Ross signs with Saracens
Varsity Cup-winning captain Jonno Ross has taken a major leap forward in his playing career by signing a contract to turn out for English Premiership club Saracens.
Ross, who captained the victorious UP-Tuks side to their title in the Student competition, also led the Blue Bulls Vodacom Cup team in their recent competition.
With growing competition in the Bulls loose forward ranks, the opportunity came up to trial at the English club for two weeks and Ross accepted the challenge with just 24 hours notice.
Since being at the club he has also turned out for their Sevens side in the JP Morgan Sevens and has so impressed the club’s management that they offered him a contract.
The former St Stithians captain will take up the contract immediately and become a permanent part of the Saracens team structures.
The Bulls have now let three loose forwards go in the last month -- with CJ Stander signing for Munster and Daniel Adongo moving to Counties-Manakau.
In a separate move, former Bulls and Lions loose forward Dries van Schalkwyk has signed a two-year deal with new Pro12 Italian club, the Zebras.
Van Schalkwyk, who also played for the Southern Kings against the British and Irish Lions, is expected to make a big impact at the club.
Zebras director of rugby Roberto Manghi said in a statement he expected a lot from the South African.
"Dries is a highly-experienced player, he played Super Rugby, Currie Cup and Vodacom Cup in his career and now, aged 27, he is at his best as a rugby player," he said.
"We're enthusiastic he took the decision to face a new challenge and play European high-level rugby and we are confident he'll have a huge impact on our team both on and off the field, helping our many young players who are now approaching their first season in Rabodirect PRO12 and Heineken Cup, " added Manghi.