Bosch: Sharks and Junior Boks in tug of war?

    2017-03-28 14:00

    Lloyd Burnard - Sport24

    Durban - He may be just 19-years-old, but Curwin Bosch is hot property at the moment. 

    He is making serious waves in Super Rugby this season having excelled at both fullback and flyhalf for the Sharks, while he is also in line to be a massive player in the Junior Springbok side that will do battle at this year's World Rugby Under-20 Championships in Georgia. 

    That tournament will take place from May 31 to June 18, but the Sharks are adamant that they will not lose Bosch for any Super Rugby matches as SA Under-20 coach Chean Roux looks to prepare his side for the 12-team competition. 

    It is hard to see how that would be possible, given that the national side must surely be prioritised over Super Rugby duty, but another reason for that could be that there are bigger national honours in line for Bosch in June. 

    An extended Junior Bok squad assembled in Bloemfontein on Monday for a camp that will run until April 9. 

    Bosch, though, is still in Durban with the Sharks where he is preparing for this weekend's monster clash against the Lions in Johannesburg. 

    Pat Lambie, injured in the March 11 victory over the Waratahs in Durban, still faces another 4-6 weeks out of action as he continues to recover from a fractured vertebra. 

    Bosch, in Lambie's absence, has become the side's first-choice flyhalf and is simply indispensable right now, so how much he will be involved with the Junior Boks' preparations remains to be seen.

    Super Rugby breaks for international rugby for most of June, but the Sharks have a bye on the final weekend before that break, meaning that they have more than a month off between hosting the Stormers on May 27 and hosting the Bulls on June 30. 

    With the Junior Boks' first game set to take place against France in Tbilisi on May 31, Bosch would have three days to get from Durban to Georgia and ready for action should he play against the Stormers. 

    That is obviously not going to happen, so either Bosch will have to miss the Sharks' clash against the Stormers, or he will have to miss what is potentially South Africa's most difficult match of their pool stage campaign (they also have Argentina and Georgia). 

    Then there is the possibility of Springbok selection, which would obviously eclipse any involvement in Georgia. 

    At the end of this weekend's Super Rugby fixtures, Bosch will join Springbok coach Allister Coetzee in Stellenbosch for a three-day camp. 

    If that all goes well, a role in June's three-Test series against France is not completely out of the question for the youngster. 

    So while Roux and the rest of the next generation of Springboks are tackling the French in the Under-20 World Champs on May 31, Bosch could be preparing for a senior Springbok debut against France at Loftus on June 11. 

    At this stage, it doesn't seem that far-fetched. 

    Benhard Janse van Rensburg, who started at flyhalf in their 19-17 win over the Kings two weekends ago, is in Bloemfontein with the Under-20 squad.

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