Legendary Springbok fullback Gysie Pienaar is thrilled his son, Ruan, is following in his rugby footsteps.
The young Sharks scrumhalf has been included in Jake White’s extended 45-man Springbok training squad that will meet in Bloemfontein on Wednesday.
“I am very proud,” Pienaar told Business Day. “I think every dad would like his son to follow in his footsteps some day and I am thankful that Ruan could do that. I knew he would make the Springbok squad, but I never thought it would be so soon.”
According to Business Day, Pienaar rushed to Bloemfontein last Sunday with his family to prepare for the training camp. He said he was delighted about his achievement and was “very surprised” to be included in the squad. But he admitted that the hard work would start only now.
“It was a dream come true to see my name on the list,” said Pienaar. “I did not hear anything about being included in the squad, so it was a complete surprise when my name was read out. This is a great opportunity for the new guys who performed well in the Super 14,” he said in the report.
“But we also realise that the hard work only starts now. I am really excited about attending the training camp and I will see where I go from here.”
Of his fatherâ€™s response to his inclusion, Pienaar said: â€œHe phoned me immediately. He was very proud and emotional. Heâ€™s been there before. He knows how special it is.â€
Another son following in his father’s footsteps is young Stormers lock Andries Bekker. His dad, Hennie Bekker, also played for the Boks.