Springbok legend Schalk Burger is delighted to be joining the famous Japanese club Suntory Goliath.
Doing so fulfils one of his career ambitions of playing overseas and enjoying a different culture and rugby experience. The two year deal starts in August.
He says he was drawn to Suntory because of their reputation and glowing reports from Suntory players, among them Springbok teammate Fourie du Preez.
“Rugby offers great opportunities to travel and expand your horizons,” said the IRB’s 2004 Player of the Year who has played 68 times for South Africa’s Springboks. “Japan ticks all the boxes: it will be hosting the World Cup in 2019, it has an ambitious rugby programme and it’s an exotic location that will take me out of my comfort zone.
”I’m looking forward to the change and I’m also looking forward to learning new things. I will have my family along too, which will make the transition a lot easier.”
Suntory is one of Japan’s glamour clubs. National coach Eddie Jones used to coach the first XV while others who have worn the black and yellow colours include George Smith, George Gregan and Todd Clever.
Burger won’t be entirely lost to SA rugby as his contract allows for him to turn out for the Stormers during the Super Rugby season.