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Patience pays off for Carstens


Written by Wesley Weber (wpw)

Posted in :In the news, Sharks, Springboks on 10 Jun 2009 at 07:27
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Surprise Springbok front-row call-up Deon Carstens is an excellent reason why there may be some merit in South African rugby’s ban on overseas-based players representing the national team.

After making his Bok debut in 2002, and being plagued by bad luck which prevented him from ever making the impact at international level that he needed to in order to become a regular, Carstens had started to shift into the background as one of those players who never quite made it at the highest level.

But this week, the week of his 30th birthday, he got a surprise call to join the 28-man squad in what many consider to be the biggest series outside of a World Cup.

“It was only the hope of still being able to play for the Boks that kept me here, so I was extremely chuffed when I heard that I had been included,” said Carstens.

When we started the year I never really thought it possible. But then I started reading stuff written by you guys (journalists), and I heard my name in speculation, so I figured it must come from somewhere. When the Bok management listed me as one of the injured players when the training squad was named two weeks ago, then I started getting hopeful.”

Carstens’ last appearance for the Boks was in the 2007 Test against Samoa, the one that will be forever remembered for the controversial debut of Luke Watson, but the fact he has not figured since then should not be taken as an indication he was a bolt-from-the-blue selection.

Props do tend to mature later than other players, and Carstens’ selection is a victory for the type of player he represents, and which South Africa lacks at the moment – experienced front-rowers who have been on the circuit long enough to rub what they have learned off on younger players.

“I know it is spoken about a lot of props, so I suppose it is becoming almost a bit of a cliche, but it is true that front-row forwards learn the business by being dumped a few times. It is the school of hard knocks, you learn by making mistakes,” he said.

“At the moment there are not that many experienced guys playing front-row… the minute you start to show any signs of having what it takes, you get grabbed by a French or British club. It has left a big void in terms of the older guys teaching the younger guys the ropes.”

Carstens knows all about being dumped. He made his debut in the disastrous outing against Scotland in Edinburgh in 2002. Carstens, along with the rest of the pack, was pushed backwards, and the Scots scored a rare win on a cold and blustery day at Murrayfield.

That was during the Rudolf Straeuli era, and the Bok first choice team had been destroyed by France in Marseille the previous week, so Straeuli made his selection for Edinburgh while still possibly being affected by the red mist of anger.

“Of course I am a much more mature and advanced player than I was then. It is a blot on my rugby memory, an occasion I want to forget. A couple of years ago I was picking up good momentum and looked to be heading back into Springbok contention when Jake White was coaching.

“I was selected in 2006, but withdrew through injury. After that I never came back into favour.”

Os du Randt was the man who would have kept him out of favour, for though he made his debut as a tighthead, it was as a loosehead that he had established himself by the middle part of this decade.

“It will be a challenge to move back to tighthead, but people mustn’t forget I made my debut at tighthead and have played more in the No 3 jersey than the No 1. I haven’t played tighthead this season, but I did play as a replacement in my last Test.”

Carstens is widely recognised in the front-row club as possibly the strongest local loosehead.

Sharks coach John Plumtree must think so too, for he has been happy to play Carstens ahead of Bok first choice Beast Mtawarira – so don’t bet against Carstens wearing the No 1 jersey and playing alongside Smit if there are injuries in the forthcoming series.

“I will be ready to play either position. I am happy to play a back-up role, but will take my chance if I am given one. I have waited a long time for this.”

This article was originally published on page 27 of Saturday Argus on June 06, 2009



59 Comments

  • what a nice oke

  • Comment 1, posted at 10.06.09 08:12:21 by robdylan Reply
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  • Well done Deon!

    I hope you’ll give the Lions a taste of some Shark-Tank grass tonight…

  • Comment 2, posted at 10.06.09 08:14:16 by blackshark Reply

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  • WP should have signed this oke ages ago but NO, for some or other reason they rate the likes of JD Moller, Brok Harris, etc. :evil:

  • Comment 3, posted at 10.06.09 08:21:43 by wpw Reply
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  • @wpw (Comment 3) :

    I doubt that he would’ve signed. :razz:

  • Comment 4, posted at 10.06.09 08:26:26 by blackshark Reply

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  • @wpw (Comment 3) : Well he is at the retriing age – so there is hope. :lol:

  • Comment 5, posted at 10.06.09 09:00:04 by Worcestershire Sauce Reply
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  • @Worcestershire Sauce (Comment 5) : but WP don’t buy old props… just old locks, loosies and wingers…

  • Comment 6, posted at 10.06.09 09:12:00 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 6) : We can always hope for change – can’t we :?:

  • Comment 7, posted at 10.06.09 10:04:58 by Worcestershire Sauce Reply
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  • @blackshark (Comment 2) : He h he he what’s with the Avatar….you got a secret crush on Skipper or is he family :wink:

  • Comment 8, posted at 10.06.09 10:22:18 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @Worcestershire Sauce (Comment 7) : we can… dammit, bit of tumbleweed here today

  • Comment 9, posted at 10.06.09 10:24:34 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 8) : somehow I doubt blackshark and Skipper are related… :)

  • Comment 10, posted at 10.06.09 10:25:00 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 10) : you never know… :lol:

  • Comment 11, posted at 10.06.09 10:39:12 by rekinek Reply
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  • @Pokkel (Comment 8) :
    Cos Skipman is like that old sock…you keep thinking you’ve disposed of it…and it keeps turning up in your drawer. I’m learning to appreciate him. :razz:

    Looking forward to seeing if he will have any surprises up his sleeves tonight! Go Skipper!

