Sports Reporter
2 minute read
3 Dec 2021
1:36 pm

Former Bok assistant Gert Smal joins Bulls coaching staff

Sports Reporter

The former Springbok player will take charge of the Currie Cup team.

Former Western Province Director of Rugby and Springbok assistant coach Gert Smal has joined the Bulls. Picture: Shaun Roy/Gallo Images

Former Springbok World Cup-winning assistant coach Gert Smal has joined the Bulls as the union’s new Currie Cup head coach.

With the Tshwane-based side expected to participate in both the United Rugby Championship and the Currie Cup, which are set to overlap in the new year, the Bulls said it was imperative that they go into their title-defence campaign under the guidance of a seasoned coach.

Bulls director of rugby, Jake White, said: “We are excited to have a coach of Gert Smal’s calibre joining our ranks as the head coach of the Bulls’ Currie Cup team.

“The competition remains the premier domestic competition. It has, therefore, been important for us to bring in somebody with vast coaching experience and an understanding of the game to complement the vision of this union.

“We are focused and working hard on ensuring that our Currie Cup campaign and planning is on track. We have now won it twice in a row, and we have won the most out of any union. So, we take it very seriously.

“We are working hard that whatever date we are given for it to start, or whatever other competition we’re in, we take it very seriously. We’re not going to allow the chance to win three Currie Cups in a row to be taken for granted.”

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Smal further held the role of assistant coach for Ireland from 2008 until 2013 before assuming a position as director of rugby at Western Province. Most recently, he has been coaching at Japanese club, Toyota Verblitz as forwards coach.

Smal was also head coach White’s assistant, along with Allister Coetzee, when the Boks won the World Cup in 2007.

“It is an honour for me to be given this opportunity to coach at one of the top unions in South Africa and also in a competition of such prestige as the Currie Cup,” said Smal.

“The Bulls are in a good space at the moment as the winners of the Currie Cup for two seasons in a row. Our aim will be to continue flying the union’s flag high and cementing our position as the most competitive side in South African rugby. I look forward to the journey ahead with this ambitious side.”