010 – Western Province ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Western Province Vodacom Cup – Stormers Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2009 – Western Province ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Western Province Vodacom Cup – Stormers Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2008 – Western Province ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Western Province Vodacom Cup – Stormers Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2007 – Western Province U21 Absa Competition
  • 2006 – SA U19 2006 WP U19 – Western Province A Inter-Provincial Sevens
  • 2005 – WP U18 Craven Week – SA U19 Trials

Hanco Venter:

The 4th choice and will probably only play Under 21 matches for the Sharks or play Vodacom Cup unless injuries necessitate for him to be called up to the premier side.

Hanco was schooled in Witbank and although there is not really too much information widely available regarding this young player, I do know he has come through the Sharks Academy with a lot of success and played Sharks Under 19 and Sharks Under 21, where he has been rated very highly and is a nippy scrumhalf with a good boot.

He has also played a few games at flyhalf when injuries occurred within the Under 21 team this past season.

 

Starters:

The one good thing about making a call for the starting scrumhalf is the fact that unlike at the loose forward choices there are only two men to really call upon, either Charl McLeod or Jaco Reinach.

Either way the Sharks will have a solid 9 to start the match but my guy feel is John Plumtree will start with Jaco Reinach, as he finished stronger the past season and had been very solid. Again much will depend on conditions for the match on hand as well as who they are facing.

I can only see Conrad Hoffman or Hanco Venter coming into the picture if and when injuries occur.

 

 

Flyhalves:

Patrick Lambie:

Position Flyhalf
Height 1.77
Weight 87 kg
Date of Birth 17 October 1990
Place of Birth Durban
Provincial Debut 2010 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 25
Provincial Points 271
Super Rugby Debut 2010 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 35
Super Rugby Points 344
Test Debut 2010 Aged 20
Test Caps 20
Test points 40
Patrick-Lambie-20-12-2012

Patrick Lambie will as always attack the gain line, he will defend like a demon, he distributes well and is most of all a very calm player that more often than not takes the right options. Lastly his kicking game is extremely good.

Schooled at Michaelhouse and capable of playing flyhalf, centre and fullback, he was the leading points scorer in the 2009 ABSA Under 21 Currie Cup, despite only turning 19 later that year. He represented South Africa at Under 20 level and was utilized extensively as the first choice fullback during the 2010 Under 20 World Cup in Argentina.

Lambie joined the Sharks senior team setup in the 2010 Super 14 season, where his debut was spent in the fullback position. He was moved to centre in the 2010 Currie Cup and due to injury was required to fill the flyhalf berth. Due to his natural talent and unwavering nerve he made the position his own and was integral in helping the Sharks reach Currie Cup success in 2010, scoring 2 tries, 3 conversions and 3 penalties in the Sharks’ 30-10 win over Western Province in the final of the tournament. He was awarded with the “Man of the Match” award in the Currie Cup final. Lambie was also the second highest point scorer in the Currie Cup.

He was called up to represent South Africa during their 2010 tour to Ireland and the United Kingdom. He made his Test debut against Ireland on 6 November 2010, at flyhalf after Morne Steyn was substituted in the second half, where he promptly converted a try on debut. He has also started against the Barbarians team for the Springboks at fullback, but this is not calculated as an official international Test. Patrick Lambie was Michaelhouse’s first South African rugby player in their 115 year history.

His Career portfolio to date is as follows:

  • 2012 – South Africa Castle Outgoing Tours – South Africa The Castle Rugby Championship – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa Castle Incoming Tours – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – South Africa IRB Rugby World Cup – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2010 – South Africa Outgoing Tours – Springboks Outgoing Tours – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa IRB Junior World Championships – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies
  • 2008 – Kwazulu-Natal U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week – SA Schools SA Schools – U18 Elite Squad Elite Squads
  • 2007 – SA Schools SA Schools – KZN U18 U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week

TEST RECORD

OPPOSITION

P

W

D

L

T

C

PE

DG

PTS

Australia

4

1

0

3

0

2

0

0

4

England

4

4

0

0

0

1

3

0

11

Fiji

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Ireland

2

2

0

0

0

2

3

0

13

Namibia

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

New Zealand

4

1

0

3

0

0

0

0

0

Samoa

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Scotland

2

1

0

1

0

1

3

0

11

Wales

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

 

Butch James:

Position Flyhalf
Height 1.85
Weight 102 kg
Date of Birth 8 January 1979
Place of Birth Johannesburg
Provincial Debut 2000 – Natal Sharks, 2011-2012-Lions, 2013-Sharks
Provincial Caps 45-Sharks, 14-Lions
Provincial Points 373-Sharks, 71-Lions
Super Rugby Debut 2001-2007- Sharks, 2011-2012-Lions
Super Rugby Caps 53-Sharks, 16-Lions
Super Rugby Points 384-Sharks, 51-Lions
Test Debut 2001-Present
Test Caps 42
Test Points 159
Butch-James-20-12-2012 (2)

Again many supporters will welcome him back at the Sharks in 2013 and many will say he is too old and to this and too that, but Butch showed this past season that he is still a quality player and still has quite a bit to offer. With his return to the Sharks there are many reasons why it is a good move – he played 80% of his rugby at the Sharks where he grew up before spending some time at Bath in the UK as well as a short stint with the Golden Lions in Johannesburg.

