Sharks Juniors packed with talent

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Original Content, Sharks on 9 Jul 2009 at 22:36
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New Sharks Under 21 coach, Sean Everitt, has named an exciting side to take on Western Province in the ABSA Under 21 tournament opener on Saturday. Flyhalf Tian Meyer will lead a team that contains numerous members of last year’s victorious Sharks under 19 side.

The pack features a mixture of Vodacom Cup stars and South Africa Under 20 representatives, with hooker Kyle Cooper and lock Jandré Marais having served their country proudly in Japan last month. Props Sabelo “Sabs” Nhlapo and Wiehahn Herbst played together on numerous occasions for the Sharks XV this year – the former is a giant of a man, having played lock for South Africa at age-group level. Herbst played tighthead for the Sharks in their recent warmup game against the Pumas and has been mentioned by John Plumtree as a player whom he hopes to groom in this year’s Currie Cup.

Anton Bresler will partner Marais in the second row, having recovered from a serious knee injury that has sidelined him for quite some time. A former DHS pupil, Bresler represented the Sharks under 21s last year as well.

Nic Claasen enjoyed a fair few starts at openside flank in the Vodacom Cup and he will be joined in the loose trio by Siya Mdaka and the huge Meyer Swanepoel. The former Paarl Gim number 8 is a big unit at 1.96m and 101kg and was a key member of last year’s Under 19 squad.

It’s a bit of a bizarre reversal of fortune for the Cronjé twins, with the older Ross, who was a surprise inclusion in the Sharks Super 14 squad this year, now back with the under 21s while his brother Guy will be playing flyhalf for the Currie Cup side. Westville’s Tian Meyer, a player of whom I’ve heard some good things, will be Cronjé’s halfback partner, while former Monument captain Gary Collins will be at inside centre. Mlindazwe Nqoro at outside centre is an SA Sevens representative and also represented his country in the fifteen-man code at under 19 level two years ago.

The back three is all about Michaelhouse, with Mark Richards, a schoolboy teammate of the Cronjés at right wing and Pat Lambie, another old boy of more recent vintage at fullback. The young Lambie is another with a bright future ahead of him and it’s a testament to his talent that the 18-year-old is already deemed good enough to train with the senior Currie Cup squad. Left wing Rosco Specman is another survivor from last year’s under 21 team.

The bench contains a 5-2 split, including yet another Baby Bok in the form of tighthead prop Julian Redelinghuys. Loosehead Dale Chadwick, another to feature in the Sharks 22 against the Pumas is also there, along with Pretoria Boys High old boy Lee Thompson. Scrumhalf Alex Kock played a few games for the Sharks XV this year as well, while Lambert Groenewald is another bulky loose forward with a lot to offer. Hooker Alfred Ries and utility back Douw Steyn complete the 22.

Match 22

1. Sabelo Nhlapo
2. Kyle Cooper
3. Wiehahn Herbst
4. Jandre Marais
5. Anton Bresler
6. Nic Claasen
7. Siya Mdaka
8. Meyer Swanepoel
9. Ross Cronje
10. Tian Meyer (capt)
11. Rosco Specman
12. Gary Collins
13. Milo Nqoro
14. Mark Richards
15. Patric Lambie

16. Alfred Ries
17. Dale Chadwick
18. Julian Redelinguys
19. Lee Thomson
20. Alex Kock
21. Lambert Groenewald
22. Dauw Steyn


  • Go Guppies!! Make us proud. On another note, P.Divvy says he was appointed to win test matches not popularity contests :roll:

  • Comment 1, posted at 10.07.09 06:46:26 by JarsonX (Insomniac) Reply
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  • Remember too, many of these guys played for the victorious Under 19s last year.

  • Comment 2, posted at 10.07.09 06:50:46 by Baldrick Reply

    BaldrickCurrie Cup player
  • if Kanko doesnt pass a very late fitness test today, then Justin Downey will replace him on the bench. I will be watching the 1st game, yippie!

  • Comment 3, posted at 10.07.09 06:57:29 by JarsonX (Insomniac) Reply
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  • this from SA Rugby, ”JMH has not joined the squad as of yet”

  • Comment 4, posted at 10.07.09 07:01:57 by JarsonX (Insomniac) Reply
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  • when last did Hilton produce a Sharks player? Michaelhouse seems to be churning them out these days

  • Comment 5, posted at 10.07.09 08:31:26 by robdylan Reply
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  • oops – just found out that Tian Meyer is actually the captain!

    Pity the Sharks website left out such an important piece of information, so I had to make it up :)

  • Comment 6, posted at 10.07.09 10:11:48 by robdylan Reply
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