Junior Springbok flyhalf Robert du Preez has been released from his contract with the Sharks and will join Western Province with immediate effect.
The tall 20-year-old pivot is the son of Springbok scrumhalf Robert Senior, who is currently coaching North West University in the Varsity Cup; it was in this very competition that young Rob made a name for himself this year, excelling for Maties as a loan player.
Du Preez, who attended Kearsney College in Botha’s Hill, is a born-and-bred Natalian, having represented the province at age-group level all the way from under 16 up through to under 21 last year. He was regularly preferred at flyhalf to schoolboy star Handre Pollard during last year’s IRB Junior World Championship and built further on that showing by starting the majority of games for the Sharks under 21 side. Du Preez is still eligible for under 21 rugby this year.
Ironically, it was the arrival in Durban of Tim Swiel, who played against du Preez in Western Province colours last year, that has led to the 1.9m flyhalf moving in search of game time. Swiel has already gained senior caps for the Sharks and the odds are pretty good that du Preez will go on to do the same for Western Province in the not-too-distant future.
While it’s never nice to lose one of your “own”, we understand Rob’s reasons and wish him well with his career in Cape Town. Younger brothers Jean-Luc and Daniel remain with the Sharks, were both are contracted as under 19 players.Tweet