Steval Pumas officially sign Janse van Rensburg as head coach – 12th October 2016

Steval Pumas officially sign Janse van Rensburg as head coach


Mpumalanga Rugby PTY LTD is delighted to announce the official appointment of Brent Janse van Rensburg as the head coach of the Steval Pumas, effective from the start of the 2017 rugby season.

After extensive consultation, Janse van Rensburg, who is one of the 2016 nominees for the South African Rugby Union (SARU) Coach of the Year, signed a three-year contract with the Steval Pumas this week. MJ Mentz and Hein Kriek will stay on as assistant coaches to offer their valuable experience and support to Janse van Rensburg.

“We are very excited at the appointment of Janse van Rensburg, who has already proven himself as an excellent head coach at the Boland Cavaliers and in previous positions. He is an experienced and high-quality coach and we are fully confident that, with the assistance of the existing coaching staff, he will add immense value to the provincial side,” said Mpumalanga Rugby CEO Pieter Burger.

Burger added that it is important to invest in the game at provincial level.

Janse van Rensburg started his coaching career at the South African Institute of Rugby. He was subsequently professional coach at Queen’s College, before guiding the Border Craven Week team to eight wins out of nine matches in charge and becoming involved with the Border Currie Cup and Vodacom Cup teams. He has been a successful head coach for Varsity Cup side NMMU Madibaz and the assistant coach for the South African Universities Team.  In 2014, he was appointed as Director of Rugby at the prestigious Grey High School, and then moved to Johannesburg for a brief stint as the Golden Lions high performance coach. In June 2015, he was appointed as head coach for the EP Kings. Janse van Rensburg gained high acclaim for guiding the Boland Cavaliers to the Currie Cup Premier Division as head coach in 2016.

Janse van Rensburg will relocate to Nelspruit with his wife Liesel at the end of this year.

“I’m very excited and extremely thankful for the opportunity to join what is a great union. The Steval Pumas have had good success in the past, and are very competitive, whilst the structures and facilities at the Union are first-class. I look forward to the head coach challenge and working to move the side forward,” Janse van Rensburg said. 


Photo: 1) Pieter Burger CEO Mpumalanga Rugby PTY LTD announces Janse van Rensburg as new Head Coach to Steval Pumas

Photo by: Hennie Homann

Mbombela Stadium all set for SARU Inter Provincial Sevens – 14th October 2016

Mbombela Stadium all set for SARU Inter Provincial Sevens

Mbombela Stadium is set to host what is guaranteed to be a highly entertaining weekend of rugby, as South Africa’s best sevens teams converge again on Nelspruit for the SARU Inter Provincial Sevens Tournament on 21 and 22 October. 

The jam-packed program will see 16 men’s teams and 17 women’s teams from all nine provinces battling it out for their respective titles as top sevens outfit in the country. The teams will be split into four pools in each category, with SARU approving the introduction of a Bowl, Shield, Plate and Cup Final to ensure that more sides are active on both days of the event.    

This is the second year in a row that SARU has selected Mpumalanga Rugby to hold the tournament, with the help of sponsors including SAB, Ingwenyama Conference and Sport Resort, H2O, Heidel Eggs, Eskort and Ruggedwear. As the host union, the Steval Pumas will have three teams competing, namely the Lowveld Pumas, Highveld Pumas and Pumas Women.

The action gets underway on Friday at 10:00, with the main stadium field and the practice fields both hosting matches until 19:00. Saturday will have an action-packed schedule starting at 08:00 and ending with the Men’s Cup Final at 16:20.

Visitors have free entrance to this feast of rugby. To create the festival atmosphere associated with the exciting sevens format, Mpumalanga Rugby will also have a Castle Beer Garden between the two fields of play with music, plus food and drinks for sale. Spectators can stick around for the Currie Cup final directly after the tournament, which will be aired on a big screen.

