Cheetahs lock seals Sale Sharks move

The Sale Sharks have officially announced the signing of lock JP du Preez from the Cheetahs on a two-year deal with immediate effect.

The towering lock will link up with the Sale squad at their Carrington training base immediately. Du Preez will be available for selection following completion of his mandatory isolation period upon entering the UK from South Africa.

At 2.09 metres, Du Preez is the tallest player to ever be registered in Super Rugby and will be the second-tallest Premiership player in history.

Du Preez started his senior career with the Golden Lions in Johannesburg, making his Super Rugby debut in 2015. He went on to make only three more appearances for the Lions before moving to the Toyota Cheetahs in 2018. During his time at the Cheetahs, JP made 26 appearances in both Super Rugby and the PRO14.

Commenting on Monday’s announcement, Sharks director of rugby Steve Diamond was keen to see what Du Preez could do during his time in England.

‘We were hit pretty hard with injuries in the second row towards the back end of last season and with Lood de Jager and Josh Beaumont still out, it was imperative we found the right person to come in and ease the load in that area,’ Diamond said.

‘JP comes from South Africa with great pedigree and is a huge lad with a good skill set, so I’m really looking forward to seeing what he can do in the Premiership.’

Du Preez’s arrival brings the tally of South Africans in the Sharks’ senior squad up to 12, including Springbok World Cup-winners Lood de Jager and Faf de Klerk and capped Springboks Rohan Janse van Rensburg and the three Du Preez brothers (no relation).

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