Rugby Union: Four to follow on the international stage in the coming weeks

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The Independent Online
SOUTH AFRICA

THEO VAN RENSBURG

(Transvaal)

UNQUESTIONABLY the Springbok to watch. One of the few who quickly picked up the pace of international rugby, Van Rensburg, 25, is fearless under the high ball - an indispensable full-back's quality with the new laws encouraging so much kicking - and incisive when coming into the three-quarter line.

DANIE GERBER

(Western Province)

HIS lightning strikes are now a memory, but even at 34 Gerber is hardly slow, the centre's ability to break and his defensive solidity undiminished by the years. His influence on the confidence of those around him, a product partly of his physical presence and partly of long experience, will be critical.

AUSTRALIA

PAUL CAROZZA

(Queensland)

HE may be no Campese, though both wings share Italian ancestry, but Carozza, 26, has lately had as impressive a strike rate through opportunism and utilising his more limited resources to the full. In other words, he sets an example of the virtues of hard work and deserves to succeed on his first European tour.

AUSTRALIA

PETER SLATTERY

(Queensland)

THERE could be no harder act to follow than the retired Nick Farr-Jones but Slattery, 27, has spent three years understudying the great scrum-half, picking up half-a-dozen caps. He may lack his predecessor's extraordinary tactical vision but there is no sharper operator around the base of scrum.

(Photographs omitted)

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