I Newcastle Falcons hanno annunciato l’arrivo di DTH van der Merwe dalla prossima stagione.
Dopo tante speculazioni, è arrivata adesso la conferma ufficiale, con comunicato stampa del club inglese. DTH, 30 anni, lascerà gli Scarlets al termine della stagione in corso per passare in Aviva Premiership, dove – come ha lasciato intendere lui stesso durante l’intervista in esclusiva che abbiamo raccolto al termine della gara giocata a Glasgow – potrebbe chiudere la sua carriera, prima di dedicarsi a quella di vigile del fuoco in Canada.
DTH (il cui nome completo è Daniel Tailliferrer Hauman van der Merwe), che con i Glasgow Warriors ha vinto il titolo di Guinness PRO12 nel 2015 – marcando una meta nella finale di Belfast contro Munster – potrebbe giocare la post-season celtica coi suoi Scarlets (al momento quarti) e quasi sicuramente festeggiare la conquista della qualificazione in Champions Cup.
In un (relativamente) lunga intervista rilasciata al sito ufficiale del club inglese, DTH ha detto di essere “really excited about this move for a number of reasons. I have been watching how the last couple of years have seen Newcastle showing a major improvement, and in particular the brand of rugby they are playing. That’s the kind of attacking play people want to watch, and it’s great as a player to be involved with such a fast-paced game on that 3G pitch.
“I have been catching as many of the Falcons’ games as I can recently, and it’s a really entertaining watch. I know there is huge competition in my own area of the team so I am under no illusions about that, and I can only improve as a player being in that kind of company.
“The pace and flair Newcastle are showing right now is creating a lot of opportunities out wide, and hopefully I can get myself on the end of some of those moves. That’s where I see my role predominantly, but I just want to be a good team player and make a contribution to what seems to be a really positive atmosphere up there right now.”
“It has been outstanding to hear about the direction of the club and when I came up for my visit I was really impressed. Dean Richards is a nice guy to talk to and he has a very clear plan for the Falcons, and all the staff working under him have been extremely helpful in terms of the move. They’re all good people and I think that says a lot about a club.
“I have got a lot of good friends already at the Falcons, so I’ve been given a good idea on what to expect from people like Jon Welsh, Tyrone Holmes and Evan Olmstead. My best friend is actually a Geordie as well, and it has all been positive in terms of the reports coming back about the club and the region.
“I can’t wait to get stuck in. I have been playing in the Pro 12 for eight years now, which has been great, but the chance to move to the Aviva Premiership is something I’ve been keen to try. People always compare the two and everyone will have their viewpoint on it, so it will be nice to judge for myself.”