South African Conference Preview

At this stage none of the South African sides have sent out finalised Super Rugby squads. This is our current best guess at who is in which squad based off of multiple sources. We have split the conference into two Podcasts. The first with Paul Tait looking at the Jaguares, and the second with Brendon Nel discussing the South African franchise. Check out the pod below once it is released:

Jaguares Podcast S03E06 ft. Paul Tait
Soundcloud:
Itunes:
Stitcher:



South Africa Podcast S03E07 ft. Brenden Nel
Soundcloud:
Itunes:
Stitcher:

Lions

Full squad:
Props: Keagan Glade, Johannes Jonker, Leo Kruger, Nathan McBeth, Asenathi Ntlabakanye, Carlu Sadie, Jannie du Plessis, Sti Sithole, Dylan Smith, Frans van Wyk
Hookers: Malcolm Marx, Pieter Jansen, Jan-Henning Campher
Locks: Reinhard Notsharhnagel, Rhyno Herbst, Marvin Orie, PJ Steenkamp, Wilhelm van der Sluys, Ruan Vermaak
Loose forwards: Willem Alberts, Roelof Smit, Francke Horn, Hacjivah Dayimani, Len Massyn, Vincent Tshituka, Jo-Hanko de Villiers, Cyle Brink, Marnus Schoeman
Scrumhalves: Ross Cronjé, Dillon Smit, André Warner
Flyhalves: Elton Jantjies, Shaun Reynolds, James Mollentze, Eddie Fouché
Centres: Dan Kriel, Jan-Louis la Grange, Manuel Rass, Wandisile Simelane, Wayen van der Bank, Lourens van der Schyff
Outside Backs: Duncan Matthews, Jamba Ulengo, Tyrone Green, Courtnall Skosan, Andries Coetzee, Tiaan Swanepoel, Gianni Lombard, Stean Pienaar

New Faces:
Jannie du Plessis (Montpellier), Carlu Sadie (Stormers), Francke Horn (Western Province), Dan Kriel (Stormers), Roelof Smit (Bulls), James Mollentze (Free State Under-21), Tiaan Swanepoel (West Harbour, Sydney), Duncan Matthews (Bulls), Jamba Ulengo (Bulls), Willem Alberts (Stade Francais), André Warner (Bulls), Keagen Glade (Golden Lions XV), Leo Kruger (Golden Lions), Asenathi Ntlabakanye (Golden Lions U21), Stean Pienaar (Golden Lions)

Losses:
Robbie Coetzee (released), Kwagga Smith (Yamaha Jubilo), Jacobie Adriaanse (retired), Chergin Fillies (Golden Lions), Danie Mienie (Italy Rovigo), Lourens Erasmus (DoCoMo Red Hurricanes), Robert Kruger (Shining Arcs), Stephan Lewies (Harlequins), James Venter (Sharks), Nic Groom (Edinburgh), Lionel Mapoe (Stade Français), Franco Naudé (Pumas), Harold Vorster (Panasonic Wild Knights), Ruan Combrinck (Stade Français), Madosh Tambwe (Sharks), Sylvian Mahuza (Shining Arcs)

Best 15:
Dylan Smith, Pieter Jansen, Carlu Sadie, Rhyno Herbst, Marvin Orie, Marnus Schoeman, Cycle Brink, Hacjivah Dayimani, Ross Cronjé, Elton Jantjies, Courtnall Skosan, Dan Kriel, Wandisile Simelane, Tyrone Green, Andries Coetzee
Note: Malcolm Marx is away until June

Stocks are rising:
Tyrone Green – The electric outside back stormed into the Lions last season. With quality hands, agility and an ability to bust tackles the young outside back could be an absolute weapon if he gets bigger minutes this time round.
Pieter Jansen – Someone has to fill the giant shoes left vacant by Malcolm Marx until June and the man that filled the jersey at the back end of last season was the 24 year old Hooker.

Stocks are falling:
Carlu Sadie – You could be tempted to pickup the young tighthead early from the props this season, but Jannie du Plessis stands firmly in the way of Carlu getting more than 50 minutes a game which should be enough to break his points per game.

Smokies
Vincent Tshituka – There is still a lot of competition in the loose forwards with the return of Willem Alberts and the emergence of Franke Horn adding to the stacked choices at the club. Tshituka can play at both 6 and 7 and firmly established himself as a future star in the back half of last season. If you’re looking for soneone to take a punt on, the versatile back rower is potentially a great choice.