Butch is a more then handy back- up flyhalf in case an injury should happen to Patrick Lambie or should rotation of players be required. It is after all a very long arduous season coming up and will without doubt be very taxing on the players.

James was schooled at Maritzburg College.

Although his first names are Andrew, David, he has been known as ‘Butch’ since his grandmother gave him the nickname as an infant. In the case of butch we delve a bit deeper seeing as he has had a very long career and it is interesting to see how his journey has been to date.

Sharks career

James played for the Sharks in the Currie Cup and for the Sharks in Super Rugby. He has twice played in a Super Rugby final for the Sharks, being on the losing side on both occasions. In the 2001 Super 12 final, the Sharks lost 36–6 to the ACT Brumbies with Butch James missing four penalty attempts in the first half and in 2007 they lost 19–20 to the Bulls.

His career with the Sharks and the Springboks was hampered by injury. In 2002, his appearances were restricted, following knee surgery. In the 2004 Super Rugby season, he played in every game for the Sharks and looked certain to be recalled to the national squad until an injury to the cruciate ligaments of his left knee, 12 minutes into the last game against the Stormers, ended his season and kept him out of rugby for six months.

Despite his history of injuries, James has a reputation as an aggressive tackler and excellent place kicker. Early in his career he was frequently penalized for dangerous tackles, particularly tackles above the shoulder, with a swinging arm, or without the use of the arms. In only his second Test, against France, he was cited and suspended for an off-the-ball hit on French wing David Bory and three Tests later against Australia he was sin-binned for a tackling offence. More recently he has improved his tackling technique and is now less prone to conceding penalties.

It was announced on 9 July 2007 that he had signed a two year contract with Bath Rugby though he continued to be eligible to play for the Springboks.

Springbok career

Following the completion of the 2001 Super 12 season, James was included in the Springboks squad and made his debut for South Africa at flyhalf in a 32–23 loss to France at Ellis Park. In the following Test, also against France, he contributed five penalty goals in the 20–15 victory in Durban, but was later cited and suspended, missing South Africa’s next match, against Italy. He returned for the 2001 Tri Nations Series and started at flyhalf in every game though South Africa only managed to win the one match, 20–15 against Australia in Durban.

James was a part of Springboks in November 2002 and was a reserve in a Test against France at Stade Velodrome in Marseilles and was subsequently moved to starting flyhalf for a Test against Scotland. He was switched to inside centre for the following match against England. South Africa lost all of those end-of-season Tests including the 52–0 drubbing by England.

James was included in the Springboks 2006 Tri Nations Series squad, playing in the 35–17 loss to the All Blacks in Wellington as well as in the following match against Australia in Sydney which the Springboks lost 20–18, thanks to a late Wallaby try. James made an impact in the first half, though one of his cross-field kicks was intercepted and led to a Mark Gerrard try. He was also selected for the end-of-year tour to Ireland and England.

After being omitted from the squad for the game against Ireland, James started in the first game against England. In the first half he scored a try with the help of Jean de Villiers and at the start of the second half he set up a try for Springbok wing Akona Ndugane, the first of his career. Although he scored 14 points (a try, two penalties, and a conversion), South Africa narrowly lost the game 23–21 and James had to be substituted after suffering another knee injury, which meant he missed South Africa’s 14–25 win in the second Test against England.

James was named in the Springboks squad for the 2007 Rugby World Cup. He played in three pool matches, including those against Samoa and England and in all three games in the knock-out stages. In the final, against England his composure and ability to nullify the impact of his opposite number, Jonny Wilkinson, helped South Africa to a 15–6 win.

Bath career

Following the 2007 World Cup tournament, James joined Bath Rugby. He made his debut in Bath’s 28–6 victory over Auch in the European Challenge Cup on 10 November and was an immediate success, earning the man of the match award after scoring a superb individual try and setting up another with a deft cross-field chip-kick.

On 1 February 2011 it was announced that James would be joining the Lions back in South Africa at the end of May.

