Cape Town - The Stormers have managed to secure the services of English rugby player Matt Turner to shore up their depth on the wing.
Stormers Director of Rugby Gert Smal and head coach Allister Coetzee have made no secret of the fact that they were looking to sign a specialist wing for the upcoming Super Rugby season. Coetzee confirmed this at the Cape franchise’s recent training camp in Hermanus.
With the exciting Seabelo Senatla unavailable due to his commitments with the South African Sevens team, there was an obvious lack of specialist wings in the group. Dillyn Leyds and EW Viljoen who started in George on the wing against the SWD Eagles on Saturday, are utility players who can play anywhere in the back three, but are not specialist wings.
The Stormers' brains trust are still interested in the services of 32-year-old Fijian Sailosi Tagicakibau who played 10 games for the Stormers last year, while Kenyan wing Willy Ambaka is also back at training with the Stormers.
The 27-year-old Turner has been training at the High Performance Centre in Bellville since Monday.
The speedster was born in Cape Town and attended Western Province Preparatory School before matriculating from Bishops.
He was one of the star performers in the 2006 Bishops team that was regarded by many as one of the best teams in the history of the school. Turner scored 25 tries at an average of more than one try per game during that season. He however did not make the Western Province Craven Week side that year.
He qualified to represent England according to the International Rugby Board's ancestry rules and regulations. Turner made the move to England and was selected for the England Sevens team for the first two legs of the 2009/10 HSBC World Sevens Series. He also played for the English Premiership club Bristol in the Aviva Premier League.
While on holiday in South Africa, Turner was released to play for the Southern Kings against the British and Irish Lions in 2009. He was also a member of the Springbok Under-20 team and Western Province Under-19 team. Controversially he was considered second string in the Western Province Under-21 squad.