Peter de Villiers gives Sharks discard trial at EP

Inny Radebe. (Photo by Steve Haag/Gallo Images)
Inny Radebe. (Photo by Steve Haag/Gallo Images)

Former Sharks flyhalf Inny Radebe has started training with Eastern Province and could be offered a contract if the Elephants are included in the Franchise Cup.

According to the HeraldLIVE website, the 26-year-old has arrived in Port Elizabeth for a short trial and new EP coach Peter de Villiers is excited having the pivot amongst his ranks.

The EP Elephants could participate in a new Franchise Cup tournament set to kick off in February.

Reports have claimed that SA Rugby was planning the tournament - slated to feature the four PRO16 franchises and the Cheetahs - as a way for Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber to keep his top players match-fit for the coming international season.

However, with the SA Cup - the qualifying mechanism for next season's Currie Cup - likely to be scrapped due to Covid-related logistical challenges, calls are reportedly growing for the Franchise Cup to be expanded to eight teams which would see EP participate.

"It is a sin in South African rugby that a guy like Inny isn't playing for a big union," De Villiers said. "He is one of those gifted players who we simply have to make space for, so for me it is a privilege to allow him to direct my backline.

"He understands precisely where the gaps in the defensive line are, and I think we have to give him an opportunity," the former Springbok mentor added.

According to Radebe, the move isn't a done deal yet but he was happy to be afforded the opportunity.

"I am training with the team and I am strongly considering staying here," Radebe said.

Radebe was a star at schoolboy level and represented the Golden Lions at the 2013 U18 Craven Week.

He joined the Sharks after school and played for the UKZN Impi and Sharks Under-19 team.

Radebe made his senior breakthrough in 2016 and earned his first Super Rugby cap in 2017.

However, he then suffered a knee meniscus tear, which halted his development and he struggled for game time at the Sharks and was without a union contract at the end of 2019, which forced him to resort to club rugby to keep fit.

- Compiled by Sport24 staff

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