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VIDEO: 'He needs to play' - White expresses concerns over rest period

SPOTLIGHT: Bulls Director of Rugby Jake White has weighed in on the compulsory rest period debate as he expressed some concerns about the development of one of his star players.

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Ahead of his team’s Jukskei derby against the Lions, White was asked for an update on Boks Kurt-Lee Arendse and Canan Moodie, who have both been enjoying a break and are due for a return to action.

The Bulls boss revealed that Kurt-Lee Arendse will be attending a funeral “as he had a family bereavement”.

However, he had a lot to get off his chest when it came to the 21-year-old Moodie.

The story continues below…

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“Canan is a really interesting story. I did a study – from January 20 last year to now, he has played 15 games,” said White.

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“That includes off the bench and starting and for South Africa and the Bulls.

“It makes me think that we are going to have to relook this five-week or eight-week break players get.

“They’ve [SA Rugby} got to try and do it on an individual basis because a guy like him who is 21 needs to play.

“In the last four months, he has played four games of rugby and then he has to take eight weeks off because it is an obligatory SA Rugby rule.

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“He has come back and he is not ready to play. He has been to Bali on holiday and there is no way I can put him on [the field].

“Picking a guy who is not ready is detrimental to everybody and what message does it send out to Sebastian [de Klerk] and Sergeal [Petersen], who have trained and played so well.”

White added: “With him [Moodie] only playing 15 games, and I stress not all of those are as starters and not all 80 minutes, is a minimal amount of rugby for a young guy who is supposed to be developing consistently,

“He came out of a Covid year where he didn’t play, so if you look at the last four years he hasn’t played much rugby and you all think he is going to be one of the superstars?”

‘Time to catch up’

White used a golfing analogy to explain the situation Moodie is in.

“You can be a professional golfer and hit as many balls on the driving range as you want and putt all day on a putting green. However, if you don’t play in tournaments you are not going to get better as a professional golfer.

“We are going to have to relook how this leave works and the merits of individualising it.

“A guy like Canan has been injured many times with his hamstring.

“The last thing I need now is him getting back from a holiday and then putting him on the field and then he is out for another six weeks.

“The feedback you get from the conditioners and the sports scientists is that he needs time to catch up to the other players.”

@rugby365com

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