Griquas have confirmed the departure of scrumhalf Zak Burger, who has joined the Vodacom Bulls with immediate effect.
The 22-year-old Burger, who attended the prestigious rugby school Paarl Gim, represented Western Province at age grade level and played for the Sharks from in 2017.
He played for the Junior Springboks in 2018 and joined Griquas that same year and has since developed into one of the union’s most influential players over the course of the last three years.
But it has now been confirmed that the Bulls snapped up the livewire scrumhalf to fill the void left by the departure of Ivan van Zyl, who left Loftus after signing for English club Saracens.
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‘Griquas hereby announce with a mixture of both joy and sadness the departure of Izak Burger who is leaving the union to join the Bulls with immediate effect,’ read the Griquas statement.
Head coach Scott Mathie said it’s bittersweet seeing a player of Zak’s ability and raw talent leave Kimberley.
‘Obviously having a player of Zak’s calibre leave us is not ideal but we at Griquas pride ourselves in giving players opportunities when they present themselves and we believe Zak has the talent and right mindset to become a Springbok in the near future,’ Mathie said.
‘His leadership qualities will also be missed, and he is a great man to have in any rugby setup and culture. He will definitely be missed by his teammates and the rest of the management, but we really do wish him all the best. He deserves everything good that comes his way.’
Commenting on Burger’s departure, Griquas CEO Arni van Rooyen said: ‘Yes, it is sad to see Zak go. Not just as a rugby player but he is a good young man with impeccable values who everybody really liked at the union, but his talent is undeniable, and we will not stand in his way to reach higher honors.
‘Maybe even the highest. It is also good to know that we as a rugby union can still produce such remarkable rugby players and we thank Zak for his services to Griquas.’
Photo: Frikkie Kapp/Gallo Images