Surely no stopping Nelspruit’s finest now?

I have to say that in my mind Nelspuit Old Boy Duane Vermeulen should have walked away with SA rugby’s big award for being the country’s best rugby player in 2013 already. To me it’s debatable whether or not Vermeulen has had a better season this year compared to last year. Nevertheless I have to applaud the IRB Rugby Player of the Year 2014 nominee for being consistently good these past two seasons. Vermeulen is up for the SARU Player of the Year again this year and this time I really hope the decision goes his way. I suspect that last year’s Player’s Player of the Year – Willie le Roux who is the only other SARU Rugby Player of the Year nominee to make the shortlist for a second year running and was also an IRB Player of the Year 2014 nominee, will be Vermeulen’s stiffest competition for the main prize but one does necessarily want to count out the back to his best Marcell Coetzee or the Currie Cup standout Nizaam Carr, especially when public votes count toward the final decision.

The ceremony takes place on Sunday 8 February 2015 in Midrand.

Of interest to schoolboy rugby fans is the naming of the Craven Week Player of the Year at the same event. Eastern Province were crowned the unofficial champions and in all likelihood the award winner will be one of their dependable standout players.

All the nominations for 2014:

SARU Rugby Player of the Year:

1. Nizaam Carr (Bishops)
2. Marcell Coetzee (Port Natal)
3. Willie le Roux (Paul Roos)
4. Handré Pollard (Paarl Gim)
5. Duane Vermeulen (Nelspruit)

2013 Winner: Jean de Villiers (Paarl Gim)

SARPA Players’ Player of the Year:

2013 Winner: Willie le Roux (Paul Roos)

Coca-Cola Craven Week Player of the Tournament:

2013 Winner: Grant Hermanus (Western Province, Paarl Gim)
2012: Sergeal Petersen (Eastern Province, Grey High School)
2011: Jan Serfontein (Free State, Grey College)
2010: Johan Goosen (Free State, Grey College)

Absa Young Player of the Year:

1. Nizaam Carr (Bishops)
2. Cheslin Kolbe (Brackenfell)
3. Handré Pollard (Paarl Gim)
4. Seabelo Senatla (Riebeeckstad)
5. Jan Serfontein (Grey College)

2013 Winner: Eben Etzebeth (Tygerberg)

Absa Team of the Year:

1. Springboks
2. Junior Springboks
3. Springbok Sevens
4. Xerox Golden Lions (Absa Currie Cup)
5. DHL Western Province (Absa Currie Cup)

2013 Winner: Steval Pumas

Absa Coach of the Year:

1. Johann Ackermann (Xerox Golden Lions) (Brandwag Benoni)
2. Allister Coetzee (DHL Western Province) (Mary Waters)
3. Neil Powell (Springbok Sevens) (Sentraal – FS)

2013 Winner: Jimmy Stonehouse (Ermelo)

SA Under-20 Player of the Year:

1. Thomas du Toit (HJS Paarl BH)
2. Jesse Kriel (Maritzburg College)
3. Handré Pollard (Paarl Gim)

2013 Winner: Cheslin Kolbe (Brackenfell)

SA Sevens Player of the Year:

1. Branco du Preez (PW Botha)
2. Frankie Horne (Hugenote – Bol)
3. Seabelo Senatla (Riebeeckstad)

2013 Winner: Cornal Hendricks (Bergrivier)

Vodacom Super Rugby Player of Year:

1. Marcell Coetzee (Cell C Sharks) (Port Natal)
2. Duane Vermeulen (DHL Stormers) (Nelspruit)
3. Warren Whiteley (Lions) (Glenwood)

2013 Winner: Adriaan Strauss (Grey College)

Vodacom Cup Player of the Year:

1. Renaldo Bothma (Steval Pumas) (Volkskool Heidelberg)
2. Jonathan Francke (GWK Griquas) (Strand)
3. Lizo Gqoboka (EP Kings) (Ntabankulu)

2013 Winner: Fred Zeilinga (Glenwood)

Absa Currie Cup Premier Division Player of the Year:

1. Nizaam Carr (DHL Western Province) (Bishops)
2. Juan de Jongh (DHL Western Province) (Hugenote -Bol)
3. Jaco Kriel (Xerox Golden Lions) (Standerton)

2013 Winner: Scarra Ntubeni (KES)

Absa Currie Cup First Division Player of the Year:

1. Boela Abrahams (Down Touch Griffons) (Hentie Cilliers)
2. Sylvian Mahuza (Leopards) (Outeniqua)
3. Dillon Smit (Leopards) (HTS Middelburg)

2013 Winner: Rosko Specman (Kingswood)


  1. In my opinion, Warren Whiteley should also be in the mix for SARU Player of the year…

  2. @Woltrui: Verbetering nommer een vir die jaar voltooi!

    I’m hoping for more across the Jukskei River rivalry this season. Big things are happening to the South of the river bed, so it would be nice if some Ellis Park revivalists could come on here and tell you Northern folks not to worry about defending Standerton’s honour coz now that they have learned how to defend their own tryline, they know they have Standerton’s back! :mrgreen:

  3. @Woltrui:Los die dinge wat ons geen beheer oor het nie. Gaan maak eerder Maandag ‘n draai by Loftus en laat weet hoe lyk die O/19 groep van die Bulle. Ek wag in spanning vir jou terugvoer Maandag aand

  4. Frikken jaar het nog nie begin nie en die Charkies ploeg al met Puma’s se kalwers :evil:
    Jaco Kriel kom van Standerton HoE”rskool Mr Beet. Whatch it Boitjie :-x Die jaar gaat ons baklei dat die spoeg spat 8-O


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