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Herewith the Toyota Cheetahs squad member and contenders for Super Rugby 2013:

 

Props:

Schalk van der Merwe - 2012 - 005 Schalk Willem van der Merwe:

Age: 22 years – 04 December 1990

Vital Statistics: (H) 183 cm (W) 115 kg

Schalk was born in Tzaneen. He has come through the ranks of Cheetahs rugby, having represented the union at u/18 Academy Week in 2008, and in the same year, the SA Schools Academy team. He went on to represent the Free State at u/19, u/21, Vodacom Cup, and Currie Cup in the 2012 season. Though still young, he has stood his man in the scrums, and a bright future lays ahead of him.

 

 

Caylib OosthuizenCaylib Rees Oosthuizen:

Age: 23 years – 01 September 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 186 cm (W) 115 kg

Born in Cape Town, Caylib started representative rugby with SWD in 2007 at the Academy week, and was also part of the SA Schools Academy team. He was signed by the Lions after being spotted in the Varsity Cup. He was selected for the 2009 Junior Bok squad, for the IRB Junior World Championship. Having already played Currie Cup and Super rugby with the MTN Lions, Caylib is sure to benefit from the mentorship of Os du Randt.

 

 

Coenie OosthuizenVictor Coenraad (Coenie) Oosthuizen:

Age: 24 years – 22 March 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 183 cm (W) 127 kg

Coenie has been in the Cheetahs system since 2005, representing Free State Schools at the 2005 Grant Khomo u/16 tournament. He also played u/18 Craven week in 2006 & 2007, as well as SA Schools in 2007. He has represented the Free State at every level possible since.

Coenie has had quite a distinguished career thus far, having represented the Junior Boks at the 2009 IRB Junior World Championship. Interestingly enough, he had by then already played Super Rugby for the Cheetahs. He was part of the Springbok squad, in 2010 on the EOYT tours, but only made his Bok debut in 2012 vs England. He has been the Cheetahs go to man, in the scrums for a few seasons already. If he can shake off the injury bogey, he will be the Cheetahs anchor in the scrums.

 

Rossouw de KlerkPieter Rossouw de Klerk:

Age: 23 years – 21 August 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 186 cm (W) 116 kg

Born in Vredenburg, and a product of Paarl Gymnasium, Rossouw represented WP at the u/16 Grant Khomo week in 2005. He then moved to the Bulls straight out of school, and has represented the Bulls at u/21, Vodacom Cup, Currie Cup and Super Rugby.

 


Trevor NyakaneTrevor Ntando Nyakane:

Age: 24 years – 04 May 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 178 cm (W) 117 kg

Trevor was born in Bushbuckridge, and finished high school at Ben Vorster in Tzaneen, He represented Limpopo at the Craven week at both u/16 and u/18 levels. Straight from school, he was drafted into the Cheetahs setup. He has already represented the Cheetahs at u/19, u/21, Vodacom Cup, Currie Cup, and in 2012 he played Super Rugby.

 


Lourens AdriaanseLourens Cornelius Adriaanse:

Age: 25 years – 05 February 1988

Vital Statistics: (H) 180 cm (W) 115 kg

Born in Cape Town, Lourens is another Paarl Gym player. He is the younger brother of Lions prop Jacobie, who is now playing in Europe. He started his representative rugby in 2004 at the u/16 Grant Khomo week for the WP. He went on to represent WP at Craven week u/18, WP u/19, WP u/21, WP Vodacom Cup. He starred for Maties in the Varsity Cup, and was subsequently selected for the SA Students team in 2009. He was contracted by Griquas in 2011, and has become a regular anchor in their front row. He has also represented the Toyota Cheetahs in Super rugby.

 

Steph RobertsWillem Andries Stephanus (Steph) Roberts:

Age: 28 years – 28 March 1985

Vital Statistics: (H) 188 cm (W) 118 kg

Born in Bloemfontein, Steph is another old Grey’s product. He represented Free State at the 2003 u/18 Craven Week, and was selected for the SA Schools and for the Junior Boks in 2004. He made his provincial debut in 2005 for the Cheetahs u/19 and Vodacom Cup teams. He signed for Griquas in 2008, and played for the Royal XV against the touring British & Irish Lions. He had a good season with Griquas in 2012.
Considering the Cheetahs have lost the services of players like WP Nel (Edinburgh) and Marcel van der Merwe (Bulls), the Cheetahs have a nice group of young props to choose from, providing decent depth in the frontrow

There should be a fair bit of competition on the LH side, as Coenie has stated that he will prefer to play exclusively tighthead for the Cheetahs. Nyakane might be a good bet, having already played Super Rugby, however Steph Roberts, and Caylib Oosthuizen will push him hard. On the TH side, we can safely bank on Coenie starting if fit, with the solid Adriaanse or the promising de Klerk as back up.

All things considered, the Cheetahs look well covered at prop. The available players are all strong scrummagers, as well as fairly mobile, which fits in well with the Cheetahs expansive game plan.

 

 

Hookers:

 

Adriaan_StraussJan Adriaan Strauss:

Age: 27 years – 18 November 1985

Vital Statistics: (H) 184 cm (W) 112 kg

Born in Bloemfontein, Adriaan strangely enough made his provincial debut for the Blue Bulls in 2004 at u/20 level. In the same year he represented the Junior Boks at the IRB u/19 World Championship. In 2005 he played Vodacom Cup and Currie Cup rugby for the Bulls. In 2006, he again represented the Junior Boks at the IRB u/21 World Championship. He made his Super Rugby debut for the Bulls in the same year, before joining the Cheetahs in 2007. He has become the Cheetahs 1st choice hooker, and has captained the Cheetahs on numerous occassions.

He made his bok debut vs Australia in 2008, and has 19 Bok caps. In 2012, on the End of Year Tour, he was selected as the vice captain for the Boks vs Ireland, Scotland and England. Using his opportunity as starting hooker for the Boks, Adriaan has enhanced his reputation, with some standout performances. His leadership also came through strongly on the end of year tour.