His career portfolio is as follows:

  • 2013 – After his contract expired at the end of the 2012 season, he rejoined the Sharks
  • 2012 – MTN Golden Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – MTN Lions Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – South Africa IRB Rugby World Cup – MTN Golden Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – MTN Lions Vodacom Super Rugby – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2010 – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours
  • 2008 – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours
  • 2007 – South Africa IRB Rugby World Cup – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – South Africa World Cup warm-up matches
  • 2006 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours
  • 2005 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round – Sharks Vodacom Super 12
  • 2004 – Sharks Vodacom Super 12 – 2004
  • 2003 – Natal Sharks ABSA Currie Cup – Premier Div. – SA ‘A’ Vodacom Incoming Tours – Sharks Vodacom Super 12 – 2003
  • 2002 – South Africa Springboks Outgoing Tour – Natal Sharks Bankfin Currie Cup – South Africa ‘A’ Incoming Tours – South Africa Incoming Tours
  • 2001 – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – Natal Sharks Bankfin Currie Cup – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – Sharks Vodacom Super 12
  • 2000 – Natal Sharks Bankfin Currie Cup – South Africa U/21 South Hem. U21 – South Africa U/23 African Rugby Champs – Natal Wildebeest Vodacom Cup
  • 1999 – South Africa U/21 South Hem. U21 – Natal Sharks U/21 Bankfin Under 21 – Natal Sharks Bankfin Currie Cup – Natal Wildebeeste Vodacom Cup
  • 1998 – Natal Sharks U/21 Bankfin Under 21
  • 1996 – South Africa U/23 Other National Games

TEST RECORD

OPPOSITION

P

W

D

L

T

C

PE

DG

PTS

Argentina

2

2

0

0

0

9

0

0

18

Australia

10

4

1

5

0

5

7

0

31

England

6

4

0

2

1

2

2

0

15

Fiji

1

1

0

0

1

0

0

0

5

France

3

1

0

2

0

0

5

0

15

Italy

2

2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Namibia

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

New Zealand

10

2

0

8

1

0

4

1

20

Samoa

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Scotland

2

1

0

1

0

0

2

0

6

USA

1

1

0

0

0

2

0

0

4

Wales

3

3

0

0

0

8

8

0

40

 

Fred Zeilinga:

Position Flyhalf
Height 1.75
Weight 84 kg
Date of Birth 11 December 1992
Place of Birth Ladysmith
Provincial Debut 2012 Sharks XV
Provincial Caps 0
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut 0
Super Rugby Caps 0
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Fred Zeilinga

He is likely to be third in line at flyhalf for the Sharks. This young pivot came through the junior ranks with a very good reputation but taking injuries into account and the fact that opportunities has not knocked on his door yet, he is yet to prove that reputation. He is a natural flyhalf that strangely enough can play scrumhalf too and he has a solid kicking game to boot.

Fred was schooled at Glenwood High School and has had a very illustrious junior career and it was only due to a broken ankle that he did not play for SA Schools. He broke his ankle in a match between Glenwood and Maritzburg College two weeks before the Craven Week.

His career to date is as follows:

  • 2012 – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2011 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2010 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition – KZN U18 Craven Week
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition – KZN U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week
  • 2008 – Kwazulu-Natal U16 Coca-Cola Grant Khomo Week – U16 Elite Squad Elite Squads
  • 2005 – Kwa-Zulu Natal U13 Coca Cola Craven Week

 

Starters:

Patrick Lambie will start without a doubt, with Butch James the backup. Will Fred Zelinga play Super Rugby in 2013? I do not believe so as John Plumtree will fall back onto players like Meyer Bosman or Francois Steyn to cover pivot in the case of too many injuries.

 

 

Centres:

Francois Steyn:

Position Centre, Fullback, Flyhalf, Wing
Height 1.91
Weight 110 kg
Date of Birth 14 May 1987
Place of Birth Aliwal North
Provincial Debut 2006 to 2009-Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 18
Provincial Points 70
Super Rugby Debut 2007-2009-Sharks, 2012-Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 40
Super Rugby Points 81
Test Debut 11 November 2006 vs Ireland in Dublin, aged 19
Test Caps 53 plus 2 none Test matches
Test Points 132
Francois-Steyn-20-12-2012

Fransie was schooled Grey College, Bloemfontein and ever since was touted by most as South Africa’s “Wunderkind”. Loved by some and hated by others, but no matter which side of the fence you sit on regarding this enigmatic yet brilliant player, his rugby career details make for impressive reading.

From school he went straight into the Sharks Academy where he was a huge success from the start and is a player renowned for his long distance kicking ability and strong tackling. Add to that his ability as a very accurate distributer to players outside him as well as his offloading in the tackle.

Besides his time at the Academy, Frans also spent time at the Murray Mexted Academy in New Zealand where, whilst there many local teams tried hard to gain his services.

