Plumtree: JP best No 13 in SA

2012-03-08 20:26

Durban - Sharks coach John Plumtree believes Springbok JP Pietersen is currently the best outside centre in South Africa.

The Sharks tried the Bok wing at centre in their pre-season matches and have since kept faith with him in midfield.

“JP is big and quick, and defensively he’s very accurate,” Plumtree told Sharks website editor Michael Marnewick.

“To be honest, I think he’s probably the best 13 in the country at the moment, and that’s a positive; but remember, that’s my opinion.

“He’s also adapted quicker to the position than I thought he would and added another string to his bow. I think it’s great for him to be considered at wing or at centre for the Boks. He’s been excellent there, he’s a real threat and the opposition will have to watch him. He’s giving a lot of thought to the position and has adapted well. There is risk involved in moving a world-class winger to 13, but he’s embraced it and I’m really pleased for him, hopefully he will continue to get better and better," said Plumtree.

However, despite the plaudits from his coach, Pietersen himself admits it is a process he is still working through.

“Hopefully the coach is happy with my performance.

“It’s going alright so far. It’s only the second game of the tournament but I’m taking it game by game.

“When Plum (Plumtree) asked me if I would consider the move to centre, I said it would be a great challenge for me to get more involved in the game and in organising defence. I was quite keen to take up the challenge.

“It looks easy, but it isn’t and I’m still learning a lot, especially on defence, in getting into the best position you can defend. It’s also a lot about the work rate, but I do get a lot of help from my team-mates, Marius Joubert and Meyer Bosman have been a great help.

“It’s a process of learning every week. You can talk about it, but the best place to learn is on the field. It’s also about getting defensively good and getting into the right positions to attack the ball and defend well too," said Pietersen.

The Sharks take on the Lions in a Super Rugby clash at Kings Park on Saturday.


15. Riaan Viljoen, 14. Odwa Ndungane, 13. JP Pietersen, 12. Tim Whitehead, 11. Lwazi Mvovo, 10. Patrick Lambie, 9. Frederic Michalak, 8. Keegan Daniel (captain), 7. Willem Alberts, 6. Marcell Coetzee, 5. Ross Skeate, 4. Steven Sykes, 3. Wiehahn Herbst, 2. Bismarck du Plessis, 1. Dale Chadwick

Substitutes: 16. Craig Burden, 17. Jannie du Plessis, 18. Anton Bresler, 19. Jacques Botes, 20. Charl McLeod, 21. Meyer Bosman, 22. Paul Jordaan

15 Jaco Taute, 14 Deon van Rensburg, 13 Doppies La Grange, 12 Butch James, 11 Michael Killian, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Michael Bondesio, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Joshua Strauss (captain), 6 Derick Minnie, 5 Franco van der Merwe, 4 Marius Coetzer, 3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Callie Visagie, 1 Patric Cilliers

Substitutes: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Caylib Oosthuizen, 18 Stephan Greef, 19 Cobus Grobbelaar, 20 Tian Meyer, 21 Alwyn Hollenbach, 22 James Kamana


  • Tino - 2012-03-08 20:30

    BWWAAAAA HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! no wonder the guppies are at the bottom of the log!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!BWAAA HAAAA HAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

      Penny - 2012-03-09 06:46

      LOL I was thinking the same thing !!! Guppies are doing a heck of a lot of talking not having won one game so far ... shutup sharks, you are choking early this year. Sharks to get relegated to make way for the Kings in 2013

      Hanjo - 2012-03-09 08:27

      I'm not a Sharks supporter, but the Sharks are yet to play a home game, losing away against the Bulls and Stormers(just - in both cases) hardly suggests they are going to have a bad season...they might, but it's all just assumptions at this point.

  • Bulldozer - 2012-03-08 20:31

    Juan de Jongh is the best no.13. That's right. I said it.

      Tino - 2012-03-08 20:40

      nee bulldozer, sy sidestep is te voorspelbaar, die aanvals lyne word beperk daardeur

      gordon.p.jacobs - 2012-03-08 20:55

      Wow Dozer, I'm impressed!

      Bootman - 2012-03-08 21:13

      Ok, who are you and what did you do with the real Bulldozer?

      Jack - 2012-03-08 21:17

      Ok - who stole Dozy's profile? Poor Plumtree doesn't have too much choice. He has good wings in Odwa & Mvovo, but they're still a little thin at center. I'd also play JP out of position over Bosman...

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-08 21:32

      I've always been unbiased, chaps. Why so surprised?

      Boer - 2012-03-08 22:25

      I like the part : in my opinion. I presume he is also of the opinion that he knows what he is doing.

      Bulldozer - 2012-03-09 06:53

      Raven, It's realy me (Bull). I used the word 'chaps' to sound more sophisticated, like Saffa. She knows nothing about rugby, but she sure is sophisticated.

