Why Taute prefers Stormers

Fri, 12 Oct 2012 06:53
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Jaco Taute may be seen as a 'utility back' in the Springbok set-up, but he has been guaranteed a starting spot in his preferred position of fullback at the Stormers.

Jaco Taute may be seen as a 'utility back' in the Springbok set-up, but he has been guaranteed a starting spot in his preferred position of fullback at the Stormers.

This is the reason why the two-Test rookie will head to Cape Town for Super Rugby in 2013.

Taute's agent, Eduard Kelder, who is currently in London on business, confirmed that the 21-year-old Lions star will play for the Stormers in 2013.

Although some of the "details" of his contract with the Stormers still have to be finalised before he does sign on the dotted line, the deal clincher was that he will be considered as a fullback.

This website can reveal that the Bulls, the other option for the youngster, wanted him as centre.

However, the Stormers will play him in his preferred position of fullback, where he will get a starting spot ahead of Cape Town regulars Joe Pietersen and Gio Aplon. The latter is likely to play on the wing. Pietersen, who can play fullback, wing and even flyhalf, will most likely provide utility cover off the bench.

Taute, who made his Test debut at outside centre against Australia at Loftus Versfeld last month, first made his mark as a fullback. However, has been equally impressive in the Lions midfield this year.

But 15 remains the preferred number on his jersey.

The Stormers are also set to beat off the challenge of the Sharks and Bulls for the signature of another Lions Bok, Elton Jantjies.

This website can reveal that Jantjies has been promised the Stormers No.10 jersey and a regular starting spot ahead of the franchise's Japan-based Bok Peter Grant - who will again miss the first few weeks of the Super Rugby season while he fulfils his obligations with his club abroad.

With Currie Cup pivot Demetri Catrikilis heading to the Southern Kings at the end of the current season, and the other options all too often on the injury list, Jantjies is the ideal buy for the Stormers.

And they can guarantee the 22-year-old, who also played the first of his two Tests against the Wallabies in Pretoria last month, a starting spot.

Kelder also confirmed that hooker Callie Visagie, who has extended his contract with the Golden Lions for another year, will be loaned to the Bulls for Super Rugby.

However, the 24-year-old front row forward will not be guaranteed a starting spot in Pretoria.

He will be competing with Bok Chiliboy Ralepelle and young Bongi Mbonambi for a spot in the matchday 22.

According to reports veteran Willie Wepener, another former Lions export, is not living up to the team's expectations and may struggle to get a contract for 2013.

All three Lions - Taute, Jantjies and Visagie - will remain on the Lions' books and return to the Johannesburg-based outfit for the promotion-relegation match at the end of the Super Rugby season - when they will face the last-placed South African team.

By Jan de Koning

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