Currie Cup

Rhule still has Bok dream

2014-10-13 17:27
Raymond Rhule (Gallo Images)
Bloemfontein - Cheetahs wing Raymond Rhule is confident that his team can rebuild into a competitive unit heading into next year's Super Rugby campaign.

The Cheetahs' 2014 season officially came to an end last weekend as their 47-7 disappointing defeat against the Golden Lions in Johannesburg relinquished their hopes of qualifying for the Currie Cup semi-finals.

It was an impressive effort from a squad guided by a young coach in Rory Duncan, especially after losing several key players after Super Rugby.

More players will now leave the union heading into the 2015 season, like Adriaan Strauss, Lappies Labuschagne and Trevor Nyakane.

The Cheetahs will need to rebuild quickly with Super Rugby kicking off in February. However, Rhule believes the men from Bloemfontein will be able to come together effectively.

"It was a disappointing end to the Currie Cup campaign, but there are many positives to take out," Rhule told the MyPlayers website.

"Many young players filled in very nicely and made valuable contributions. I've played with many of them at school and junior provincial levels, and there's plenty of talent coming through.

"With these guys coming through the ranks, our depth will be strengthened going into Super Rugby next year. We've lost many senior players, but I'm sure the team will pull together and prove to be competitive."

The Cheetahs' depth will also be boosted by the Griquas players, who will be available for selection.

On a personal note, Rhule is focused on returning to the form that saw him receive a surprise Springbok call-up in 2012. After touring with the team to Europe that season, he admitted that it's been a tough journey since then.

"After making the Springbok squad two years ago, my confidence took a massive blow as I've been left out of the national team's plans since then," said Rhule.

"I guess that comes with the pressures of being a rugby player... handling the success and disappointments.

"Seeing my mates like Trevor Nyakane and Oupa Mohoje doing well for the Springboks this season inspires me. My main goals are doing well for the Cheetahs and doing enough to earn my spot back in the Springbok squad in the near future."

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