Why Matt is right fit for Sharks

Tue, 18 Feb 2014 15:42
Large matt stevens saracens

The Sharks made a "great deal" to secure the services England international and current Saracens prop Matt Stevens.

The Sharks made a "great deal" to secure the services England international and current Saracens prop Matt Stevens.

The Durban-born Stevens, who will join the Sharks in August ahead of the start of the Currie Cup competition, signed a two-year contract.

Sharks Director of Rugby Jake White the 31-year-old Stevens, with 39 Test caps and close to 150 Premiership games, will be a good 'teacher' for the youngsters in the Sharks set-up.

"He comes from Kearsney College and he has obviously learnt all his rugby here in this [KwaZulu-Natal] province," White told this website.

"He has never played in the Currie Cup [competition] and there is a burning desire to be part of the Currie Cup campaign.

"I think it is a great signing," the World Cup-winning former Bok coach said, adding: "He is an international, he played for the British and Irish Lions, while he can also play on both sides of the scrum."

White pointed to young players like locks Peter-Steph du Toit and Stephan Lewies, as well as loosehead prop Thomas du Toit as those who could benefit from the veteran's arrival.

"There's a lot of learning they can get from a guy like him," he told this website, adding: "For him to come to the Sharks is a great deal for us."

Of course he will add some much-needed depth to the Sharks squad at a time when their entire first-choice front row is likely to be on Springbok duty.

"With the front row that we have - Jannie and Bismarck du Plessis, along with Tendai Mtawarira - he [Stevens] is a good compliment to have.

"With those guys set to be on Springbok duty later this year I have no doubt we are going to need the experience of another senior guy in the front row.

"I feel it is a very good time to get him to join the Sharks."

Sharks CEO John Smit, who played alongside Stevens at Saracens in the English Premiership, also expressed his delight with the signing.

"The versatility of Matt, [to be able to play] on both sides of the scrum, and his experience makes him a great acquisition to our squad," Smit said.

"We look forward to welcoming him to The Sharks family."

By Jan de Koning

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 24 November 2017
Cheetahs v Edinburgh 17h30 Bloemfontein
Ulster v Treviso 19h05 Kingspan Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Connacht 19h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Leinster v Dragons 19h35 RDS Stadium
Newcastle Falcons v Gloucester 19h45 Kingston Park
Sat, 25 November 2017
Leicester Tigers v Worcester Warriors 12h45 Welford Road
Bath v Harlequins 12h45 Recreation Ground
Italy v South Africa 13h00 Rome
Scotland v Australia 14h30 Cardiff
England v Samoa 15h00 Twickenham
Wales v New Zealand 17h15 Cardiff
Sale Sharks v Northampton Saints 17h30 AJ Bell Stadium
Ireland v Argentina 17h30 Aviva Stadium
France v Japan 19h00 Paris
Sun, 26 November 2017
Ospreys v Glasgow Warriors 13h00 Liberty Stadium
Kings v Scarlets 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Zebre v Munster 13h30 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Saracens v Exeter Chiefs 15h00 Allianz Park
London Irish v Wasps 15h00 Madejski Stadium
CURRIE CUP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Sharks 12 10 0 2 47
Western Province 12 7 0 5 37
Golden Lions 12 6 0 6 35
Blue Bulls 12 5 0 7 32
Free State Cheetahs 12 6 0 6 31
Pumas 12 4 0 8 27
Griquas 12 4 0 8 26