KSA Shark ©

Barritt & Van Heerden debut off the bench

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :In the news on 15 Nov 2008 at 08:42
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World Cup winner Wikus van Heerden and Bradley Barritt are set to make their Saracens debuts after being named on the bench for Sunday’s Guinness Premiership clash against Gloucester at Vicarage Road.

The Guinness Premiership website reports that the South African duo, who arrived in the UK two weeks ago after facing each other in the final of the Currie Cup, are thrown straight into the action as Sarries look to build on a run of results that has seen them win seven of their last eight matches and rise to fifth place in the Premiership table.

Barritt, van Heerden and fellow new signing Ben Jacobs started full training with the rest of the squad this week and Director of Rugby Eddie Jones has been delighted with how quickly the trio has settled.

“They’ve been training very hard and all three players will add depth and quality to the squad and help move Saracens on. Bradley Barritt and Ben Jacbos are very talented and skilful centres, while Wikus Van Heerden was the best back row in the Currie Cup and his strength and physical approach makes him ideally suited to the English game.”

For van Heerden, who joined Saracens from the Blue Bulls, it won’t be the first time he’s played at Vicarage Road as he played in a friendly for the Cats in Watford in 2005. “There was a great atmosphere inside the ground that night so I’m looking forward to the chance of running out from the home dressing room this time,” added the 29-year-old. “I’ve had a good week of training, but now I’m just ready for the action to start. I’ve followed the Guinness Premiership closely and it’s a fantastic competition – one that I can’t wait to be part of.”

In other team news, Neil de Kock returns to the line-up following paternity leave, while with Rodd Penney ruled out through a calf injury and with wingers Chris Wyles, Francisco Leonelli and Kameli Ratuvou three of nine players away on international duty, Kevin Sorrell is given a run on the wing. Andy Kyriacou completes his comeback to the first team after seven months out with a knee injury.

“Kevin is very experienced and clever player along with being one of the best defenders in the club, so we don’t have any issues with him playing on the wing,” explained Jones. “We’re going into this game physically and mentally fresh ahead of a very important period in the season.

“This block of three Premiership matches in a row means teams have the chance to really cement a position on the top half of the table and I am expecting our squad to take that opportunity.

“Gloucester represents a strong test for us but they have changed the way they play this season and have adopted a more conservative style and have added more kicking to their game. They have won the last three games against Saracens and two of them by pretty big scores, so we’re looking forward to facing them.”

Saracens line-up vs Gloucester

15 Alex Goode
14 Kevin Sorrell
13 Adam Powell
12 Andy Farrell ©
11 Noah Cato
10 Glen Jackson
9 Neil de Kock
1 Nick Lloyd
2 Matt Cairns
3 Cobus Visagie
4 Kris Chesney
5 Hugh Vyvyan
6 Ben Skirving
7 Andy Saull
8 Michael Owen

16 Andy Kyriacou
17 Tom Mercey
18 Tom Ryder
19 Wikus van Heerden
20 Mickey Wilson
21 Bradley Barritt
22 Edd Thrower


  • Barritt has got a tough task ahead of him if he intends displacing Farrell.

    Wikus will have an easier task slotting into the starting XV I think.

  • Comment 1, posted at 15.11.08 08:52:06 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • Farrel is a carthorse, man! 🙂 Btw, what Currie Cup did Eddie Jones watch?

  • Comment 2, posted at 15.11.08 10:27:29 by robdylan Reply
  • @robdylan (Comment 2) :

    Farrell is also the Captain though.

    I hope they show a few Saffasons games during our “off-season”

  • Comment 3, posted at 15.11.08 10:31:10 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 3) : Maybe I shouldn’t cancel Sky Sports next weekend…

  • Comment 4, posted at 15.11.08 10:54:44 by robdylan Reply
  • @robdylan (Comment 4) :


  • Comment 5, posted at 15.11.08 10:55:47 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • “while Wikus Van Heerden was the best back row in the Currie Cup”

    Um, what about Jean Deysel????????????????????

  • Comment 6, posted at 15.11.08 13:22:33 by Baldrick Reply
  • @Baldrick (Comment 6) : 🙂

    As Rob says: What CC was Jones watching????????????

  • Comment 7, posted at 15.11.08 13:30:54 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • @robdylan (Comment 2) : Andy Farrell is also extremely injury prone so unlikely to last the season. He is also getting on a bit so expect he will be replaced after about 60 minutes!

  • Comment 8, posted at 15.11.08 22:58:48 by Villie Reply
  • @KSA Shark © (Comment 7) :

    I thought Wickus was awesome for the Bulls in the CC…

  • Comment 9, posted at 16.11.08 03:58:37 by bryce_in_oz Reply

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