His career portfolio to date is as follows:

Test debut: 11 November 2006 vs Ireland in Dublin, aged 19
Last test: 15 September 2012 vs New Zealand in Dunedin, aged 25
Total tests: 53
Tour matches: 2
Total Springbok matches: 55
Win ratio: 38-14-1
Tours: Ireland & England, 2006; Ireland & Scotland, 2007; RWC in France, Wales & Scotland, 2007; Wales & England, 2007; British Isles, 2008; British Isles, 2010; RWC in New Zealand, 2011.
Honors: SA Under-19 Player of the Year, 2006; Sasol Most Promising Player of the Year, 2007.

OPPOSITION

P

W

D

L

T

C

PE

DG

PTS

Argentina

3

2

1

0

1

0

0

0

5

Australia

10

4

0

6

1

0

6

2

29

British Isles

3

2

0

1

0

0

2

0

6

England

10

9

0

1

1

1

2

1

16

Fiji

2

2

0

0

1

0

2

0

11

Ireland

1

0

0

1

1

0

0

0

5

Italy

1

1

0

0

1

3

0

0

11

Namibia

1

1

0

0

1

0

0

0

5

New Zealand

8

4

0

4

0

1

5

0

17

Samoa

3

3

0

0

1

0

1

0

8

Scotland

3

2

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

Tonga

1

1

0

0

0

0

1

0

3

USA

1

1

0

0

1

0

0

0

5

Wales

6

6

0

0

1

0

2

0

11

  • 2012 – South Africa The Castle Rugby Championship – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa Castle Incoming Tours – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – South Africa IRB Rugby World Cup – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2010 – South Africa Outgoing Tours – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations
  • 2009 – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – South Africa British & Irish Lions Tour – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2008 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tour – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – South Africa IRB Rugby World Cup – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tour – Springboks XV Vodacom Outgoing Tour – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – South Africa World Cup warm-up matches
  • 2006 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa IRB Under 19 World Championship – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours – Springbok XV Vodacom Outgoing Tours
  • 2005 – Free State SA Under 19 – Free State ABSA Under 21 Competition – South Africa IRB U19 World Championships
  • 2004 – Free State U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week

What an illustrious career this man has had and when one looks at the statistics it does not even show his time at Racing Metro (France) in 2009 to 2012.

 

Paul Jordaan:

Position Centre/Wing/Flyhalf
Height 1.80
Weight 90 kg
Date of Birth 4 January 1992
Place of Birth Somerset East
Provincial Debut 2012-Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 13
Provincial Points 20
Super Rugby Debut 2012-Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 10
Super Rugby Points 10
Test Debut 2011-2012-Springboks-U20
Test Caps 8
Test Points 5
Paul-Jordaan-20-12-2012

Paul is another star rugby player schooled at Grey College in Bloemfontein and is one of the present players on most rugby supporter’s lips. He is also, like Francois Steyn, a very versatile backline player with one difference, he has blistering pace. This is one reason I feel these two players will and are going to make a tremendous combination in the midfield for the Sharks.

In my humble opinion I believe Paul could be the new Danie Gerber of SA Rugby. I know some will castigate me for even comparing Paul with Gerber, but I have no doubt that this young man is in that category.

Another factor that many supporters are not aware of is that Paul also played flyhalf at school and a few games for the Sharks XV at pivot and has a solid kicking game.

Paul’s career portfolio to date is as follows:

  • The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa IRB Junior World Championship – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – South Africa IRB Junior World Championships
  • 2010 – South Africa SA U18 High Performance – Free State U18 Craven Week
  • 2009 – Free State U18 Academy Week
  • 2008 – Konica Minolta Free State U16 Coca-Cola Grant Khomo Week – U16 Elite Squad Elite Squads
  • 2005 – Eastern Province U13 Coca Cola Craven Week

 

Tim Whitehead:

Position Centre
Height 1.88
Weight 90 kg
Date of Birth 30 May 1988
Place of Birth Port Elizabeth
Provincial Debut 2009-2011-WP, 2011-2012-Present-Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 21-WP, 7-Sharks
Provincial Points 10-WP
Super Rugby Debut 2010-2011-Stormers, 2012-Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 10-Stormers, 15-Sharks
Super Rugby Points 5-Sharks
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Tim-Whitehead-20-12-2012

Tim was schooled at Grey High School in the Eastern Cape, he then moved to the Western Cape where he studied at UCT and started his senior rugby career.

Towards the end of 2011 he decided to change provinces as he felt his career was at a dead end whilst at Western Province and although hesitant at first he took up the offer to join the Sharks and ever since has been a stalwart at the Tank.

Sadly for him, is the fact the Francois Steyn has also decided to return to the Tank and hopefully this will not break his spirit as a player since joining the Sharks. Tim has been a solid and dependable inside centre for the Sharks so one can only hope he finds confidence at Steyn’s return, fact is Steyn is the Springboks first choice inside centre and thought of by many as one of the very best in world rugby.

Tim is a team player and again will cover 12 and 13 as he has the skills to do so. His one weakness is that he does not have that out and out pace of Paul Jordaan.