 

Hercu_LiebenbergHercúlaas Johannes (Hercú) Liebenberg:

Age: 27 years – 16 May 1986

Vital Statistics: (H) 178 cm (W) 110 kg

Hercú was born in Postmasburg, and attended school at Grey College. He made his representative debut at the 2004 u/18 Craven Week. He went on to represent SA Schools in 2005, the Cheetahs at u/21, Vodacom Cup, and Currie Cup. He played for the Mighty Elephants in 2009, and was considering retirement due to a long term injury, when Naka lured him back to the Cheetahs. He has since established himself as reliable back up to bok Adriaan Strauss, and the Cheetahs have been able to manage the workload of Strauss, without losing much.

 

 

ryno_barnesRyno Joseph Barnes:

Age: 31 years – 05 November 1981

Vital Statistics: (H) 185 cm (W) 110 kg

Born in Cape Town, Ryno attended school at Paarl Gym, and DF Malan. He made his provincial debut for WP in the Vodacom Cup in 2006. He moved to the Valke in 2007, playing Vodacom and Currie Cup. In 2009, he was signed by Griquas. He was part of the Royal XV that played against the touring British & Irish Lions. He has played Super Rugby for the Cheetahs since 2010, and has been a solid backup option for the Cheetahs. Ryno has a sterling season with Griquas in the 2012 Currie Cup, and is a grafter in the front row.

 

 

TorstenRTorsten George van Jaarsveld:

Age: 26 years – 30 June 1987

Vital Statistics: (H) 176 cm (W) 100 kg

Born in Namibia, the tough player attended Hendrik Verwoerd in Pretoria. He represented the Bulls u/18 Academy team in 2005. He was then contracted by the Valke. He played u/19, and u/21 for the Valke, and was then signed by the Pumas, where he quickly became a stalwart. He was selected for the 2012 Northern Barbarians side for the June internationals vs. the touring England squad. He has been contracted by the Cheetahs as from end 2012.
Bar injury, Adriaan Strauss is head and shoulders above the others in the group, and is likely to be the Cheetahs captain as well. Thus, it is a squabble for a place in the final squad of 35 between the rest. Hercú has been the deputy in the Currie Cup, and has rotated as back up hooker with Barnes. Both are solid back up options. Torsten comes with a reputation as a tough and hard working hooker, who will likely see Super rugby action at some time, given the attrition rate in this tough tournament. He may also be used as a flanker in an emergency.

 

 

Locks:

 

Andries_FerreiraAndries Stephanus Ferreira:

Age: 23 years – 29 March 1990

Vital Statistics: (H) 197 cm (W) 120 kg

Born in Despatch, Andries finished school at Affies in Pretoria. He represented EP at the u/16 Grant Khomo week in 2005 and 2006. In 2008 he represented the Bulls at the u/18 Craven Week, and made the SA Elite Squad, as well as the SA Schools squad. He continued to rise up the ranks at the Bulls, playing for the u/19, and u/21 sides. After a brief stint playing European league, Andries was signed by the Cheetahs in 2012. Since then he has 14 Super Rugby matches under his belt, primarily as a No. 4 lock, and is beginning to grow in stature.

 

 

Ligtoring_LandmanRynard Jaco (Ligtoring) Landman:

Age: 26 years – 24 July 1986

Vital Statistics: (H) 196 cm (W) 120 kg

Born in East London, Ligtoring as he is nicknamed, went to school in Despatch. He represented EP at the u/18 Craven Week in 2004. He was then signed by the Leopards, and played in their u/19 team, also being selected for the SA u/19 team. He continued his career with the Leopards, representing them at u/21, Vodacom Cup and Currie Cup level. In 2009 he made his Super rugby debut for the Lions. He also played for the Royal XV vs. the touring British & Irish Lions. After a year with Boland in 2011, he was contracted by Griquas in 2012. He has played well for Griquas, and will hope to be in the final Cheetahs S15 squad for 2013.

 

 

 

Lodewyk_De_JagerLodewyk (Lood) de Jager:

Age: 20 years – 17 December 1992

Vital Statistics: (H) 205 cm (W) 125 kg

Born in Alberton, the big fellow attended Hugenote Springs. He started his provincial career with the Leopards u/19 team, and by accounts he was unlucky to have not made the final cut for the Junior Bok squad of 2012. Lood played Currie Cup rugby for the Leopards before being thrust into the limelight by Naka, and could well be the Cheetahs bolter for 2013. It is probable that he will make his Super Rugby debut before playing Currie Cup rugby for his new provincial union.

 

 

Martin_Muller Martin Dirk Muller:

Age: 25 years – 23 March 1988

Vital Statistics: (H) 198 cm (W) 110 kg

Born in Cape Town, this Bishops old boy represented WP at the 2006 u/18 Craven Week, and was selected for the SA Schools B team. In 2007 he was selected to represent the Junior Boks at the IRB u/19 World Championship. After representing WP at u/19 and u/21 level, he also made the Junior Bok team for the inaugural IRB Junior World Championship in 2008. In 2009, after some Varsity Cup rugby for UCT, and Vodacom Cup rugby for WP, Martin made the SA Students team, and made his Super rugby debut with the Stormers. In 2011 he signed with Griquas, and played Super 15 rugby for the Cheetahs (11 matches). He was out for the entire 2012 Super 15, with a long term injury, but after a prominent season of Currie Cup rugby, he will be keen to regain his place as 1st choice No. 5 lock for the Cheetahs.

 

 

 

Edwin_HewittEdwin Westley Hewitt:

Age: 25 years – 28 March 1988

Vital Statistics: (H) 197 cm (W) 123 kg

Born in Pretoria, and a product of Affies, Edwin seemed to slip through the schools system undetected.He represented the Leopards at U/19 and u/21 level, and the Pukke, in the Varsity Cup, before signing with Griquas in 2010. Though relatively unknown, Hewitt is highly rated by Griquas coach Pote Human.

