Super Rugby

Irish fans will enjoy Botha, says ex-Bok

Arno Botha (Gallo Images)
Arno Botha (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Former Springbok Pedrie Wannenburg believes countryman Arno Botha will be a great asset for Irish club Ulster.

Ulster on Monday announced the signing of the 25-year-old from the Bulls. He will join his new side after the conclusion of this year’s Super Rugby competition.

The 36-year-old Wannenburg, who played 20 Tests for the Springboks between 2002 and 2007, played for Ulster between 2010 and 2012 after also joining them from the Bulls.

He was a crowd favourite at Ulster and responded Twitter when he heard the news of Botha’s signing:

After leaving Ulster, Wannenburg played for four years in France (Castres and Oyonnax), before heading to America in 2016 where he joined the Denver Stampede.

Botha captained the Junior Springboks in the 2011 World Championships in Italy and was also named as their Player of the Year after a string of impressive performances.

He made his debut for the Springboks against Italy in June 2013, but suffered a knee injury just four minutes into his second Test, against Scotland, later that month.

Botha has been in superb form over the past couple of seasons and captained the Blue Bulls as they made the final of last year's Currie Cup.

Before leaving South Africa, Botha will be looking to finish his tenure at the Bulls on a high.

"I have achieved such a lot with the Bulls and will give my all to help the team to try and win the Super Rugby title in 2017, something that has eluded me so far in my career,” he said on Monday.

“I am only leaving at the end of the campaign and is highly motivated to deliver for the team. The decision to move to Ulster was taken after considerable thought from my side and I feel it is the right time in my career to feel what rugby in the northern hemisphere is all about. Until then, I am as passionate about the Bulls as I have ever been.”

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