Rudolph Jacobs
Rugby Journalist
1 minute read
18 Jun 2014
6:00 am

Joy and sadness for Cornal

Rudolph Jacobs

His first cap for South Africa was a mixture of sheer joy and great sadness for new Springbok wing Cornal Hendricks, pictured.

FILE PICTURE: Cornal Hendricks during the South African National rugby team training session at the Western Province High Performance Centre in Bellville on June 02, 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images)

The 26-year-old had already made his debut in the Green and Gold against the World XV at Newlands a week earlier, but had to wait to last weekend’s Test against Wales in Durban to earn his first full cap.

“My grandmother passed away last Thursday, which obviously was very sad for me, but the day itself was a massive occasion, crowned by my first Test try on debut,” Hendricks enthused.

“My mother couldn’t make it, but fortunately my girlfriend was there for support and she is, after all, almost like family.”

Born in Paarl, he made his first provincial steps for Boland, but it wasn’t until he became a star for the Sevens Boks that recognition arrived on his doorstep.

His sublime form for the Cheetahs in this year’s Super Rugby – which included a 75m try against the Stormers in Bloemfontein – ensured that coach Heyneke Meyer couldn’t ignore him.

And being included in the national Sevens side for the Commonwealth Games alongside the likes of Bryan Habana and Schalk Brits, sealed a wonderful year for him.