International rugby players returning to Nam for Russia matches

01 Jul 2015 16:30pm
WINDHOEK, 01 JUL (NAMPA) - The Namibia Rugby Union (NRU) has announced that the country’s foreign-based players will return to Namibia for their upcoming matches against Russia in the Windhoek Draught Friendship Series.
The two test matches against Russia will be played at the Hage Geingob Stadium in Windhoek on 11 and 18 July.
A media statement availed to Nampa by NRU General Manager John Williams on Wednesday said the majority of players in the preliminary training group for the Rugby World Cup will be available for selection for the two test matches.
Williams said South African team Sharks’ loose-forward Renaldo Bothma is also expected for the series.
Bothma recently announced that he would join Japanese outfit Verblitz after the World Cup in September on a two-month contract.
Only PJ van Lill, Johannes Coetzee and Danie Dames are unlikely to make it to Windhoek in time for the first test.
“Van Lill and Coetzee have administrative matters to sort out in France where they play club rugby, while Dames will not be in Windhoek on Monday because of an injury and the birth of his child,” he explained.
Meanwhile, the squad includes Saracens-based Jacques Burger, who returns to Windhoek for his first test on home soil since 28 November 2009.
Burger played the last of his 30 test matches for Namibia against Canada in Colwyn Bay in November last year.
Williams stated that following the four-week tour to Tunisia and Romania last month, the players were given an extended break and the squad will start assembling in Windhoek this weekend.
Newly appointed back-line coach Pieter Rossouw will also join the group and the team will start with its preparations on Monday.
The Russians are scheduled to arrive in Windhoek the Thursday ahead of the start of the two-match Windhoek Draught Friendship Series.