 

 

 

Waltie_VermeulenPetrus van der Walt (Waltie) Vermeulen:

Age: 24 years – 11 November 1988

Vital Statistics: (H) 198 cm (W) 112 kg

Born in Bloemfontein, and another Grey’s old boy, Waltie has been in the Cheetahs system since 2006, when he represented Free State at the u/18 Craven Week. Since then he has represented the Cheetahs at u21, Vodacom Cup, Currie Cup and Super rugby (2010). He has 19 Super Rugby caps for the Cheetahs, but due to his studies(medical doctor), he has become the forgotten man outside of the Cheetahs camp. Despite his realtive absence, due to his studies, the Cheetahs coaches are well aware of what waltie offers as a lineout specialist, and he will add valuable depth.

 

 

Francois_UysFrancois Uys:

Age: 27 years – 12 March 1986

Vital Statistics: (H) 194 cm (W) 112 kg

Born in Springs, Francois attended Dr. EG Jansen. He represented the Valke at the 2004 u/18 Craven week. In 2005 he was selected for the Junior boks, in the IRB u/19 World Championship. He represented the Lions at u/21, Vodacom Cup, and Currie Cup from 2006 to 2008. In 2009 he was signed by the Cheetahs, and after a few matches of Vodacom Cup, was called up to the Cheetahs Super 14 squad. He has been a regular feature (17 Super Rugby caps) at either lock, flank or 8th man. Uys is a very physical and committed player, and has been the Cheetahs go to man, to provide a spark in the forward exchanges. His versatility makes him an useful squad member.

 

Bar the unknown quality of young Lood de Jager, who may yet turn out to be the Cheetahs bolter for next year, and the as yet untested Hewitt, it can be expected that Ferreira should start in the No. 4 jersey, with Martin Muller at No. 5. However, anything is possible and Super 15 is sure to take its toll, so the likes Francois Uys, Landman and Waltie Vermeulen will likely be called on for duty. No doubt young Lood, and Hewitt will likely feature during the long season, and stake a claim. Naka has good expierence as backup. With captain Strauss’ accurate lineout throwing, lineouts as such haven’t been the Cheetahs achilles, as much as the lack of grunt in the second row. This looks like a season where this could be resolved.

 

 

Loose Forwards:

 

heinrich_brussowHeinrich Wilhelm Brüssow:

Age: 26 years – 21 July 1986

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

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

 

 

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

 

 

Marnus_SchoemanMarnus Schoeman:

Age: 24 years – 09 February 1989

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

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

 

 

 

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

 

 

Justin_DowneyJustin Downey:

Age: 26 years – 11 November 1986

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

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

 

 

 

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

 

 

Pieter_LabuschagnePieter Hermias Cornelius (Lappies) Labuschagne:

Age: 24 years – 11 January 1989

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

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

 

 

 

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

 

 

Boom_PrinslooJohannes (Boom) Prinsloo:

Age: 24 years – 12 March 1989

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

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

 

 

 

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

 

 

T DanillerTertius Daniller:

Age: 23 years – 04 August 1989

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

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

 

 

 

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

 

Davon_RaubenheimerDavon Stephanus Raubenheimer:

Age: 28 years – 16 July 1984

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

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

 

 

 

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

 

 

Philip_van_der_WaltChristoffel Phillipus (Phillip) van der Walt:

Age: 23 years – 14 July 1989

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

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

 

 

 

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

 

 

Leon_KarremakerLeon Karemaker:

Age: 28 years – 18 May 1985

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

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

 

 

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

 

 

JuanJuanne Hugo (Juan) Smith:

Age: 31 years – 30 July 1981

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

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

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

 

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

 

 

Scrumhalves:

 

Piet v ZylPetrus Erasmus (Piet) van Zyl:

Age: 23 years – 14 September 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 174 cm (W) 84 kg

Born in Pretoria, Piet attended the illustrious Grey College in Bloemfontein. Given his talent, it is surprising that he didn’t play representative schools rugby, but rose to prominence in the Varsity Cup for Shimlas. From there he quickly rose through the ranks. He made his Super debut in 2012. He has 15 Super rugby caps, and with his crisp pass, and a good eye for space van Zyl has combined well with Johan Goosen, and their understanding, has benefitted both players.

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2008 – Shimlas (Varsity Cup), Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2009 – Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2010 – Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition), Free State (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2011 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

Sarel Sarel Johannes Pretorius:

Age: 29 years – 18 April 1984

Vital Statistics: (H) 174 cm (W) 82 kg

Born in Bloemfontein, Sarel attende Reitz Höer Skool. He represented the Central Region in the 2003 u/18 Craven Week. He has played provincial rugby for the Griffons, Cheetahs, Valke, and griquas, as well as Super Rugby for the Cheetahs and the Australian franchise, Waratahs.

He made his Super rugby debut in 2010, but really made everyone sit up and take notice with a try scoring spree in the 2011 Super 15, earning the SA Super 15 Player of the Year Award. In 2012 he signed with the Waratahs (14 Super caps), in a deal that would see him return for the Cheetahs’ in the Currie Cup. That sojourn did not end well, as Sarel soon found himself excess to requirements in Sydney. He is back with Cheetahs, and will without a doubt, get enough game time. He has his detractors, especially regarding his defence, but as a game breaker, he is par exellance! He has represented the Cheetahs38 times at Super Rugby level, and his experience will be crucial.

Rugby Career:
  • 2003 – Griffons (ABSA u/20 Section B).
  • 2005 – Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2006 – Medicover Valke (Vodacom Cup), Medicover Valke (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2007 – Medicover Valke (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Wildeklawer Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2008 – Wildeklawer Griquas (Vodacom Cup), Wildeklawer Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Emerging Springboks (IRB Nations Cup).
  • 2009 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup),GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Royal XV (British & Irish Lions Tour).
  • 2010 – GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup),GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Waratahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

Tewis de BruynMatheus Johannes (Tewis) de Bruyn:

Age: 30 years – 05 August 1982

Vital Statistics: (H) 174 cm (W) 86 kg

Born in Hoopstad, and a Grey College old boy, Tewis made his provincial debut for the Leopards in the 2002 Bankfin u/21’s. He stayed with the Leopards until 2004, when he joined the SWD Eagles. In 2006 he joined Boland, and played Currie Cup rugby for them till 2007, when he joined the Cheetahs. He soon established himself as a regular starter, and a very versatile player. He made Super debut in 2008, and has since been a stalwart for the Cheetahs (56 Super Rugby caps). Apart from his scrumhalf duties, he has also done duty as a goal kicker, and run out as a useful flyhalf. Tewis is another player with a wealth of experience, and is a valuable squad member.

