Delport eyes Fourie's position

2010-01-07 23:03
Marius Delport (Gallo Images)
Pieter Jordaan

Johannesburg – Marius Delport is not taking anything for granted as he eyes the Lions No 13 jersey that has been vacated by Jaque Fourie.

Delport, 24, has built an impressive CV at the Bulls and also achieved success with South Africa’s junior teams. His size (1,94m and 96kg) also places him in the Fourie category, but he’s quick to point out that he will have to utilise every grain of power to force his way in to the starting line-up.

“We’ve been told that we’ll have to fight for that place. There are about 10 guys at the Lions that will want to play outside centre. There’s Deon van Rensburg, Jannie Boshoff, Alwyn Hollenbach and other good players,” said Delport.

The move to the Lions may help Delport realise his potential after he was unable to hold a regular starting position at the Bulls or Blue Bulls.

He signed a two-year contract with the Golden Lions Rugby Union (GLRU) rather than leaving SA to go and play club rugby in France.

Racing Metro, for whom Frans Steyn plays, was a possible destination, while other clubs were also interested in his services.

“I felt I had to move and initially wanted to go overseas, but I love my country too much,” said Delport.

“It’s nice at the Lions. Dick Muir (the Lions’ new director of coaching) and his coaching team are open-minded. It sounds as if they want to play a bit of running rugby, so it will be nice.”

Delport is still living in Pretoria, but the daily trip to Johannesburg will be worth every moment if he can make his mark at his new team. He also has the advantage of being able to play wing and fullback.

It is still unclear who will wear the No 15 jersey following Louis Ludik’s departure to the Sharks. Ludik and Willem Alberts are both lost to the Gauteng side, but Muir believes they can be replaced from within the Lions’ ranks.

“It’s always a setback to lose quality players, but we have a number of options,” said Muir.

Muir also said that he has a number of captaincy options, but that flanker Cobus Grobbelaar is likely to continue in the role.


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