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South African Trankle to be a Paladin

Last updated May 27, 2015

By John Roberts

trankleThomas Trankle, an 8-man from Cornwall College (Pretoria, South Africa), has accepted a Furman Rugby Scholarship and will enroll in August.

Trankle, 6’4 and 235 pounds, is a two-year starter for Cornwall and has been selected for regional all-star teams in the rugby-obsessed nation. He has also played center and flanker. He is the son of Georg and Cheryl Trankle.

Trankle (highlight video) is just the second South African to join the Paladins. Monty Turner, a fullback and member of the Class of 2011, was the first.

“Furman has an enthusiastic atmosphere, and offers a relatively uncomplicated way for me to start my new life in the U.S.,” says Trankle. “The mild weather conditions in South Carolina were also a factor as it is somewhat similar to my climate in South Africa. I found it a college that is very aesthetically pleasing and filled with friendly people. Clearly, superior academic quality and merit played a key determinant role, and adding the rugby environment, all together made Furman an easy choice.”

Trankle represents the final commitment for the 2015 Furman Rugby recruiting class, the most talented to date. The group also includes John Williams (highlight video), a member of the USA Under 19 team, and Robbie Greco, a highly touted prop from Uppingham School in England. Other commitments include Jeff Rein, (highlight video), Austin Willis (both members of the USA South team), Aidan Clarke, Josh Hager, Pierce Kirkland and Drew Turner.

Furman Coach John Roberts says Trankle should be able to step in and shore up a Paladin forward pack that will be without Trent Pannell and Richard Budd, two excellent locks who graduated earlier this month. The team will also be without starting props Adrian Marcogliese and Jeff Tonge in fall as both will be participating in study away.

“We have extremely high hopes for Thomas. He is an aggressive runner with great size and athleticism,” said Roberts. “We are looking forward to seeing him in purple in just a few months.”

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