Munster midfielder Jaco Taute is set to extend his short-term contract with the Irish province until the end of the season.
That was the word from Munster's director of rugby, Rassie Erasmus, who said the province were working closely with the Irish Rugby Football Union's performance director, David Nucifora, for Taute to stay on at Munster after his superb run of form in recent weeks.
“It’s not signed off but obviously as David mentioned last week we’re discussing it with both David and Western Province, or the Stormers, and on our side at Munster,” Erasmus told The42.
“We’ve officially requested that and everybody knows we’ve lost Alex Wootton long-term, we’ve lost Bill Johnston long-term and now Sweets [Darren Sweetnam] tonight is a little bit of a doubt so, you know, Jaco played more than 90 games at full-back at first-class level and he’s covering places for us there. It’s not signed and sealed but we have to make sure, how do you say it, we cross the Ts and dot the Is before we can officially say he’s with us but, yes, we’re discussing that with David.”
Taute’s current Munster deal expires on the 31 December but Erasmus is hopeful of retaining the 25-year-old Springbok's services until the end of the current campaign.
“I think the main things about Jaco on the field are physicality and work-rate and probably sometimes just guts-ing it out,” said Erasmus when asked about Taute’s qualities.
“He’s maybe not too flashy at times but that’s the part he brings to the game, competitiveness, but I think, too, look, the team’s young. Rory Scannell is young. Tyler Bleyendaal has had the last two seasons where he’s seldom been on the field. Darren Sweetnam is a young guy. So those kind of things, I think he brings almost calmness and mentoring skills off the field which is great for the development of all the players, not just Irish players.
“And I think he’s just totally bought into being a Munster player. He’s proud to be a Munster player.”