JP Pietersen

Last updated

JP Pietersen
JP Pietersen.jpg
Full nameJon-Paul Roger Pietersen
Date of birth (1986-07-12) 12 July 1986 (age 32)
Place of birth Stellenbosch, Western Cape, South Africa
Height1.90 m (6 ft 3 in)
Weight106 kg (234 lb; 16 st 10 lb)
SchoolHoërskool Generaal Hertzog. Witbank
Notable relative(s) Dusty Noble, Howard Noble (cousins)
Rugby union career
Position(s) Wing / Centre / Fullback
Current team Sharks (Currie Cup)
Senior career
2005–2012 Sharks (Currie Cup) 42 (85)
2006–2016 Sharks 137 (195)
2013–2016 Panasonic Wild Knights 25 (70)
2016–2017 Leicester Tigers 15 (15)
2017–2019 Toulon 38 (45)
Correct as of 4 February 2018
National team(s)
2006–2016 South Africa (tests) 70 (120)
2006–2016 South Africa (tour) [lower-alpha 1] 2 (0)
2014–2015 Springboks [lower-alpha 1] 2 (0)
Correct as of 4 February 2018

Jon-Paul Roger "JP" Pietersen (born 12 July 1986 in Stellenbosch, South Africa) is a South African rugby union player for the Sharks in the Currie Cup. He generally plays fullback or wing. He played in 69 tests for the Springboks.

Stellenbosch Place in Western Cape, South Africa

Stellenbosch is a town in the Western Cape province of South Africa, situated about 50 kilometres east of Cape Town, along the banks of the Eerste River at the foot of the Stellenbosch Mountain. It is the second oldest European settlement in the province, after Cape Town. The town became known as the City of Oaks or Eikestad in Afrikaans and Dutch due to the large number of oak trees that were planted by its founder, Simon van der Stel, to grace the streets and homesteads.

Rugby union Team sport, code of rugby football

Rugby union, widely known simply as rugby, is a contact team sport which originated in England in the first half of the 19th century. One of the two codes of rugby football, it is based on running with the ball in hand. In its most common form, a game is between two teams of 15 players using an oval-shaped ball on a rectangular field with H-shaped goalposts at each end.

Sharks (Currie Cup) rugby union team

The Sharks are a South African rugby union team that participates in the annual Currie Cup tournament. The Sharks' home stadium is Kings Park Stadium. They draw most of their players from the KwaZulu-Natal Province. The Sharks are the current representative team of the Natal Rugby Union, founded in 1890. The team is the fourth most successful provincial union in the country, having won the Currie Cup title eight times.


Youth and early career

Pietersen was educated at the Hoërskool Generaal Hertzog in Witbank, but made his provincial debut with the Sharks as a 19-year-old during the 2005 Currie Cup season. His 2006 Super 14 season was disrupted by injuries but despite this, he was included in the South African under-21 team to compete at the 2006 Under 21 Rugby World Championship. South Africa made the final, but were defeated by the hosts, France.

Witbank Place in Mpumalanga, South Africa

Witbank, renamed eMalahleni in 2006, is a city situated on the Highveld of Mpumalanga, South Africa, within the eMalahleni Local Municipality. The name Witbank is Afrikaans for "white ridge", and is named after a white sandstone outcrop where wagon transport drivers rested. The city is known for the coal-mining in the surrounding region.

The 2005 Currie Cup was the 67th season in the South African Currie Cup competition since it started in 1889.

The 2006 Super 14 season started on Friday 10 February 2006. The Grand Final was held on Saturday 27 May 2006. Super 14 is a provincial rugby union competition with 14 teams from New Zealand, Australia and South Africa. This season was the first of the expansion, which saw two new teams, the Western Force and the Cheetahs, join the Super 12/14. The addition of two new teams led to the name change from the Super 12. It was also the first year for a new Super 14 trophy.

International career

Upon arriving back to South Africa after the under-21 World Championship he was named in the Springboks' 2006 Tri Nations Series squad where he debuted against New Zealand at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg.

The 2006 Tri Nations Series, an annual rugby union competition between the national teams of Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, marked the tenth anniversary of the original competition. With three rounds still remaining, the New Zealand All Blacks were assured of first place in the competition after their victory over Australia on 19 August, their 21st consecutive home win.

Royal Bafokeng Stadium stadium

The Royal Bafokeng Sports Palace is a football, rugby and athletics stadium in Phokeng near Rustenburg, South Africa. It was built and is managed by the Royal Bafokeng Nation. It is used as the home stadium for Premier Soccer League club Platinum Stars. The Leopards rugby team host large attendance matches during the Currie Cup at the stadium, instead of their usual home ground, Olën Park.

Rustenburg Place in North West, South Africa

Rustenburg City is a city at the foot of the Magaliesberg mountain range. Rustenburg is located in the North West Province of South Africa. It was one of the official host cities of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, being in close proximity to Phokeng, the capital of the Royal Bafokeng Nation, where the Royal Bafokeng Stadium is located. The England national football team also used this as their base camp for the tournament.

Pietersen's deceptive pace and gliding runs make him an unpredictable back-line player, with the ability to break the line at will and create attacking opportunities for his team. He is also a clinical finisher, and was the leading try scorer in the 2007 Super 14 competition with 12 tries from 15 games. Pietersen remains a firm fan favourite for the unpredictable and exciting dimension his play brings to the team. Before the emergence of Francois Steyn at the Sharks franchise, Pietersen was seen as the ideal replacement for Percy Montgomery as fullback, however with Steyn being able to play at fullback, wing or fly-half, Pietersen focused on wing as his primary position, and it is in this role that most of his appearances have been made for club and country.