Jaguares

Full Squad:
Props: Santiago Medrano, Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro, Mayco Vivas, Javier Díaz, Lucio Sordoni, Juan Pablo Zeiss, Joel Sclavi
Hookers: Agustín Creevy, Julián Montoya, Santiago Socino,
Locks: Matías Alemanno, Guido Petti, Ignacio Calas, Lucas Paulos,
Loose forwards: Rodrigo Bruni, Fancisco Gorrissen, Marcos Kremer, Tomás Lezana, Santiago Grondona, Santiago Montagner, Javier Ortega Desio, Juan Bautista Pedemonte
Scrumhalves: Gonzalo Bertranou, Tomás Cubelli, Felipe Ezcurra
Flyhalves: Joaquín Díaz Bonilla, Domingo Miotti, Tomás Albornoz,
Centres: Santiago Chocobares, Jerónimo de la Fuente, Matías Orlando, Matías Moroni,
Outside Backs: Emiliano Boffelli, Sebastián Cancelliere, Santiago Carreras, Bautista Delguy, Joaquín Tuculet, Mateo Carreras, Juan Pablo Castro, Juan Cruz Mallía, Lucas Mensa

New Faces:
Joel Sclavi (Agen), Ignacio Calas (Jaguares XV), Santiago Montagner (Jaguares XV), Juan Bautista Pedemonte (Santiago), Tomás Albornoz (Tucumán), Mateo Carreras (Jaguares XV) , Juan Pablo Castro (Jaguares XV), Lucas Mensa (Pucará)

Losses:
Santiago García Botta (Harlequins), Enrique Pieretto (Exeter Chiefs), Ramiro Moyano (Toulon), Gasper Baldunciel (Alumni), Diego Fortuny (Universitario de Salta), Tomás Lavanini (Leicester Tigers), Franco Molina (Jaguares XV), Juan Manuel Leguizamón (released), Pablo Matera (Stade Français), Martin Landajo (Harlequins), Santiago González Iglesias (Released), Bautista Ezcurra (Jaguares XV), Ignacio Mendy (Argentina 7s), Benjamin Macome (Periodismo)

Best 15:
Mayco Vivas, Julian Montoya, Santiago Medrano, Guido Petti, Matías Alemanno, Tomás Lezana, Javier Ortega Desio, Juan Bautista Pedemonte, Gonzalo Bertranou, Joaquín Díaz Bonilla, Bautista Delguy, Jerónimo de la Fuente, Matías Orlando, Matías Moroni, Emiliano Boffelli

Stocks are rising:
Tomás Lezana – Someone needs to benefit from Pablo Matera moving on and the man most likely is Lezana. It should mean he get significant and consistent minutes, upping scoring rate to a top ranked loose forward.
Matías Alemanno – There are only two established locks in the squad meaning Alemanno should play a lot of footy in 2020. His only competition is realy Paulos and potentially Kremer if he works as a part time solution.

Stocks are falling:
Agustín Creevy – The 2019 RWC shows that the baton has well and truly been passed to Montoya. Expect Creevy’s minutes to dwindle even further in 2020.

Smokies:
Juan Bautista Pedemonte – The young number 8 is an absolute weapon that Paul Tait says could be Argentina’s next Facundo Isa! There is a reasonable chance that he could get some solid minutes at the back of the scrum this year, however there is some huge competition ahead of him.

Sharks

Full squad:
Props: Thomas du Toit, Michael Kumbirai, Mzamo Majola, John-Hubert Meyer, Ox Nché, Khutha Mchunu, Juan Schoeman
Hookers: Kerron van Vuuren, Fez Mbatha, Dylan Richardson
Locks: JJ van der Mescht, Ruben van Heerde, Jordan Sesink-Clee, Andrew Evans, Hyron Andrews, Le Roux Roets
Loose forwards: Phendulani Buthelezi, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Tyler Paul, James Venter, Kwanda Dimaza, Tera Mtembu, Dylan Richardson, Luke Stringer, Wian Vosloo, Henco Venter
Scrumhalves: Louis Schreuder, Sanele Nohamba, Grant Williams, Cameron Wright
Flyhalves: Curwin Bosch, Jordan Chait
Centres: Andre Esterhuizen, Lukhanyo Am, Marius Louw, Jeremy Ward, Werner Kok, DJ Falconer, Murray Koster
Outside Backs: Aphelele Fassi, Lwazi Mvovo, Boeta Chamberlain, Sibusiso Nkosi, Madosh Tambwe, Muller du Plessis, Makazole Mapimpi, Thaakir Abrahams, Grant Williams

