Argentina vs Tonga

Unwanted Bulls lock heads to France

Mon, 23 Jun 2014 08:15
Large paul willemse bulls ball

Bulls lock Paul Willemse is heading to France, after being overlooked for Springbok selection.

Bulls lock Paul Willemse is heading to France, after being overlooked for Springbok selection.

The Blue Bulls Company (BBC) confirmed on Monday that Willemse will head abroad at the end of the year.

The 22-year-old player will join French club Grenoble after the Currie Cup on a two-year deal.

According to the BBC High Performance Manager, Xander Janse van Rensburg, it is becoming increasingly difficult to hold on to players and to compete with overseas clubs.

He added that with Willemse being overlooked for Bok selection the big cash offer was too good to ignore.

"Paul feels that he is not currently in the mix for Springbok selection and has a number of locks ahead of him in the line-up, so wants to add a different element to his game by playing in the French Top 14," Janse van Rensburg said.

"Game-time in France will see him improve as a player and we can reap the benefits of that upon his return.

"We tried our utmost best to retain the services of Paul," Janse van Rensburg added.

"It is however very concerning that we are losing players at a younger and younger age to the overseas market.

"In Paul's case, we are talking about a massive offer to the player and one that is very hard to say no to.

"We certainly cannot blame Paul for accepting such a lucrative offer, but even if we wanted to, we could not match it as this is one of the biggest offers I have seen for a player of his age."

Willemse plans to return to South Africa in two years' time to make a bid for the Springboks jersey and could well be back in Bulls colours then.

Argentina vs Tonga
sast: 15h30 | local: 17h30

  • 38 | 16
Sun, 04 October 2015
Zebre v Scarlets 13h00 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Ireland v Italy 15h45 London
Tue, 06 October 2015
Canada v Romania 15h45 Leicester
Fiji v Uruguay 19h00 Milton Keynes
Wed, 07 October 2015
South Africa v United States 15h45 London
Namibia v Georgia 19h00 Exeter
Fri, 09 October 2015
Pumas v Blue Bulls 16h00 Mbombela Stadium
Western Province v EP Kings 16h00 Newlands
New Zealand v Tonga 19h00 Newcastle
Sat, 10 October 2015
Golden Lions v Griquas 12h00 Ellis Park
Samoa v Scotland 13h30 Newcastle
Free State Cheetahs v Sharks 14h05 Bloemfontein
Australia v Wales 15h45 London
England v Uruguay 19h00 Manchester
Sun, 11 October 2015
Argentina v Namibia 11h00 Leicester
Team P W D L Pts
Golden Lions 9 9 0 0 43
Blue Bulls 9 7 0 2 34
Western Province 9 6 0 3 30
Free State Cheetahs 9 3 1 5 21
Sharks 9 4 0 5 19
Pumas 9 3 1 5 16
EP Kings 9 2 0 7 12
Griquas 9 1 0 8 8