Marcel Van Der Merwe still has some in his engine for his 3rd Top 14 stint
Published on Thursday, July 28, 2022 at 06:00
Between injuries and selections, your squad has to adapt to all the issues that will arise during the season. When you have internationals in the same position, you need to have a third element with experience to be able to take on the starting role. Brive hopes to have found his man in the person of Marcel Van Der Merwe.
Introduction and background of the player
Marcel Van Der Merwe
Born on 24 October 1990 in Welkom
2011-2012 cheetahs (3 Super Rugby matches, 22 Currie Cup matches and 9 Tests, 12 Vodacom Cup matches and 8 Tests)
2013-2016 bulls (45 Super Rugby matches and 5 tries, 20 Currie Cup matches and 1 try)
2016-2020 Toulon (79 first 14 games and 5 tries, 18 Champions Cup games, 1 Challenge Cup game and 2 tries)
2020-2021 bulls (3 games in Super Rugby Unlocked, 3 games in Currie Cup)
2021 La Rochelle (2 matches in the Top 14)
2021-2022 London Irish (19 Premiership games3 Challenge Cup matches, 4 Rugby Cup matches)
Marcel Van Der Merwe: Staying at the top for another return to France
South Africa is one of the strongholds of rugby and the players tend to be a certain size! Marcel Van Der Merwe is from the central highlands of the country, Welkom to be precise. Like many children, he discovered rugby by following friends. While for many, it will remain a passion, he will turn it into a job. The course is not easy and requires sacrifices though in 2011 the hard work paid off with a Vodacom Cup debut for the Bloemfontein Cheetahs. After the Vodacom Cup, it will be the Currie Cup. The young mainstay’s performances opened the door to Super Rugby in 2012. In 2013, Van Der Merwe switched divisions, joining the Blue Bulls. The competition is there but the right mainstay has found a place in a franchise looking to regain its luster. Despite some injuries, his level remains intact and The door opens for the Springboks in 2014 on the summer tour of Scotland. He will also participate in the Rugby Championship in 2014 and 2015. The summer of 2016 is the departure for Europe. His first experience in Europe was in Toulon. The South African international does not slow down and has established himself as one of the best straight pillars in the championship. With him, RCT will reach the final of the Top 14 against Clermont but will lose this final by 22-16 (Van Der Merwe holds the half and the final). The following seasons, Van Der Merwe still keeps his place but the final results of the RCT are more difficult. In the 2019/20 season, Marcel Van Der Merwe suffered from an ankle sprain from the start of the season and underwent surgery in January, a few weeks before the start of the pandemic. Then the pillar returns to the country but is in the trough of the wave and struggles to find his place in the Bulls. His body hurts him. After recovering, he returned to France briefly as a medical joker in La Rochelle. After another return to the country, try the English experience this time, at the London Irish, for the 2021/2022 season. And things are looking much better for the South African who is regaining playing time and confidence. This great experience will only last one season because a new French stage awaits him near Brive. Advertised near Bayonne, it is finally at the CAB where Marcel Van Der Merwe will bring his high-level experience to the young players but not only.
Our opinion on Marcel Van Der Merwe
Between the departures of Soso Bekoshvili and Cody Thomas and the selections of Pietro Ceccarelli and Luka Japaridze, Brive had to recruit a high profile for this right back position, somewhat in the profile of Motu Matu’u. Marcel Van Der Merwe ticks all the boxes, while being a very good rugby player, both in the game and in the tackle.. If he had some difficult seasons with injuries, last season he showed that he still had it in him. Brive shouldn’t have recruited the RCT version of Marcel Van Der Merwe, but if it’s the London Irish version, that’ll be fine. With three very good players in this position, there’s no need to wear them down (and therefore hurt them), The rotation can be smart and efficient to get the best out of Marcel Van Der Merwe and his teammates.
You can find his file in the CABCL player list