  • Comment 12, posted at 10.06.09 10:50:22 by blackshark Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 1) : Totally agree. Such a class bloke. Always got time for the supporters and I always have a good chat to him when I’m down at Kings Park.

  • Comment 13, posted at 10.06.09 10:53:24 by Villie Reply
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  • @wpw (Comment 3) : But we bought him from you guys originally…you didn’t want him!!

  • Comment 14, posted at 10.06.09 10:54:02 by Villie Reply
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  • Did someone say weed :cool:

  • Comment 15, posted at 10.06.09 10:54:16 by Claytie Reply
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  • @Claytie (Comment 15) : uh oh…

  • Comment 16, posted at 10.06.09 10:55:33 by robdylan Reply
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  • @blackshark (Comment 12) : If he could throw straight at the lineouts then I would be a lot more forgiving. After so many years practice it’s criminal that he is still so inaccurate!

    The rest of his game is actually fairly decent!

  • Comment 17, posted at 10.06.09 10:55:53 by Villie Reply
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  • Changing the subject a bit, I’ve just read on Supersport that PDV’s “bolter” could be playing Danie Rossouw at openside.

    I nearly choked on my toast. While I rate Rossouw as a player….if they were going to start him, surely it would be as blindside? :shock:

    To me, he’s the perfect player for the bench because he can cover the whole backrow and even lock. He also tends to make an impact when coming on!

  • Comment 18, posted at 10.06.09 10:59:15 by Villie Reply
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  • @Villie (Comment 18) : He is way to slow to play openside.Actually to slow to play any side, lock it is for him.

  • Comment 19, posted at 10.06.09 11:03:27 by Claytie Reply
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  • @Claytie (Comment 19) : Agreed. That’s why if they were going to start him it would have to be blindside and we already have Juan Smith there, in the top 3 in the world.

    Go speak to PDV please :wink:

  • Comment 20, posted at 10.06.09 11:05:35 by Villie Reply
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  • @Villie (Comment 20) : Theres no chance Divvie is going to start him.

  • Comment 21, posted at 10.06.09 11:08:19 by Claytie Reply
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  • @Claytie (Comment 21) :

    I doubt that he will do anything drastic like that.
    Our starting forwards all pick themselves…

  • Comment 23, posted at 10.06.09 11:16:43 by blackshark Reply

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  • Jake played Danie at openside once or twice…

  • Comment 24, posted at 10.06.09 11:18:08 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Villie (Comment 14) :

    Deon Carstens??

    Jy lieg man!!! :???:

  • Comment 25, posted at 10.06.09 11:32:31 by wpw Reply
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  • @Villie (Comment 18) :

    I saw that very same article on News24 this morning and decided not to post it here because the author is JJ Harmse.

    (Rob you really should add a :puke: smiley as an option) :wink:

  • Comment 26, posted at 10.06.09 11:36:23 by wpw Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 24) :

    I remember the one time was against Australia and we lost the test 0-49. :cry:

  • Comment 27, posted at 10.06.09 11:37:54 by wpw Reply
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  • @wpw (Comment 25) : he’s a Western Cape boy through and through… I think he was stuffing around in the lower leagues of Boland club rugby when we picked him up.

  • Comment 28, posted at 10.06.09 11:40:31 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Claytie (Comment 22) :

    Nice – but I agree with those who say Matt should’ve beefed up a bit…

  • Comment 29, posted at 10.06.09 11:48:34 by blackshark Reply

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  • @wpw (Comment 27) : correct.

    @wpw (Comment 26) : rude smileys are the preserve of the RW massive :)

  • Comment 30, posted at 10.06.09 11:57:20 by robdylan Reply
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  • If we (Sharks) can bring something from the last match we played…we can take these guys.

    Kockott will do his bit with the boot…plus a few tries…

    SHARKS!

  • Comment 31, posted at 10.06.09 12:03:49 by blackshark Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 30) :

    Oops. :roll:

  • Comment 32, posted at 10.06.09 12:06:00 by wpw Reply
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  • @blackshark (Comment 31) : pass the pipe – you’re hoggin! :mrgreen:

  • Comment 33, posted at 10.06.09 12:36:50 by robdylan Reply
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  • @wpw (Comment 25) : Not at all. He came from you lot!

