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NRU selectors happy with turnout for trials

Summary

The national Under-20 (U-20) rugby coach, Jood Opperman, has expressed satisfaction with the number of players that turned up for the U-20 national rugby team trials on Saturday.The Namibia Rugby Union held trials for the U-20 team at the Hage Geingob…

The national Under-20 (U-20) rugby coach, Jood Opperman, has expressed satisfaction with the number of players that turned up for the U-20 national rugby team trials on Saturday.

The Namibia Rugby Union held trials for the U-20 team at the Hage Geingob Stadium to select a squad that will represent Namibia at the Barthés Trophy in Nairobi, Kenya during the month of April 2021.

This junior tournament will see eight African national U-20 teams compete for the title with the winner qualifying for the World Rugby U-20 Championship, though due to the ongoing impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic, World Rugby cancelled this year’s championship.

Speaking to the media on Saturday, Opperman said they registered 90 players for the trials this year.

“Players came from all over Namibia and we also had seven of our players currently residing in South Africa turning up for trials,” said Opperman who added that the trials were a bit tough for some players due to a lack of rugby last year but most of the players’ fitness level was really surprising.

He said the teams that made the cut from the trials will have to be approved by the board before they can be invited for training.

“We have a very good squad especially the backline, but we lack a bit in our second row particularly the lock, however we selected four or five good locks that can do the job for us when we are in Nairobi, Kenya,” Opperman said.

The coach also noted that some players in the squad are in their final qualifying year of U-20 rugby.

The probable A-team players selected are:

Herschell van Wyk (loose head prop), Frikkie Engelbrecht (hooker), Bernd Beddies (tight head prop), Zander Bronkhorst and Riaan Grové (lock), Dhale Cloete and Sheron Rossouw (flankers), William James Otto (eighth man), Oela Blaauw (scrum half), Samuel Poulton (fly half), Franklin Karigub (left wing), Kian Ethan Fransman and Niel Holtzhausen (centre), Liam Louw (right wing), Kenan Walters (full back), Friedrich Grobbelaar (hooker), Harry Ngasia (prop loose), Edmando Coetzee (prop tight), Rowan Jansen and Alexander Jansen (utility forward), Brian Bayer (scrum half), Geraldo Beukes and Coburn Claasen (utility back).

Possible B-team players are:

Ernst Lowe (loose head prop), Upahee Muhuura and Michael Tjazerua (hooker), Lucky Mauha (tight head prop), Itungua Rukoro and Vihan Scholtz (lock), Ethan Rittmann and Henri Rossouw (flanker), Ray-Eez Dwayne Feris (eighth man), Tyrese de Wee (scrum half), Raschano van Rooi (fly half), Lyle Beukes (left wing), Maandero Haimbodi and Wilmar du Toit (centre), Wian Geldenhuys (right wing) Jeandré Loubser (full back), Brand Davids (prop loose), Renier van Zyl (prop tight), Kobus Wilders and Riaan van Zyl (utility forward), Benjamin Boshoff and Nathan Isaacs (utility back).

Source: Namibia Press Agency