Jake admits Canan Moodie is getting tough love at the Bulls: 'I want him to play 100 Tests'

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  • Bulls mentor Jake White has candidly admitted that he'll be applying some tough love to Canan Moodie now that his gifted teenaged back has become a Springbok.
  • White notes it's not because he's being "horrible" but out of a deep desire to see the new star reaching an "inevitable" 100 caps for the Boks.
  • Already, Moodie has shown no complacency as he was already back at Loftus doing extras on the Bulls' off-day this week.

Canan Moodie earlier this week admitted wholeheartedly that he returns to Loftus under increased scrutiny because, at 19, he's already completed a meteoric rise by becoming a Springbok.

And while that means the precocious Bulls youngster will put more pressure on himself, he can be rest assured Jake White, his franchise director of rugby, is also going to be harder on him.

"I'm tougher on him. Much tougher. And I'm really being serious," the Bulls mentor said on Thursday after immediately restoring his international sensation to the starting lineup for Friday evening's URC meeting with Connacht.

"It's the most natural thing in the world. I've got kids and I know expectations change."

However, as with the majority of parents, this hardnosed attitude is adopted out of compassion.   

READ | Bok sensation Canan Moodie reveals Lionel Mapoe's simple advice that rocketed his rise

"Canan's come from nowhere to being a Springbok and scoring tries in the Rugby Championship in nine months. That's why I'm tougher on him, not in a horrible way but because I want him to stay the way that he is."

Already famed for his superb work ethic, Moodie didn't take long to soothe any reservations White might've had in that regard. 

"That said, I don't really have to worry about him because he's still incredible. We had off on Wednesday and yet here he is, doing extras," said the former World Cup-winning coach. 

"I'm happy to say he hasn't lost who he is."

Revealingly but perhaps not unsurprisingly, White confirmed that Moodie's switch to his favoured No 13 position - where he might find his bread properly buttered at international level in the long-term - will happen at some stage.

Bulls:

15 Kurt-Lee Arendse, 14 Canan Moodie, 13 Cornal Hendricks, 12 David Kriel, 11 Sbu Nkosi, 10 Johan Goosen, 9 Zak Burger, 8 Elrigh Louw, 7 Marco van Staden, 6 Marcell Coetzee (captain), 5 Ruan Nortje, 4 Walt Steenkamp, 3 Francois Klopper, 2 Johan Grobbelaar, 1 Gerhard Steenekamp

Substitutes: 16 Jan-Hendrik Wessels, 17 Simphiwe Matanzima, 18 Mornay Smith, 19 Janko Swanepoel, 20 Reinhardt Ludwig, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Chris Smith, 23 Lionel Mapoe

"We have centres who, with all respect, are getting on now. Cornal [Hendricks] and Lionel [Mapoe] have been around for a long time. It won't be long before Canan goes into the No 13 jersey and then there will be more work for him," he said.

"I've said it many times, he'll play 100 Tests for South Africa, seeing now what I see, not because it's a given, just because he is who he is.

"I have to be tough on him to make sure he doesn't miss out on that opportunity because he'll be massive for the Springboks."

Kick-off is at 18:30.


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