  • Comment 34, posted at 10.06.09 12:45:22 by Villie Reply
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  • @Villie (Comment 34) :

    Sorry for calling you a liar!!! :???:

    I thought you meant he was a WP player before joining you moffos. :mrgreen:

  • Comment 35, posted at 10.06.09 12:57:42 by wpw Reply
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  • @Villie (Comment 34) : Well I’m @wpw (Comment 35) :

    Well I meant he came from the Western Cape. I consider Boland and Wee Pee to be one! :razz: Deon played for SA under 19′s and we signed him soon after. So Wee Pee let him slip the net, since he came from around there.

    Just like Oom Stefan Terblanche…another Boland boy!

  • Comment 36, posted at 10.06.09 13:01:29 by Villie Reply
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  • @wpw (Comment 35) : someone needs to do their hooooomewooooork :)

  • Comment 37, posted at 10.06.09 13:04:42 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Villie (Comment 36) : Deon played SA Under 19s the same year as Joe van Niekerk. Pretty strange, that… I would have thought Joe was much younger

  • Comment 38, posted at 10.06.09 13:05:41 by robdylan Reply
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  • Hey everyone…..had a wonderful surprise today….KSA & Kette came to visit AND nogall asked us to go to the game with them this evening…I am soooo stoked!! I phoned my mates and told them, sorry, never pull out of prior committments BUT…this is one I can’t miss…good news is that they are just as happy as I am!!!

  • Comment 39, posted at 10.06.09 13:13:22 by Me2 Reply

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  • @Me2 (Comment 39) : aren’t they great folks, those? :)

  • Comment 40, posted at 10.06.09 13:42:37 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 40) : Yebo! Just so great to meet up with them…we are having an “after party” and will be meeting more of our Sharksworld friends!!! Can’t wait..just a pity more of you can’t come too!!

  • Comment 41, posted at 10.06.09 13:50:25 by Me2 Reply

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  • @Me2 (Comment 39) : Jislaaik!

  • Comment 42, posted at 10.06.09 13:50:50 by Claytie Reply
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  • @Me2 (Comment 41) : I’ll be there in spirit

  • Comment 43, posted at 10.06.09 13:55:51 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Claytie (Comment 42) : dying to meet you too :wink:

  • Comment 44, posted at 10.06.09 13:56:42 by Me2 Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 43) : Thsi site is playng “silly” with me today…keeps going off line :???:

  • Comment 45, posted at 10.06.09 13:59:12 by Me2 Reply

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  • @Me2 (Comment 45) : how do you mean going off line?

  • Comment 46, posted at 10.06.09 14:22:50 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Me2 (Comment 41) : Wish I was there Els :cry: :cry:

  • Comment 47, posted at 10.06.09 14:43:38 by Villie Reply
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  • @Villie (Comment 47) : Me2!
    @robdylan (Comment 46) : When I hit the “submit” button, the site disappears and a message comes up about not being able to open the page!

  • Comment 48, posted at 10.06.09 15:11:09 by Me2 Reply

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  • @robdylan (Comment 33) :

    Man of the Match – Skipper !!!

    Ok…on a serious note…we’ll talk after the game Robot’to…I think we have a chance here. Sharks by 5. I said 7 yesterday…now i’m saying 5 OK! :smile:

  • Comment 49, posted at 10.06.09 15:29:53 by blackshark Reply

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  • @blackshark (Comment 49) : ever the optimist….I really hope I get my Superbru wrong this evening…I have the Lions for a win.

  • Comment 50, posted at 10.06.09 15:45:31 by Pokkel Reply
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  • @blackshark (Comment 49) : wow – ok. Have you actually looked at the team sheet?

  • Comment 51, posted at 10.06.09 15:50:14 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Me2 (Comment 39) :
    Enjoy it, Im jealous and wish I could be there. Hell it seems like years ago that I saw a Sharks team playing.

  • Comment 52, posted at 10.06.09 15:50:50 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • @Me2 (Comment 48) : strange… check your cookie settings?

  • Comment 53, posted at 10.06.09 15:50:56 by robdylan Reply
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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 52) : last time I saw the Sharks live was in 2006… last time I saw them actually playing was a long time before that!

  • Comment 54, posted at 10.06.09 15:52:55 by robdylan Reply
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  • @robdylan (Comment 54) :
    I saw them against the Stormers at the beginning of this Super 14, they played for one half. :wink:
    I actually just want to see some people running around Kings Park in black and white, if they really play it will be a bonus but Im not really expecting too much.

  • Comment 55, posted at 10.06.09 15:59:03 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • Not always optimistic but I have a feeling that even if we dont win this one we’ll be impressed by most of the non-regular players.

  • Comment 56, posted at 10.06.09 16:00:36 by blackshark Reply

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  • @Salmonoid (Comment 55) :
    Forgot to add, live would be best but TV will do at this stage.

  • Comment 57, posted at 10.06.09 16:17:11 by Salmonoid Reply
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  • what time is K/O this evening?

  • Comment 58, posted at 10.06.09 16:18:11 by Claytie Reply
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  • @Claytie (Comment 58) :
    19.10, not sure if thats when the ball or the kakpraat is kicked off.

  • Comment 59, posted at 10.06.09 16:30:19 by Salmonoid Reply
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