Send us your Two Oceans pics!

Will you be taking part in the Two Oceans Marathon? If so, send your pics to sport@news24.co.za - and we'll include you in our gallery!

LIVE

    White factor lured WP prodigy

    2013-12-17 10:24
    Post a comment
    Durban - Former Western Province junior flyhalf Tim Swiel says the prospect of being coached by Jake White was key in his decision to join the Sharks, reports Sharks website editor Michael Marnewick.

    He attended the famous Cape Town school Bishops College which boasts amongst its old boys Pick 'n Pay’s Raymond Ackerman, technology whiz Mark Shuttleworth, rugby players Robbie Fleck and Daniel Vickermann, and SA cricketers Adrian Kuiper and Herschelle Gibbs.

    Swiel matriculated in 2011 and attended Western Province Academy the following year and played two years for the WP Under-21 side straight out of school. They lost to the Blue Bulls in the 2012 final but then managed to pull it off against the same team this year, winning at Newlands in the Under-21 Final.

    “There are a lot of new things happening here and in terms of coaching, Jake White is the coach and he has a distinguished record, which made the decision to come to the Sharks an easy one,” he explains of his move to KZN.

    “To be under his mentorship will be great for my career. The culture here is great, I’ve been welcomed with open arms by all the players.”

    His ties to KZN are not a newly-established relationship, but go back into the history of the province. His mother is a Crookes, a name associated with endeavour and achievement for over 150 years in KZN, a family of successful farmers, businessmen and philanthropists who established the GJ Crookes Hospital and Vernon Crookes Nature Reserve, both on the KZN South Coast.

    But his focus now is on the training programme. “We started our pre-season training on 18 November and we’ve been at it for almost five weeks now. It’s been tough, long hours, but it’s well-structured and I’ve learned a lot. On the field, on the track or in the gym, it’s been all-round very good for me.”

    Commenting on his new environment, he explains: “It is very organised here, we have a programme we stick to and everything is punctual. It’s great here although I still have to get used to the humidity; the Cape Town weather is more constant. The people are very friendly, the culture here is great and even the senior players have been very welcoming.

    “I’m training hard, the main goal is to play Super Rugby, but you have to tick the small boxes first. Hopefully if I keep doing everything necessary, keep training hard and if the little things go well, the big things - like selection - will come.”

    A player with lightning-quick turn of speed, he just wants to play. “I like playing flyhalf but I am also happy at fullback, I just enjoy playing. I’ll play wherever my coach selects me.”

    The Super Rugby challenge is going to be a huge step up for him from provincial age group level, one he is looking forward to.

    “It has a big mental component about it,” he says, “I also think the speed of the game, along with the physicality, is greater than what I’ve experienced. But that’s why we have these long pre-season programmes, so that we’re in shape to handle the impact.

    “The pre-season is longer than I’ve done before, and intense. The days are longer too, but it’s going well and I’m learning a lot. I’m getting stronger every day.

    “I’m looking to benefit from the likes of Jake White as coach and even John Smit as the CEO, both come with the reputation of a successful Rugby World Cup which is great for the union. I’ve also enjoyed working with Sean Everitt, we do a lot of skills’ and speed work which I enjoy.”

    Read News24’s Comments Policy

    24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

    Comment on this story
    78 comments
    Add your comment
    Comment 0 characters remaining
    Live Video Streaming
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk

    Fixtures

    25 April 2014
    • Blues v Waratahs, Auckland 07:35
    • Brumbies v Chiefs, Canberra 09:40
    • Sharks v Highlanders, Durban 19:10
    26 April 2014
    • Hurricanes v Reds, Wellington 09:35
    • Western Force v Bulls, Perth 11:40
    • Cheetahs v Stormers, Bloemfontein 17:05
    02 May 2014
    • Blues v Reds, Auckland 09:35
    • Melbourne Rebels v Sharks, Melbourne 11:40

    Results

    19 April 2014
    18 April 2014
    12 April 2014
    11 April 2014
    05 April 2014
    04 April 2014
    29 March 2014
    28 March 2014
    22 March 2014
    21 March 2014
    15 March 2014
    14 March 2014
    08 March 2014
    07 March 2014
    01 March 2014
    28 February 2014
    23 February 2014
    22 February 2014
    21 February 2014
    15 February 2014

    Logs

    Rank Team P W Pts

    EXPERT OPINION

    “The Sharks as SA’s lone playoffs side for the first time in Super Rugby’s conference format is a fair possibility, warns Rob Houwing.”

    Opinion Poll

    While the Sharks look like sure winners of the SA Super Rugby Conference, the "battle" for the wooden spoon could well develop into a four-team race. Who eventually props up the table?

    Monday Quiz Madness!

    TAKE THE QUIZ
    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.