Vodacom Super 14

Jack has fond memories of WP

2010-04-29 22:36
Chris Jack (Gallo Images)
Stephen Nell

Cape Town – Crusaders lock Chris Jack is not surprised that the Stormers have been successful in this year’s Super 14.

The 31-year-old All Black told Sport24 this week that he has “fond memories” of the few months that he spent with the Western Province Currie Cup team last year. He believes that WP should have made the Currie Cup final.

“I watched the semi-final against the Blue Bulls and was disappointed because WP should actually have won easily,” said Jack.

“The patience with which they played, respect for their game plan and ability to stick to it is exceptional. They play like an experienced side.”

Jack caught up for dinner with WP friends Anton van Zyl, Francois Louw and Hanyani Shimange on Tuesday evening this week.

However, friendships will be shifted aside at Newlands on Friday night when Jack plays for the Crusaders against the Stormers at Newlands.

The match can be crucial in deciding the fate of both teams in the Super 14.

The Crusaders struggled with their lineout play against the Western Force last week and the pressure is on Jack to get it right. However, he may struggle to do that with Andries Bekker as direct opponent.

“Andries is really playing well. He was with the Springboks when I played at WP. We never played together, but he has really added a dimension to his game with his running skills and pace. He’s a top lock,” said Jack.

“The Stormers’ lineout statistics are in the region of 90% (of their ball won).”

Jack will have to rise to these challenges if he wants to reach his goal of playing for New Zealand at next year’s World Cup.

His time at WP was the first step towards that after being released by English club Saracens.

“I came home because I wanted to give myself the chance of playing in next year’s World Cup. I did not want to sit in England and watch New Zealand win the World Cup, thinking I might have been part of it. If I’m good enough, it will be great.”

Both the Crusaders and Stormers are under pressure after losing last week.

“It’s a critical match to reach the semi-finals because it’s not getting any easier in the next few weeks. The Stormers play the Sharks next week and we’re up against the Bulls. It’s a difficult path for both teams.”

Read more on:    stormers  |  crusaders  |  super 14

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