Malaysian Valke set for 1st GRR game
The Malaysian Valke are ready to be unveiled in tonights Global Rapid Rugby union game in Perth, Australia at the home of the Western Force.
The rugby fixture was a surprise late addition to the 2019 calendar, announced last month. The match is also a timely event as the Wallabies host the All Blacks from New Zealand on Saturday in the same city in the first of their 2019 Bledisloe Series.
Who are the Malaysian Valke?
The Malaysian Valke are heavily backed by the South African Currie Cup side the Falcons, who are unbeaten in their 2019 Currie Cup campaign. The GRR website said, “The Valke side has a strong South African flavour but also includes two Malaysian players as part of the first steps in a proactive partnership between the Falcons and Malaysia Rugby Union to develop and grow the game.
“We felt we had something to offer emerging rugby nations and our approach to Malaysia to form a mutually beneficial partnership was warmly received.
We have enjoyed a very positive relationship and have ambitious goals around the development of a team that can compete strongly in Rapid Rugby as well as continue to develop the game in Malaysia to the point they qualify for the Rugby World Cup” said Joubert.
Which Malaysian players are involved?
The Malaysian Rugby Union have been also commenting on their excitement in having two national team player included in the squad. The two players; Samuel Meran and Badrul Bin Muktee arrived in Perth only on Wednesday, 48 hours prior to the game.
Both players will start on the bench for the Valke. In addition, the Malaysian national team manager will also be part of the match build-up and involved with game day activities.
Rudy Joubert is the Valke’s Director of Rugby and he has an impressive background. Joubert was the former Head Coach of Namibia at the 1999 Rugby World Cup, the Springbok (South Africa’s) Technical Adviser at the 1995 RWC and a former coach Cardiff and the Super rugby Blue Bulls.
The Malaysian Valke Head Coach, JP Immelman, also said: “Over the past five years we have been one of the few South African teams that has been trying to really play a more open and expanded type of running rugby game and I think that suits Rapid Rugby.”
We will have to wait and see in 2020 when the full Global Rapid season should commence, exactly how many more Malaysian players will have an opportunity to play with the Valke.
Malaysia Valke Team
STARTING XV: 1.Juice GUMEDE, 2.Robey LEIBRANDT, 3.Heinrich ROELFSE, 4.Shane KIRKWOOD (C), 5.Jacques ALBERTS, 6.Thabo MABUZA, 7.Boela VENTER, 8.Friedle OLIVIER, 9.Anrich RICHTER, 10.Errol JAGGERS, 11.Leighton VAN WYK, 12.Grant JANKE, 13.Andrew VAN WYK, 14.Koert CRONJE, 15.Juan NEL
RESERVES: 16.Marco KLOPPER, 17.Luxolo KOZA, 18.Martin SITHOLE, 19.Wihan JACOBS, 20.Johan PRETORIUS, 21.Lundi RALARALA, 22.Rodney DAMONS, 23.Samuel MERAN, 24.Badrul Bin MUKTEE, 25.Franzwa SCHUTTE
The Western Force finished the 2019 GRR Showcase Series as champions of both the Asia and Pacific series as well as beating a World 15s team.
Western Force Team
STARTING XV: 1.Cameron ORR, 2. Feleti KAITU’U, 3. Tom SHEMINANT, 4. Jeremy THRUSH (C), 5. Fergus LEE-WARNER, 6. Tevin FERRIS, 7.Carlo TIZZANO, 8. Brynard STANDER, 9. Issak FINES, 10. Andrew DEEGAN, 11. Rod DAVIES, 12. Rodney IONA, 13. Nick JOOSTE, 14. Jonah PLACID, 15. Jack MCGREGOR.
RESERVES: 16. Heath TESSMANN, 17. Harrison LLOYD, 18. Chris HEIBERG, 19. Ben GRANT, 20. Jackson PUGH, 21. Ian PRIOR, 22. Chris MILLER, 23. Leon FEKE, 24. Haluafa LAVAKA, 25. Ollie CALLAN, 26. Dom HARDMAN.
- Venue: HBF Park, Perth, Australia
- Date: Friday, 9 August 2019 (Kick-off 6.30pm)
You can read our summarised views of the GRR 2019 Series here.