Bulls flanker signs for Saints

Gerrit-Jan van Velze has signed a new deal with Northampton Saints for the next European season.

The 24-year-old will be released by the Bulls as he leaves for England in three months. Van Velze, a former SA U19 and U20 representative, earned 59 Currie Cup and Vodacom Cup caps and made one Super Rugby start for the Bulls in his career. He also captained the Pretoria union to two Vodacom Cup titles.

Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder expressed his excitement about his latest recruit.

‘He will bring plenty of qualities to our squad – he carries the ball well, has lots of pace and shows good game understanding and leadership,’ said Mallinder.

‘We will need all of those things as we look to stay at the top end of the Premiership and get to the knockout stages of European competition, and believe that Gerrit-Jan can play a big role in our development as a squad.’

Van Velze will join former Springbok tighthead prop Brian Mujati at the club.