Saracens' Burger heads Namibia's RWC squad
A tremendous year for Namibia flanker Jacques Burger will see him lead his country into Rugby World Cup 2011.
Earlier this year the back rower played a crucial role in helping his club, Saracens, lift the English Premiership title. Now he has been named captain of a country appearing in their fourth World Cup.
Burger will be joined in the squad by another loose forward with European experience, Jacques Nieuwenhuis, who plays for French club Aurillac in the second-tier Pro D2, while flanker Rohan Kitshoff plays for Western Province in South Africa’s Currie Cup.
Most of the team play for clubs in Namibia and neighbouring South Africa, though scrum half Ryan de la Harpe plays for Birmingham side Moseley in England’s Championship.
Burger is one of 13 survivors from the 2007 tournament, in which Namibia lost all its pool games to Ireland, France, Argentina and Georgia.
Namibia open their RWC 2011 campaign against Fiji in Rotorua on 10 Septembe, but the big tie will be against neighbours and defending champions South Africa in Albany on 22 September. Prior to Namibia gaining independence, its rugby team competed as South West Africa in the Currie Cup, and Namibian-born players who have represented the Springboks include Percy Montgomery.
Backs: Johannes Bock, Chrysander Botha, Hendirk Dames, Darryl de la Harpe, Ryan de la Harpe, Eugene Janjties, Theuns Kotze, Tertius Losper, Conrad Marais, David Philander, Llelwellyn Winkler, Daniel van Wyk, Mcgrath van Wyk, Willem van Zyl.
Forwards: Jacques Burger (captain), Egbertus O'Callerghan, Nico Esterhuyse, Hendrik Franken, Hugo Horn, Uakazuvara Kazombiaze, Rohan Kitshoff, Heinze Koll, Raol Larson, Pieters van Lill, Jacques Nieuwenhuis, Reaud van Neel, Tinus du Plessis, Johannes Redelinghuys, Johannes du Toit, Marius Visser.
Squad subject to RWCL approval
- South Africa
- New Zealand