HISTORY AND BACKGROUND

The WPRI was launched in 2007 by current CEO, Jacques Hanekom, under then WP Director of Rugby, Nick Mallett, to meet the demands of the modern professional game. This required introducing young rugby players to the rigours of high performance sport at an increasingly younger age. Thus was born the rugby academy which was to rule the roost amongst its other South African counterparts for the next eight years.

With the aim of preparing young school leavers for the routine and workload of the professional game, the WPRI’s main aim is to create a conveyor belt of performance-ready rugby players for Western Province and Stormers rugby. This group of players (all aged 19 years old), along with the WP Rugby Academy, also form the core of the WP u19 side each year. The WP Rugby Academy was launched in 2014 to expand the Province’s base of talent as well as extend the age range of developing players to u21. The Academy has served a massive role in widening the opportunities for aspiring players to break into the Western Province ranks. This was proven by the seven and three players who respectively represented the WP u19 and u21 sides during their first season in existence.

Interestingly enough, winning the WP u19 competition does not form part of the performance outcomes of the annual programme, but rather the collective and individual development of the players’ on-field rugby abilities and lifestyle off the field. This, however, has not stopped the WP u19 team (driven by the power of the WPRI) from winning four out of the last eight u19 national competitions since its 2007 inception. In the same time period (2007 – 2014), no other union has managed to win more than one national competition.

In 2012, the WPRI relocated to the brand new Stellenbosch Academy of Sport, from its previous home in Huis Neethling, formerly a University residence. This move gave the programme a big boost and has really created a sense of elite professionalism.

We strive to prepare our annual group to not only be better rugby players on the field, but to be better people and great citizens off the field. For further information on any of the aspects of the WPRI, please follow the tabs at the top of the page.

THE TEAM BEHIND THE WPRI

Nazeem Adams -
Programme Director and
WP u19 Head Coach

Qualifications / Past Career:
BEd – High School Teacher

Rugby Bio:
Has been with WPRI since inception
Presently SA u20 Assistant Coach
WP Juniors (u18, u19, u20)
Vodacom Cup
Currie Cup (Assistant Coach)

Andri Stander -
Commercial Manager

Qualifications / Past Career:
Hons. Financial Management, PGD Sport Management

Bio:
Joined the WPRI in 2012 as manager responsible for all business related functions of Institute,
Recruitment and Contracting, Whole-Person Development.
Co-ordinator of WPRI's new TRITIME curriculum.
He previously coached the UCT u20A1 Rugby team whilst doing Business Consulting

Johan van Wyk -
Head of Performance and Medical

Qualifications / Past Career:
BSc (Sport Science) – Physiotherapy and Strength & Conditioning

Rugby Bio:
As player represented:
Stormers, Western Province, Sharks, South Africa A, Northampton (UK)
Has been involved with the WPRI since inception
Responsible for SA Sevens Rehabilitation Programme
Recognised as expert in rehabilitation services and results

Chris October -
WP u19 Defence Coach and
WPRI Coach

Qualifications / Past Career:
BSc (Educ) – Physical Science Teacher

Rugby Bio:
Joined the WPRI in 2014 after his involvement with below teams:
Head Coach SA Schools
Coach SA U/16 HP Squad
Head Coach SA Schools & Ass-coach SA U/18 HP Squad
Head Coach WP Craven week Side
Manager SA Schools Side & Craven Week Side

Rito Hlungwani -
WP u19 Forwards Coach and
WPRI Coach

Qualifications / Past Career:
ND (Building) and BTech (Quantity Surveying)

Rugby Bio:
As Player represented:
Western Province Vodacom Cup, WP Currie Cup, Boland (as captain) Vodacom Cup and
Currie Cup

As Coach:
Joined WPRI in 2015 after having coached the WP Disas, Primrose RFC, Villager RFC

Gareth Wright -
WP u19, u21, Vodacom Cup
Kicking Coach and Recruiter

Qualifications / Past Career:
PGD Sport Psychology

Rugby Bio:
As Player represented:
Western Province, Cats and Lions, Griquas, Border and Leeds Carnegie (UK)

As Coach and Recruiter:
Joined the WPRI as junior team recruiter and kicking coach in 2014.
EP Kings until 2013

Hannes Prinsloo -
Conditioning Coach

Qualifications / Past Career:
Lieutenant in SA National Defence Force
Honours (Sport Science)

Bio:
Joined the WPRI at inception as Strength and Conditioning Coach 
U19 Currie Cup Winners 2007, ‘10, ‘12, ’14 (Western Province)

Llewellyn Morkel -
Conditioning Coach

Qualifications / Past Career:
BSc Sports Science Hon.

Bio:
Joined as WPRI Conditioning Coach in 2010

Nadia Clenzos -
Physiotherapist

Qualifications / Past Career:
BSc Physiotherapy (Wits), MPhil Sports Physiotherapy (UCT)

Bio: 
Physiotherapist with special interest in sports.
Joined the WPRI in 2013 after serving as team Physiotherapist at UJ Rugby and the Lions u19 side.
Currently also physiotherapist for WP u19, serving in private practice (Stellenbosch Academy of Sport),
Also involved with various sports teams such as Maties Rugby & SA 7s.