Competing teams will be well-looked after throughout the weekend, having access to dedicated team areas and a players’ and officials’ area within the Puma’s Restaurant, where hot lunches and fruit tables will be available. Accommodation has been booked for all the teams at either Ingwenyama, Bundu Lodge or Stay Easy for three nights from Thursday to Sunday.

“We are extremely excited to once again host this fantastic tournament. Last year’s event was very successful and we expect that this year will be even better. We look forward to a weekend of exciting, competitive rugby and satisfied spectators,” said Roelof Kotze, Amateur Rugby Manager at Mpumalanga Rugby. 

Steval Pumas start new dawn with Janse van Rensburg – 2nd November 2016

Steval Pumas start new dawn with Janse van Rensburg

Incoming Steval Pumas head coach Brent Janse van Rensburg has already started work with the team on the first phase of pre-season training and the development of the rugby programme at the union.

After a brief break for the Steval Pumas after the 2016 season, Janse van Rensburg says that the immediate focus will be on the development of the environment the union wants to create, and ensuring operational efficiency.

“It has been a busy but rewarding few days. We are currently focusing on ensuring that the necessary infrastructure is in place to allow our rugby programme to function optimally. The medical and conditioning departments are our other focus to ensure that the right steps are taken to produce elite athletes,” said Janse van Rensburg.

Van Rensburg explained that the first phase of pre-season training will be more skills-based than usual, with the further rollout of the coaching programme being implemented in January. He added that he has been incredibly impressed with the infrastructure in place at the Steval Pumas.  

“The administration of the union is exceptional and CEO Pieter Burger has clearly brought his experience from the corporate world. Specialist people have been put in place with a longer-term vision clearly in mind. The facilities are world class and I believe that this union is geared for bigger things to be achieved in future. From a coaching perspective, if we formulate the correct recipe, we can achieve success,” he said.

The squad is likely to be further boosted by the addition of several new players. The union is currently in the process of finalising signings and will communicate these to supporters and the media when everything is confirmed in the coming weeks.

Photo caption: Incoming Steval Pumas head coach Brent Janse van Rensburg has started working with the side at Mbombela Stadium.

Steval Pumas ring seven changes for Kings clash – 28th September 2016

Steval Pumas ring seven changes for Kings clash

Steval Pumas coach MJ Mentz has made seven changes to the starting team which ran out against the Toyota Free State Cheetahs last week, as the men from Mpumalanga look to close their Currie Cup campaign on a high note against the Eastern Province Kings in Port Elizabeth on Friday evening.

Fly half Francois Brummer, who has started every game of this season’s Currie Cup, has been ruled out due to an ankle ligament injury. Playing his last match for the Steval Pumas, Heinrich Steyl moves from fullback to take up the reins from the former Super Rugby player. Devon Williams will slot into his familiar berth at number 15.

Hennie Skorbinksi is also unavailable for selection after undergoing finger surgery, giving the 102kg Leighton van Wyk another starting opportunity at inside centre. Tyler Fisher has been picked ahead of Ruwellyn Isbell at right wing, whilst scrumhalf Emile Temperman has recovered from knee ligament damage to replace Kevin Luiters. Isbell and Luiters will provide backline cover from the bench, along with Deon Helberg.

In the forwards, Jeremy Jordaan gets his first start in the Steval Pumas jersey at left lock, in place of Stephan Greeff. Hugo Kloppers has been named as the lock replacement. Lambert Groenewald is out with bronchitis, to be replaced by Carel Greeff at right flank. Khwezi Mona is being rested with an ankle niggle, with De-Jay Terblanche starting at loose head prop.

After a winless Currie Cup thus far, coach Mentz said that his side are determined to cap off the season with a victory against the bottom-of-the-log Kings. 

“We are extremely hungry for a win and the new guys coming this week realise the importance of getting that win. The Kings have played some good rugby in the first half of every game this season and will be just as hungry as us. Obviously it’s never nice to be involved in a bottom-of-the-log clash but there’s still a lot to play for,” Mentz said.

