JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

Jacques Potgieter fulfils wish linking with Waratahs in Super Rugby

Man mountain: Waratahs recruit Jacques Potgieter trains on Tuesday.

Man mountain: Waratahs recruit Jacques Potgieter trains on Tuesday. Photo: Wolter Peeters

Jacques Potgieter aims to prove that he is a blue-blooded Waratah who is driven by the goal of helping NSW win their first Super Rugby title.

But on Tuesday, the 27-year-old South African forward who has signed with NSW for two years said he was still very much a Springbok as well. ''As a rugby player you always want to play for your country. You always want to play at the highest level you can. I still have that ambition,'' said Potgieter, whose career includes three Tests caps and 23 in Super Rugby.

Potgieter, who is 194 centimetres and 115 kilograms and joined NSW from the Fukuoka Sanix Blues in Japan where he played for a short stint after leaving the Bulls in South Africa last year, said he has not spoken to Springbok coach Heyneke Meyer since arriving in Sydney last month.

But with the South African Rugby Football Union's openness to consider overseas based players for Test selection - unlike Australian Rugby Union policy - Potgieter said he spoke with the Springbok coach ''before I went to Japan''.

''He said, 'Best of luck,' and 'Look after yourself'. I haven't spoken to him [since], but if you are playing good enough, they can't leave you out. [However], my focus is [on] settling in with the Waratahs and then doing my best for the team and then everything will look after that.''

Potgieter's Springbok goals should not concern Waratahs coach Michael Cheika, who signed him foremost as a second-rower and for his physicality, ball skills and athleticism. He just needs to him to ready fighting fit for NSW. And that is what Cheika hopes he will see on Friday night when Potgieter plays in the Waratahs' last trial against the Highlanders in Newcastle.

Potgieter said he has ''always wanted to play for the Waratahs, especially from last year - watching them play [with] the new style … a physical game and they swing the ball out wide. They [also] have good history.'' Cheika's in-your-face manner as a head coach has certainly not put off Potgieter. He is accustomed to old-school coaching in South Africa.

On Tuesday, he recalled pre-season training camps with his old Currie Cup team, the Eastern Province Kings - and not the Bulls, as Waratahs captain Dave Dennis thought last week - when the team would be woken up without warning at ''three or four in the morning'' for training. ''We used to train hard and unexpected hours just to [learn to] be ready,'' he said.

Potgieter is certainly ''ready'' for his first game for NSW after having completed his second successive training run with the Waratahs on Tuesday - since his arrival in Sydney, he bided his time to recover from a calf niggle.

''I'm feeling very good. I am up with [the game plans] and looking forward to it,'' he said.

While a known back-rower, Potgieter has no qualms about playing at lock either. ''I told Michael I am a team player, whatever he reckons is the best for the team I will play that position. I will be up for the challenge,'' he said.

''I will give it 100 per cent whether it is lock, whether it's No.8 or blindside, I'll play anywhere.''

Of course, Potgieter will still bring the trademark physicality of South African rugby to the Waratahs, even if he says it is not a trait of the Australian game.

13 comments so far

  • I am sure Potgieter is a useful player and may make the SA squad again, but surely since Australia only selects its squad from players domiciled in Australia, unlike SA, why in the hell would the ARU allow a a SA to play for an Australian S15 team. 100% of all Australian S15 spots should be those who qualify to become a Wallaby. The ARU need to make up their minds, rethink their policies so they are more consistent.

    Date and time
    February 12, 2014, 6:45AM
    • Potgieter!! Now that's a good solid Dinky Di' name if I ever saw one!

      Simon Sez'! You're exactly correct mate, but the Aussie Super franchises are chock full of New Zealanders, (ones that can't cut it in their home teams) as they stand, so I'd imagine that Mr. Potgieter would be in the same category, can't cut in South Africa so head for ''good old OZ, they'll accept anybody!

      Niceties go out the window mate and you're spot on in saying that "any player selected for S15 spots should be those who qualify to be a Wallaby", but it won't ever happen because if that theory was enforced there wouldn't be a competitive S15 side in the competition as it'd mean that all the New Zealanders and others wouldn't be able to play either.

      Cheers mate, "good post".

      Date and time
      February 12, 2014, 11:01AM
    • I hardly think having one overseas marquee player in your team constitutes a problem for Australian rugby. Take a look at the French Top 14 comp - now there it's a real issue. Don't forget that Australian players go to France and Japan for the money so if we plug the occasional gap with an overseas player then fair enough.

