Duane Vermeulen has spoken highly of Evan Roos as the two big eighthmen prepare for a rematch in the Vodacom United Rugby Championship semi-final between the Stormers and Ulster in Cape Town on Saturday.
Ulster and Vermeulen have made the trip to Cape Town for the URC semi-final against one of his former teams, the Stormers.
The game will present Vermeulen with the opportunity to stamp his authority on Roos, who has been heavily touted as his potential successor on the international front after some sensational performances for the Stormers this season.
“There’s big talk about him. He’s an exceptional player and plays well in the Stormers’ set-up. He’s a big carrier for them,” Vermeulen told the official Ulster website.
“We play completely different styles. He’s out and running in the backline and from lineouts, where I am with the forwards. There’s a whole different gameplan – you can match him with Nick Timoney or Marcus Rea.
“He’s been really influential in the way they play and he’s racked up a couple of Player of the Match performances. It’s really good for them, he is playing well and hopefully he gets an opportunity in the national squad. If you play well, you need to get an opportunity somewhere else. Hopefully, it’s national colours.”
Evan Roos vs Duane Vermeulen
Dreams do come true…pic.twitter.com/pgzBzUIe9m
— Saffas Abroad Rugby (@SaffasRugby) March 26, 2022
In the regular-season clash between the two sides, the Stormers took an early lead, before having to weather a second-half onslaught from Ulster as the Capetonians successfully defended a three-point buffer in the final 20 minutes.
“We weren’t really on our game on that day,” Vermeulen said. “We gave two early, easy tries at the beginning and they were 14-0 up. It was a tough task to fight back. Some decisions didn’t go our way, but you can’t put yourself in that kind of position to win a game. Hopefully, we can do a little bit better this time around.”
— SA Rugby magazine (@SARugbymag) June 8, 2022
Photo: Getty Images