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Wed Jul 30 11:02:46 SAST 2014

Two ex Boks die

Sapa | 25 October, 2010 07:460 Comments

Two former rugby Springboks, Ernest Erich Dinkelmann and Frederick Wilhelm "Mannetjies" Gericke, have died.

Dinkelmann, a medical practitioner, died of a stroke in Nelspruit. Born on May 14, 1927, he was 83 years old at the time of his death.

He was one of the locks on the 1951-52 Springbok tour of the UK, Ireland and France in which he played 19 matches. A versatile player, he appeared at lock, flank and eighthman on the long tour.

He scored a try when the Springboks routed Scotland 44-0 in Edinburgh and he scored another try against France.

The team has been described by many rugby critics as the best to have ever left South Africa’s shores. All five tests on the tour were won, with Dinkelmann appearing in four of them. He played a further two tests against the touring Australian team in 1953.

He was educated at Ermelo High School and University of Pretoria, becoming the first Tukkies player to gain Springbok colours.

After his playing days were completed, Dinkelmann coached various clubs and Northern Transvaal and he later wrote a handbook on handling skills in rugby.

He was also at one time chairman of the Northern Transvaal’s medical subcommittee and the selection committee.

Johnny Buchler (fullback) and Tjol Lategan (centre) are the last two survivors of the 1951-52 touring party.

Dinkelmann leaves his wife, a daughter and five sons, and a number of grandchildren.

Gericke played scrumhalf in one Test match against Scotland at the Boet Erasmus stadium in Port Elizabeth in 1960. He was 77.

Although setting up two tries for flank Hugo van Zyl and scoring one himself, he was never chosen for South Africa again. The Springboks, under the captaincy of Des van Jaarsveldt, won the match 18-10.

Van Jaarsveldt expressed sorrow at the death of his 1960 teammate.

“Mannetjies was a very good scrumhalf and had a good game against Scotland,” Van Jaarsveldt said.

Gericke represented the Junior Springboks in 1955 against the touring British and Irish Lions, and was the vice-captain on the Junior Springboks tour of Argentina in 1959.

He had recently undergone a knee operation but his condition deteriorated afterwards.

While playing for Transvaal he was a member of Diggers club and played for Transvaal against the touring All Blacks in 1960.

When playing for Griquas in 1953 he played against the touring Australian side. Gericke was educated at Diamantveld High, Kimberley and he and Flippie van der Merwe (1981-89) are currently the only two Boks produced by that school.

Gericke leaves a wife, three sons and a daughter, eight grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

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