Pumas (rugby team)
|Union||Mpumalanga Rugby Union|
|Ground(s)||Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit (Capacity: 40,929)|
|2015 Currie Cup Premier Division||6th|
The Pumas (currently known as the Steval Pumas for sponsorship reasons) are a South African rugby union team that competes in the Premier Division of the Currie Cup and the Northern Section of the Vodacom Cup. The team draws their players from Mpumalanga Province (formerly known as the South Eastern Transvaal) and plays at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit, having previously also played at the Puma Stadium in Witbank.
The Pumas are a well supported team throughout Mpumalanga Province, with large fan bases located in Witbank, Middelburg, Ermelo and Nelspruit. The Pumas average crowds of 13,000 at home Currie Cup matches.
Formed in 1969 as South Eastern Transvaal, the Pumas are one of the younger unions in the country. The team has never won the Currie Cup.
For their 2010 Currie Cup campaign, the Pumas appointed the seasoned Jimmy Stonehouse as coach. Though considered the underdogs of the Currie Cup competition, on 27 August 2010 the Pumas beat current champions the Blue Bulls 22–21 at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit. They eventually finished 7th.
The following players are contracted by the Pumas for 2016:
|2016 Pumas squad|
|(c) denotes team captain, Bold denotes player is internationally capped.
1 Vincent Koch is also contracted to play for the Stormers during the 2016 Super Rugby season.
2 Renaldo Bothma is also contracted to play for the Sharks during the 2016 Super Rugby season.
3 Chris Cloete is also contracted to play for the Kings during the 2016 Super Rugby season.
4 Marlou van Niekerk is on loan from the Eastern Province Kings.
5 Damien Jansen van Rensburg, Jacques Kotzé and Leighton van Wyk signed short-term deals for the 2016 Currie Cup qualification series only.