William Small-Smith and Craig Barry, who are both contracted to the Springbok Sevens team, have been included in a squad of 33 players for the South African Under-20 training camp in Stellenbosch in January.
The South African Under-20s will get together at the brand new Stellenbosch Academy of Sport on January 16, 2012. The camp will include two training matches, against Ikeys (January 21) and Maties (January 27), before the players depart on January 28.
Small-Smith recently played in the Dubai leg of the HSBC Sevens World Series, while Barry, who played in the Junior World Championships in Italy earlier this year, has been part of Paul Treu’s wider Springbok Sevens training squad for the last year.
“William and Craig have been part of the Sevens set-up since we got together for the first time in Kimberley last month, so by inviting them to our next camp, we will have a proper opportunity to assess them and get them up to speed in our structures,” said Dawie Theron, head coach of the SA U20 team.
“Paul Jordaan, who played for the SA U20s earlier this year and has also been in the Springbok Sevens mix, will get game time in our two pre-season warm-up matches against Ikeys and Maties. While he was at our last camp in Stellenbosch, he did not take part in the training sessions because of injury, but he’ll most likely be fit to play in January.
“We’ve also decided to have a look at SA Schools lock Jacques du Plessis, who was part of the Pumas side at the Coca-Cola Craven Week earlier this year.”
Commenting on their draw for the 2012 IRB Junior World Championships in the Western Cape, where the SA U20s will face England, Ireland and Italy in their pool games, Theron said: “We learned a lot from playing England in Italy earlier this year. All three our opponents will be very well prepared, as they compete in the Six Nations for U20 teams, so we can’t afford to be anything but 100% going into the tournament.”
Furthermore, after consultation with the respective provincial unions, it was decided that five players would not be considered for the camp due to injury or Vodacom Super Rugby commitments. They are Steven Kitshoff and Tsotsho Mbovane (both Western Province), Pieter Steph du Toit (KwaZulu-Natal), Ruan Venter (Golden Lions) and Johan Goosen (Free State).
The SA Under-20 training squad is:
- Fullbacks: Craig Barry, Marais Schmidt.
- Wings: Travis Ismail, Jan de Klerk, Paul Jordaan.
- Centres: Jan Serfontein, William Small-Smith, Mathys Smit, Kobus van Wyk.
- Flyhalves: Tony Jantjies, Errol Jaggers.
- Scrumhalves: Kevin Luiters, Rudi van Rooyen, Hlanhla Hlungwane, Vian van der Walt.
- Loose forwards: Shaun Adendorf, Wian Liebenberg, Fabian Booysen, Khaya Majola, Siseko Jafta, Cobus Nel.
- Locks: Ettiene Oosthuizen, Paul Willemse, Ruan Botha, Jacques du Plessis.
- Props: Marzuq Maarman, Gideon Muller, Allan Dell, Nicolaas van Dyk.
- Hookers: Jason Thomas, Mihlali Mpafi, Mark Pretorius, Franco Marais.