Last year we all saw a lot of young players introduced to Super Rugby, either due to injury of other players or just because they are pure class. Some of them even went on to represent our nation’s pride by earning some Springbok caps. They have grown not just in size but also in stature, and this year they can really light up the Super Rugby stage!
Most of the boys playing for the Black & White at the moment were all born in 1985 (which funny enough is also the year I was born). That makes them one of the youngest Super Rugby teams ever and they have so much to be proud of already. How many teams can say that they reached a Super Rugby final with an average team age of 26 years old? Not to mention the two Currie Cup finals as well. And the these youngsters’ names will be mentioned a lot during the next couple of months.
So lets have a look at a few of the youngsters that i am really looking forward to see in the Black & White this season:
Pat Lambie: Now that “King” Carlos has had a few weeks with him I’m sure we will see Super Pat bring something new to the field. Last year he had a few injury concerns and missed a fair few matches towards the end of Super Rugby.
Cobus Reinach: Cobus was awesome last season in the Currie Cup and has shown that he has what it takes to step up to Super Rugby level, but you can’t ignore all the experience that Charl Mcleod offers. I’m not sure how Plum is going to play this one, all I do know is that Cobus will get his chance to start this season.
Paul Jordaan: Now here is a player that can really burst away and score some points, he is a bit fragile thou and seems to get injured rather often. I do think it’s because he gets targeted a lot by the opposition since they know his deadly speed and knack for breaking the line. This year I would like to see him gain some more confidence in his structured play and defence thou.
Marcell Coetzee: Our young super fit and completely dedicated young loose forward has more than proved himself last season, and all we can ask is that he continues the same way as he started.
Jandre Marais: The first of the two young locks, Jandre has already shown that he can step up and take the punch. He will become a regular starter, and this is a real opportune moment for the Sharks coaches to build a lock partnership between Jandre and Pieter-Steph that can last for a good many years to come.
Kyle Cooper: With Bismarck still recovering from his knee injury Kyle will be second choice hooker after Craig Burden and I’m sure we will see him play off the bench until Bismarck makes his return. What I am looking forward to is him maybe starting a game during the warm-up matches, just to see how he operates the scrum.
Pieter-Steph Du Toit: Now here is a player that I am really looking forward to seeing more of. The first time I saw him play was for the Sharks XV, I thought to myself that here is a proper young lock that The Sharks can really mould into a formidable force. I think Pieter-Steph is ready for the responsibly that Super Rugby players carry on their shoulders and much like Marcell Coetzee the boy seems to have that same calm, charm and decency about him.
I know most of us can’t wait to see the Sharks back on the field doing what they do best. And this is really a season where the Sharks can use all the knowledge and experience they have gained from the past two seasons. There where a lot of lessons there, and you can see the hunger in all the players. They want to win, they need to win and not just for their fans but for themselves! I would like to wish all the boys the best of luck for the long season ahead, and we look forward to see what you young guns will bring to the toughest rugby tournament on the planet.Tweet