Botha to lead Blue Bulls

Date published: August 1 2016

Springbok loose forward Arno Botha will lead the Bulls in the Currie Cup Premier Division, the Blue Bulls Company (Pty) Ltd announced.

Botha, who has two Test caps to his credit, brings a wealth of talent to the team and is expected to lead by example and from the front. The Blue Bulls start their Currie Cup campaign against Western Province on Friday in Pretoria.

Botha has proven leadership, having led the Junior Springboks to the Junior World Championship a couple of years back and has had one of the core leadership roles in the current Bulls structure, playing 46 times in Super Rugby.

He has played in 24 Currie Cup matches for the team since his debut against the Pumas in 2011.

"We are very fortunate to have a strong leadership core. Arno does have the edge when it comes to experience and he is very well respected amongst the squad. It is also very important for me to have my captain as a starting certainty, so Arno ticks all the boxes," said head coach Nollis Marais.

"He is one of the best in the country and I can expecting good things from the team with him in charge."

Botha said it is a big honour to lead the team.

"I grew up being a Blue Bulls fan and always admired the quality of leadership in this team. I have also played with some great captains, so hope to bring justice to the position. If you lead from the front, half of the challenge is done, so I am keen to see how this added responsibility improves my game," he said.

The Blue Bulls Company meanwhile also confirmed their coaching staff for the remainder of the season. A number of new signings were also announced.

Marais is again in charge of the Blue Bulls Currie Cup team. His forwards coach is Anton Leonard and backline coach is David Manuel. John-William Meyer will act as technical and kicking coach and Shaun du Toit and Henri-Charl Terblanche take care of strength and conditioning.

Pine Pienaar is defence coach for the senior side, Gary Botha scrum and breakdown coach for all teams and Jacus Coetzee in charge of rehabilitation.

The BBC also announced the signings of Conraad van Vuuren, John Roy Jenkinson and the extension of Tony Jantjies' deal.

Van Vuuren, currently playing for the Free State, will join on 1 November on a two-year deal and Jenkinson, formerly Pukke and Leopards and currently a Maties and WP prop, will join for two years from 1 August.

Jantjies has agreed to a contract extension until 31 October 2017.