Premium Journalist
2 minute read
4 Jan 2016
11:56 am

Toulon and Saracens interested in signing Bok Koch


Stormers tighthead prop Vincent Koch is a wanted man – with two European clubs interested in securing his services.

FILE PICTURE: Vincent Koch during the Absa Currie Cup promotion and relegation match between Steval Pumas and GWK Griquas. Picture: Manus van Dyk/Gallo Images

But it seems as though Koch’s friendship with former Stormers teammate, Duane Vermeulen, currently playing his rugby for Toulon, could make his decision to continue his career in France a little easier.

The other club interested in the man who was omitted from the Springbok World Cup squad are Saracens.

Koch’s future plans are currently up in the air, but the 25-year-old is expected to play for the Stormers scrum again in this year’s Super Rugby tournament even though it is believed he has not been offered an increase on last year’s salary.

However, his Currie Cup team, the Pumas, are not expected to top his planned move overseas.

Koch is not the only South African being pursued. Toulon, who have not found a suitable successor for All Black Carl Hayman and Italian Martin Castrogiavanni, are also after Marcel van der Merwe – another Bok tighthead who missed out on the World Cup.

Unlike Frans Malherbe and Trevor Nyakane, Van der Merwe and Koch are apparently not among the 20 players who were offered joint contracts with their unions and SARU. They would join several South African props who now play their trade overseas.

Steven Kitshoff recently joined Bordeaux Bègles. Jannie du Plessis’s recent move to Montpellier is seemingly keeping Pat Cilliers keep out of the starting lineup, hence Saracens (where longtime friend of Cilliers, Michael Rhodes, is playing at the moment) will be keeping an eye on that.

Others include Ross Geldenhuys (Highlanders), CJ van der Linde (Montpellier), Schalk van der Merwe (Montpellier), Wiehahn Herbst (Ulster), Heinke van der Merwe (Stade Français) Francois van Wyk (Western Force), Ruan Smith (Brumbies), BJ Botha (Munster), Gurthro Steenkamp (Toulouse), Rossouw de Klerk (Grenoble), Bees Roux (Montpellier) and Brian Mujati (Sale Sharks).

JC Janse van Rensburg (Bayonne) and JP Smith (Brumbies) are two props that have moved in the other direction and will definitely add depth to the Cape Town pack.

Jacobie Adriaanse is another who is returning home, hooking up with the Kings after recently playing for the Scarlets and Montpellier.

– African News Agency (ANA)