Jordan Hendrikse on Sharks move: I needed a new chapter

Jordan Hendrikse was recalled to the Lions’ starting XV for last week’s 40-10 thrashing of his future team, the Sharks. Photo: BackpagePix

Jordan Hendrikse was recalled to the Lions’ starting XV for last week’s 40-10 thrashing of his future team, the Sharks. Photo: BackpagePix

Published Mar 7, 2024


Jordan Hendrikse says that he is moving back to Durban because he wants a fresh challenge – and his wish is the Sharks’ command as they try to rebuild from a disastrous season.

The 22-year-old was schooled in Durban at Glenwood High before joining the Lions, and is leaving them just as they are coming good after a few years of struggle – and will now join up with Springbok scrumhalf brother Jaden at the Sharks.

“I wanted to change my environment,” Hendrikse told the website.

“I would like to embrace a different style, especially with the coaches they have at the Sharks, the (running) game they want to play there and the culture.

“They (have) so many Springboks, and I can learn from them. Before the alignment camp was announced, I saw it as an opportunity to learn from those players and hopefully get seen.

“It’s also about going back to a familiar space. I was in Durban for five years during high school, and I know a lot of people there. I just needed a bit of a challenge and a new chapter in my life.”

Hendrikse said he was grateful for the opportunity the Lions gave him.

“The Lions gave me a chance at a young age, and I am forever grateful for the backing that I got from the coaching staff. But every player needs to find their feet somewhere, and for me, that’s starting again somewhere else.”

Hendrikse was recalled to the Lions’ starting XV for last week’s 40-10 United Rugby Championship thrashing of his future team at Ellis Park, and he said he will serve out his remaining time in Johannesburg to the best of his ability.

“My focus is still where I am now, to leave my jersey in a better place and take the Lions forward. When my journey at the Sharks starts, whether that’s later this year or whenever I get to leave the Lions, I look forward to that.”

Hendrikse said the plight of the Sharks reminds him of where the Lions were a few years ago.

“Two seasons ago, we were in the same place that the Sharks are. We had a group of new coaches come in. They had a new style that they wanted to build,” the former Junior Springbok flyhalf said.

“It took us two seasons to get it right. In this third season, we’ve been gelling well. Our combinations have settled, and we’re understanding each other.

“The biggest thing for us now is consistency, especially at home. Last season we were good at home, but this season, we’ve struggled a bit.

“If we can win our next four or five home games, that should put us in a comfortable position to make the play-offs.

“It’s about building on our performances each week. We still have these dips in our game where we lack a bit of focus, whether that’s discipline or errors. Good teams will capitalise on that.

“It’s about being consistent and not having those dips. If we control that, that should allow us the opportunity to make the play-offs.

“Our away record is quite good as well. The games that we’ve lost have been only by one or two points.

“I think we are way better than how we started the season (losing three games in a row). We’ve grown a lot as a team and individually as players.

“The boys are excited. Last year we were so close to making play-offs – we were three points behind the Sharks.

“This season, we are aiming for the top four and hopefully going on to win the URC. We’ve been building in seasons one and two ... Now season three is about winning this.”