When asked whether his participation in the FNB UP-Tuks Young Guns side had a positive influence on his performances at the trials held in Stellenbosch, Nonkontwana said, “Yes, I believe so. Game time is always better than no game time. As a rugby player you always learn more by getting game time and being tested in different scenarios and situations. I strongly agree that the Young Guns competition played to my advantage and many others in preparation for the trials.”

It is also likely that Nonkontwana will play alongside his fellow Tuks teammate Janse van Rensburg, who was his partner in the second row during their campaign in the Young Guns competition. “It would be a nice opportunity, especially since we understand each other. Janse has been a good helping hand. He has worked with Victor Matfield so he has been able to share some of the technical aspects in the line-outs, which will be useful for me covering lock and eighthman at this level,” Nonkontwana said of pairing up with Janse van Rensburg for the Junior Boks.

The Junior Boks will play against Scotland on 2 June, the host nation New Zealand on 6 June, with their final match in the pool stages being against Samoa on 10 June.

The most important game will undoubtedly be against host nation New Zealand as the Baby Blacks will be going into the game as favourites. The Junior Boks beat the Baby Blacks in last year’s play off for third and fourth place and also in the final of the competition in 2012 in Cape Town.

The side has just completed a three-match international friendly series against Argentina in the Western Cape in preparation for the Junior World Championship.

Image: sportlive.co.za

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