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2002 – Leopards (Bankfin u/21 Competition), Leopards (Bankfin Currie Cup).
  • 2003 – Leopards (Vodacom Cup), Leopards (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2004 – Eagles (Vodacom Shield), Eagles (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2005 – SWD Eagles (Vodacom Cup), Eagles (ABSA Currie Cup Qualifier).
  • 2006 – Eagles (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup),Fidentia Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2007 – Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup Qualifier), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2008 – Free State (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2009 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (British & Irish Lions Tour), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2010 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division),Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division),Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

 

Marnus_HugoAbraham Pieter Marnus Hugo:

Age: 30 years – 24 September 1986

Vital Statistics: (H) 169 cm (W) 82 kg

Born in Paarl, Marnus is a Paarl Gym old boy. He made his provincial debut for Natal in 2005, and, has played provincial rugby for Boland, and Griquas. He made his Super rugby debut for the Cheetahs in 2010 (2 caps). A combatitive scrumhalf, his play is well suited to the fast flowing style the Cheetahs favour.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2005 – Natal (SA u/19)
  • 2006 – Boland (ABSA u/21 Competition), Fidentia Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup).
  • 2007 – Boland (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2008 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2009 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Boland (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2010 – Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Regent Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).

 

Cheetah coachesNaka, and Hawies, will probably not look further than the young and exciting van Zyl, and the experienced duo of “Super” Sarel and Tewis, but should injuries cut them down, Marnus is a player of similar ilk.

 

 

Flyhalves:

 

Johan_GoosenJohannes (Johan) Lodewikus Goosen:

Age: 20 years – 27 July 1992

Vital Statistics: (H) 185 cm (W) 87 kg

Born in Burgersdorp, Johan actually started playing as a flank, and then moved to fly half. At an early age “The Goose” as he is affectionately called, showcased great skill and understanding of the game. After Grade 8, he moved to Grey College in Bloemfontein. He has represented the Free State at all levels, and made the SA Schools team in 2009, and in 2010 he was selected for the u/18 High Performance Squad that played in the Four Nations tournament vs. England, France and Argentina. In 2011 he participated in the IRB Junior World Championship.

In 2012, he made his Super Rugby debut, and such was his impact, that he was topping the score sheets, up until he sustained a serious shoulder injury vs. the Highlanders, in the act of scoring a great try.

Despite only playing a combined 40 minutes of Currie Cup rugby, he was called up to the Bok squad, preparing for the Rugby Championship match vs. Australia in Perth. He made his debut, off the bench in that match, and replaced a misfiring Morne Steyn vs. The All Blacks in Dunedin and made massive difference, taking the ball flat, and attacking the line with purpose. The Boks might have won, had Goosen been brought on sooner. He started a match for the Boks for the first time vs. Australia at Loftus, and despite struggling with a sore heel, that affected his usually accurate goal kicking, he was an attacking force, that ignited the backline, resulting in a 5 try rout of the Wallabies. In the next match vs. The All Blacks in Soweto, he injured his knee in the 1st half, opening the door for Elton Jantjies. Johan will look forward to a 2012 with less injury disruptions, and cement his bok place.

Rugby Career:
  • 2005 – Border (u/13 Craven Week).
  • 2008 – Konica Minolta Free state (Grant Khomo u/16 Week), u/16 Elite Squads.
  • 2009 – Free State (Coca Cola u/18 Craven week), SA Schools u/18.
  • 2010 – Free State (Coca Cola u/18 Craven week), SA u/18 High Performance Squad, Schools u/18, Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2011 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Junior Springboks (IRB Junior World Championship).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15), Springboks (Castle Rugby Championship).

 

 

Francois_BrummerFrancois Brummer:

Age: 23 years – 17 May 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 183 cm (W) 91 kg

Born in Pretoria, and a Waterkloof old boy, Brummer was once regarded as a hot fly half prospect at the Bulls. He is one of only a few players that have played in 3 IRB Junior World cups! He represented the Bulls at the 2005 u/16 Grant Khomo week, u/18 Craven Weeks. and senior levels. He also represented the Junior Boks in the 2008 IRB u/19 World Championship. He made his Super rugby debut in 2010 (5 caps). Stuck behind Morne Steyn, and Jacques Louis Potgieter, influenced his decision to move to Griquas in search of more game time. In 2012, he was influential in the Griquas success. Though unlikely to lift Goosen out the starting berth, he will add value as a back up option.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2005 – Blue Bulls (Grant Khomo u/16 Week).
  • 2006 – Blue Bulls (Coca Cola u/18 Craven Week).
  • 2007 – Blue Bulls (Coca Cola u/18 Craven Week), Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA u/19 Competition), Junior Springboks (IRB u/19 World Championship).
  • 2008 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA u/19 Competition),Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA u/21 Competition), Vodacom Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Junior Springboks (IRB Junior World Championship).
  • 2009 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Junior Springboks (IRB Junior World Championship).
  • 2010 – Blue Bulls (ABSA u/21 Competition), Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Bulls (Vodacom super 14).
  • 2011 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Bulls (Vodacom super 15).
  • 2012 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).

 

 

Elgar_WattsElgar Graeme Watts:

Age: 32 years – 24 September 1985

Vital Statistics: (H) 181 cm (W) 87 kg

Born in Paarl, Elgar represented Boland at the 2003 u/18Craven Week. He made his provincial debut for Boland in 2008, after starring for Maties, in the 2006 Club Championships. Apart from a season with the Pumas in 2010, Watts has played his entire provincial career with Boland, and was instrumental in them winning the First Division Currie Cup in 2011. He also represented the SA Barbarians South vs. the touring English in 2012. Elgar has the all round skills , and will fit in well with the Cheetahs style of rugby. In fact the sequence of events that culminated in Sias Ebersohns decision to move overseas, was probably the reason why Naka contracted Watts.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2006 – Maties (Fidentia National club Championship).
  • 2008 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Boland Cavaliers(ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2009 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Boland (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Southern Kings (British & Irish Lions Tour).
  • 2010 – Pumas (Vodacom Cup), Barloworld Toyota Pumas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2011 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Regent Boland Cavaliers(ABSA Currie Cup First Division) DHL Stormers (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Regent Boland Cavaliers, (Vodacom Cup), Regent Boland Cavaliers(ABSA Currie Cup First Division), SA Barbarians South (Castle incoming Tours vs. England).

