Zimbabwean-born flyhalf Kennedy Tsimba has signed with the Pumas.
Tsimba has had precious little game time since joining the Vodacom Blue Bulls in 2005, and with youngsters Derick Hougaard and Morne Steyn set to stick around in Pretoria, the move away from the union made sense.
The 32 year old broke the Free State record for the most points scored in a season (228), a feat which earned him the Currie Cup Player of the Year award in 2002, and accumulated over 1000 points during his five-year tenure with the Bloemfontein side (2000 to 2004). He has also played rugby for Bath in England (1998), and has represented both the Cats and Bulls in the Super 12.
His arrival in Witbank will boost the hapless Pumas significantly. They failed to win a single game in the Currie Cup, and only managed to pick up four bonus points in 14 games.
While their backline has looked good at times, the real problem lies in the forwards, who were unable to make a telling impression on any of the opposition they faced in the domestic competition. Chester Williams’s first job as coach will undoubtedly be to focus on improving the pack if they are going to avoid a similar string of hidings in 2007.
Pumas squad for 2007:
Forwards: Simon Blakeley, Marakas Botha, Ashton Constant, Frikkie de Jager, Marc de Marigny, Jean du Bois, Ross Geldenhuys, Stefan Gerber, Sean Johnson, MornÃ© Kruger, Riaan Kruger, Danzel Manuel, Jacques Lombaard, Hein Potgieter, Johan Prins, Maurice Read, CornÃ© Steenkamp, Paul Schreuder, Bokkie Swanepoel, JD Toerien, Jonathan van der Schyff, Schalk van der Merwe, Rassie van Vuuren.
Backs: Pieter Benade, Jovan Botha, Arno Coetzee, Jacques Coetzee, BC du Plessis, Lourens Dunn, Christiaan Els, Ruan Lamprecht, Sasha Marot, Carlo Moodie, Adnaan Oesman, Hennie Oosthuizen, Gordon Pangetti, Riaan Smit, Hyron Thysse, Kennedy Tsimba, Quintin van Tonder, Shaun Venter.