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Downey joins Burger in Japanese switch

Written by Rob Otto (robdylan)

Posted in :Currie Cup, Original Content, Sharks, Super Rugby on 2 Jun 2014 at 12:10
Tagged with : , , , , , ,

The big news – at least form a Bok point of view – seems to be the confirmation that Schalk Burger will join Suntory Sungoliath in Japan after Super Rugby this year. Sharks fans will be more interested to see that Justin Downey is joining him.

After an impressive junior career with the Sharks, Downey moved to Griquas in 2010 in search of game time, after finding limited opportunities at senior level in Durban. He made his Super Rugby debut for the Cheetahs the following year and established himself as a mainstay in the Griquas pack, before moving back to Durban ahead of last year’s successful Currie Cup campaign.

2014 saw him fail to crack a Super Rugby berth under new coach Jake White, though and along with others in a similar boat – such as Edwin Hewitt, Peet Marais and Wiehahn Herbst – Downey has opted to continue his career out of the country.

Burger’s Japanese deal will see him return to the Stormers for Super Rugby – my understanding is that Downey’s is a permanent move, in the same vein as those recently concluded by Keegan Daniel and Jean Deysel.

The Sharks now suddenly look rather vulnerable at loose forward, a position in which there has been a serious glut of talent over the last few seasons.


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