Snyman named Blue Bulls vice-captain

HARARE - Towering  Zimbabwe junior rugby lock Eli Snyman is over the moon after being named Blue Bulls U19 Vodacom team vice-captain for the Absa Under-19 Provincial Championship.

The role is a major endorsement of the rising lock’s potential and leadership skills but the former St John’s College captain insists he is keeping his feet on the ground.

He will, however, hope to repay the faith shown in him by coach Hayden Groepes when he lines up at No.5 this afternoon against the Golden Lions at Ellis Park.

“I just have to keep level-headed and just focus on my tasks for the game,” the 19-year-old told the Daily News yesterday.

Snyman will be in the illustrious company of junior Springboks JT Jackson and Tinus de Beer who have also been named in the starting team.

Jackson and De Beer along with eight other Blue Bulls U19 players played for South Africa in the recent World Rugby Under-20 Championship in Italy.

Snyman is taking the new experience in his stride and is determined not to be just another shooting star.

“The training has been very tough as we are now in a professional system much harder than school rugby training. It is very professional here even for the U19 which has made it a great experience so far.

But very tough because of the language barrier and of course being away from home for long periods of time,” he said in an earlier interview with this paper.

The forward was recruited into the Pretoria-based side following his powerful displays during last year’s Craven Week in Middleburg.

The then Zimbabwe Under-18 rugby vice-captain was one of the few bright sparks for the Junior Sables in a tournament they would like to forget after they lost all the three matches they played.

It was no surprise that the Loftus Versfeld Stadium-based side went on to include the Zimbabwean fledgling lock along with 32 other emerging rugby stars.

The Vodacom Blue Bulls are renowned for having one of the best junior rugby set ups in South Africa.

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