The Emirates Lions have snapped up Springbok legend Morne Steyn as their kicking coach for the coming season.
Steyn, who has the unique honour of having sunk a penalty to beat two British and Irish Lions teams and win the series for the Springboks, retired a few months ago to concentrate on his kicking school.
The team announced the appointment in a release on Monday.
“Capped 68 times for Springboks and amassing over 700 test points, the recently retired place-kicker will assume the role as the Johannesburg team’s kicking consultant, working closely with the franchise’s ball strikers,” the release stated.
Speaking on his appointment, Steyn expressed his eagerness to join the franchise and to get going.
“I’m incredibly excited to get stuck in with the Emirates Lions.”
“They are a team with exciting talent and astute professionalism both from a players and coaching perspective, with the potential of achieving great things in the future.”
“I’m particularly looking forward to working closely with the kickers in the squad, and my aim is to make a difference to the team’s kicking strategy. The Lions are extremely fortunate to have great ball strikers; guys like Jordan (Hendrikse), Quan (Horn), and Sanele (Nohamba) are all brilliant kickers, so I’m excited to work with them closely.”
With the upcoming Vodacom United Rugby Championship just under two months away, Lions boss Rudolf Straeuli expressed his delight with the appointment.
“There’s no doubt that Morne was one of the best kickers in world rugby and to have him share his knowledge and experience with our group is huge for us.”
“Tactical and goal-kicking forms a major part of competitive rugby, especially in Europe where conditions are often testing and rely heavily on out-of-hand kicking. To have the caliber of Morne advise and guide our kickers will no doubt influence and enhance our game strategy,” Straeuli added.