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Du Preez twins commit future to Sharks

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Jean-Luc and Daniel have signed new deals keeping them at Sale until the end of the 2025/26 season.

Alex Sanderson has hailed ‘honorary Mancunians’ Jean-Luc and Dan du Preez as two of the Premiership’s very best after the twins committed their long-term futures to Sale Sharks.

The powerful 27-year-olds, who signed for the club on permanent deals in 2019, have put pen to paper on deals taking them up to the end of the 2025/26 season.

The twins arrived in Manchester from Durban-based Super Rugby side Cell C Sharks, where they had played alongside older brother – and now Sale teammate – Rob.

Since then both players have become key parts of the Sharks side, with versatile Jean-Luc, who initially joined on loan, racking up 83 appearances for the club, and number eight Dan featuring 73 times.

Jean-Luc said: “I am delighted that I will be staying with Sale and I’m really excited to see what we can produce as a group.

“My brothers and I come over in 2019 wanting to win something, and we have struggled over the last few seasons by Sale’s standards, however I feel there is a renewed energy in the club and I think this might just be the year where we surprise a lot of people.”

Dan said: “I’m so excited to be here for the next four years and I can’t wait to see where we go as a team. I couldn’t be happier with my decision. My family and I have made this home.”

Sharks Director of Rugby Alex said the new deals for two of his key players demonstrates the level of the club’s ambition.

He said: “Where do I start with the du Preez twins and their physicality, their passion and their quality? My cup runeth over.

“They are two of the very best and most consistent performers in the Premiership and for them to both commit three of the best years of their careers to this club goes so far in shouting out what a special place this is.

“The lads had offers from Japan and from France but they want to be here and that demonstrates just how high our aspirations and ambitions are.

“Jean-Luc and Dan have had kids here, their families are happy here and they’ve really found a home. I know they’re from South Africa but they’re honorary Mancunians.”

Jean-Luc and Dan joined Sale Sharks on a permanent deal in 2019 after impressing on an initial three-month loan contract.

The twins arrived in Manchester from Durban-based Super Rugby side Cell C Sharks, where they had played alongside older brother – and now Sale teammate – Rob.

Jean-Luc has won 13 international caps since making his Springbok debut as a replacement against Wales, in Cardiff, in 2016.

Dan, who has six caps, made his debut for the Springboks the following year and in doing so made history.

The twins’ dad Robert played seven tests for South Africa and when Dan took the field against France, it was the first time in South African rugby that two sons of a Springbok had played Test rugby.

In 2021 both Jean-Luc and Dan were named in the Springbok squad for the series against the British and Irish Lions.

“This is a huge coup for the club. Jean-Luc and Dan were highly sought after and had plenty of offers from both the Gallagher Premiership and abroad. They see what we’re building here and they want to stay and be a part of it. 

“It’s a huge statement of intent for us. We want to create an environment where the very best players feel like they can grow and thrive and be successful.  

“Jean-Luc and Dan are absolutely integral to what we want to achieve and we’re all thrilled that they’ve decided to stay.” 

Images & Content from Sale Sharks Rugby


Premiership

Tom Wood to captain Barbarians for showdown with Saints

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Northampton Saints legend Tom Wood will lead out Barbarian F.C. at cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens for tomorrow afternoon’s clash between the two sides.The world-famous invitational side will lock horns with the men in Black, Green and Gold for the first time in history on Saturday (kick-off: 3pm), and with Saints close to full strength for the exhibition match, the BaaBaas have selected a side packed with star quality to run out in Northampton.Wood captains the team and lines up in the No.8 jersey alongside Cardiff Rugby flanker Olly Robinson and former Wasps back row Ben Morris.Elliott Stooke and Graham Kitchener – formerly of Wasps and Worcester Warriors respectively – are selected in the engine room, with an explosive front row including Scotland international Murray McCallum, All Black Hika Elliot, and Stormers tighthead Brok Harris.Former England international Danny Cipriani starts at fly-half, with Gareth Simpson in the No.9 jersey and Wales international Owen Williams filling a second playmaker role at inside centre.Outside the former Worcester player in midfield is another Saints legend in Luther Burrell, who runs out at the Gardens berth for one final appearance in the UK before making the switch to Japan.And the Barbarians’ back-three is full of pace and power with England’s Marland Yarde and Zach Kibirige set to start on the wings, with Wales international Jonah Holmes completing the line-up at fullback.A limited number of tickets remain for the fixture, starting from £22 adult / £8 junior*. PLEASE CLICK HERE to purchase now.BARBARIAN F.C. SIDE TO FACE NORTHAMPTON SAINTSSaturday 26 November 2022cinch Stadium at Franklin’s GardensKick-off: 3pm15 Jonah Holmes14 Zach Kibirige13 Luther Burrell12 Owen Williams11 Marland Yarde10 Danny Cipriani9 Gareth Simpson1 Murray McCallum2 Hika Elliot3 Brok Harris4 Graham Kitchener5 Elliott Stooke6 Ben Morris7 Olly Robinson8 Tom Wood (c)Replacements:16 Tevita Ikanivere17 Ben Harris18 Elliot Millar-Mills19 Lloyd Ashley20 Will Boyde21 Francois Hougaard22 Mali Hingano23 Perry Humphreys

Northampton Saints legend Tom Wood will lead out Barbarian F.C. at cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens for tomorrow afternoon’s clash between the two sides.