 

 

GraaffJohannes Petrus Jacobus (Hansie) Graaff:

Age: 23 years – 10 September 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 190 cm (W) 94 kg

Born in Pretoria, and a scholar from Wonderboom in Pretoria, Hansie could well turn out to a bolter in 2013. A relatively unknown player, who only caught the eyes of the Griffons selectors due to his performances for TUT in the Varsity Cup. He was offered a contract to play for Griffons in 2012, and was named the SA First Division Player of the Year, which is remarkable in that he only moved to flyhalf midway through the season. Hansie has also caught the eye of National Sevens coach, Paul Treu. An accurate goal kicker, and he has good distribution skills. It will be interesting to see what it was that piqued, Paul Treu’s interest. All of sudden, Naka has 3 experienced players in Goosen, Brummer and Watts, plus another exciting youngster.

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2010 – TUT (Varsity Cup).
  • 2011 – TUT (Varsity Cup).
  • 2012 – TUT (Varsity Cup), Griffons (Vodacom Cup), Griffons (ABSA Currie Cup First Division),

 

“Wunderkind” Goosen has the inside track for the fly half berth, but should another injury curse strike, a repeat of 2012’s disaster at flyhalf , should be averted, as Brummer has excelled at flyhalf for the Griquas.

Brummer is a serious talent, who lost his mojo at the Bulls. Not many players have represented the Junior Boks in three consecutive tournaments. Elgar Watts is solid if not spectacular, but the Flyhalf bolter could well be the new “kid” on the block Hansie Graaff. Paul Treu is usually an astute judge of talent, and he was more than mildly interested in Graaff.

All in all, the Cheetahs are seemingly well covered in this position for 2013, seeing that in a crisis, Riaan “True Blue” Smit can also slot in at 10, having gained experience in playing fly half in 2012.

 

 

Centres:

 

Joubert_EngelbrechtGabriel Joubert Engelbrecht:

Age: 23 years – 27 June 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 190 cm (W) 97 kg

Born in Kimberly, Joubert attended school in Upington. He represented the Griquas Academy team at the 2006 Under 18 Craven Week, and the Griquas Under 18 Craven Week team in 2007. He was then signed by the Leopards, whom he has represented at Under 19, Under 21, Vodacom Cup, and Currie Cup level. He was selected to play for the SA Barbarians North against the touring English in 2012. Joubert is a strong running centre, and will be keen to force his way into the Cheetahs squad.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2006 – Griquas (Academy u/18 Week).
  • 2007 – Griquas (Coca Cola u/18 Craven Week).
  • 2008 – Platinum Leopards (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2009 – Leopards (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2010 – Leopards (ABSA u/21 Competition), Leopards (ABSA Currie Cup Promo/Relegation).
  • 2011 – Leopards (Vodacom Cup), Leopards (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – Pukke (Varsity Cup), Platinum Leopards (Vodacom Cup), Leopards (ABSA Currie Cup first Division), SA Barbarians North (Castle Incoming Tour vs. England).

 

 

GeelAlbertus Daniël (Barry) Geel:

Age: 31 years – 30 April 1982

Vital Statistics: (H) 185 cm (W) 92 kg

Born in Springs, Barry attended FH Odendaal High School in Pretoria. Barry made his provincial debut for the Leopards in the Vodacom Cup in 2002. He then represented the Leopards in the Currie Cup until 2007, when he moved to Griquas. He played for Griquas until 2011, when he moved to the Cheetahs. He made his Super Rugby debut in 2010 for the Cheetahs and has regularly featured for them.

 

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2002 – Leopards (Vodacom Cup), Leopards (Bankfin Currie Cup).
  • 2003 – Leopards (Vodacom Cup), Leopards (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2004 – Leopards (Vodacom Cup), Leopards (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2005 – Impala Leopards (Vodacom Cup), Impala Leopards (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2006 – Impala Leopards (Vodacom Cup), Impala Leopards (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2007 – Wildeklawer Griquas (Vodacom Cup), Wildeklawer Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2008 – Wildeklawer Griquas (Vodacom Cup), Wildeklawer Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2009 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2010 – Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State XV (Vodacom Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

EbersohnRobert Thompson Ebersohn:

Age: 24 years – 23 February 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 180 cm (W) 87 kg

Born in Bloemfontein and a Grey College old boy, Robert has had a varied professional rugby career thus far. He has represented the Free State at all levels from Craven Week Under 16, to Super Rugby, except Under 21 level. He also played SA Schools and in two IRB Junior World Championships. In 2010 he made his Super Rugby debut, and has been a regular in the Cheetahs team.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2005 – Free State (Coca Cola Grant Khomo u/16 Week).
  • 2006 – Free State (Coca Cola Craven u/18 Week).
  • 2007 – Free State (Coca Cola Craven u/18 Week) Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition), SA Schools.
  • 2008 – Shimlas (Varsity Cup), Free State (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Junior Springboks (IRB Junior World Championship), Springbok Sevens (IRB Sevens Series).
  • 2009 – Vodacom Free State (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Junior Springboks (IRB Junior World Championship), Springbok Sevens (IRB Rugby World Cup Sevens).
  • 2010 – Free State (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15), Springbok Sevens (HSBC Sevens World Series).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

Johann_Sadie Johann Sadie:

Age: 24 years – 23 January 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 188 cm (W) 88 kg