      Saffa - 2012-03-09 08:02

      @Dozey - I know nothing about rugby? That coming from an 'expert' like you of course? A chap who thinks that Spies epitomises brutality at the breakdown? Juan de Jongh is the best 13 in SA IMH and ignorant opinion - so we agree, and that says WHAT exactly about your knowledge?

      Hanjo - 2012-03-09 08:41

      Juan de Jongh is a great defender, but he rarely passes the ball, until he improves that part of his game, he'll be a limited player...(I'm a Stormers Supporter) - I feel the same about Johann Sadie, in the CC 2011 season he played a very selfish style of rugby. JP has potential, although he has a long way to go, guys like Lionel Mapoe(used at outside centre by the Cheetahs and Lions), Frans Steyn(played a few games for racing metro at OC), Wynand Olivier(strictly as an outside centre) , Tim Whitehead(he may be a little light) , Jaco Taute( who played as an OC in his younger days) and even Brian Habana( I know the haters will hate) are options we might benefit from experimenting with at outside centre, with the departure of Jaque Fourie, there's a gap to bring in someone new...we have limited specialist OC options at the moment and some of these options might be exactly what we need to fill Jaques' position...imo

  • Johnny - 2012-03-08 20:36

    I also believe JP is the best nr.13 in the country. Should have played their in the last WC already, but our Pieter had no imagination. Our future Springbok nr.14 will be JJ Engelbrech with JP on his inside. This younger just needs some game time at the Bulls. Mark my words.

      Tino - 2012-03-08 20:41

      eish jonny, whatever jy drink is te sterk vir jou ou maat

  • Saffa - 2012-03-08 20:40

    Second best, after WO

      dirk.dup - 2012-03-08 21:26

      Hey Alexander, The last games in the currie cup in 2011 and the one game in this years super rugby WO played outside center number 13. You Twit!!

  • Saffa - 2012-03-08 20:42

    Hope u all have a good night. I'm done at work and since I don't have internet at home won't be able to post my unbiased Bull bashings until tomorrow morning.

  • Taetjo - 2012-03-08 20:45

    Nooo freakin way! Juan de Jong, Johan Sadie, Doppies La Granje, Robert Ebersohn are better.. Much better!

      Penny - 2012-03-09 06:47

      This Plumtree is just doing lots of talking to try stay in the media spotlight. He knows his guppies won't even feature this year. For a team that hasn't even won one game yet, they sure do talk a lot.

  • Nico - 2012-03-08 21:04

    based on what? 2 games in a loosing team? plum is really trying to back his decision here, rather say you don't have other options. GO LIONS!!!

  • Stormkaap - 2012-03-08 22:31

    Think its a bit early for comments like this from Plum. For me de Jongh is the man. Ebersohn has not fully convinced me yet.. Would like to see Lionel Mapoe.. he was quite effective for the Cheetahs there

  • anneline.duplessis1 - 2012-03-08 23:12

    sorry mr Plubtree but Pietersen not best senter, but very good on wing. Dont ruine his ability.

  • francois.delange - 2012-03-09 07:12

    John Plumtree has suceeded in changing (and wrecking) the careers of some of our best players. Ruan Pienaar, Frans Steyn to to mention a few. His imports is not helping the Sharks situation either. Lacroix is now at scrumhalf and Mcleod is on the bench. JUST BECAUSE HE IS TRYING TO WIN!

      Christie - 2012-03-09 09:10

      Frederick Michalack you mean, Francois. Lacroix played ages ago for the Sharks. Methink was in the time of McIntosh reign (1995-1996).

      David - 2012-03-09 11:34

      It is Freddy Michelak. Lacroix retired 10 years ago

  • Michiel - 2012-03-09 08:00

    Plumtree is a genius he takes the worst wing and makes him the best centre. LOL

  • uwe.klopfer - 2012-03-09 08:52

    plumtree apparently knows more about rugby than I do, he is a super rugby coach... so I'm not going to say JP is or isn't the best 13 in SA... but IF he is then SA has a serious number 13 problem come four nations and england tour later this year.

  • legndkilla - 2012-03-09 12:12

    i want some of that sh*t he's smokin cos it it will surely blow my mind in the same way it did when i saw the headline of this article

  • Patrick - 2012-03-10 04:10

    if thats the best in sa, then i feel sorry for u guys!!! bring on the NZ vs sa matches!!

  • Paul - 2012-03-10 07:57

    Best Plumtree keeps his opinions to himself, 2 games at outside centre and now hes the best in the country, come on, and the sharks have lost both games,

  • Paul - 2012-03-10 07:58

    glad its only plumtrees opinion.2 games at centre and now hes the best in the country.wake up, wouldnt even play him on the wing for the boks.

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