      Date and time
      February 12, 2014, 11:18AM
    • Agree, and I think this is one of the reasons why the All Blacks players are developed so well and seamlessly integrate at the highest level. Because they identify their young players well, they develop them and they back them. They don't look at overseas players. Potgieter may be great for the Tahs' title aspirations, but will take the spot of a young, up and coming player that may be good enough by next year for the world cup squad. Someone like Will Skelton, Greg Peterson or Jed Holloway.

      Date and time
      February 12, 2014, 12:33PM
    • Spot. On. Potgetter is just another typical Saffa. All p.... and wind. Blah blah blah we are so tuff and blah blah again. They aren't smart enough or fast enough to be real threats. Why are we helping to develop Springboks for South Africa ?. Cheika needs to check his Australian loyalometer (don't try to pronounce this at home)

      Date and time
      February 12, 2014, 3:23PM
    • Because he is a class player that the waratahs have missed since their inception as a club. Out of all the positions in australian rugby, lock is our weakest, we have bloody Rob Simmons starting in our best XV, THAT is saying something. Also, I don't believe the ARU is against any aussie team actually trying to win super 15, the key to the waratahs winning this year is the work of the forwards like Potgieter, Skelton and Hooper opening the gateway for the backs to bring it home.

      Date and time
      February 12, 2014, 11:17PM
    • Have you even watched Super rugby before Simon? Australia simply don't have the playing stocks to fill their own teams. Hell, half of the Wallabies weren't even born in the country, so where do you draw the line? Add to that the lure of French / Japan rugby and you have even less choice.
      Imagine the Force having only local players available to them, because Australians aren't exactly lining up from the eastern states to go West. Why do you think they have 8 or so Saffers in the squad this year.

      Date and time
      February 13, 2014, 12:48PM
    • @ johnny-boy -- "helping to develop Springboks for South Africa"!!!!

      Potgieter is already a Springbok AND played for a Super-15 team that has won the title 3 times before he decided to see the world -- Japan and now Australia.

      So what development is there for him by joining a team with a lot of huff-and-puff BUT that is about it (NO TITLES) -- I think the opposite is true, damaging his career to come and play for a losing team!!!

      Date and time
      February 13, 2014, 4:56PM
  • Well, Simon, you will no doubt be shocked to learn that the Brumbies have two new South African players for 2014 (Conrad Hoffman and Lionel Cronjé) and the Western Force have at least seven (Marcel Brache, Chris Heiberg, Brynard Stander and Wilhelm Steenkamp in the main squad, and Dillyn Leyds, Dylan Sage and Francois van Wyk in the wider training squad). The reality is that Australia simply doesn't have the players required to field five teams.

    Date and time
    February 13, 2014, 7:54AM
    • I watch a ton of Super rugby (saw nearly every fixture in 2012 and 2013), that doesn't qualify me as an expert, but I know a decent player in the comp when I see one. Potgieter was one of my favorite backrowers last year and I felt he was massively under-used by the Bulls in 2013. He will be massive for the Waratahs this year and will bring a hard edge to their pack. The Waratah players have already said that his presence at training has already lifted the intensity and quality of the sessions. Having a marque player, although not eligible for Wallaby selection, can have a positive effect on those that are eligible. As a Reds fan, I wish he was in our squad!

      Date and time
      February 13, 2014, 3:37PM

      More comments

      Make a comment

      You are logged in as [Logout]

      All information entered below may be published.

      Error: Please enter your screen name.

      Error: Your Screen Name must be less than 255 characters.

      Error: Your Location must be less than 255 characters.

      Error: Please enter your comment.

      Error: Your Message must be less than 300 words.

      Post to

      You need to have read and accepted the Conditions of Use.

      Thank you

      Your comment has been submitted for approval.

      Comments are moderated and are generally published if they are on-topic and not abusive.