Born in Malmesbury, Johann is a Paarl Gymnasium old boy and has represented Western Province at all levels from Under 16 to Super Rugby. He also represented the Junior Springboks at the IRB Junior World Championship. He made his Super Rugby debut in 2010. In 2012 he signed for the Blue Bulls but a sequence of injuries denied him any chance of making an impact and he was playing second fiddle to room mate JJ Engelbrecht as a result. So he asked for a release and signed with the Cheetahs. It is expected that the Cheetahs style of rugby will be more suited to him and an exciting combination with Robert Ebersohn could be on the cards.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2005 – Investec Western Province (Coca Cola Grant Khomo u/16 Week).
  • 2006 – Western Province (u/18 Academy Week), Western Province (Coca Cola Craven Week u/18), South Africa (CAR u/18).
  • 2007 – Western Province (Coca Cola Craven Week u/18).
  • 2008 – Vodacom Western Province (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2009 – Maties (Varsity Cup), Western Province (ABSA u/21 Competition) Junior Springboks (IRB Junior World Championship).
  • 2010 – Maties (Varsity Cup), Western Province (Vodacom Cup), Western Province (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2011 – DHL Western Province (Vodacom Cup), DHL Western Province (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), DHL Stormers (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Bulls (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

JP_NelJacobus Paulus (JP) Nel:

Age: 32 years – 09 January 1981

Vital Statistics: (H) 184 cm (W) 94 kg

Born and schooled in Worcester, JP made his provincial debut for Fidentia Western Province Under 21 in 1999 and he also played Vodacom Cup rugby, before being lured to the Bulls in 2001. He quickly became a stalwart in the Bulls backline and made his Super Rugby debut in 2001. He also made the Junior Springbok team which contested the IRB Under 21 World Cup in 2002. He gained a reputation as a hard tackling and running centre. After so many years at the Bulls, he signed for a club in Japan. He returned to South Africa in 2012, and joined Griquas. Though a tad long in the tooth, he is an uncompromising player and opponents will know exactly what to expect from him.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 1999 – Fedsure Western Province (Bankfin u/21 Competition).
  • 2000 – Fedsure Western Province (Vodacom Cup). Fedsure Western Province (Banfin u/21 Competition).
  • 2001 – Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Blue Bulls (Bankfin Currie Cup), Bulls (Vodacom Super 12).
  • 2002 – Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Blue Bulls (Bankfin u/21 Competition), Blue Bulls (Bankfin Currie Cup), Bulls (Vodacom Super 12), Junior Springboks (IRB u/21 World Cup).
  • 2003 – Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Mobil Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Bulls (Vodacom Super 12).
  • 2004 – Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Bulls (Vodacom Super 12).
  • 2005 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Bulls (Vodacom Super 12).
  • 2006 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Bulls (Vodacom Super 12).
  • 2007 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Bulls (Vodacom Super 12).
  • 2008 – Vodacom Bulls (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2009 – Vodacom Bulls (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2010 – NTT Shining Arcs (Japanese Top League).
  • 2011 – NTT Shining Arcs (Japanese Top League).
  • 2012 – GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).

 

Robert Ebersohn and Johann Sadie must be favourites to start, however if Hawies Fourie persists with Robert Ebersohn as an outside centre, it could open the door for Barry Geel, leaving Robert Ebersohn and Johann Sadie to squabble for the 13 jumper. Joubert Engelbrecht and Jean Stemmet, will push hard, and JP Nel won’t let any side down.

 

 

Wings:

 

BenjaminRayno Shannon Benjamin:

Age: 29 years – 03 August 1983

Vital Statistics: (H) 187 cm (W) 89 kg

Born in Vredenburg, Rayno made his provincial debut for Boland in 2004, and played Vodacom Cup and Currie Cup rugby for them till the end of 2006. In 2006 he started his Springbok Sevens career, and was soon a regular feature in the Springbok Sevens Squad. He made his Super Rugby debut in 2006. Benjamin has been prolific try scorer for the Springbok Sevens team as well as for his provincial teams.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2004 – Boland Cavaliers(Vodacom Shield), Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2005 – Boland Cavaliers(Vodacom Cup), Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2006 – Fidentia Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Stormers (Vodacom Super 14), Springbok Sevens (IRB Sevens Series).
  • 2007 – Golden Lions (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Springbok Sevens (IRB Sevens Series).
  • 2008 – Xerox Lions (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Auto & General Lions (Vodacom Super 14), Springbok Sevens (IRB Sevens Series).
  • 2009 – Southern Kings (British & Irish Lions Tour), Springbok Sevens (IRB Sevens Series & IRB Men’s Rugby World Cup Sevens).
  • 2011 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super15).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super15).

 

jannie_boshoffJan Hendrik (Jannie) Boshoff:

Age: 27 years – 13 January 1986

Vital Statistics: (H) 178 cm (W) 87 kg

Born in Newcastle, Jannie attended Maritzburg College, and represented Kwazulu Natal, at the 2004 Under 18 Craven Week. He made his senior provincial debut with the Golden Lions, and has played at all levels for the Lions. He made his Super Rugby debut in 2007.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2004 – Kwazulu Natal (Coac Cola u/18 Craven week).
  • 2005 – Golden Lions (SA u/19’s).
  • 2006 – Golden Lions ABSA u/21 Competition), Lions (Vodacom Cup).
  • 2007 – Golden Lions (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Lions (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2008 – Xerox Lions (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Auto & General Lions (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2009 – Golden Lions (Vodacom Cup), Xerox Lions (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Auto & General Lions (Vodacom Super 14), Xerox Golden Lions (British & Irish Lions Tour).
  • 2010 – Golden Lions (Vodacom Cup), Xerox Lions (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Auto & General Lions (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – MTN Golden Lions (Vodacom Cup), MTN Golden Lions (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), MTN Lions (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).

