Cape Town – Bulls coach Pote Human has warned that the South African player exodus in 2020 will provide challenges to the country’s Super Rugby franchises next year.
Human shared his views in an interview with Netwerk24.
With the nation on a high following the Springboks’ win at the 2019 Rugby World Cup, attention is slowly turning to next year’s Super Rugby charge and pre-season preparations.
There are, however, numerous members of that victorious squad from Japan who will be moving abroad in 2020 having played Super Rugby this year.
The Bulls, for example, lose flyhalf Handre Pollard (Montpellier, France), Jesse Kriel (Canon Eagles, Japan), Lood de Jager (Sale, England), RG Snyman (Honda Heat, Japan), Duane Vermeulen (Kubota Spears, Japan) and also Schalk Brits to retirement.
Lock Jason Jenkins (Canon Eagles) is also on his way out.
The Bulls have been hit hardest.
The Stormers are losing Damian de Allende (Wild Knights, Japan and Munster, Ireland) and Eben Etzebeth (Toulon) and are perhaps impacted the least by players leaving.
The Lions lose Malcolm Marx (Shining Arcs, Japan) and Kwagga Smith (Yamaha, Japan) while there is also uncertainty over when injured captain Warren Whiteley will return, and over in Durban the Sharks have lost Tendai Mtawarira (retirement), Coenie Oosthuizen, Akker van der Merwe and twins Jean-Luc and Dan du Preez (all Sale Sharks).
“I think all of our teams, with the exception of the Stormers, will lose a lot of key personnel. You go be left without experience in Super Rugby and that’s why the Lions want to contract a guy like Jannie du Plessis,” Human said.
“Every team needs hard, experienced campaigners. With all the experience lost, 2020 will be a challenging season for the South African teams.”
The Super Rugby competition starts earlier next year, with Sharks tackling the Bulls in Durban on January 31.
The Stormers host the Hurricanes Cape Town on February, while Lions are away to the Jaguares later in in the day.
– Compiled by Sport24 staff