This is the third in the series of Cell C Sharks Squad Contenders for Super Rugby 2014. We do 2 articles per week per South African Super Rugby participating franchise.
We discuss the players IN the Super Rugby Group, and not all the options beyond that.
In this Article we look at the contenders for LOCKS in the Cell C Sharks 2014 Super Rugby group, and whether they could force their way into Bok contention.
Coaches Naka Drotske and Hawies Fourie, seem to be pretty clear of who they envisage in their final Super Rugby squad for 2013. Griquas players Justin Downey, Leon Karemaker, Steph Roberts, Edwin Hewitt, Marnus Hugo and Jean Stemmet have been released to Griquas to prepare for the Vodacom Cup.
It is speculated, that the possible return of Juan Smith may have been the primary motivation as Phillip van der Walt, Heinrich Brüssow, Lappies Labuschagne, Juan Smith, and Boom Prinsloo all have still to prove their fitness. This could indicate that Juan’s progress is in line with the coaches’ expectations.
Looking at the tall timber, in what has been a troublesome position for the Cheetahs in seasons past. With stalwarts like Barend Pieterse, Rory Duncan, Corniel van Zyl, Flip van der Merwe, David de Villiers , Nico Breedt, and Wilhelm Steenkamp all leaving a void, so a new generation of locks has to be nurtured. With the more recent departures of George Earle, and Izak van der Westhuizens’s departure for colder pastures, a perception could exist, that the Cheetah class of 2013 could struggle in the second row. Well, maybe not!