      Super Rugby 2015

      Round 1
      Fri, 13 FebTimes shown AEDT
      CRU 10 vs REB 20 Report Stats
      BRU 47 vs RED 3 Stats
      Sat, 14 FebTimes shown AEDT
      LIO 8 vs HUR 22 Report Stats
      BLU 18 vs CHF 23 Report Stats
      Sun, 15 FebTimes shown AEDT
      SHA 29 vs CHT 35 Report Stats
      BUL 17 vs STO 29 Report Stats
      WAR 13 vs FOR 25 Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 2
      Fri, 20 FebTimes shown AEDT
      CHF 19 vs BRU 17 Report Stats
      REB 28 vs WAR 38 Report Stats
      Sat, 21 FebTimes shown AEDT
      BUL 13 vs HUR 17 Report Stats
      HIG 20 vs CRU 26 Report Stats
      RED 18 vs FOR 6 Report Stats
      Sun, 22 FebTimes shown AEDT
      STO 27 vs BLU 16 Report Stats
      SHA 29 vs LIO 12 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 3
      Fri, 27 FebTimes shown AEDT
      HIG 20 vs RED 13 Report Stats
      FOR 13 vs HUR 42 Stats
      Sat, 28 FebTimes shown AEDT
      CHT 25 vs BLU 24 Report Stats
      CHF 40 vs CRU 16 Stats
      REB 15 vs BRU 20 Report Stats
      Sun, 01 MarTimes shown AEDT
      BUL 43 vs SHA 35 Report Stats
      LIO 19 vs STO 22 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 4
      Fri, 06 MarTimes shown AEDT
      CHF 17 vs HIG 20 Report Stats
      BRU 27 vs FOR 15 Report Stats
      Sat, 07 MarTimes shown AEDT
      BLU 10 vs LIO 13 Report Stats
      RED 5 vs WAR 23 Report Stats
      Sun, 08 MarTimes shown AEDT
      CHT 20 vs BUL 39 Report Stats
      STO 29 vs SHA 13 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 5
      Fri, 13 MarTimes shown AEDT
      HUR 30 vs BLU 23 Report Stats
      FOR 17 vs REB 21 Report Stats
      Sat, 14 MarTimes shown AEDT
      CRU 34 vs LIO 6 Report Stats
      HIG 26 vs WAR 19 Report Stats
      RED vs BRU 29 Stats
      Sun, 15 MarTimes shown AEDT
      STO 19 vs CHF 28 Report Stats
      CHT 10 vs SHA 27 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 6
      Fri, 20 MarTimes shown AEDT
      HIG 13 vs HUR 20 Report Stats
      REB 16 vs LIO 20 Report Stats
      Sat, 21 MarTimes shown AEDT
      CRU 57 vs CHT 14 Report Stats
      Sun, 22 MarTimes shown AEDT
      BUL 25 vs FOR 24 Report Stats
      SHA 12 vs CHF 11 Report Stats
      WAR 28 vs BRU 13 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 7
      Fri, 27 MarTimes shown AEDT
      HUR 36 vs REB 12 Report Stats
      RED 17 vs LIO 18 Report Stats
      Sat, 28 MarTimes shown AEDT
      CHF 37 vs CHT 27 Report Stats
      HIG 39 vs STO 21 Report Stats
      WAR 23 vs BLU 11 Report Stats
      Sun, 29 MarTimes shown AEDT
      SHA 15 vs FOR 9 Report Stats
      BUL 31 vs CRU 19 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 8
      Fri, 03 AprTimes shown AEDT
      HUR 25 vs STO 20 Report Stats
      REB 23 vs RED 15 Report Stats
      Sat, 04 AprTimes shown AEDT
      CHF 23 vs BLU 16 Report Stats
      BRU 20 vs CHT 3 Report Stats
      Sun, 05 AprTimes shown AEDT
      SHA 10 vs CRU 52 Report Stats
      LIO 22 vs BUL 18 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 9
      Fri, 10 AprTimes shown AEST
      BLU 16 vs BRU 14 Report Stats
      Sat, 11 AprTimes shown AEST
      CRU 20 vs HIG 25 Report Stats
      WAR 18 vs STO 32 Report Stats
      FOR 15 vs CHT 24 Report Stats
      Sun, 12 AprTimes shown AEST
      LIO 23 vs SHA 21 Report Stats
      BUL 43 vs RED 22 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 10
      Fri, 17 AprTimes shown AEST
      CRU 9 vs CHF 26 Report Stats
      Sat, 18 AprTimes shown AEST
      HUR 24 vs WAR 29 Report Stats
      HIG 30 vs BLU 24 Report Stats
      BRU 8 vs REB 13 Report Stats
      FOR 6 vs STO 13 Report Stats
      Sun, 19 AprTimes shown AEST
      SHA 10 vs BUL 17 Report Stats
      CHT 17 vs RED 18 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 11
      Fri, 24 AprTimes shown AEST
      CHF 35 vs FOR 27 Report Stats
      BRU 31 vs HIG 18 Report Stats
