Quick tap with Marcel Theunissen

PUBLISHED: June 5, 2024

Loose forward Marcel Theunissen looks back on his debut in lockdown, relives his 50th DHL Stormers match and talks tight lines with teammate Paul de Wet.

You grew up in Bloemfontein and moved to Stellenbosch after school. Do you prefer living in a small town to city life?

While both small towns and cities have their own challenges, I prefer living in a small town. I enjoy the close community, the slower pace of life and the ease of getting around. I find that small towns offer a sense of belonging and a more relaxed atmosphere, which suits my personality.

You made your DHL Stormers debut in Super Rugby Unlocked during lockdown. What was that experience like and how much of a difference is it having big crowds back?

Making my debut for the DHL Stormers in Super Rugby Unlocked during lockdown was a dream come true for me. Playing in empty stadiums was not what we were used to and it lacked the energy and motivation that comes with having a packed crowd cheering you on. But I still got fired up when I pulled that jersey over my head to play the game we all love. Fast forward to now it’s amazing to have the Faithful back. The energy in the stadium is electric. We feed off the crowd’s enthusiasm, and it’s a huge boost to our performance. It’s great to see the stands packed again, and we’re loving every minute of it.

You are a keen fisherman, is there a friendly rivalry with Paul de Wet?

We’ve had some friendly banter on the water, that’s for sure. We both love fishing and enjoy the thrill of reeling in a good catch. While we have our own ways of fishing, our rivalry is all in good fun. We always share tips and stories about our fishing adventures, and I’ve learned a thing or two from him. It’s great to have someone who shares my passion and to make good memories with.

You shared the milestone of your 50th DHL Stormers match with Evan Roos and Brok Harris on his 150th. What was the experience like? Any memories of the day that stand out?

Reaching my 50th match for the DHL Stormers alongside Evan Roos and Brok Harris’s 150th was an incredible experience! To do it with a rugby legend like Brok who has played over 400 professional games is a huge honour and he is definitely someone that I look up to. The atmosphere was amazing. Seeing the crowd’s reaction when you run out alone was a moment that I can cherish for life and to have my family there and receiving congratulations from my teammates made it even more special. We also had a good game againt Leinster and got the win, which made it even more special.

You are on tour this week for the Vodacom URC quarterfinal in Glasgow. What has been your best memory on tour with the team?

I think from a rugby perspective one of the top moments was when we won our first South African Shield overseas in the first season of the Vodacom URC. The last two away games against Dragons and Connacht were quite special for us because they were both must-win games and all of the players and coaches were very focused and wanted to get the job done. Off the field I think all the boys know Cardiff is always a nice place to have a Guinness as well as Limerick, we have a few good stories that we can tell.