Having been named in the DHL Stormers matchday 23 for last weekend’s clash against the Lions at DHL Newlands, fit-again utility back Jaco Taute is hoping for some game time when the 2015 SA Conference champions travel to Durban to take on the Sharks in Vodacom Super Rugby action this coming weekend.
The strapping inside centre/fullback did not get any game time against the Lions, as the teams played to a tense 19-19 draw, but he is hoping to play a part in Saturday’s final league encounter against the Sharks.
“It obviously depends on selection, but it will be nice to be in the mix this weekend, it’s always nice to play in the Shark Tank and I obviously have good memories from last year’s game in Durban,” said Taute, whose last-gasp drop-goal won the match for the DHL Stormers in last year’s corresponding fixture.
“Every time you wear the DHL Stormers jersey you give the best you have – there is talk of us resting a few guys, perhaps, but we are not going to Durban to make up numbers…
“We would like to beat the Sharks on Saturday, we’re a proud team and union – you always want to win when you represent great teams like DHL Western Province or the DHL Stormers.”
Taute, 24, made a late start to the season after undergoing a scope on his knee after pre-season action, but he is determined to make up for lost time should he make his return for the DHL Stormers this weekend – having featured in the business-end of DHL WP’s near-successful 2015 Vodacom Cup campaign.
He told the www.iamastormer.com website: “The operation at the beginning of the year was basically just to clean up the wear and tear. It had nothing to do with ligaments, so I feel I’ve worked incredibly hard and feel really good.
“I went through a very strict rehabilitation process where I worked incredibly hard,” he added.
“I would really just like to get on the park. I’ve got some good game time under my belt in the Vodacom Cup these last few weeks. So I’d like to play to be able to build some momentum to fulfil my potential and give my best to the DHL Stormers.
“I’m really desperate, very hungry and I can’t wait to pull that jersey over my head again.”
Taute considers himself more of an inside centre at present, having performed in that position during DHL Western Province’s victorious 2014 Absa Currie Cup campaign, but he will play wherever the team needs him.
He added: “I think things went really well (for me) at inside centre during last year’s Absa Currie Cup season.
“We won and I feel I built up more momentum in the position. I’m also more used to the position now, so I’d really like to continue at inside centre and build on that.
“I’m not saying I’d never play fullback again, but for now my focus is on the position where I played during the last Absa Currie Cup.”