      Sat, 25 AprTimes shown AEST
      CRU 29 vs BLU 15 Report Stats
      WAR 18 vs REB 16 Report Stats
      Sun, 26 AprTimes shown AEST
      LIO 34 vs CHT 29 Report Stats
      STO 15 vs BUL 13 Report Stats
      RED 19 vs HUR 35 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 12
      Fri, 01 MayTimes shown AEST
      HIG 48 vs SHA 15 Report Stats
      BRU 10 vs WAR 13 Report Stats
      Sat, 02 MayTimes shown AEST
      BLU 41 vs FOR 24 Report Stats
      HUR 29 vs CRU 23 Report Stats
      REB 16 vs CHF 15 Report Stats
      Sun, 03 MayTimes shown AEST
      CHT 25 vs STO 17 Report Stats
      BUL 35 vs LIO 33 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 13
      Fri, 08 MayTimes shown AEST
      CRU 58 vs RED 17 Report Stats
      REB 42 vs BLU 22 Report Stats
      Sat, 09 MayTimes shown AEST
      HUR 32 vs SHA 24 Report Stats
      FOR 18 vs WAR 11 Report Stats
      LIO 28 vs HIG 23 Report Stats
      Sun, 10 MayTimes shown AEST
      STO 25 vs BRU 24 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 14
      Fri, 15 MayTimes shown AEST
      BLU 23 vs BUL 18 Report Stats
      RED 46 vs REB 29 Report Stats
      Sat, 16 MayTimes shown AEST
      HUR 22 vs CHF 18 Report Stats
      WAR 33 vs SHA 18 Report Stats
      Sun, 17 MayTimes shown AEST
      LIO 20 vs BRU 30 Report Stats
      CHT 24 vs HIG 45 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 15
      Fri, 22 MayTimes shown AEST
      CHF 34 vs BUL 20 Report Stats
      RED 14 vs SHA 21 Report Stats
      Sat, 23 MayTimes shown AEST
      BLU 5 vs HUR 29 Report Stats
      WAR 32 vs CRU 22 Report Stats
      FOR 3 vs HIG 23 Report Stats
      Sun, 24 MayTimes shown AEST
      CHT 17 vs LIO 40 Report Stats
      STO 31 vs REB 15 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 16
      Fri, 29 MayTimes shown AEST
      CRU 35 vs HUR 18 Report Stats
      BRU 22 vs BUL 16 Report Stats
      Sat, 30 MayTimes shown AEST
      SHA 25 vs REB 21 Report Stats
      HIG 36 vs CHF 9 Report Stats
      FOR 10 vs RED 32 Report Stats
      Sun, 31 MayTimes shown AEST
      STO 42 vs CHT 12 Report Stats
      LIO 27 vs WAR 22 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 17
      Fri, 05 JunTimes shown AEST
      HUR 56 vs HIG 20 Report Stats
      FOR 20 vs BRU 33 Report Stats
      Sat, 06 JunTimes shown AEST
      REB 21 vs BUL 20 Report Stats
      BLU 11 vs CRU 34 Report Stats
      RED 3 vs CHF 24 Report Stats
      CHT 33 vs WAR 58 Report Stats
      Sun, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
      STO 19 vs LIO 19 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Round 18
      Fri, 12 JunTimes shown AEST
      BLU 7 vs HIG 44 Report Stats
      REB 11 vs FOR 13 Report Stats
      Sat, 13 JunTimes shown AEST
      BRU 24 vs CRU 37 Report Stats
      CHF 13 vs HUR 21 Report Stats
      WAR 31 vs RED 5 Report Stats
      Sun, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
      BUL 29 vs CHT 42 Report Stats
      SHA 34 vs STO 12 Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Super Rugby Qualifying Finals
      Sat, 20 JunTimes shown AEST
      HIG 24 vs CHF 14 Report Stats
      Sun, 21 JunTimes shown AEST
      STO 19 vs BRU 39 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Super Rugby Semi Finals
      Sat, 27 JunTimes shown AEST
      HUR 29 vs BRU 9 Stats
      WAR 17 vs HIG 35 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Super Rugby Grand Final
      Sat, 04 JulTimes shown AEST
      HUR 14 vs HIG 21 Report Stats
      View All Fixtures
      Super Rugby 2015
      Overall standings
      Team P W L D +/- Pts
      Hurricanes 16 14 2 0 170 66
      Waratahs 16 11 5 0 96 52
      Stormers 16 10 5 1 50 45
      Highlanders 16 11 5 0 117 53
      Brumbies 16 9 7 0 108 47
      Lions 16 9 6 1 -22 42
      Chiefs 16 10 6 0 73 48
      Bulls 16 7 9 0 9 38
      View all

      Follow Us on Facebook

      Featured advertisers