Ruan set to choose be­tween Boks and Eng­land

The Rugby Paper - - News - ■ By NEALE HAR­VEY

RUAN Ack­er­mann in­sists he has an open mind over where his in­ter­na­tional am­bi­tions lie af­ter fol­low­ing his fa­ther, Jo­han, to Glouces­ter.

Ack­er­mann, who op­er­ates equally im­pres­sively at seven and No.8, opted to move to the Premier­ship af­ter star­ring for the Jo­han­nes­burg-based Li­ons.

The 21-year-old has been on South Africa’s radar but could now turn his at­ten­tion to Eng­land, for whom he will qual­ify in three years. Ack­er­mann told The

Rugby Pa­per: “South Africa have got a new vi­sion with some good young­sters com­ing through, but you never know what the fu­ture holds, if it’s go­ing to be here or go­ing back.

“The fact that I’m still young gives me that op­por­tu­nity to maybe have a shot for Eng­land or go back in a few years and still be young enough to play for the Spring­boks.”

Ack­er­mann has been hugely im­pressed with what he has seen at Glouces­ter’s hi-tech train­ing cen­tre at Hart­pury Col­lege.

He ex­plained: “It’s a lot more or­gan­ised and pro­fes­sional and it’s been quite a step up from what I’ve been used to.

“For ex­am­ple, the GPS tracker they put on you to mon­i­tor your train­ing, speed and dis­tances you run is new. In the gym the equip­ment we use to im­prove your jump speed and height is im­pres­sive.”

Two full sea­sons in Su­per Rugby at such a young age sug­gests Ack­er­mann is some­thing spe­cial.

“I played ev­ery Su­per Rugby match over two sea­sons, so I’ve been blessed and to gain ex­pe­ri­ence along­side top Spring­boks like Jaco Kriel and War­ren Whiteley was awe­some,” he says.

As for work­ing un­der his dad at King­sholm, Ack­er­mann added: “From a small age we’ve been in­volved in rugby to­gether so our bond is very strong and with all his ex­pe­ri­ence as a player and coach he helps me a lot.

“I don’t get any favours and I know what he ex­pects from me, so that just makes me work harder to prove my­self to other peo­ple.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.