Hougie’s free at last

Derick Hougaard has put the 2003 World Cup behind him and is enjoying the freedom of the Vodacom Super 14.

In the new 124-page issue of SA Rugby magazine, on sale now, Hougaard admits he is a much improved player.

“I’m certainly a lot more mature,” he says. “I realise now that I was very young [in 2003] but now I’ve got more responsibility. I’m able to say more on the field, I understand what to expect and I’ve got more experience to do the right thing at the right time.”

In a ground-breaking initiative, the new issue of SA Rugby magazine has four different covers – one for each region of the country.

fs1.jpggauteng.jpgThis is in response to a number of readers from outside the Western Cape, who enjoyed the last issue but would have preferred a player from inside their Super 14 region to be on the cover.

fs.jpgcape.jpgSo this month, Hougaard is on the cover of the Gauteng edition, while Ruan Pienaar and Brent Russell (KwaZulu-Natal), Schalk Brits (Western Cape) and Juan Smith (Free State) also make an appearance.

Also in the new issue:

- Schalk Brits: “I want to bash down the Bok door”

- Versatility: Why’s it’s ruined Russell, why it’ll save Ruan

- Juan Smith’s Bloem crib

- Super 14: Life to the deal, death to the player

- Scrap the scrum? NEVER

- Academy kids: Can they pass both ways?

- Players agents: Necessity or nuisance?

- Q&A with Wendell Sailor

- Ryk Neethling’s Dream XV

- Reuben Thorne: “I’ve put 2003 behind me”

- Columns from Schalk, Naas and Mallett

- Keo’s Killer Quiz & Crossword