New Faces:
James Venter (Lions), Henco Venter (Cheetahs), Sikhumbuzo Notshe (Stormers), Ox Nche (Cheetahs), Michael Kumbirai (Stormers), Jordan Sesink-Clee (Maties), Jordan Chait (Maties), Werner Kok (RSA 7s), Madosh Tambwe (Lions)

Losses:
Tendai Mtawarira (retirement), Coenie Oosthuizen (Sale), Akker van der Merwe (Sale), Jean-Luc du Preez (Sale), Dan du Preez (Sale), Rhyno Smith (Cheetahs), Courtney Winnaar (Kings), Leolin Zas (Stormers), Cullen Collopy (New Orleans Gold), Ruan Botha (London Irish), Gideon Koegelenberg (Rebels), Jacques Vermeulen (Exeter Chiefs), Philip can der Walt (Newcastle Falcons), Robert du Preez (Sale Sharks), Kobus van Wyk (Hurricanes), Chiliboy Ralepelle (Facing ban)

Best 15:
Ox Nche, Kerron van Vuuren, Thomas du Toit, Ruben van Heerden, Hyron Andrews, Phendulani Buthelezi, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Tera Mtembu, Louis Schreuder, Curwin Bosche, Makazole Mapimpi, Andre Esterhuizen, Lukhanyo Am, Sibusiso Nkosi, Aphelele Fassi

Stocks are rising:
Ox Nche – The former Cheetahs loosehead prop is highly rated in South Africa and has moved to the Sharks for most likely a better shot at a Springboks jersey. Ox will likely hold down the No.1 jersey, pushing Thomas “the tank engine” to tighthead prop.
Curwin Bosch – Bosch will be the Sharks flyhalf this year. That means he gets more ball and more attacking opportunity. He is another young flyhalf with immense attacking ability that could score huge points this year.

Stocks are falling:
Kerron van Vuuren – After owning the hooking jersey in 2019 Kerron could face much stiffer competition with the development of young gun hooker Dylan Richardson.

Smokies:
Mzamo Majola – Majola is an exciting young prop that scores big fantasy poitns when he is on the park. He will find it tough to consistently crack the starting side, but it should only take one injury for him to be a powerhouse.
Phendulani Buthelezi – Phepsi was the U20’s captain at their World Cup in 2019 and is another highly rated young prospect. With plenty of movement in the Sharks loose forwards he is a reasonable punt to get an early opportunity, if he takes it with both hands, he could be a mainstay in any Draft Rugby side.

Bulls

Full squad:
Props: Matthys Basson, Lizo Gqoboka, Wiehahn Herbst, Madot Mabokela, Simphiwe Matanzima, Nqoba Mxoli, Trevor Nyakane, Dayan van der Westhuizen, Gerhard Steenekamp, Mornay Smith
Hookers: Johan Grobbelaar, Edgar Marutlulle, Jaco Visagie, Corniel Els
Locks: Andries Ferreira, Juandré Kruger, Ruan Nortje, Ryno Pieterse
Loose forwards: Abongile Nonkontwana, Josh Strauss, Tim Agaba, Nick de Jager, Carel du Preez, Ruan Steenkamp, Mullyer Uys, Marco van Staden, Jano Venter, Jeandre Rudolph
Scrumhalves: Embrose Papier, Ivan van Zyl, Theo Maree
Flyhalves: Manie Libbok, Morné Steyn, Marnitz Boshoff
Centres: Burger Odendaal, Stedman Gans, Dylan Sage, Marnus Potgieter, Nafi Tuitavake
Outside Backs: Johnny Kôtze, Rosko Specman, Cornal Hendricks, Jade Stighling, Warrick Gelant, Divan Rossouw

New Faces:
Morne Steyn (Stade Francais), Juandré Kruger (Toulon), Abongile Nonkontwana (Cheetahs), Josh Strauss (Sale Sharks), Nafi Tuitavake (Northampton Saints)

Losses:
Handre Pollard (Montpellier), Jesse Kriel (Canon Eagles), Lood de Jager (Sale), RG Snyman (Honda Heat), Duane Vermeulen (Kubota Spears), Schalk Brits (Retired), Jason Jenkins (Toyota Verblitz), Conraad van Vuuren (Sunwolves), Eli Snyman (Benetton), Hendré Stassen (Stade Français), Thembelani Bholi (Southern Kings), Jannes Kirsten (Exeter Chiefs), Paul Schoeman (Honda Heat), Roelof Smit (Lions), Hanro Liebenberg (Leicester Tigers), André Warner (Lions), Chris Smith (Pumas), JT Jackson (Southern Kings), Travis Ismaiel (Harlequins), Duncan Matthews (Lions)