Steyl is leaving the Steval Pumas to pursue his studies in accountancy. Renaldo Bothma, who has captained the team since the early stages of the season, will also wear the pink jersey for the last time as he takes up a full-time contract with the Blue Bulls.  

“It was a great privilege to have both of these talented rugby players on board and we wish them every success for the future. We hope we can send them off with a win,” Mentz commented.

Kick-off on Friday is at 18:00.



Full back




Right wing




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Left wing




Fly half




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Number eight




Right flanker




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Right lock




Left lock




Tight head prop








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Utility Forward




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Utility back




Steval Pumas bring sewe veranderings aan vir Kings-botsing

Steval Pumas se afrigter, MJ Mentz het sewe veranderings aan die beginspan gemaak wat verlede week teen die Toyota Vrystaat Cheetahs uitgehardloop het. Die manne van Mpumalanga hoop om die Curriebeker-veldtog op ‘n hoë noot af te sluit teen die Oostelike Provinsie-Kings in Port Elizabeth Vrydagaand.

Die losskakel Francois Brummer, wat elke wedstryd van dié seisoen se Curriebeker begin het, is uitgesluit weens 'n enkel-ligament besering. Heinrich Steyl, wat sy laaste wedstryd vir die Steval Pumas speel, beweeg vanaf heelagter om die pligte van losskakel oor te neem. Devon Williams sal inskakel in sy gewone plek op nommer 15.

Hennie Skorbinksi is ook nie beskikbaar nie nadat hy chirurgie aan sy vinger ontvang het. Dit gee Leighton van Wyk 'n geleentheid om as binnesenter op die veld te draf. Tyler Fisher is bo Ruwellyn Isbell gekies op regtervleuel, terwyl die skrumskakel Emile Temperman van knieligament skade herstel het om Kevin Luiters te vervang.

Onder die voorspelers kry Jeremy Jordaan sy eerste kans in die Steval Pumas trui as linker slot in die plek van Stephan Greeff. Hugo Kloppers is aangewys as die slot vervanging. Lambert Groenewald sit uit as gevolg van brongitis en word vervang deur Carel Greeff op die regter flank. Khwezi Mona rus na ‘n enkelbesering, en De-Jay Terblanche draf uit as loskopstut.

Na 'n wenlose Curriebeker tot dusver, het afrigter Mentz gesê dat sy span vasbeslote is om die seisoen af te sluit met 'n oorwinning teen die onder-op-die-leer Kings.

"Ons is uitgehonger vir 'n oorwinning en die nuwe ouens wat vandeesweek inkom besef die belangrikheid daarvan om te wen. Die Kings het goeie rugby gespeel het in die eerste helfte van elke wedstryd dié seisoen en sal net so oorgehaal wees vir oorwinning soos ons. Dit is nooit lekker om betrokke te wees in 'n onder-op-die-lys botsing nie, maar selfs in so ‘n geval is daar nog baie om voor te speel," het Mentz gesê.

Steyl groet die Steval Pumas om rekeningkunde te studeer. Renaldo Bothma, wie kaptein van die span was sedert die middel van die rugbyseisoen, sal ook die pienktrui vir die laaste keer dra. Hy sal by die Blou Bulle aansluit op ‘n voltydse basis.

“Dit was ‘n groot voorreg om beide sulke talentvolle rugbyspelers by die Steval Pumas te hê en ons wens hul alle sukses toe met hul toekomende loopbane. Ons hoop om hul af te sien met ‘n oorwinning oor die Kings,” het Mentz gesê.

Die wedstryd skop af op Vrydag om 18:00.



  • Renaldo Bothma makes his last appearance in the Pumas jersey this Friday in PE. Next year he joins The Vodacom Blue Bulls
  • Heinrich Steyl makes his last appearance in the Pumas jersey this weekend as he pursues his studies and a career in accountancy


Photo: Photo – Andre Meintjes