Lions centre Rohan Janse van Rensburg says his team-mates are embracing the challenges ahead of the Super Rugby final against the Hurricanes on Saturday.
The Lions have enjoyed a fairytale Super Rugby season. Having suffered relegation just three years ago, the Johannesburg-based team have worked hard to build a team strong enough to win the overall tournament.
And they will have that opportunity in Wellington this weekend.
After beating the Crusaders and Highlanders at home in the quarter-final and semi-final respectively, they find themselves competing in the tournament decider.
However, it won’t be easy this time round as they had to travel to New Zealand via Sydney for the big game. The team arrived safely on Monday evening (South African time). They also face the a Hurricanes side who have not lost at home this year.
Rohan Janse van Rensburg, who has been in superb form in the No 12 jersey this season, stressed that the players are making no excuses going into the final.
“We were just excited to be in Wellington and train for the final. Everyone in the squad is excited… we just want to enjoy this week and the big occasion on Saturday,” Janse van Rensburg told MyPlayers.
“The wins over the Crusaders and Highlanders were emotional victories for us. All the players were overwhelmed with emotions after beating two great teams. Looking back to the season, we’ve enjoyed a great run, which has humbled us. However, we realise that we still have one more hurdle to go, so we’re fully focused on that challenge.
“We are very honoured to be in the final and we plan to make the most of the experience.”
Janse van Renbsurg, who turns 22 on 11 September, has been praised by pundits and fans for his strong performances this season. There are also calls for him to be included in the Springbok squad for the upcoming Rugby Championship, which will be announced after the Super Rugby final.
Janse van Rensburg said he appreciates the support.
“I owe all the praise to the players around me. It would not be possible without their leadership and guidance,” said Janse van Rensburg. “I’m very humbled by the fact that there are calls for me to be in the Springbok squad. That would definitely be a dream come true.”
By Gareth Duncan