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FEATURED

Du Plessis making major strides

PUBLISHED: April 25, 2016



DHL Stormers flyhalf Jean-Luc du Plessis says that he feels more comfortable with the speed and intensity of Vodacom Super Rugby every week.

DHL Stormers flyhalf Jean-Luc du Plessis says that he feels more comfortable with the speed and intensity of Vodacom Super Rugby every week.

The talented 21-year-old pivot was handed the opportunity to start in the DHL Stormers No.10 jersey following injuries to Robert du Preez and Kurt Coleman, and has already impressed with a few eye-catching displays.

While many young players may feel overwhelmed with such reponsibility, Du Plessis says that the backing and support of the coaching staff has been crucial in giving him the confidence to express himself on the Vodacom Super Rugby stage.

“I am very happy and grateful for this opportunity, it is definitely a very big step up for me, Vodacom Super Rugby is a different beast.

“Every week I am feeling a bit more comfortable and a bit more used to the speed and intensity of the game. Credit to the coaching staff, they instill a lot of confidence in us, whether you have 50 caps or five caps.

“The team goes out every Saturday full of confidence that we can do the job, on a personal level I feel that I am growing into my role and improving week by week,” he said.

Despite his relative inexperience Du Plessis has already shown great potential, and he credited the guidance he has got in the DHL Stormers set-up for his convincing start to his career.

“There is a time and a place for everything on the field, it is just important to get a good mix. There are times when you have to control the game, slow it down and play a bit more tactically, and there are times where you can express yourself, be free and give the ball some air.

“Credit must go to the coaching staff, they don’t box you in and they allow every player to go out and express themselves, although every player knows what is expected of him, so I think we have got a good mix at the moment,” he said.

Of course, Jean-Luc is not the first Du Plessis to star at DHL Newlands, with his father Carel and his uncles having thrilled the faithful in the 1980s during a golden period for DHL Western Province, and the significance of the family’s history is certainly not lost on Jean-Luc.

“It is obviously something that runs deep in our family and is something that we take a lot of pride from.

“It has always been my dream to play for Western Province at Newlands, it is a big part of my heritage and I have been going there most of my life with my father coaching,” he added.