Ebersohn off to Montpellier
Bloemfontein - Cheetahs coach Naka Drotské couldn’t have hoped for a worse timing than the news that Robert Ebersohn has taken up an offer with French club Montpellier after the Currie Cup season.
According to the supersport.com website, Drotské, who is currently preparing his side in Sydney for their Super Rugby qualifier against the Brumbies, would have been looking for as quiet a preparation as possible, and this was one of the bigger reasons for choosing the Coogee Beach base rather than preparing in the Brumbies backyard in Canberra.
But now, with Ebersohn’s departure a fait accompli, the Cheetahs are likely to face a number of questions regarding the make-up of their squad for the future, a week after they secured the signatures of Willie le Roux and Trevor Nyakane away from poaching provinces.
The midfielder was first approached by Montpellier to join them at the end of Super Rugby, but was not released by the Cheetahs at the time, and also chose to try and make the Springbok side in the process.
Ebersohn was selected for the Springbok group, but didn’t play a Test and seems to have fallen behind Jan Serfontein, JJ Engelbrecht and Juan de Jongh in the pecking order and barring injury, is probably unlikely to play in the November tour of Europe.
It is unclear whether Montpellier’s threat of legal action - and a possible fine - after Ebersohn rejected their initial offer, had anything to do with the decision, but the Springbok chances certainly did.
Montpellier apparently approached Ebersohn a second time with an offer, and despite Ebersohn wanting to apparently keep it quiet until after the playoff rounds, his picture and profile appeared on Montpellier’s website on Wednesday which prompted the news becoming public.
At Montpellier, Ebersohn will join the likes of Rene Ranger and Wynand Olivier in a powerful midfield, as the French club has ambitious hopes for their future in the Top 14.