Tim’s career portfolio to date is as follows:

  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – DHL Western Province ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – DHL Western Province Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – DHL Stormers Vodacom Super Rugby – UCT FNB Varsity Cup Presented by Steinhoff International – DHL Western Province Vodacom Cup
  • 2010 – Vodacom Western Province ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Western Province Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Western Province Vodacom Cup – UCT FNB Varsity Cup – Vodacom Stormers Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – SA Students SA Students – Western Province ABSA Under 21 Competition – Western Province Vodacom Cup
  • 2008 – Vodacom WP u21 ABSA Under 21 Competition – UCT FNB Varsity Cup

Meyer Bosman:

Position Centre/Flyhalf
Height 1.92
Weight 98 kg
Date of Birth 19 April 1985
Place of Birth Bethlehem
Provincial Debut 2005-2010-FS cheetahs, 2011-Present-Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 56-FS, 34-Sharks
Provincial Points 109-FS, 132-Sharks
Super Rugby Debut 2006-2010-Cheetahs, 2011-present-Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 59-Cheetahs, 34-Sharks
Super Rugby Points 188-Cheetahs, 24-Sharks
Test Debut Test debut: 19 November 2005 vs Wales in Cardiff aged 20
Test Caps 3
Test Points 7
Meyer-Bosman-20-12-2012

Meyer was schooled Oakdale Agricultural High. He started as a flyhalf but later in his career showed great ability in the inside centre position. He has played for the national team of South Africa, the Springboks.

Bosman started his professional rugby career at the Free State Cheetahs, who competes in the Currie Cup. His most famous moment during his first season was the winning try he scored in the dying moments of the game against a full strength Blue Bulls team in 2005. The score earned the Free State Cheetahs their second Currie Cup championship (the first being more than 30 years prior). Bosman was part of the team that successfully defended the title for the following two years, by ending in a draw in 2006 against Blue Bulls and defeating the Golden Lions in 2007′s final.

At the young age of 20, he made his debut for the Springboks in late 2005, against Wales in Cardiff. The Springboks won the game 33–16, with Bosman having contributed two conversions on his debut. He played the next week against France in Paris, again starting at flyhalf. He kicked one penalty goal in the 20–26 loss.

At the end of the 2010 Currie Cup season, Bosman signed with The Sharks, the 2010 Currie Cup Champions. He made his debut for them against his former team, the Cheetahs, in the Super Rugby competition on 19 February 2011, playing at inside centre. Ironically the former Sharks inside centre, Andries Strauss, played in that match for the Cheetahs, the two players literally swapping the number 12 jerseys for the two teams respectively.

His career portfolio is as follows:

  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2010 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Vodacom Cheetahs Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs British & Irish Lions Tour – Vodacom Cheetahs Vodacom Super 14
  • 2008 – Vodacom FS Cheetahs ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Vodacom Cheetahs Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Vodacom Cheetahs Vodacom Super 14
  • 2006 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Vodacom Cheetahs Vodacom Super 14 – Springbok XV Vodacom Outgoing Tours
  • 2005 – Vodacom Cheetahs ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Free State ABSA Under 21 Competition – Vodacom Cheetahs Vodacom Cup – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours
  • 2004 – Free State ABSA U20 Competition Section A

 

Heimar Williams:

Position Centre
Height 1.80
Weight 93 kg
Date of Birth 2 September 1991
Place of Birth Krugersdorp
Provincial Debut 2011-Sharks
Provincial Caps 1-Sharks
Provincial Points 0
Super Rugby Debut 0
Super Rugby Caps 0
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Heimar-Williams-20-12-2012

Heimar was schooled in Pretoria at Afrikaans Hoër Seunsskool, he then joined the Sharks Academy to further his studies and rugby career. He is a versatile centre that plays either 12 or 13 and has, like Jordaan, some pace to boot, just not as explosive.

His young career to date as follows:

  • 2012 – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2011 – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2010 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2009 – SA Academy U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week

Starters:

John Plumtree will start with Francois Steyn and Paul Jordaan, this of course will depend on the injury Frans picked up during 2012′s Springbok games, but injuries apart no doubt that would be the best combination in my opinion. If Francois Steyn is still injured at the start of the 2013 season, Tim Whitehead will start at inside centre.

 

 

Wings:

JP Pietersen:

Position Wing
Height 1.90
Weight 103 kg
Date of Birth 12 July 1986
Place of Birth Stellenbosch
Provincial Debut 2005 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 42
Provincial Points 90
Super Rugby Debut 2006 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 100
Super Rugby Points 165
Test Debut 9 September 2006 vs Australia in Johannesburg, aged 20
Test Caps 48
Test Points 70
JP-Pietersen-20-12-2012

JP Pietersen was schooled in Witbank at Generaal Hertzog High school. He then moved to the Durban where he got accepted at the Sharks Academy and at age 19 made his debut for the Sharks.

