Britz set for Cheetahs return
Brenden Nel - SuperSport
Johannesburg - The Cheetahs continue in their quest to replenish their player cabinet and are believed to be close to completing the signing of Lions "wild-man" Willie Britz, the supersport.com website reports.
This comes after the Bloemfontein side confirmed the signings of three other Lions players - prop Bees Roux, flyhalf Willie du Plessis and utility back Coenie van Wyk for the coming season.
The Cheetahs have also signed Montpellier midfielder JP du Plessis and have an agreement for SA under-20 winger Sergeal Peterson to represent them at Super Rugby level.
Britz, of course, played his junior rugby at Griquas, representing them at Craven Week before playing Under-19 rugby and making his Vodacom Cup debut for the Cheetahs in 2009 before alternating between the Cheetahs, Griffons and the Shimlas Varsity Cup side for four seasons.
Britz was lured to Johannesburg in 2012 and featured regularly in the Lions squad, including both promotion-relegation games and made his Currie Cup debut against the Cheetahs for the Lions in the same year.
Since then he has been a regular in the Super Rugby side and has provided some sterling work off the bench as an impact player or when on the field.
His agent James Adams confirmed to supersport.com that Britz was in negotiations with the Cheetahs, “but that nothing has been signed yet.”
His signature is expected in the next few days though.
News also out of Bloemfontein is that the Bulls may well have beaten the Stormers to the signature of Trevor Nyakane.
While a decision is only expected after this weekend’s Lions-Cheetahs Super Rugby game on Britz, Nyakane, Adriaan Strauss and Lappies Labuschagne, it seems all bar Strauss are done deals.
Nyakane and Labuschagne have decided, according to Volksblad, to accept offers from the Bulls, while Strauss will make up his mind after this weekend on joining the Pretoria side.
The Cheetahs have also signed Blue Bulls utility back Clayton Blommetjies for the coming season.
The signings are sure to offset the losses the Cheetahs have suffered as already they have lost the likes of Johan Goosen to Racing Metro in France and are set to lose Springboks Trevor Nyakane (Stormers/Bulls) and captain Adriaan Strauss (Bulls). Other players who have confirmed their moves include fullback Hennie Daniller to Zebre in Italy, Riaan “True Blue” Smit to Oyonnax in France, Ligtoring Landman (Newport and Gwent Dragons), Nick Schonert (Worcester Warriors), Kevin Luiters (EP Kings) and Andries Ferreira (Zebre).
No 8 Philip van der Walt is heading to Biarritz as well, while Piet Lindeque has decided to give up his contract to go farming.
Torsten van Jaarsveld, who is equally at home at flank and hooker, has extended his contract with the Cheetahs.