Nizaam Carr is excited to join the Vodacom Bulls and explains why he wants to play for the Springboks again. DYLAN JACK reports.
During the lockdown, the Bulls have undergone a massive rebuild under new director of rugby and head coach Jake White.
White has not only brought in a fresh coaching staff, but has also made big changes to the playing staff, letting 15 players join other franchises and bringing in 13 new faces to the squad.
Carr was part of the newbies at Loftus Versfeld, having joined the Pretoria-based franchise from English Premiership club Wasps, for whom he had played since 2018 and won just shy of 50 caps.
Chatting to SA Rugby magazine, Carr opened up on the opportunity to join White’s rebuild at the Bulls, who the experienced loose forward said made him feel valued.
‘It takes me back to when I first left for England. All I knew was Western Province,’ Carr said. ‘The Wasps trip really opened up my mind and my heart to new experiences. I didn’t know what it meant to play for another club. So I have got that same era of excitement that I had when I first started with the professional game.
‘When I spoke to the Bulls, they were definitely one of the teams who wanted my services, they were eager and said it would be great to have me on board and I would suit their style of rugby. I jumped at that because when you feel welcomed and valued, I think that is the place for you to be. That’s what stood out for me.’
The 29-year-old Carr has five Test caps, but last played for the Springboks in 2016 against Wales at the Millennium Stadium.
‘Yes, of course,’ Carr answered when asked whether he would like to play for the Boks again. ‘Anybody who plays in South Africa who doesn’t dream of playing for the Springboks shouldn’t be playing. That should be the pinnacle of your career, the highest point that you can achieve in rugby.
‘Seeing my friends win the World Cup inspired the nation. There is a lot of poverty out there. Yes, sport won’t save what people are going through, but it definitely inspires and gives hope. For any person wanting to do well at their job, wanting to be great at whatever they are doing. That’s what the World Cup win meant to me, it inspires people. That’s what I want to do, constantly inspire.
‘Through my rugby, I want to create hope and inspire. I am in a fortunate position and if I don’t use those opportunities, I am wasting my time. Playing for the Springboks would definitely add to that.’