Barritt will not replace Joubert

Western Province have failed to lure exciting young Sharks centre Bradley Barritt to Cape Town, despite a concerted effort.

“Bad luck boys, Bradley Barritt is ours,” Sharks chief executive Brian van Zyl told Cape Argus Rugby Writer Dale Granger. Coach Kobus van der Merwe said that Province were eager to fill the midfield void with a rising young talent like Barritt.

Van Zyl confirmed that the Sharks had closed a deal with Barritt last week when he signed a two-year contract.

Province will be without the services of Springbok midfielders Jean de Villiers, De Wet Barry and Marius Joubert for the next two Currie Cup competitions and had pinned their hopes on the brilliant young 19-year-old.

And Joubert seems to have fallen out of favour at Newlands anyway. The centre will not be available to play Currie Cup rugby for WP this season, or next, as he is one of the 24 contracted Boks who have been withdrawn from the Currie Cup.

Joubert’s contract, nevertheless, expires later in the year. On Saturday night, after he had slipped two tackles that gifted the Bulls tries en-route to their 43-10 demolition of the Stormers, a WP executive member said his contract would not be up for renewal.

Even though the Sharks could lose veteran lock Johan Ackermann, who has a serious calf injury sustained in their final game against the Western Force on Friday, Van Zyl dismissed rumours that his union was eyeing Stormers lock Ross Skeate.

“We’ve got enough talented young locks in the union, we don’t have to worry about our second row,” van Zyl said.