Dylan Richardson (Gallo Images)
- Sharks coach Sean Everitt admitted that versatile forward Dylan Richardson has been eyed by Scotland for four years.
- The 22-year-old Kearsney College product was called up into a 36-man squad by their coach Gregor Townsend.
- Richardson qualifies to play for Scotland through his father, who was born in Edinburgh.
Sharks coach Sean Everitt admitted Dylan Richardson being called up to the Scottish national rugby team was always on the cards after the union had courted him three years ago for the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
Richardson, whose middle name is Thor (Duane Vermeulen’s nickname), qualifies for Scotland through his father, who was born in the country’s capital of Edinburgh.
Everitt, whose team is facing the Cardiff Blues on Saturday evening, said the union has been following his progression for four years.
Richardson, who was educated at Kearsney College in Botha’s Hill, played in both of the Sharks’ games against the British & Irish Lions.
That meant Scotland coach Gregor Townsend, who was the attack coach for the tourists, would have seen what he needed from the versatile forward.
“It’s a massive win for us. We hate losing players to opposition countries. It’s a good career path for Dylan, but it is also a sad day for South African rugby when you lose a quality player at a young age,” Everitt said.
“It’s a path that he’s chosen and we wish him all the best. We’ll certainly support him in his role. The Scottish Rugby Union has been watching Dylan and his progression for the past four years.
“They did approach him in 2018 to play in the World Cup for Scotland, so the writing was always on the cards.
“We support him in his quest to play international rugby and we hope that he gets to represent Scotland because him bringing that experience will be a massive benefit to the team.”
Everitt has also retained faith in Boeta Chamberlain at flyhalf while Curwin Bosch slots back into the team at fullback.
Everitt said Chamberlain was starting to come good on the potential he showed at age-group rugby level.
“He fills a bigger hole as far as the depth issue is concerned. I coached Boeta back in 2018, so I know what his skill set and potential is,” Everitt said.
“He didn’t get much game time in his Under-21 year due to injury, but he’s come back well and this tour was a great opportunity for him to be doing what he’s doing now.
“He was a big contributor to the team’s success against the Ospreys.”
The Sharks will also have to be without nippy winger Thaakir Abrahams with what Everitt said was a significant injury.
Abrahams came off early in last week’s surprise 27-13 win over the Ospreys.
“It’s a significant injury. He’s returned home and he’s going to have scans and he’ll see an orthopaedic surgeon,” Everitt said.
Saturday’s clash kicks off at 20:35 (SA time).
15 Curwin Bosch, 14 Marnus Potgieter, 13 Jeremy Ward, 12 Murray Koster, 11 Anthony Volmink, 10 Boeta Chamberlain, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Phepsi Buthelezi (captain), 7 Henco Venter, 6 Dylan Richardson, 5 Hyron Andrews, 4 Ruben van Heerden, 3 Thomas du Toit, 2 Kerron van Vuuren, 1 Ntuthuko Mchunu
Substitutes: 16 Dan Jooste, 17 Khwezi Mona, 18 Wiehahn Herbst, 19 Reniel Hugo, 20 Gerbrandt Grobler, 21 James Venter, 22 Tian Meyer, 23 Werner Kok