The Stormers back-row stock will take a temporary hit with the news that No 8 Juarno Augustus is set to join Northampton Saints for the next two seasons. He is off in July.
The 23-year-old has been granted an early release from his contract with Western Province Professional Rugby and intends to return to his home union in 2023.
Augustus steadily progressed through the Western Province ranks having represented them at the Under-18 Academy Week before joining the Western Province Rugby Institute after school.
Having impressed for Western Province Under-19‚ Augustus was selected for the Junior Springboks in 2016 and went on to be named World Rugby Under-20 Championship player of the tournament that year‚ scoring seven tries in Georgia.
He made his senior Western Province debut in 2017 and played his first game for the Stormers later that year. He has played 19 times for the Stormers and represented Western Province on 15 occasions.
Injuries have, however, hampered the barrel-chested loose forward’s progress and he missed the start of Rainbow Cup SA as a result of another niggling injury.
“This is a great opportunity for me to experience a new environment and grow on and off the field so that I can add more value in the blue and white jersey in the future‚” said Augustus.
He may be a little reluctant to see his back-row battleship go, but head coach John Dobson believes Augustus will benefit from his time in England.
“We were not going to stand in Juarno’s way and wish him all the best. He is still very young and will add to his game in the next two years before returning to us.
“He is a proud product of this region and we look forward to seeing him develop his game and return a better player one day.
“We have seen the benefit in the past of such a move with our current captain Steven Kitshoff and we are hopeful Juarno’s career will follow the same path‚” Dobson said.
Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments?
Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.
Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.