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Veteran All Black set to replace Vermeulen at Toulon

By RugbyPass

Reports emerging this morning from France suggest that Toulon could be about to lose a number of key players, including powerful backrower Duane Vermeulen.

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However, the French giants have already got a replacement in their sights with New Zealand flanker Jerome Kaino in talks to join the club from the Auckland Blues – according to French rugby outlet Rugbyrama.

With the new salary cap in place in the Top14, Toulon look set to announce the departure of Vermeulen along with Ma’a Nonu and Marcel Van der Merwe.

It is believed that Vermeulen’s Springboks ambitions are also playing a large role in his departure, and it is believed he will rejoin the Stormers on a dual contract with South Africa Rugby. He has also been tipped to lead the Springboks under Rassie Erasmus.

Toulon are believed to be close to finalising a deal for Jerome Kaino with parties having reportedly agreed general terms and could complete the transfer in the coming weeks.

Kaino’s starting position with his native All Blacks has been under pressure with Liam Squire and Vaea Fifita putting in some big performances while the 81 Test cap All Black was absent in recent times.

The 34-year-old moved to Auckland from American Samoa with his family when he was a child and played league before switching to rugby while at Papakura High School. After playing at centre and fullback as a teenager, Kaino developed into one of New Zealand’s most promising young loose forwards.

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He has been capped 81 times for the All Blacks.

He will replace Vermeulen, who was recently called into the Springbok squad, having not played for his national side since June last year.

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Shaylen 7 hours ago
Ireland and South Africa share the same player development dilemma

These guys will be utility players Nick it cannot be helped because coaches cannot help themselves. Rassie looks at players like these and sees the ability to cover multiple positions without losing much. It allows the 6-2 or 7-1. He wont change his coaching style or strategy for one player. At provincial level players like these are indispensable. If there is an injury to your starting 12 but your back up 12 is a bit iffy then a coach is going to go with the back up 10 who is gold and who can play a good 12. Damian Willemse for the Springboks is an obvious case, for the Stormers its the same. Dobson plays him at 12 or 15, with Gelant in the team he plays 12 but if Gelant goes down he doesnt go for his back up 15, he just puts Willemse there. With Frawley its the same at international and provincial level. He just slots in wherever. Frans Steyn made a career out of it. He was much maligned though as a youngster as he never fully developed into any role. He then went to Japan and France to decide for himself what kind of player he was, put on muscle and retained his big boot, ran over players and booted the ball long and came back into the Springboks after about 3 years away and was then certain about how he wanted to play the game no matter what position. Coaches cannot help themselves because they only want what is best for their teams and that means putting your most talented players on even if it means you cause them some discomfort. Sometimes players need to decide how they want to play the game and then adapt that to every position and let the coach decide how they want to use them.

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