 

 

cameron_jacobsCameron Luciano Jacobs:

Age: 27 years – 31 October 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 178 cm (W) 86 kg

Born in Port Elizebeth, Cameron attended Framesby High and represented Eeastern Province at school level and Under 19 level, before moving to Bloemfontein to study. In 2008 and 2009 he made the SA Students team. He has also represented the Cheetahs at all levels, making his Super Rugby debut in 2012.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2005 – Eastern Province (Coca Cola Grant Khomo u/16 Week).
  • 2006 – Eastern Province (Coca Cola Craven u/18 Week).
  • 2007 – Eastern Province (Coca Cola Craven u/18 Week), BA Mighty Elephants (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2008 – Shimlas (FNB Varsity Cup), Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition) South Africa (SA Students).
  • 2009 – Shimlas (FNB Varsity Cup), Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition), South Africa (SA Students).
  • 2010 – Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2011 – Shimlas (FNB Varsity Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Tasol Solar Griffons (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – Shimlas (FNB Varsity Cup), Toyota Free State XV (Vodacom Cup), Tasol Solar Griffons (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

JansenRocco Reginald Jansen:

Age: 26 years – 21 July 1986

Vital Statistics: (H) 179 cm (W) 91 kg

Born in Queenstown, Rocco attended Queens College and made his provincial debut for the Leopards 2005. In 2007 he signed with the Bulls. In 2008 he also made the Emerging Springbok team, which played in the IRB Cup of Nations. After a brief stint with the Eeastern Province Mighty Elephants, Rocco signed with Griquas, and made his Super Rugby debut for the Cheetahs in 2012.

Rocco is a powerful runner, and a great finisher. Given a sniff of space, he will punish you. He was only 1 try behind the top try scorer of the Currie Cup, Raymond Rhule, with 7 touchdowns.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2005 – Impalas (Provincial Amateur Competition) Leopards (SA u/19’s).
  • 2006 – Leopards (ABSA u/21 Competition), Leopards (Inter-Provincial Sevens Competition).
  • 2007 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA u/21 Competition), Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2008 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Emerging Springboks (IRB Nations Cup).
  • 2009 – Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Mighty Elephants (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2010 – Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2011 – Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

DustyDusty Clint Noble:

Age: 29 years – 30 April 1984

Vital Statistics: (H) 184 cm (W) 90 kg

Born in Stellenbosch, Dusty made his provincial debut in 2002 for the Mpumalanga Under 19’s. He played provincial rugby for the Leopards, Sharks and Lions. He made his Super Rugby debut in 2006. He has also represented the Springbok Sevens on numerous occasions. In 2011 he moved to GWK Griquas and has played Super Rugby for the Cheetahs.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2002 – Mpumalanga ( u/19 Competition).
  • 2003 – Leopards (ABSA u/20 Competition).
  • 2004 – Leopards (ABSA u/20 Competition).
  • 2005 – Natal (ABSA u/21 Competition), The Sharks (ABSA Currie Cup Qualifier).
  • 2006 – Jaguars RC (Fidentia Club Championships), Natal (ABSA u/21 Competition), Wildebeest (Vodacom Cup), The Sharks (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division) The Sharks (Vodacom Super 14), Springbok Sevens (IRB Sevens Series).
  • 2007 – Wildebeest (Vodacom Cup), The Sharks (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division) The Sharks (Vodacom Super 14), Springbok Sevens (IRB Sevens Series).
  • 2008 – Xerox Lions (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Auto & General Lions (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2009 – Golden Lions (Vodacom Cup), Xerox Lions (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Auto & General Lions (Vodacom Super 14), Xerox Golden Lions (British & Irish Lions Tour).
  • 2010 – Auto & General Lions (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – MTN Golden Lions (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

JongiJongikhaya Lutric (Jongi) Nokwe:

Age: 31 years – 30 December 1981

Vital Statistics: (H) 186 cm (W) 90 kg

Born in Ngxalawe, Ciskei, Jongi ironically made a name as a Sevens Springbok in 2002. He then played Vodacom and Currie Cup rugby for Boland until 2007, when he signed for the Cheetahs. In 2004 he toured with the Springboks to the British Isles, but only made his Springbok debut in 2008. He made his Super Rugby debut for the Stormers in 2006. A serious knee injury in 2010 threw his career a curveball and he has battled to regain the form that saw him score 4 tries against the Wallabies in a Test match. If he can regain his form, he is a finisher of note and will add depth.

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2002 – Springbok Sevens (IRB Sevens Series).
  • 2003 – Boland (Vodacom Cup), Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Springbok Sevens (IRB Sevens).
  • 2004 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Shield), Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Springboks (Vodacom Outgoing Tours), Springbok Sevens(Emirates Airline George Rugby Sevens).
  • 2005 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Shield), Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2006 – Fidentia Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Fidentia Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Vodacom Stormers (Vodacom Super 14), Springboks (Vodacom Outgoing Tour).
  • 2007 -Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2008 – Free State (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Springboks (Vodacom Incoming & Outgoing Tour), Springboks (Vodacom Tri-Nations).
  • 2009 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Springboks (Vodacom Outgoing Tour), Springboks (British & Irish Lions Tour).
  • 2010 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – Tasol Solar Griffons (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – EP Kings (Vodacom Cup) EP Kings (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).

 

 

RhulerRaymond Kofi Rhule:

Age: 31 years – 06 November 1992

Vital Statistics: (H) 178 cm (W) 78 kg

Born in Accra, Ghana, Rhule went to Louis Botha High in Bloemfontein. He sure has enjoyed a meteoric rise since starring for the Junior Springboks as a replacement. He has represented the Free State at school and provincial level, bar Super Rugby. Given his performances in the Currie Cup, he is sure to make his debut in Super Rugby soon. He made a massive impact in the Junior World Championships as a replacement for Paul Jordaan. His electric pace, strong running, stepping off both feet and his spatial awareness makes him a strike weapon of note. He earned himself a call up to the Springbok squad on the End of Year Tour, to gain exposure of the Springbok systems.

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2009 – Free State (u/18 Academy Week).
  • 2010 – Free State (u/18 Craven Week).
  • 2011 – Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2012 – Shimlas (FNB Varsity Cup), Toyota Free State XV (Vodacom Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA u/21 Competition), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Junior Springboks (IRB Junior World Championship), Springboks (Castle Outgoing Tour).

 

The Cheetahs have pace to burn out wide. To determine starting berths amongst this lot will be thumbsuck at best, as all have serious pace and talent. It will come down to current form to cement a start. Raymond Rhule was sensational in 2012, Rayno Benjamin ever solid. Rocco Jansen was also in a rich vein of form for Griquas. We all know what a fit Jongi Nokwe brings to the table.

