Playing in Japan helped my game - Sharks centre

    2018-05-09 11:30

    Cape Town - Sharks centre Andre Esterhuizen feels his impressive performances in Super Rugby can be attributed to a stint in Japan.

    The 24-year-old has been a revelation for the Sharks in 2018, proving a menace for opposition defences with not only his barnstorming runs, but also his off-loading skills.

    He was named man-of-the-match in last Saturday's 38-12 annihilation of the Highlanders at Kings Park.

    Esterhuizen said he gained confidence while playing for the Sanix Blues club in Japan in 2017.

    “The game was a lot faster over there, we ran out of our 22 and from everywhere. You had the freedom to play more rugby with less kicking and that helped me quite a bit,” was quoted as saying by Netwerk24.

    Esterhuizen added that he learnt a lot from former All Black flyhalf Carlos Spencer, who is one of the coaches at the Sanix Blues.

    “I worked on a lot of extras because we had time on our hands (due to the rest breaks afforded to overseas players). So I worked closely with the coaches there such as Carlos Spencer, which really helped with things like my kicking and passing.”

    “I think that is where I gained some confidence. There, you don’t have to worry too much if you make an error because it’s not really like in Super Rugby, where one mistake can cost you a try. So I think I just got the confidence to play my game and try different things, which I then felt more comfortable doing when I came back to the Sharks.”

    The Sharks take on the Bulls in Pretoria this Saturday (17:15 kick-off), with both teams to be announced on Thursday.

    What To Read Next

    Read News24’s Comments Policy

    Live Video Streaming
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk


    Friday, 25 May 2018
    • Crusaders v Hurricanes, AMI Stadium 09:35
    • Rebels v Sunwolves, AAMI Park 11:45
    • Jaguares v Sharks, Estadio Jose Amalfitani 21:40
    Saturday, 26 May 2018
    • Chiefs v Waratahs, FMG Stadium Waikato 09:35
    • Reds v Highlanders, Suncorp Stadium 11:45
    • Bulls v Brumbies, Loftus Versfeld 15:05
    • Stormers v Lions, Cape Town 17:15
    Friday, 01 June 2018
    • Highlanders v Hurricanes, Forsyth Barr Stadium 09:35


    19 May 2018
    18 May 2018
    12 May 2018
    11 May 2018
    05 May 2018
    04 May 2018
    28 April 2018
    27 April 2018
    22 April 2018
    21 April 2018
    20 April 2018
    14 April 2018
    13 April 2018
    07 April 2018
    06 April 2018
    01 April 2018
    31 March 2018
    30 March 2018
    24 March 2018
    23 March 2018
    18 March 2018
    17 March 2018
    16 March 2018
    10 March 2018
    09 March 2018
    03 March 2018
    02 March 2018
    24 February 2018
    23 February 2018
    17 February 2018


    Rank Team P W Pts

    Opinion Poll

    Who will finish top of the SA Conference in this year's Super Rugby tournament?

    Can you name the top Super Rugby tryscorers of all-time?

    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.