Is Pretorius on the Welsh radar?

Thu, 28 Jun 2012 15:57
Large andries pretorius cardiff 6

Welsh giants, Cardiff Blues, will field South African-born flanker Andries Pretorius against the Cheetahs next month.

Welsh giants Cardiff Blues, who compete in the European Cup and Pro12 competitions, will tour the country with South African-born Andries Pretorius set to make a big impact against his former countrymen.

The 26-year-old loose forward has been linked to a possible call-up to the Welsh national team in the near future.

But, first-up, the Cardiff Blues will play against the Free State Cheetahs at Grey College's main field in Bloemfontein on August 4 - with Pretorius set to face players from his country of birth.

While Pretorius is relatively unknown in South Africa, he is highly regarded in Wales as a possible future international player.

Pretorius moved to the United Kingdom in 2006 to study business at Hartpury College in Gloucestershire and made his debut for the Blues in 2009.

Cardiff Blues Chief Executive Richard Holland said Pretorius was an exciting player and predicted a bright future for him.

"He's certainly a big part of our squad and he is a talented rugby player," said Holland.

"From our perspective if he continues in that fashion he should catch the eye of the Welsh selectors as soon as he becomes eligible."

The match promoter, Willem Strauss, said on Thursday that Cardiff Blues had confirmed that their players, who represented Wales in their recent tour to Australia, would be included in the touring team to South Africa.

Welsh captain Sam Warburton is thus set to leadi the Blues team against the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.

Two of the Blues' injured stars, the British Lions centre Jamie Roberts and former All Blacks No.8 Xavier Rush, will accompany the team on their pre-season tour.

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