He started at Fullback and although a very good fullback he was soon selected at wing with his deceptive pace and gliding runs which make him an unpredictable backline player, with the ability to break the line at will and create attacking opportunities for his team. He is also a clinical finisher and was the leading try scorer in the 2007 Super14 competition with 12 tries from 15 games.

He was selected for the Springboks 2007 Rugby World cup squad. Starting in the first two matches, Pietersen scored three tries. He was impressive in the game against England, scoring two tries and setting up a third.

However, post World Cup JP Pietersen went on to establish the most capped wing combination in Springbok history with Bryan Habana, currently standing at 25 Tests. Ten more than the next best pairing of James Small and Jaques Olivier. Aside from his obvious attacking abilities, Pietersen is widely regarded for his outstanding defense. His cover defense being the saving grace of the Springboks 2008 End of Year Tour, manfully keeping the Welsh at bay and dominating his opposite Shane Williams. His all-round skills remain of the highest standard, having matured into one of the best wings post readmission.

2012 Was no different, where JP Pietersen was again at his best. He was in scintillating form and was it not for a broken thumb he would possibly have had his best season ever. He also had a successful stint at outside centre when the Sharks needed him, showing his versatility as a player.

TEST RECORD

OPPOSITION

P

W

D

L

T

C

PE

DG

PTS

Argentina

2

2

0

0

2

0

0

0

10

Australia

11

5

0

6

1

0

0

0

5

British Isles

2

2

0

0

1

0

0

0

5

England

7

6

1

0

4

0

0

0

20

Fiji

2

2

0

0

1

0

0

0

5

France

1

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

Ireland

2

1

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

Italy

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Namibia

1

1

0

0

1

0

0

0

5

New Zealand

8

4

0

4

1

0

0

0

5

Samoa

3

3

0

0

2

0

0

0

10

Scotland

3

3

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Tonga

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

USA

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Wales

3

3

0

0

1

0

0

0

5

  • 2012 – South Africa Castle Outgoing Tours – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa Castle Incoming Tours – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – South Africa IRB Rugby World Cup – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2010 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa British & Irish Lions Tour – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2008 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tour – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – South Africa IRB Rugby World Cup – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tour – Springboks XV Vodacom Outgoing Tour – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – South Africa World Cup warm-up matches
  • 2006 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa IRB Under 21 World Championship – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours – Springbok XV Vodacom Outgoing Tours
  • 2005 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round
  • 2004 – @lantic Pumas ABSA U20 Competition Section B – Mpumalanga U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week

 

Odwa Ndugane:

Position Wing
Height 1.91
Weight 102 kg
Date of Birth 20 February 1981
Place of Birth Umtata
Provincial Debut 2000-2003-Border, 2004-2005-Blue Bulls, 2005-Present-Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 49-Border, 2-Blue Bulls, 72-Natal Sharks
Provincial Points 125-Border, 145- Natal Sharks
Super Rugby Debut 2004-2005-Blue Bulls, 2005-present-Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 10-Bulls, 82-Sharks
Super Rugby Points 15-Bulls, 110-Sharks
Test Debut 2008
Test Caps 9
Test Points 10
Odwa-Ndugane-20-12-2012

Odwa was schooled at the Hudson Park High School, after which he represented the Border Bulldogs and thereafter moved to the Bulls with his twin brother Akona.

He completed the season 2004 at the Bulls, but soon into 2005 he decided to join the Sharks Academy and quickly found his way into the Sharks senior side where he still applies his trade. Odwa has been one of the most dependable players at the Sharks setup, as he always gives his best. He has always been one of the most underrated wings in South Africa, being a player that reads the game well and gets involved, maybe only the lack of a bit of raw speed being his downfall.

He has also showed his versatility in having also played for the Sharks at fullback, having showed very good attacking skills from the back. He also is defensively sound and runs good lines. He brings a lot of experience to the Sharks backline and although he may not start most matches, the Sharks at least know they have very good backup in him and they know he will not let the team down.

In 2008 He made his Test debut against Italy (26-0 victory) in Cape Town ahead of his twin brother Akona Ndugane.

