Dragons Eye South African Lock Deon Slabbert for Squad Reinforcement

…By Alan Peterson for TDPel Media. In their pursuit of strengthening the pack for the upcoming season, the Dragons are targeting South African lock Deon Slabbert from Currie Cup team Pumas.

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Head coach Dai Flanagan has identified the lock position as a priority following the departure of Will Rowlands to Racing 92.

While there were initial discussions about signing Kobe Steelers lock JD Schickerling, he is considered too expensive for the Welsh club and is likely to join either the Stormers or a French club.

Deon Slabbert, on the other hand, is a more affordable option for the Dragons.

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Although there are other players on their radar, sources indicate that there is a high probability of Slabbert donning the Dragons jersey next season.

The 23-year-old lock has been playing in the Currie Cup and is yet to represent one of South Africa’s United Rugby Championship teams.

The Dragons have been actively scouting the Currie Cup for promising talents to develop. Standing at 6ft 6ins and weighing 117kg, Slabbert is known for his powerful ball-carrying abilities and expertise in the lineout.

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To secure the signing of Slabbert, the Dragons will need approval from the Welsh Rugby Union, which had recently prevented Cardiff from signing Slabbert’s Pumas teammate Thinus de Beer, who plays as an outside-half.

Aside from pursuing Slabbert, the Dragons have been proactive in bolstering their squad.

They have already secured signings in center Corey Baldwin and scrum-half Dane Blacker from the Scarlets, while Dan Lydiate will be returning to Newport from the Ospreys.

Furthermore, negotiations are underway with Welsh playmaker Rhys Patchell, who has been released by the Scarlets.

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However, the Dragons’ ability to meet Patchell’s salary demands is still uncertain.

Meanwhile, Head Coach Dai Flanagan has also approached experienced Wales full-back Leigh Halfpenny for a coaching role at the club next season.

Halfpenny, who is 34 years old, has yet to decide whether he will retire from playing.

As the Dragons focus on strengthening their second-row, Deon Slabbert has emerged as a player of significant interest to the club.

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