 

 

Fullbacks:

Hennie DanillerHendrik Joseph (Hennie) Daniller:

Age: 29 years – 05 April 1984

Vital Statistics: (H) 194 cm (W) 101 kg

Born in Cape Town, Hennie is a Paarl Gymnasium old boy. He represented Boland at the 2001 Under 18 Craven Week and WP in the 2002 Under 18 Craven Week. In the same year he played SA Schools against France and Wales. In 2003 he made his provincial debut for the Bulls Under 19 side and also made the Junior Springbok team which played in the IRB Under 19 World Championship. He made his Super Rugby debut in 2004 for the Bulls and then moved to Boland for 2005, before settling down at the Cheetahs. A solid player with a booming boot and his ability to tie in at least two defenders makes him a useful player on the counter. Daniller is also one of only a few players that have contested 3 consecutive Junior World Championships. He has been the 1st choice at the Cheetahs for a number of years, and will no doubt feature prominently.

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2001 – Boland (u/18 Craven Week).
  • 2002 – Western Province (u/18 Craven week), South Africa (SA Schools vs. England and France).
  • 2003 – Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Blue Bulls (ABSA u/20 A Section), Mobil Blue Bulls(ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Junior Springboks (IRB FIRA-AER u/19 World Championship).
  • 2004 – Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Blue Bulls (ABSA u/20 A Section), Mobil Blue Bulls (Vodacom Super 12), Junior Springboks (IRB u/21 World Championship).
  • 2005 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Blue Bulls (ABSA u/21 A Section), Vodacom Blue Bulls (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Junior Springboks (IRB u/21 World Championship).
  • 2006 – Vodacom Blue Bulls (Vodacom Cup), Fidentia Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2007 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2008 – Griffons (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2009 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14), Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (British & Irish Lions Tour).
  • 2010 – Vodacom Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Vodacom Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 14).
  • 2011 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

Willie le RouxWillem Jacobus (Willie) le Roux:

Age: 23 years – 18 August 1989

Vital Statistics: (H) 186 cm (W) 90 kg

Born in Stellenbosch, Willie attended Paul Roos Gymnasium. He represented the Western Province Academy team at the 2007 Under 18 Craven Week. He then represented the Boland at Under 21, Vodacom Cup and Currie Cup level, before exploding on the Super Rugby scene last year in the Super Rugby Competition. He will look to cement his place next year. An exciting and elusive runner, he was used mostly on the wing by the Cheetahs, but with the emergence of Raymond Rhule, he will likely shift back to fullback.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2007 – Western Province (u/18 Academy Week), Racing Metro (French Top 14).
  • 2008 – Boland (ABSA u/21 Competition).
  • 2010 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Boland (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2011 – Boland Cavaliers (Vodacom Cup), Regent Boland Cavaliers (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2012 – GWK Griquas (Vodacom Cup), GWK Griquas (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

 

Nico ScheepersJacobus Nicolaas (Nico) Scheepers:

Age: 23 years – 27 February 1990

Vital Statistics: (H) 188 cm (W) 97 kg

Born in Port Elizabeth, this Nico Malan pupil represented the Eeastern Province Academy team at the 2008 Under 18 Academy Week. Studing at the University of Free State, he made his provincial debut for the Free State Under 19 team in 2009. In 2010 he represented the Junior Springboks at the IRB Junior World Championship. He has represented the Cheetahs at Under 21, Vodacom Cup, Currie Cup and made his Super Rugby debut in 2012. A reliable goal kicker, and no slouch, having played many matches as a wing.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2008 – Eastern Province (u/18 Academy Week).
  • 2009 – Free State (ABSA u/19 Competition).
  • 2010 – Free State (Vodacom Cup), Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition), Junior Springboks (IRB Junior World Championships).
  • 2011 – Toyota Free State Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Free State (ABSA u/21 Competition), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2012 – Shimlas (FNB Varsity Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Toyota Free State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

 

Riaan SmitAdriaan Jacobus (Riaan) Smit:

Age: 29 years – 28 April 1984

Vital Statistics: (H) 178 cm (W) 85 kg

Born in Springs, Riaan also oddly nicknamed “True Blue” made his provincial debut for the Leopards in the 2004 Under 20 A Section Competition. He also played Vodacom Cup and Currie Cup rugby for the Leopards until 2007, when then signed for the Mica Pumas. After one season with them he was off to the Valke and then back to the Leopards before settling down at the Cheetahs in 2010. He had a particularly good 2012 season, even slotting in at flyhalf to replace the misfiring Sias Ebersohn.

 

 

Rugby Career:
  • 2004 – Leopards (ABSA u/20 Competition Section A).
  • 2005 – Leopards (ABSA u/21 Competition Section A).
  • 2006 – PUK Rugby Institute (Fidentia National Club Championship), Impala Leopards (Vodacom Cup), Impala Leopards (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2007 – Witbank Mica Pumas (Vodacom Cup), Witbank Mica Pumas (ABSA Currie Cup First Division).
  • 2008 – Valke (Vodacom Cup), Valke (ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2009 – Platinum Leopards (Vodacom Cup).
  • 2010 – Free State (Vodacom Cup), Griffons (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Vodacom c(ABSA Currie Cup Premier Division).
  • 2011 – Toyota Fee State Cheetahs (Vodacom Cup), Toyota Fee State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).
  • 2012 – Toyota Fee State XV (Vodacom Cup), Toyota Fee State Cheetahs (ABSA Currie Cup First Division), Toyota Cheetahs (Vodacom Super 15).

 

All the above contenders have a fair shot a starting, with Willie le Roux and Hennie Daniller, probably the front runners. It all depends on whether Naka Drotske and Hawies Fourie see Willie le Roux as wing option or a fullback. Nico Scheepers is a reliable goal kicker, solid under the high ball, and has also done service at wing, which gives him great utility value. The same goes for Riaan Smit.

One thing for sure between the four there is ample cover at fullback, with Willie le Roux and Riaan Smit adding further depth at wing. Riaan Smit can also cover flyhalf should things really go pear shaped there.

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