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Leicester Tigers set to bolster with 6'5, 110kg former Bok U20 captain

By Alex Shaw
Could Hanro Liebenberg help bring the good times back to Leicester Tigers? (Photo by Johan Rynners/Gallo Images/Getty Images)

Leicester Tigers have been busily recruiting this season in a bid to avoid contesting another relegation battle next season.


Tigers’ 32-31 loss at home to Bath on the final day of the regular season confirmed their spot at 11th in the table, in what has been the club’s worst showing in the professional era.

In an attempt to be competing at the other end of the table in 2019/20, Leicester have already secured the signatures of Jordan Taufua, Tomas Lavanini, Jaco Taute, Noel Reid and Nephi Leatigaga, as well as bringing back former academy graduates Calum Green and Charlie Clare.

The next name set to be added to that list looks to be Bulls loose forward Hanro Liebenberg, with South African newspaper Rapport reporting that he has already signed with the club from the East Midlands.

Liebenberg, 23, captained the South Africa U20 side back in 2015 and was viewed as one of the brightest prospects in the southern hemisphere, let alone South Africa.

His career was slightly derailed later that year, as he suffered a ruptured small intestine during a tackle in a Currie Cup game against Western Province. The injury left Liebenberg hospitalised and there were concerns it could mean a premature end to his career, but two successful operations followed and he was able to make a full recovery.

With pundits regularly suggesting that Tigers have lost some of their physical menace in the forward pack in recent years, the addition of Liebenberg, alongside Taufua and Lavanini, would go a long way to re-instilling that menace of old.


The back rower, who can also cover in the second row if needed, has spent his entire career with the Bulls, although he did spend a short loan stint at Stade Francais earlier this season, linking up with Heyneke Meyer’s side prior to the beginning of Super Rugby.

With Mike Williams, Brendon O’Connor, Will Evans, Michael Fitzgerald, Graham Kitchener and Valentino Mapapalangi all departing Welford Road this summer, the club is currently in the midst of dramatically reshaping its second and back rows.

Watch: The Academy – Part Six

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