Lions lose Franco (again)

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Lions, Original Content, Super Rugby on 25 Apr 2014 at 10:05
Tagged with : , , , ,

As if it wasn’t bad enough losing their only current Springbok to injury, the Lions now have to face up to the reality that big Franco van der Merwe won’t pull on their colours again.

The single-capper Bok has signed a deal with Irish province Ulster, which will see him play out of Ravenhill in Belfast for the next two years. Van der Merwe, who is currently undergoing rehabilitation after ankle surgery, will join up with Ruan Pienaar and company after the Super Rugby season, ironically replacing another South African, former Shark Johann Muller, on their roster.

“I spoke with Johann Muller and Ruan Pienaar about Ulster and they had only good things to say. That made the decision really easy for me,” said van der Merwe of the move.


  • Something really needs to change financially in South African rugby. Cant blame the players for wanting money.

  • Comment 1, posted at 25.04.14 10:08:16 by Seth101 Reply
    Valued Sharksworld Supporter Author
  • Thing is can we match their pounds with Rands? I don’t know what they earn but guess it must be a lot when converted.

  • Comment 2, posted at 25.04.14 10:26:34 by Caratacus Reply

  • @Seth101 (Comment 1) :
    Its the economy, stupid! 😉

  • Comment 3, posted at 25.04.14 10:28:31 by Big Fish Reply
    Big Fish
  • Was a great servant to Lions rugby. Sad to see him go. He should have had much more than just one Springbok cap and he will surelly be missde at the Lions, the effect of his injury is already felt

  • Comment 4, posted at 25.04.14 10:41:41 by Mutley Reply
  • Where is Johann Muller going?

  • Comment 5, posted at 25.04.14 10:49:31 by bokbok Reply

  • Had the privilige of meeting him during the recent Sharks/Lions game at Ellis Park. Really awesome guy. A loss to the Lions but I wish him all the best.

  • Comment 6, posted at 25.04.14 10:51:27 by vanmartin Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld Author
  • Money talks!!!!!!!!!!! Good luck Franco.

  • Comment 7, posted at 25.04.14 11:15:27 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • @bokbok (Comment 5) : He is officially retiring from all competitive rugby.

  • Comment 8, posted at 25.04.14 13:25:39 by markm Reply

  • When even a guy like Juan Smith leaves for overseas rugby, you know it’s more than just the money pulling guys overseas.

    How old is Franco, ’cause it seems the players feel that their bodies can’t take the pace of rugby once they hit their late 20’s or touch on 30.

  • Comment 9, posted at 25.04.14 14:00:08 by FireTheLooser Reply

  • @FireTheLooser (Comment 9) : 31

  • Comment 10, posted at 25.04.14 14:03:54 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • @Seth101 (Comment 1) : @Caratacus (Comment 2) : Its the bloody agents faults. Before agents you could get away with telling a rugby player that the rand – pound – euro – dollar – and yen were all of equal value.

  • Comment 11, posted at 25.04.14 14:42:57 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • @Mutley (Comment 4) : Yep, the glue of that team. I wish him lots of success overseas.

  • Comment 12, posted at 25.04.14 14:44:57 by Salmonoid the Subtle Reply
    Friend of Sharksworld
    Salmonoid the Subtle
  • @Salmonoid the Subtle (Comment 11) : ja boet ;-P but must say it sometimes seems as if some agents only worry about the money and not the player’s future chances or development! ?!?!?!?

  • Comment 13, posted at 25.04.14 14:52:13 by JD Reply
    Friend of SharksworldCompetition Winner Administrator
  • Full name Franco van der Merwe
    Born 15 March 1983 (age 31)
    Paarl, South Africa
    Height 1.98 m (6 ft 6 in)
    Weight 116 kg (18 st 4 lb)
    School(s) attended Hartswater High School
    University North-West University

  • Comment 14, posted at 26.04.14 12:33:15 by Gerhardt Reply


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