  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – South Africa IRB Rugby World Cup – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2010 – South Africa Outgoing Tours – Springboks Outgoing Tours – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa British & Irish Lions Tour – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14 – Sharks MTN test
  • 2008 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tour – South Africa Vodacom Tri-Nations – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – SA Emerging IRB Nations Cup – South Africa Vodacom Incoming Tours – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2006 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2005 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round – Natal Wildebeest Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super 12
  • 2004 – South Africa A South Africa A Outgoing Tour – Bulls Vodacom Super 12 – Blue Bulls ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division
  • 2003 – Spoornet Bulldogs ABSA Currie Cup First Div – Spoornet Bulldogs Absa Currie Cup Qualifying Rounds – Spoornet Bulldogs Vodacom Shield
  • 2002 – Spoornet Bulldogs Bankfin Currie Cup – Border U/21 Bankfin Under 21 – South Africa IRB U21 World Cup – Border Vodacom Cup
  • 2001 – Spoornet Bulldogs Vodacom Cup
  • 2000 – Border U/21 Bankfin Under 21
  • 1999 – Border U/21 Bankfin Under 21

 

Lwazi Mvovo:

Position Wing
Height 1.85
Weight 92 kg
Date of Birth 3 June 1986
Place of Birth Umtata
Provincial Debut 2007 Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 63
Provincial Points 140
Super Rugby Debut 2010 Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 40
Super Rugby Points 75
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 7
Test Points 5
Lwazi-Mvovo-20-12-2012

Lwazi Mvovowas schooled at Maria Louw High School. His debut for the Natal Sharks was in 2008 against Boland.

In the 2010 Currie Cup tournament he was the second highest try scorer with 12 tries to his name. In the Super Rugby competition he impressed once again when he tied for the second highest try scorer, with 6 tries to his name.

He is very quick on his feet and shows an excellent work rate. In October 2010 Lwazi was selected for the Springbok squad of 39 players to prepare for the November tour of Europe. He made his Springboks debut on 20 November 2010 in the 21-17 loss to Scotland at Murrayfield. Lwazi scored his first international try against England, at Twickenham on Saturday 27 November 2010, in a 21-11 victory.

Lwazi made his Tri-Nations debut against the Australia in Sydney on 23 July 2011. He was part of the 39 – 20 hammering at the hands of the Wallabies, however he showed strength and stamina to test the Australian defense for the full 80 minutes. His 100m time was 10.32 seconds.

Mvovo then appeared against New Zealand in Wellington as No 11.

Although Lwazi did not have his best season in 2012, he did finish the season in better form and hopefull in 2013 he can continue with that trend.

  • 2012 – South Africa Castle Outgoing Tours – South Africa The Castle Rugby Championship – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – South Africa Castle Incoming Tours – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby – South Africa Castle Tri-Nations
  • 2010 – South Africa Outgoing Tours – Springboks Outgoing Tours – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – The Sharks Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Sharks British & Irish Lions Tour – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks MTN test
  • 2008 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup
  • 2007 – Sharks U/21 ABSA Under 21 Competition – SA Amateur Africa Cup – Pool South – Wildebeest Vodacom Cup
  • 2006 – Kwa-Zulu Natal Inter-Provincial Sevens Competition – Men – KZN U21 ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2005 – Border SA Under 19
  • 2004 – Border Bulldogs ABSA U20 Competition Section B – Border U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week

 

Sibusiso Sithole:

Position Wing
Height 1.84
Weight 94 kg
Date of Birth 20 June 1989
Place of Birth Queenstown
Provincial Debut 2011- Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 33
Provincial Points 60
Super Rugby Debut 2012-Present-Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 0
Super Rugby Points 0
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Sibusiso-Sithole_20-12-2012

Sibusiso was schooled at Queens College and represented Border at Craven Week, thereafter he was accepted at the Sharks Academy and in 2010 made his way into the Junior Springbok Under 20 squad.

Sbura really made his name known in the Blitzbokke where it was his power and hunger for the try-line that set up the victory. He has since made his way through the junior levels into the Sharks XV and Sharks premier side.

His career portfolio to date is as follows:

  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup -Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition -The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2010 – South Africa HSBC Sevens World Series George – South Africa HSBC Sevens World Series Dubai – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – South Africa IRB Junior World Championships – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2008 – Border U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week – U18 Elite Squad Elite Squads – SA Schools SA Schools
  • 2006 – Border U16 Coca Cola Grant Khomo Week

 

 

Fullbacks:

Louis Ludik:

Position Fullback/Wing
Height 1.83
Weight 91
Date of Birth 8 October 1986
Place of Birth Kempton Park
Provincial Debut 2006-2009-Golden lions, 2010-Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 44-Golden Lions, 37-Natal Sharks
Provincial Points 60-Golden Lions, 35-Natal Sharks
Super Rugby Debut 2007-2009-Lions, 2011-Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 26-Lions, 32-Sharks
Super Rugby Points 20-LIons, 20-Sharks
Test Debut 0
Test Caps 0
Test Points 0
Louis-Ludik-20-12-2012

Louis was schooled at EG Jansen High School and represented the Falcons at various school levels, namely Falcons Craven Week Under 13 1998 &1999, Nike Falcons Under 15 2001, Falcons Craven Week Under 16 2002, Falcons Craven Week Under 18 2003 & 2004. He went on from junior level as well as starting his post school rugby career at the Golden Lions until the end of 2009, having sustained a serious injury to his knee in a match against the touring British & Irish Lions.