The 2007 Super 14 season started in February 2007 with preseason matches held from mid-January. It finished on 19 May with the final at ABSA Stadium in Durban, in the first final between two South African teams in the history of Super Rugby. The visiting Bulls won the 2007 Super 14 Final, scoring a try in the 83rd minute and narrowly defeating the Sharks 20–19, thereby becoming the first South African side to win the Super Rugby title in the professional era.

Percy Montgomery South African rugby union player

Percival Colin "Percy" Montgomery OIS is a retired South African rugby union player. When he ended his international career in August 2008, he held the all-time records for both caps and points for South Africa's national team, known as the Springboks.

He was selected into the Springboks 2007 Rugby World Cup squad. Starting in the first two matches, Pietersen scored three tries. He was impressive in the game against England, scoring two tries and setting up a third.

2007 Rugby World Cup 6th Rugby World Cup

The 2007 Rugby World Cup was the sixth Rugby World Cup, a quadrennial international rugby union competition inaugurated in 1987. Twenty nations competed for the Webb Ellis Cup in the tournament, which was hosted by France from 7 September to 20 October. France won the hosting rights in 2003, beating a bid from England. The competition consisted of 48 matches over 44 days; 42 matches were played in ten cities throughout France, as well as four in Cardiff, Wales, and two in Edinburgh, Scotland.

England national rugby union team sportsteam in rugby union

The England national rugby union team competes in the annual Six Nations Championship with France, Ireland, Scotland, Italy, and Wales. They have won this championship on a total of 28 occasions, 13 times winning the Grand Slam and 25 times winning the Triple Crown, making them the most successful outright winners in the tournament's history. They are ranked fourth in the world by the International Rugby Board as of 18 March 2019. England are to date the only team from the northern hemisphere to win the Rugby World Cup, when they won the tournament back in 2003. They were also runners-up in 1991 and 2007.

The top try-scorer in the 2007 Super 14 failed to score even one in 2008, a fact acknowledged by both AJ Venter and Stefan Terblanche in the October 2008 edition of SA Sports Illustrated .

The 2008 Super 14 season started in February 2008 with pre-season matches held from mid-January. It finished on 31 May, when the Crusaders won their seventh Super Rugby title with a 20–12 victory over the Waratahs in front of the Crusaders' home fans at AMI Stadium. The 2008 season was the third of the expansion, which led to the name change to the Super 14. The schedule, which covered 3½ months, featured a total of 94 matches, with each team playing one full round robin against the 13 other teams, two semi-finals and a final. Every team received one bye over the 14 rounds.

AJ Venter is a retired South African rugby union footballer, who played rugby for the Sharks in the international Super Rugby competition, and the Sharks in the domestic Currie Cup competition. Venter has also played for the South African national team, the Springboks.

Stefan Terblanche South African rugby union player

Carl Stefan Terblanche is a former South African rugby union player. He played wing, centre and fullback.

However, post World Cup Pietersen went on to establish the most capped wing combination in Springbok history with Bryan Habana, standing currently at 25 tests, ten more than next best, James Small and Jaques Olivier. Aside from his obvious attacking abilities, Pietersen is widely regarded for his outstanding defence. His cover defence being the saving grace of the Springbok's 2008 End of Year Tour, manfully keeping the Welsh at bay, and dominating his opposite Shane Williams. His all-round skills remain of the highest standard, maturing into one of the best wings since South Africa's readmission to international sport.

Pietersen was called up for South Africa's 2011 Rugby World Cup campaign starting the first game in a 17–16 victory for the Springboks against Wales. South Africa then thrashed Fiji 49–3 with Pietersen this time playing on the left wing. Pietersen did not play when South Africa thrashed Namibia 87–0. He started again on the right wing as South Africa squeezed past Samoa 13–5. South Africa were then through to the quarter-finals of the world cup. South Africa were then knocked out of the tournament losing 11–9 against Australia. He has also scored 4 tries in the 2015 world cup.

In April 2013, it was announced that he would play for Panasonic Wild Knights [4] in the 2013–14 Top League in Japan, [5] meaning he missed out on the Sharks' 2013 Currie Cup Premier Division campaign, but would return to the Sharks for the 2014 Super Rugby season.

Pietersen signed a three-year deal to join English Premiership side Leicester Tigers prior to the 2016–2017 season. [6] However, as of 20 June 2017, Pieterson was granted early release from Welford Road to join top French club Toulon in the Top 14 from the 2017-18 season. [7]


  1. 1 2 In addition to playing in test matches, Pietersen featured in four non-test matches for South Africa. [1] Two of these were international tour matches, and in 2014 [2] and 2015, [3] he played in matches against a World XV in Cape Town. These matches have an equivalent status to international tour matches, but were played on home soil.

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  1. South African Rugby Annual 2017. South African Rugby Union. 2017. p. 66. ISBN   978-0-620-74427-0.
  2. South African Rugby Annual 2015. South African Rugby Union. 2015. p. 104. ISBN   978-0-620-62087-1.
  3. South African Rugby Annual 2016. South African Rugby Union. 2016. pp. 124–125. ISBN   978-0-620-69290-8.
  4. 2013年度 スローガン/新体制、2013年度新加入選手(追加)、2012年度退部選手(追加)のお知らせ (Press release) (in Japanese). Panasonic Wild Knights. 8 May 2013. Archived from the original on 17 June 2013. Retrieved 8 May 2013.
  5. "JP on sabbatical". Sharks. 22 April 2013. Retrieved 22 April 2013.[ permanent dead link ]
  6. "World Cup winner Pietersen to join the Tigers" (Press release). Leicester Tigers. 11 January 2016. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 11 January 2016.
  7. "Toulon sign Springboks utility back JP Pieterson from Leicester Tigers". BBC Sport. 20 June 2017. Retrieved 22 June 2017.