Best 15:
Lizo Gqoboka, Jaco Visagie, Trevor Nyakane, Andries Ferreira, Juandré Kruger, Marco van Staden, Ruan Steenkamp, Josh Strauss, Embrose Papier, Morné Steyn, Rosco Specman, Burger Odendaal, Johnny Kôtze, Cornal Hendricks, Warrick Gelant

Stocks are rising:
Josh Strauss – The Scottish international No. 8 has returned home. Previously captained the Lions, will be expected to be an absolute work horse for his new club.
Dylan Sage – The man most likely to be tasked with filling Jesse Kriel’s sizeable shoes. At 26 years old he has significant experience in professional rugby in both 15s and 7s. His versatility also allows him to earn more minutes with the ability to play all of incide center, outside and wing.

Stocks are falling:
Warrick Gelant – Gelant fell well down on his exceptional 2018 form last season, with the continued development of Divan Rossouw, and the real chance of either Morne Steyn, or Libbok playing at 15, he could drop even further.

Smokies:
Manie Libbok – Just how the Bulls will use Libbok and Steyn remains to be seen, but it isn’t inconceivable that the highly rated prospect could get some significant game time throughout the season. Has the athleticism needed to score some serious fantasy points.

Stormers

Full squad:
Props: Kwenzo Blose, Neethling Fouché, Steven Kitshoff, Wilco Louw, Leon Lyons, Frans Malherbe, Alistair Vermaak
Hookers: Bongi Mbonambi, Scarra Ntubeni, Ramone Samuels, Chad Solomon
Locks: Salmaan Moerat, JD Schickerling, Ernst van Rhyn, Chris van Zyl, David Meihuizen
Loose forwards: Pieter-Steph du Toit, Ben-Jason Dixon, Johan du Toit, Siya Kolisi, Cobus Wiese, Nama Xaba, Juarno Augustus, Jaco Coetzee
Scrumhalves: Herschel Jantjies, Justin Phillips, Jano Vermaak, Paul de Wet
Flyhalves: Jean-Luc du Plessis, Damian Willemse
Centres: Rikus Pretorius, Matt Moore, Daniël du Plessis, Ruhan Nel, Michal Haznar, Jamie Roberts
Outside Backs: Sihle Njezula, Sergeal Petersen, Edwill van der Merwe, Seabelo Senatla, Dillyn Leyds

New Faces:
Rikus Pretorius (Western Province), Matt Moore (Western Province), Leon Lyons (Western Province), Ben-Jason Dixon (Western Province), Sihle Njezula (Western Province), Michal Haznar (Griquas), David Meihuizen (Western Province), Jamie Roberts (Bath)

Losses:
Eben Etzebeth (Toulon), Damian de Allende (Wild Knights & Munster), Corne Fourie (Gloucester), Michael Kumbirai (Sharks), Lee-Marvin Mazibuko (Viadana), Chris Maassyn (Cheetahs), Sikhumbuzo Notshe (Sharks), Marno Redelinghuys (Rugby ATL), Kobus van Dyk (Canon Eagles), Joshua Stander (Suntory Sungoliath), JJ Engelbrecht (Sunwolves), Dan Kriel (Lions), Duncan Saal (Cheetahs), Craig Barry (Cheetahs), SP Marais (Canon Eagles), EW Viljoen (Leicester Tigers),

Best 15:
Steven Kitshoff, Bongi Mbonambi, Frans Malherbe, Salmaan Moerat, JD Schickerling, Siya Kolisi, Pieter-Steph du Toit, Jaco Coetzee, Herschel Jantjies, Damian Willemse, Sergeal Pietersen, Dan du Plessis, Ruhan Nel, Seabelo Senatla, Dillyn Leyds

Stocks are rising:
Damian Willemse – Dobson says Willemse will be the Stormers flyhalf this year. Hopefully this means we get the insane scoring rate we know he can deliver.
Sergeal Pietersen – Pietersen had an insane year in the Currie Cup in 2018 as the competition top try scorer, but then injury prevented him from taking advantage of his hot form last season. With depleated wing stocks this time round we should see him hold down one wing long enough to return to his try scoring form.

Stocks are falling:
Jean-Luc du Plessis – If Willemse is set to rise in 2020, then Jean-Luc’s fantasy stocks are set to hit rock bottom. Stay well away this year.

Smokies:
Rikus Pretorius – The 12 jersey is still very much up for grabs. The exceptional young centre is definitely in the conversation to take the jersey, but he’ll have to get past Dan du Plessis though to really crack the top tear of Draft Rugby centres.

Note: Team transfers will continue to be updated as they are released.

Written by Harrison Dale