Jean 'invites' Ma'a to join Stormers

Fri, 13 Sep 2013 11:20
Large ma a nonu anthems Large jean de villiers boks train Large ma a nonu b w Large jean de villiers boks looks Large ma a nonu all blacks pass

All Blacks centre Ma'a Nonu may be on the wishlist of French club Clermont Auvergne, but he also has an open 'invitation' to join the Stormers.

All Blacks centre Ma'a Nonu may be on the wishlist of French club Clermont Auvergne, but he also has an open 'invitation' to join the Stormers in Cape Town.

Nonu appears unwanted by any of the five New Zealand Super Rugby franchises, with a return to the Hurricanes about the only remaining option.

On Friday Springbok and Stormers captain Jean de Villiers said they'd definitely have him in their part of the world.

"You've got a world-class player like that, you want to have him in your team," De Villiers said at his regular Friday media briefing - ahead of the Rugby Championship Test between New Zealand and South Africa in Auckland on Saturday.

"So, like I said, we can do with a couple of backline players at the Stormers, and Cape Town's not a bad place."

This followed a French newspaper report that Nonu is on the verge of joining Clermont Auvergne.

Toulon were another side interested in Nonu, but their owner Mourad Boudjellal has ruled his team out of the running.

"We looked at the option, of course, but the player had very high contract expectations and did not fit our needs perfectly," Boudjellal told Var Matin.

"With Bastareaud, Maxime Mermoz and Matt Giteau, the position is full, especially as Rudi Wulf, Bryan Habana and Drew Mitchell can also play centre."

The French newspaper claimed Boudjellal added Nonu would sign for Clermont with reports suggesting "high contract expectations" were in the region of €650,000 a year.

Clermont has a strong New Zealand connection, with former Bay of Plenty coach Vern Cotter at the helm and ex-All Blacks Sitiveni Sivivatu, Benson Stanley and Regan King on their books.

De Villiers admitted he would love to play alongside a player he regards as a "friend" off the field.

"[It is] always a massive game when I play against him," De Villiers told a media scrum, when asked about Nonu.

"He is someone that I really respect, by the way that he plays every time he puts on the [All Black] jersey.

"He is a good guy off the field as well.

"When you play against each other, against someone for so long, you build that respect on the field and a friendship off the field as well.

"We enjoy the odd chat after and prior to games. I enjoy that as well, because for me rugby is a platform to make friends as well. It may sound silly in the professional era, but rugby is still a game where you could kill each other on the field and still be friends off the field.

"He is one of those guys that plays it hard, but can still have the odd chat afterwards. [He is] a great player who has been written off so many times, but he just comes back stronger every single time."

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Golden Lions v Boland 15h00 Johannesburg
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Sat, 27 August 2016
New Zealand v Australia 07h35 Wellington
EP Kings v Western Province 14h00 Port Elizabeth
Sharks v Blue Bulls 16h10 Durban
Argentina v South Africa 17h40 Salta
RESULT SCORE
Sat, 20 August 2016
South Africa v Argentina 30 | 23
Golden Lions v Griquas 24 | 30
Australia v New Zealand 8 | 42
Fri, 19 August 2016
Blue Bulls v EP Kings 49 | 35
Western Province v Free State Cheetahs 25 | 32
Boland v Sharks 20 | 41
Sat, 13 August 2016
Free State Cheetahs v Blue Bulls 43 | 20
Golden Lions v Pumas 68 | 26
Fri, 12 August 2016
Sharks v Griquas 46 | 24
EP Kings v Boland 10 | 28
Sat, 06 August 2016
Boland v Free State Cheetahs 16 | 44
Hurricanes v Lions 20 | 3
Fri, 05 August 2016
Pumas v Sharks 10 | 33
Blue Bulls v Western Province 45 | 26
Sat, 30 July 2016
Lions v Highlanders 42 | 30
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Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 10 0 5 43
Waratahs 15 8 0 7 40
Rebels 15 7 0 8 31
Reds 15 3 1 11 17
Force 15 2 0 13 13
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 15 11 0 4 53
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 52
Chiefs 15 11 0 4 51
Crusaders 15 11 0 4 50
Blues 15 8 1 6 39
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 1 4 51
Bulls 15 9 1 5 42
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Sunwolves 15 1 1 13 9
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 14 11 0 3 52
Sharks 15 9 1 5 43
Jaguares 14 3 0 11 18
Kings 15 2 0 13 9