Former SA Schools stars Salmaan Moerat, Muller Uys, Nkosikhona Masuku and Rikus Pretorius will be among the first intake of top young stars inducted into the SA Rugby Academy as the mother body on Thursday welcomed the Stellenbosch Academy of Sport (SAS) as official partner to the new initiative.
Thirty of the best U19 and U20 players from around the country will form part of the SA Rugby Academy in 2018. The players will be based as a group for four months at SAS’s world-class facilities in Stellenbosch and will return to their respective unions for the rest of the season.
As part of the programme, coaches from the Springbok team, Junior Springboks and the Springbok Sevens, as well as SAS, will work with these players, following the agreement of one-year partnership deal to this very important programme.
“With the holistic development of the players as its main aim, this programme is the perfect fit between high performance sport and education,” said SA Rugby CEO Jurie Roux.
“It’s wonderful to have a company as committed to sport and the upliftment of people such as SAS to come on board in this very important venture and I would like to thank them for their contribution.
“The academic side of the programme is very important as we aim to also prepare players for careers outside of playing rugby, while at the same time keeping the very important aspect of transformation in mind.
“They will receive world-class guidance in terms of what is needed to become a top professional rugby player, but will also study various courses at a number of tertiary institutions across the country.”
Rob Benadie, CEO of SAS, said: “We want to promote excellence and make a contribution to transformation in South African Rugby.
“We particularly like the idea of partnering with SA Rugby on their rugby academy as it creates fantastic opportunities for the development of our top black rugby players and the performance of the Boks over years to come.”
Issued by SA Rugby Communications