Griffons' nine eyeing title as top points scorer in Currie Cup
NEWS: Jaywinn Juries is the second highest points scorer in the Currie Cup but plays for the team destined for the wooden spoon this season that has only won a single game in twelve rounds of the competition thus far.
That is no mean feat for the 24-year-old Griffons scrumhalf, who also made his Currie Cup debut this year.
Juries is just one point behind Tinus de Beer of the Pumas on the Currie Cup list of points scorers with 93 points, while he tops the list of conversion goals with 18 this season.
The prolific points scorer is a born and bred Griffon having represented them from Under 16 level. In 2014 he always wore the purple jersey at the Under 18 Craven Week and acted as vice-captain. In the same year he also represented the Griffons in the Under 19 First Division leading the team as captain.
Kicking runs in the Juries family with his grandfather, legendary Jack Juries, who played eighth man for the Proteas and also acted as the goal kicker.
Jack boasts an impressive record, having represented the Proteas against England (1971), Rhodesia, the Netherlands (in Amsterdam), Ponsonby of New Zealand (1973), France (1975), the All Blacks (1976), the British Lions (1974) and a touring side from Llanelli (Wales) in 1976. Juries played 27 ‘Tests’ against the Leopards (Sara) and donned the captain’s armband against, among others, England, France and the All Blacks (1976).
He played his last match for the Proteas in 1978, but continued to play for South Western Districts and his beloved Good Hope for many years. In fact, his natural fitness led him to retire from club rugby only at the ripe old age of 47.
It is no surprise that the Griffons number nine doesn’t have to think twice when asked who his role model is. “That answer is easy. My grandfather was a great player and I definitely inherited my goal kicking abilities from him.”
The young Juries says he works very hard at his kicking game. “That is the part of my game that I put the most work into. I also play golf and it helps with the consistency of my game. And when I miss a kick at goal, I know exactly why it happened.
“I try the same with golf. So to play golf and practice my kicks every day benefits the team because it helps me score points, so I pay a lot of attention to it,” Juries explains.
Asked who has played a role in his life as a rugby player, he doesn’t hesitate. “My current coaches, Denzel Frans and Wynand Pienaar, play a huge role in my career. The guidance I get from them is invaluable.
“My uncle, Jacques, is the current Griffons coach and he also played a massive role in my development as a player.”
Juries is truly blessed with sterling rugby blood that runs through his veins. Another uncle is Fabian Juries, who not only achieved great success in the green and gold of the Blitzboks, he also turned out for six out of the 14 provincial unions in South Africa. He is currently the coach of the national team of Kazakhstan.
Juries says for the Griffons it is a big challenge and an honour to play against the bigger names in the Currie Cup. “It is a huge challenge, but I think we have prepared for it and we thoroughly understand what it takes.
“We adapt and learn as we go. It is a wonderful challenge to play there and we love every minute of it. We know they are only human and we also want to show that we can play at that level.
“Ideally I would love to play in the United Rugby Challenge one day. And like every little kid in this country I dream of playing for the Springboks one day.”
The Griffons face the Bulls at Loftus on Friday.