In the pre-season between 2009 and 2010 Louis decided to further his career at the Sharks in Durban where he has slowly regained form after the injury and cemented his place as the first choice Fullback at the Sharks. Moving Patrick Lambie to Flyhalf has made it easier for Louis as well as the fact that his own form grew to the standard that some in South Africa regard him as the form Fullback in SA and also feel he was very unfortunate not to make the End Of Year Springbok touring squad to the United Kingdom.

The Sharks will be hoping Louis continues with this form.

His career portfolio to date is as follows:

  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2010 – Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Invitational XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2009 – Xerox Golden Lions British & Irish Lions Tour – Auto & General Lions Vodacom Super 14
  • 2008 – Xerox Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Xerox Lions Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Auto & General Lions Vodacom Super 14
  • 2007 – Golden Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – SA Emerging IRB Nations Cup – Lions Vodacom Super 14
  • 2006 – Lions ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Lions Vodacom Cup
  • 2005 – Golden Lions SA Under 19 – Golden Lions ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2004 – Falcons U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week

 

Riaan Viljoen:

Position Fullback/Flyhalf/Wing
Height 1.85
Weight 95
Date of Birth 1 April 1983
Place of Birth Carltonville
Provincial Debut 2005-2007-Falcons, 2008-2011 Griquas, 2012-present Natal Sharks
Provincial Caps 36-Falcons, 71-Griquas, 9-Natal Sharks
Provincial Points 56-Falcons, 292-Griquas, 19-Natal Sharks
Super Rugby Debut 2009-Cheetahs, 12-Sharks
Super Rugby Caps 26-Cheetahs, 12-Sharks
Super Rugby Points 38-Cheetahs, 20-Sharks
Test Debut 2009
Test Caps 2 tour matches
Test Points 0
Riaan-Viljoen-20-12-2012

Riaan was school at Klerksdorp High School and played North West Province Craven Week before joining the Sharks Academy to further his career. He went on to play Sharks Under 19 and Under 20 from 2002-2004.

In 2005 he joined the Falcons where he spent a few years before joining the Griquas where he then got to play Super Rugby for the Cheetahs. Riaan is known for good attacking rugby and a very big boot and is a versatile back that can play Fullback or Flyhalf or Wing.

In 2012 he returned to the Sharks where he is currently applying his trade. He has yet to really find the form he had at the Cheetahs, all be it he has had a few very good games for the Sharks but sadly lackeded consistency.

Riaan will surely regain his form in 2013 as he is a quality player.

His career portfolio to date is as follows:

  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – GWK Griquas ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Griqualand West Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – Toyota Cheetahs Vodacom Super Rugby – GWK Griquas Vodacom Cup
  • 2010 – GWK Griquas ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – GWK Griquas Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Griquas Vodacom Cup – Vodacom Cheetahs Vodacom Super 14
  • 2009 – South Africa Vodacom Outgoing Tours – GWK Griquas ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – GWK Griquas Absa Currie Cup Compulsory Friendlies – Royal XV British & Irish Lions Tour – Vodacom Cheetahs Vodacom Super 14 – GWK Griquas Vodacom Cup
  • 2008 – Wildeklawer Griquas ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Wildeklawer Griquas Vodacom Cup
  • 2007 – Valke ABSA Currie Cup Premier Div – Valke ABSA Currie Cup Qualifiers – Valke Vodacom Cup
  • 2006 – Medicover Valke ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Medicover Valke Vodacom Cup
  • 2005 – AMD Valke ABSA Currie Cup First Division – AMD Valke ABSA Currie Cup Qualifying Round
  • 2003 – Natal Sharks ABSA U20 A Section
  • 2002 – Natal U/19 U19 Competition

 

Gouws Prinsloo:

Gouws Prinsloo is a solid young Fullback and also able to play outside centre. After school he was invited to the Sharks Academy and is still a member of the Sharks squad.

His portfolio is as follows:

  • HEIGHT 179 cm
  • WEIGHT 85 Kg
  • BIRTH DATE 19 July 1990
  • BIRTH PLACE East London
  • FAVOURITE FILM Gladiator
  • SECONDARY SCHOOL Marlow Agricultural High
  • 2012 – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup – Sharks Vodacom Super Rugby
  • 2011 – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition – The Sharks ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division – Sharks XV Absa Currie Cup Compulsory friendlies – Sharks XV Vodacom Cup
  • 2010 – Sharks ABSA Under 21 Competition
  • 2009 – Sharks ABSA Under 19 Competition
  • 2008 – Eastern Province CD U18 Coca-Cola Craven Week

 

Starters:

Louis Ludik will surely start as he was the form fullback in 2o12. If Riaan Viljoen can find form he may well put a lot of pressure on Louis Ludik, with Gouws also fighting for a place, but no doubt Louis Ludik will start.

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