Lions fly-half Marnitz Boshoff has agreed to leave Johannesburg and play for Irish province Connacht on a two year deal.
The twenty-seven-year-old from Nelspruit, South Africa was capped for the Springboks in their mid-year test against Scotland in June 2014.
Boshoff made his Super Rugby debut in in a man-of-the-match performance in the opening round of the 2014 season, scoring all the Lions’ points – including a last-minute drop goal – to help them beat the Cheetahs 21-20 in Bloemfontein. He now has 29 super rugby caps and 214 points to his name.
He was selected to represent the Barbarians in their November 2014 tour of England. Coming on as a replacement, the young outhalf scored a try in the 36 – 40 defeat to Australia XV at Twickenham.
Boshoff has played for the Golden Lions since 2013, scoring 465 points in 25 games for the current champions. Over last year’s campaign, he had a 94% goal kicking average and kicked eight from eight in the semi-final and a further 12 points in the final win over Western Province to take the title.
Commenting on the new recruit, Connacht CEO Willie Ruane said, “Marnitz comes to Connacht with a lot of big match experience and we’re excited about what he can bring to the squad for next season.”
Head coach Pat Lam added, “In the context of where we are and where we are planning to be, Marnitz is an important signing for our squad. A lot of time and research went into identifying the right, experienced outhalf to fit the profile we were after.
“Marnitz is not only a proven and reliable goal kicker with an outstanding kicking game, but his game management has seen the rise of the Lions in Super Rugby over the last three seasons as well as him leading the Golden Lions to Currie Cup success.
“His experience will be invaluable to our young backline and we’re looking forward to welcoming him and his wife Monique to the West of Ireland.”
“I’m really excited about the move to Connacht Rugby and Galway. From speaking to Pat (Lam), I have a good understanding of what the club is about and it’s clear that there is a huge amount of passion and ambition there in terms of where they want to go.
“I’ve watched a lot of the Connacht games this season. The rugby they are playing is really exciting and I believe that I can fit in to the structure and add something as well. I can’t wait to get stuck in.
“It’s a big move for myself and my wife Monique but we’re really looking forward to meeting everyone and settling into life in Ireland.”