The Sharks have announce the signing of loosehead prop Kees Lensing from Leeds Tykes. Highly-rated as a strong scrummager and powerful carrier of the ball, Kees will fit perfectly into the Sharks power play - a combination of strength and exceptional ball skills to complement the exciting pattern of play Dick Muir has introduced this season.
He has a three year contract and will be available for the Sharks from this years domestic Absa Currie Cup season, with the contract starting June 1.
With 10 Super caps under his belt for The Bulls, Kees comes with a solid pedigree and is no stranger to local conditions and competition. He played Craven Week for NW Cape in 1995/6 and also represented the Griffons (47 caps) and Eastern Province (30 Caps). He represented Namibia at the Rugby World Cup in 2003, going on to record 10 test match appearances, and moved to the Bulls where he played Currie Cup and Vodacom Cup rugby in 2004 before making his Super 12 debut in 2005.
His move to Leeds Tykes last year at the end of the domestic Currie Cup season was lamented as a big loss to the Bulls. He went on to play alongside South Africans Andre Snyman, Rayno Gerber and Roland de Marigny, but with Leeds being relegated at the end of the domestic season, he has exercised the opt-out release clause in his contract.
Having now signed for the Sharks, the big prop doesn't view them as the old foe. "They are not really the enemy, because I was with EP for two years before I moved to the Bulls so I was here for Super 12 training camps," he explains. "I'm really looking forward to it, and being back in South Africa. The conditions here are much better and I always wanted to play with John and BJ, so here I am!"
He explains that having represented Namibia internationally, he is not eligible to play for the Springboks. "This is the only opportunity I have to play with these guys, I cannot play for the Springboks, and I really wanted to take it," he says.
"The performances of the Sharks this year made the decision so much easier for me," he explains. "There have been some changes and I am looking forward to the move; hopefully, it will suit my rugby and the way I play."