SARU has released the names of 43 young players who will be invited to Cape Town on Monday to take part in scientific and medical testing as a pre-cursor to potential inclusion in the SA Under 20 squad next season. Sharks under 19 players Piet Lindeque and Jaco van Tonder, both of whom spent some time training with the Sharks Currie Cup squad, have been included, along with 9 other KZN players.
The players will have an opportunity to meet new SA under 20 coach Dawie Theron, as well as SARU CEO Jurie Roux and the data captured during the testing session will be used as a baseline to measure the conditioning, strength and fitness of the players leading up to the IRB Junior World Championships in June next year.
Both van Tonder and Lindeque were key members of the Sharks under 19 team this year, with the latter – an outside centre from Grey College – also having run out for the under 21s on a few occasions. Van Tonder spent most of the season at fullback, after excelling as a flyhalf for SWD at Craven Week in 2008 and 2009. Also named in the squad are former Affies inside centre Heimar Williams, who was named the Sharks under 19 backline player of the year and wing Mandla Dube, who attended St Stithians College in Randburg in 2008 and played his second year of under 19 rugby for the Sharks in 2010. Perhaps the most exciting inclusion, from a backline point of view, is Hilton’s monster winger, Emil Schwarz, who was selected for the SA Under 18 High Performance squad in 2009 after a good Craven Week for KZN. He’s a large lad, who stands at 1.92m in his socks and weighs an impressive 100kg.
There are some forwards too, of course, with almost the entire Sharks under 19 pack from 2010 making the grade. The names of Marcell Coetzee, Siseko Jafta and Francois Kleinhans are ones that we’d do well to learn and remember. These lads comprised the loose trio for the Sharks under 19 side and my understanding is that all three are being looked at for Vodacom Cup rugby as early as next year. All three are local lads as well – Coetzee, the number 8, is from Port Natal, while Jafta (7) attended St Charles in Maritzburg and Kleinhans (6) hails from Glenwood. Locks Nick Dodgen (Northlands) and Mike Williams – a Zimbabwean lad who was the under 19 captain – also made the grade, along with Maritzburg College tighthead Nick Schonert.
Here is the full squad:
SA Under-20 Testing squad – Blue Bulls: Pieter Van der Walt, Bradley Moolman, Tony Jantjies, Lohan Jacobs, Jose Julies, Stephan Pretorius, Mbongeni Mbonambi, Juan Schoeman; Free State: Riaan Britz, Pieter Rademan, Jean Cook, Bernard Van Heerden, Stephan Kotze; Golden Lions: Garth Lions, Botha Van Zyl; Kwazulu Natal: Jaco Van Tonder, Emile Schwartz, Piet Lindeque, Heimar Williams, Mandla Dube, Marcell Coetzee, Siseko Jaftha, Francois Kleinhans, Nicholas Dodgen, Mike Williams, Nicholas Schonnet, Leopards: Jacobus Lourens, Lucian Cupido, Cornell Du Preez, Gabriel Strydom, Jacque Pienaar, John-Roy Jenkinson, Armand van der Merwe, Moshudu Masela, Western Province: Sizo Maseko, Clarence Khumalo, William van Wyk, Ricky Schroeder, Siyamthanda Kolisi, Nizaam Carr, Eben Etzebeth, Wilhelm Van der Slys, Frans Malherbe.Tweet