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David Humphreys chez les stormers ?

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moza de Tlse

Humphreys gets Stormers' offer

Friday January 06 2006

Super 14 side seek back-up

The Stormers, the Cape Town-based Super 14 franchise, are bidding for the services of Ulster and Ireland fly-half David Humphreys.

Stephen Nell of the Cape Times reports that the Stormers have been in touch with Humphreys as a back-up for their young fly-half Peter Grant. The proposal has the approval of the Stormers' board, which suggests that financing the project is not a problem.

Humphreys is 34 years of age and a seasoned veteran of 72 Tests, five as captain, and has been in brilliant form for Ulster whose fortunes he largely controls - a calm player who always seems to have time.

The Stormers' coach, Kobus van der Merwe, said: "There is the possibility of Humphreys taking a sabbatical. Ireland are thinking of saving him for the 2007 World Cup.

"The problem is that he has a contract with Ulster, and there are one or two complications getting him out of that. I'm positive. The talks are still alive."

He added: "We're hoping for the best. I think our chances of getting him are 50-50."

Ulster have a remote chance of qualifying for the knock-out rounds of the Heineken Cup and are currently fourth on the Celtic League, a position under threat as they lost to bottom side Connacht in their last match.

The Stormers have also been in touch with promising young (23) Naas Olivier of the Leopards.

Peter Grant, a tall 21-year-old Stellenbosch student, is the incumbent flyhalf, but the departure of Chris Rossouw for France and Gaffie du Toit for the Free State have left him shorn of back-up.

Van der Merwe said of Grant: "We have lots of confident in Peter. We back him and he's our No.1, but he can't play in every game. If we play him non-stop, he'll break down before the end of the Super 14.

"It also remains to be seen how Humphreys will adapt to Super 14 rugby. The pace and the intensity are very different from what he is used to."

© PlanetRugby.com

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boubagump (FCG)

Réponse du Manager Irlandais sur BBC :

"Ulster rugby chief Michael Reid has dispelled rumours of the pending departure of Ireland fly-half David Humphreys to play in South Africa.

The Times in Cape Town reported that the Stormers were trying to lure the player, and talks were still alive.

"David Humphreys will not be leaving," said Reid, who has been in negotiations with Humphreys to extend his contract which runs out at the end of June.

"The Stormers have not been in touch either officially or unofficially."

Irish coach Eddie O'Sullivan is still very keen to see Humphreys extend his contract until the end of the 2007 World Cup.

source : http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/rugby_unio...ish/4588216.stm

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