Incumbent Springbok Duane Vermeulen is amongst the new faces in the Vodacom Bulls wider training group for next year’s Vodacom Super Rugby competition. Vermeulen moved from Toulon earlier this year and following a short spell at Kubota Spears in Japan, will now again play his rugby in South Africa.
The backline will also have some new impact from Blitzboks Dylan Sage and Rosko Specman, while former Springbok winger Cornal Hendricks joins the squad as well.
Stedman Gans will also joins the group once his Blitzboks duties in the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series are concluded.
Xander Janse van Rensburg, High Performance Manager at the Blue Bulls Company (Pty) Ltd also announced the signing of exciting young loose forward, Muller Uys. The Junior Springbok flanker joins from DHL Western Province and will add youthful energy to the experienced loose trio.
Janse van Rensburg confirmed the continued trial of Carel du Preez. The former Blitzbok will train with the squad till February, when a final call will be made on his future involvement.
“We have also added a junior group to the wider squad. This group consists of some of our best junior players and we believe this exposure to the senior group will expedite their progress and serve as a valuable tool to their development.”
The Vodacom Bulls wider training group is:
The forwards are: Duane Vermeulen, Tim Agaba, Muller Uys, Hanro Liebenberg, Jannes Kirsten, Thembelani Bholi, Carel du Preez, Roelof Smit, Nick de Jager, Ruan Steenkamp, Marco van Staden, Paul (Tier) Schoeman, Jano Venter, Jason Jenkins, Hendre Stassen, RG Snyman, Lood de Jager, Trevor Nyakane, Lizo Gqoboka, Matthys Basson, Nqoba Mxoli, Simphiwe Matanzima, Madot Mabokela, Conraad van Vuuren, Frans van Wyk, Dayan van der Westhuizen, Jaco Visagie, Edgar Marutlulle, Johan Grobbelaar.
The backs are: Warrick Gelant, Divan Rossouw, Travis Ismaiel, Duncan Matthews, Cornal Hendricks, Jade Stighling, Rosko Specman, Jesse Kriel, Dylan Sage, Johnny Kotze, Stedman Gans, Burger Odendaal, JT Jackson, Franco Naude, Handre Pollard, Manie Libbok, Marnitz Boshoff, Ivan van Zyl, Embrose Papier, Andre Warner, Theo Maree.
As part of the BBCo’s future vision to keep bringing our young talent through our ranks and exposing them to a senior level of rugby, the apprentices in the squad are: Gerhard Steenekamp, Cabous Eloff, Mornay Smit, Adre Smit, Marius Verwey, Ruan Nortje, Eli Snyman, JC Pretorius, Ryno Pieterse, Khwezi Mafu, Lian du Toit, Fiela Boshoff, Cameron Hufke, Jay-Cee Nel, Marnus Potgieter, Earll Douwrie.
The BBCO would also like to confirm that we are in advanced negotiations with a few other players for the upcoming season, and are positive that we will make the relative announcements in due course.
* Nick de Jager will be loaned to Toyota Shoki and return start of January 2019.
* Jaco Visagie will be loaned to Gloucester and return during January 2019.
* A medical update on status of injuries within the squad will be communicated post screenings on Thursday 15 November 2018 at 10:00 at a press conference at Loftus Versfeld.
* The BBCo is in advanced stages of securing the services of Springbok hooker Schalk Brits, and we will make an announcement in due course.