Vodacom Stormers coach Kobus van der Merwe yesterday confirmed Springbok centre De Wet Barry as his captain for the 2006 Vodacom Super 14 tournament.
Kobus van der Merwe told the Cape Times that the decision to entrust Barry with the leadership duties was made after he received an overwhelming majority of votes in a ballot among the players. Barry’s lead-by-example attitude has made him a popular choice amongst his peers, earning him the respect of his teammates and opposition alike. With more than 50 caps in the black Stormers jersey, his experience in a relatively young squad, will be a huge asset, especially during the pressures of a 5 week Australasian tour.
Schalk Burger, who captained the Western Province team in a few matches towards the end of the 2005 Currie Cup, has been named vice-captain. Barry’s announcement as captain didn’t come without some bad news – the Vodacom Stormers midfielder was admitted to hospital yesterday for emergency knee surgery which will have him out for 4 to 6 weeks. Schalk will assume captaincy in the two warm-up matches against the Bulls this weekend and against the Southern Spears the following weekend.
Tickets for the match against the Bulls at Newlands on 21 January are currently on sale at Shoprite/Checkers and at the Ticket office at Newlands. Seats are only R20 (UNRESERVED) and standing room is priced at R10. WP Rugby urge supporters to purchase their tickets ahead of time, as seats are unreserved and will be on a first come first served basis. The match will kick-off at 17h00, with gates opening at 15h00. The Vodacom WP team, under the guidance of Stanley Raubenheimer, will play in a trail match as curtainraiser to the warm-up. The trail match kick’s off at 15h30.