VIDEO: Bok embracing Euro challenge

Mon, 22 Jan 2018 19:02

WATCH as Springbok Heinrich Brüssow, in his first interview since arriving at Northampton Saints, expresses his excitement about playing in Europe.

Brüssow joined up with the Saints, after touching down in the United Kingdom.

The 31-year-old South Africa international put pen to paper on a deal to took him to Franklin's Gardens back in September, and following the conclusion of the Top League in Japan is immediately available for selection.

Brüssow, equally comfortable at flank or No.8, had been playing his club rugby for Japanese side Red Hurricanes after eight years in Super Rugby playing for the Bloemfontein-based Cheetahs.

He brings considerable experience with him to Franklin's Gardens, having also been capped 23 times by the Springboks - three of those appearances coming against the British & Irish Lions in 2009.

And Brüssow is now relishing the prospect of a new challenge in the Premiership and linking up with his new Saints teammates.

"It's great to be here," he said. "It's been a few months now that I've been waiting to come, and I'm very excited to get to work on the training field and get involved with the squad.

"I really enjoyed my time in Japan but I am at a stage in my career where I need a new challenge, and coming to Europe and playing in some of the best competitions in club rugby is something that is very special.

"The Saints is a fantastic Club with big traditions and I'm really excited to get to know all the English cultures and learn what the Premiership is all about.

"There is a lot of talent in the squad and I can't wait to get out and start playing with them."

A former SA Rugby Young Player of the Year, Brüssow twice won the Currie Cup with the Free State Cheetahs, but it was during the British & Irish Lions tour of South Africa in 2009 that he really burst into the limelight.

After a barnstorming performance for his franchise against the Lions, Brüssow featured for the Springboks in all three Tests, with South Africa winning the series 2-1 and his dynamic and tenacious play - particularly at the breakdown - earning him praise from all corners.

His international debut came on English soil at Twickenham back in 2008, where he came off the bench to lock horns with Saints skipper Dylan Hartley in an emphatic 42-6 win for South Africa.

"We're delighted that Heinz is now finally at Franklin's Gardens and I can't wait to see what he can do in the Black, Green and Gold," said Saints technical coaching consultant Alan Gaffney.

"He is a player with heaps of experience who has shown his class year in, year out.

"He will be an invaluable asset for us as we look to move up the Premiership table in the second half of the season, and our younger players will look to learn a lot from him - especially from his play at the breakdown."

Source: @SaintsRugby

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