Alberts: Leaving wasn't easy
Cape Town - He’s rocked King’s Park over the years with his bruising
runs and mammoth hits, but Willem Alberts will play his last game in Durban on Saturday
when the Stormers visit.
Alberts joins the Du Plessis brothers – Bismarck and Jannie –
for what is set to be an emotional send off. Nothing has been confirmed, but
the three players will play in Sharks colours for the last time against the
Stormers with France the reported destination for all of them.
Saturday’s result can do nothing for the Sharks in terms of
log position – they will finish in 11th on the combined table regardless
of what happens – but Alberts cannot ignore the fact that this will be an
emotional 80 minutes.
"To run out at King’s Park is always a very special feeling," said the 31-year-old.
"I guess that old rugby saying, to play each game like it’s
your last, becomes a reality for me in a Sharks jersey this weekend.
"I just make sure I play my best for my team-mates, for
myself and for all Sharks fans who have supported me."
Looking back at his career, Alberts said it was difficult to
pinpoint one highlight that stood out above the rest.
"There are many. I think back to my first season when we won
the Currie Cup and I became a Bok at the end of the year because the team was successful," said Alberts.
"The Sharks helped me achieve that goal. Also in that time a
World Cup, four Currie Cup finals with wins in 2010 and 2013. All have been
Alberts said that his decision to leave Durban was not an
easy one, but was the correct one for him and his family.
He had kind words for the Du Plessis brothers, too, saying
that they had had played a massive role in his Durban life.
"When times are tough, that’s when character comes out and
you know which players you can rely on to take with you to war," said Alberts.
"They are in that category. They’re truly great players and
people in their own right. They definitely made a big difference in my rugby
Saturday’s match kicks off at 19:10.