Catrakilis to stay at WP?
Demetri Catrakilis (File)
Cape Town - The next couple of weeks of Currie Cup rugby should determine where Demetri Catrakilis furthers his rugby career in 2013.
Although there has been a lot of speculation that Catrakilis has already signed to play for the Southern Kings in next year’s Super Rugby competition, Western Province and Stormers coach Allister Coetzee
told the supersport.com website
that is still far from a certainty. He intends using the next few weeks to make up his mind whether to counter the Kings offer.
“We do have the right to match an offer that is made to one of our players and we are exercising that right with Demetri,” said Coetzee on Monday.
“There will obviously be a cut-off date when we will have to make up our minds, but that day has not arrived yet. We have been talking to his agent, and while there has been an offer made to him, we are still weighing up our options and assessing what we’ve got in terms of flyhalf talent.
“Demetri has played really well for us so far in this Currie Cup season.
"There is no doubting or denying that. But the budget only goes so far so we are going to have to see what we can afford. We also need to decide where each player fits into the pecking order.”
It is understood that Catrakilis has been made an assurance he will start at flyhalf for the Kings, so obviously the Stormers are going to have to make some sort of assurance that Catrakilis, if not ahead of first choice Peter Grant
, is still high up on the list and in line for game time for the Cape team if he stays.
Coetzee admitted he faced a bit of a problem in giving the players he is weighing up as possible Stormers flyhalves next year due to the injury that has kept Gary van Aswegen from the field for much of the past few seasons. Van Aswegen is the recognised No 2 pivot and has been highly rated ever since playing a starring role for the WP Under-21 side that dominated the 2010 national age-group competition under the coaching of John Dobson and Rassie Erasmus.
However since graduating to senior ranks he has spent lengthy spells on the sidelines with injuries, and Coetzee sent him back to club rugby at the start of the domestic season in an attempt to offer him more game time.
“It is unfortunate, but it is a fact that when a player is injured it does hold back his career and stop him from progressing,” agreed the coach.
“I need to try to find an opportunity to accommodate Gary in the team in the next couple of games. It is not just him, but also Kurt Coleman that we want to look at. The problem is, and it is a nice problem to have, is that the selected team is doing so well at the moment and has picked up enough momentum for it to make us hard to make changes.”
Coetzee added that Burton Francis, who was on the Stormers bench for much of the Super Rugby campaign, had not been contracted by the union and that explained why he was currently playing for the South Western Districts Eagles.