Currie Cup

Botes' record career at an end

2014-08-15 12:19
Jacques Botes (Gallo)
Cape Town - The most-capped Currie Cup player, Sharks flank Jacques Botes, will retire at the end of the 2014 domestic campaign.

According to the MyPlayers website, the 33-year-old engraved his name in the South African rugby annals last season when he surpassed Helgard Muller to become the player with most Currie Cup caps in the history of the competition.

He has currently played 147 matches, having represented the Sharks and the Pumas since 2002. He will now continue to add to this amazing feat during the current Currie Cup campaign with the Durban-based union, which will be his last.

“I have decided that this will be my last season as a player,” Botes told MyPlayers. “I’ve enjoyed an amazing journey, which started at the Pumas and carried on at the Sharks. I’ve enjoyed great memories, both on and off the field, during my time at both teams.

“I’ve also made many friendships along the way. Corniel van Zyl, who currently plies his trade in Italy, is a very good friend of mine and we started our careers together at the Pumas. I’m also very close with the likes of Johann Muller, Ruan Pienaar and Jean Deysel, just a few among many more. These friendships will go on for a very long time.”

Looking back on his career, Botes recalls many fond memories, including his Currie Cup debut, favourite tries and toughest opponents.

“I still remember my debut very clearly, although it was 12 years ago!,” he explained. “I joined the Pumas squad quite late in the competition, and we needed a 25-point win over SWD to remain in the Currie Cup Premier Division. We managed to secure the big win, which was a great start to my provincial career.

“Over the years, there have been many great achievements,” he added. “I’ve had the honour of playing in many Currie Cup finals, and I’ve cherished every moment when I was on the winning side. My favourite try definitely came during the 2011 season against the Lions, when I ran over 40m to line.

“Playing in Super Rugby and the Currie Cup has allowed me to play some of the best players t have played the game. It was great to play against the likes of Richie McCaw and George Smith on the international scene. In South Africa, Schalk Burger and Heinrich Brussow were outstanding.”

Botes added that he will continue life at the Sharks after his retirement at the end of the season. He will be taking on an administrative post in Durban, which will see him managing the players.

"I've run a few training sessions at the Investec International Rugby Academy, but I wasn't too serious about getting into coaching," explained Botes. "I've been lucky enough to experience the administrative side to the game, and I enjoy it a lot. I will play a big role in managing the players at the Sharks, which I'm excited about."

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Read more on:    sharks  |  currie cup  |  jacques botes  |  durban  |  rugby

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