The world-famous invitational side will lock horns with the men in Black, Green and Gold for the first time in history on Saturday (kick-off: 3pm), and with Saints close to full strength for the exhibition match, the BaaBaas have selected a side packed with star quality to run out in Northampton.

Wood captains the team and lines up in the No.8 jersey alongside Cardiff Rugby flanker Olly Robinson and former Wasps back row Ben Morris.

Elliott Stooke and Graham Kitchener – formerly of Wasps and Worcester Warriors respectively – are selected in the engine room, with an explosive front row including Scotland international Murray McCallum, All Black Hika Elliot, and Stormers tighthead Brok Harris.

Former England international Danny Cipriani starts at fly-half, with Gareth Simpson in the No.9 jersey and Wales international Owen Williams filling a second playmaker role at inside centre.

Outside the former Worcester player in midfield is another Saints legend in Luther Burrell, who runs out at the Gardens berth for one final appearance in the UK before making the switch to Japan.

And the Barbarians’ back-three is full of pace and power with England’s Marland Yarde and Zach Kibirige set to start on the wings, with Wales international Jonah Holmes completing the line-up at fullback.

A limited number of tickets remain for the fixture, starting from £22 adult / £8 junior*. PLEASE CLICK HERE to purchase now.

BARBARIAN F.C. SIDE TO FACE NORTHAMPTON SAINTS
Saturday 26 November 2022
cinch Stadium at Franklin’s Gardens
Kick-off: 3pm

15 Jonah Holmes
14 Zach Kibirige
13 Luther Burrell
12 Owen Williams
11 Marland Yarde
10 Danny Cipriani
9 Gareth Simpson

1 Murray McCallum
2 Hika Elliot
3 Brok Harris
4 Graham Kitchener
5 Elliott Stooke
6 Ben Morris
7 Olly Robinson
8 Tom Wood (c)

Replacements:
16 Tevita Ikanivere
17 Ben Harris
18 Elliot Millar-Mills
19 Lloyd Ashley
20 Will Boyde
21 Francois Hougaard
22 Mali Hingano
23 Perry Humphreys

Content & Images from – Northampton Saints Rugby


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Premiership

TEAM NEWS | Sale Sharks v Bristol Bears

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Sam James makes his 200th Sharks appearance, Cobus Wiese and Akker van der Merwe return from injury and Rouban Birch and Kieran Wilkinson are rewarded for their cup heroics with places on the replacements bench for the Saturday lunchtime Premiership clash with Bristol Bears (KO 1pm – live on BT Sport).

Jean-Luc and Dan du Preez also return to the Sharks line-up after featuring for South Africa A, while Jono Ross captains the side for the round 11 showdown with Pat Lam’s men.

Springbok hooker Van der Merwe returns to the number two shirt after six weeks out with an ankle injury picked up against London Irish in October, and he takes his place in the front row between the experienced pair of Ross Harrison and Nick Schonert.

Wiese also returns from ankle lay-off to partner Josh Beaumont in the second row, while the Du Preez twins line-up alongside skipper Ross in the back row.

Gus Warr lines up again at scrum-half alongside fly-half Rob du Preez, and in the centres, Sam Hill starts with the ever-present Sam James, who plays his 200th game for his boyhood club.

Tom Roebuck and Byron McGuigan start on the wings, with full-back Joe Carpenter making up a pacy back three.

Academy products Tommy Taylor and fit-again Simon McIntyre provide front-row cover on the bench, along with Joe Jones, who will be playing his 50th Sharks game if he takes the field.

Sam Dugdale and Friday night’s Premiership Rugby Cup player of the match Birch cover the rest of the forwards.

Joe Simpson, Wilkinson and Arron Reed are the backs replacements.

Sale Sharks Starting XV:

15. Joe Carpenter, 14. Tom Roebuck, 13. Sam James, 12. Sam Hill, 11. Byron McGuigan, 10. Robert du Preez, 9. Gus Warr; 1. Ross Harrison, 2. Akker van der Merwe, 3. Nick Schonert, 4. Cobus Wiese, 5. Josh Beaumont, 6. JL du Preez, 7. Jono Ross ©, 8. Daniel du Preez

Replacements:

16. Tommy Taylor, 17. Simon McIntyre, 18. Joe Jones, 19. Rouban Birch, 20. Sam Dugdale, 21. Joe Simpson, 22. Kieran Wilkinson, 23. Arron Reed.

Images & Content from Sale Sharks Rugby


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Falcons forward heads to France

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Thursday 24 November 2022

Lock-forward George Merrick has left Newcastle Falcons to join a French club with immediate effect.

The 30-year-old has made 13 appearances since joining from Worcester Warriors in the summer of 2021, and leaves with the thanks and best wishes of the club.

Newcastle Falcons head coach Dave Walder said: “George has been offered an exciting playing opportunity over in France and we wish him all the best for his move.

“He has been a positive presence around our squad during his time here, and on behalf of the entire coaching team I’d like to thank him for his contribution.”

Merrick said: “I’ve loved my time in Newcastle with a great bunch of boys, and I’m looking forward now to this new challenge.”

Source – Newcastle Falcons Rugby


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