BJ Botha has finally confirmed what we sort of knew all along. He’ll be seeking an early exit from his Ulster contract in order to play Super 15 next year and hopefully force his way into the Boks 2011 World Cup squad.
Although nothing has been confirmed yet, the chances are good that any number of South African teams would want Botha’s services – the Bulls and Stormers are both desperately in need of a world-class tighthead, while the Sharks and Lions would no doubt also be keen to bring in such an experienced campaigner. Botha, in an interview with a somewhat dodgy source, has expressed that his preference would always be to return to the Durban, but that he’s prepared to be flexible in the interests of SA Rugby.
From a Sharks perspective, it would only make sense to bring in BJ Botha if one of the current tightheads were to leave. With John Smit looking set to feature more regularly at hooker and the expected fallout that might eventuate, perhaps we will see fewer du Plessis’ in Durban in 2011, which would open the door for Botha, Smit and Beast Mtawarira to establish themselves as the front row to take the Boks to New Zealand.
Everyone seems to be playing this one very cagily, though, so don’t expect any big announcements. BJ and his agent will work through SARU and let them put forward their preference (the Stormers, obviously) but I’m still quietly confident hat we’ll see BJ Botha back in the black number 3 when next year’s Super 15 starts.Tweet