CAPE TOWN – Fifteen Sharks players, including the uncapped Sbu Nkosi, André Esterhuizen, Robert du Preez, Cameron Wright, Thomas du Toit and Akker van der Merwe, have been invited to the third and final Springbok alignment camp, in Durban from 22 to 25 April.
The Springbok management are using the three alignment camps to accelerate preparations for the forthcoming international rugby season.
A total of 22 players from the Stormers and Lions were present at the second camp which took place two weeks ago at the Riverside Resort in Vanderbijlpark situated in the south of Johannesburg, while 12 Bulls players attended the first camp at the same venue.
According to Rassie Erasmus, SA Rugby’s Director of Rugby, the Springbok management is looking forward to linking up with the Durban-based players at final alignment camp.
“We managed to work through a lot of technical detail during our first two camps and the various sessions with the Sharks players will be equally intensive,” explained Erasmus.
“We saw during the other two camps that the players appreciate the technical discussions and the clarification of our approach for the forthcoming international season, starting with Wales in Washington and the home series against England. Similar to the Vanderbijlpark camps, we will also have a couple of the Sharks coaches in attendance over the four days in Umhlanga.”
No on-field activities are planned for the camps and the focus of the various sessions is exclusively on alignment, which will ensure a smooth transition from Super Rugby to the Springboks when the squad gets together for the June internationals.
The Springboks start their international commitments with a clash against Wales in Washington DC on Saturday, 2 June. They then return immediately after to South Africa to face England in the Incoming Series, which will comprise three Tests on consecutive weekends.
Emirates Airline Park in Johannesburg will host the series opener on 9 June, while the second Test takes place on 16 June at the Toyota Stadium in Bloemfontein, and the final match in the series will be contested a week later at Newlands in Cape Town.
The following Sharks players will attend the third Springbok alignment camp in Durban:
Tendai Mtawarira (prop), Coenie Oosthuizen (prop), Thomas du Toit (prop), Chiliboy Ralepelle (hooker), Akker van der Merwe (hooker), Jean-Luc du Preez (loose forward), Dan du Preez (loose forward).
Louis Schreuder (scrumhalf), Cameron Wright (scrumhalf), Robert du Preez (flyhalf), André Esterhuizen (centre), Lukhanyo Am (centre), Lwazi Mvovo (wing), Sbu Nkosi (wing), Curwin Bosch (fullback).