MARNUS VAN DER MERWE
Born and raised in Mpumalanga, Marnus van der Merwe first represented his province at the U13 Craven Week of 2010. Choosing to enrol at Hoërskool Nelspruit, Marnus once again earned selection for the Pumas at the U18 Craven Week of 2014, repeating the feat in the following year. By 2015, van der Merwe had made such an impression on the national stage that he earned selection for the South African Schools U18 ‘A’ team that took on England, Italy & Wales, enjoying widespread plaudits as a dependable lineout thrower in testing conditions. With numerous provincial options presented to him, Marnus decided to further his career in Bloemfontein and summarily signed a junior contract with the Free State Cheetahs.
A large, physically imposing hooker, he received a senior professional debut in the 2017 Supersport Rugby Challenge at just 20-years-old. Despite his considerable frame, van der Merwe provides able assistance to the back row and can often be found over the ball at the breakdown, unmoved in his resolve to win a turnover. By the age of 21, Marnus was staking a claim for a starting berth in the Cheetahs Guinness Pro 14 team, and aside from his destructive ball-carrying ability and ruthless defence around the fringes, van der Merwe also enjoys an enviable Currie Cup try-scoring record of five touchdowns in eight appearances.
DOB: 17 February 1997
Current Team: Free State Cheetahs
2017 - 2021
Free State Cheetahs (Currie Cup)
2018 - 2020
Toyota Cheetahs (Guinness Pro 14, Super Rugby SA)
2017 - 2019
Free State XV (Supersport Rugby Challenge)
2016 - 2018
Free State Cheetahs (U19 Currie Cup, U21 Currie Cup)
2014 - 2015
Mpumalanga Pumas (U18 Craven Week), South Africa (U18 Schools ‘A’)