Snyman aims to reach ‘world-class’ level

RG Snyman says he feels fortunate that Irish club Munster will allow him to feature for the Springboks should a revised Rugby Championship go ahead later this year.

It was confirmed at the end of July that World Rugby approved a temporary window to accommodate the release of international players.

With Covid-19 restrictions continuing to impact transcontinental travel and entry requirements, on an exceptional basis the 2020 Rugby Championship is hopefully set to take place over a reduced six-week period between 7 November and the second week in December, with Sanzaar having asked New Zealand to host.

However, it means Snyman – as well as his fellow new Munster teammate Damian de Allende – could miss running out in the PRO14 over that period, while also being unavailable for the team’s opening game or two of the 2020-21 Champions Cup.

When asked at a news conference with Ireland media on Tuesday if he intended to play for the Boks this year, Snyman said he would if the competition was able to go ahead.

‘There is still a lot going on to see if the games [in the Rugby Championship] will go ahead. I am lucky Munster are allowing me to play for the Springboks.’

Meanwhile, commenting on the reasons for opting to join Munster, he said the opportunity to be reunited with another South African coach in Johann van Graan was a big factor. The two first met while Snyman was still in high school at Afrikaans Seuns Hoër (Affies), but this will be the first time they are working together as head coach and player.

‘First of all, it’s a very tradition-rich club, and mainly the biggest reason I came here was because of coach Johann,’ Snyman said.  ‘I’ve worked with him in the past and I know the quality of coach he is. That’s why I thought it was the best decision to come to Munster.

‘The first time I met Johann van Graan was in high school, which is quite a while back. I haven’t really worked under him that much, even though I’ve known him for a long time.

‘I do know he is a quality coach and speaking to anyone who has worked with him, I have only heard positive things. That’s what I am looking forward to, and also expanding my game within the detail that he brings. I think I’m in the best place for him to bring me to a world-class level.’

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Photo: Getty Images

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Craig Lewis