Namibian players sign for Yorkshire Carnegie
Not all is lost after the Rugby World Cup as doors have opened in England for centre Darryl de la Harpe and flank Prince !Gaoseb.
11 February 2020 | Sports
The two were part of the Namibian 2019 Rugby World Cup squad led by former head coach Phil Davies.
Davies, who is the director of rugby at Yorkshire Carnegie, signed the players to the club –
currently at the bottom of the log – in the hopes that they will use their experience to aid the quest to win a match or two.
“Darryl's a centre who has been to the last three World Cups with Namibia and someone I've coached for the last four years. He's got 50 caps, experience, is a good ball-player, a very good communicator and he'll hopefully get us over the game line a bit.
“Prince has been in the Blue Bulls academy over the last couple of years and he was at the last World Cup as a 21-year-old. He is good over the ball and will bring a lot to our game.
“It's great to have them on board and they've both had that recent experience of playing at the World Cup in Japan, which is great for us,” said Davies.
He added they have been lacking depth in their backline in particular and that it is great to have the 33-year-old De La Harpe and !Gaoseb on board. “They've trained well – as have all the boys – and we've begun to build on what was there before.”
Davies has been in charge for close to four weeks and though that first win still eludes them, he remains confident that the squad is improving.
His side lost 62-10 to Nottingham, illustrating just how far they still are from top form.
But Davies said that they've had time to reshape a few things and the effort is there from the players.
“With good coaching, we've managed to change the game plan a bit and we've got a lot of enthusiasm. We've just lacked some experience, so that's where the Namibian boys help.
“We're looking at performances and where we can improve. For example, possession statistics are going up – we are able to keep the ball for longer periods now and we're doing a lot of work on our defence and phase play. Now we're looking at our defence at set-pieces as we were badly exposed at Nottingham in that area.”
The side was scheduled to play last Sunday, with De La Harpe and !Gaoseb drafted to play in the first 15, but the match was postponed to a later date due to Storm Ciara.
It was reported that prop Andre Rademeyer has also joined the team. Efforts to reach Davies regarding this third signing went unanswered.
Yorkshire Carnegie played in the RFU Championship. The championship, also known as the Greene King IPA Championship from 2013 to 2014, is the second tier of the English rugby union league system and was founded in September 1987.
–Additional reporting by the Yorkshire Post