Speckmagic, as he is fondly known after his heroics for the Blitzboks in the last few years, returned to the Free State in July after a stint in Pretoria with the Vodacom Bulls, and with a few familiar faces and new team-mates in the squad, he has settled in and is ready to make himself at home at the Toyota Stadium.
“It is good to be back,” said the fleet-footed 31-year-old.
“I played with some of the players before, such as Howard (Mnisi) at junior level at the Cell C Sharks, and I know Duncan (Saal) from my time in Stellenbosch, which is great.
“We also have Frans (Steyn) here, who is an experienced player and he is quite the joker as well, while there are a number of young players who have come through the Grey College school ranks, so there is a fantastic vibe among the players.”
Specman admitted, however, that he had to re-acquaint himself with the frosty Bloemfontein winters and the switch from home-based training to returning gym since being in back in the city of roses.
“It is very cold in Bloemfontein, and it is a dry cold, but fortunately I lived here before, so I have acclimatised well,” he said.
“In terms of training, the weights felt quite heavy when we returned to training, and the muscles were a little sore, especially since I trained with bands during lockdown.
“But fortunately we are back to full-out weight training now, so my body is feeling good and I am really enjoying it.
“I make a point of getting the vibe going with some music at gym, and we get into the thick of things quickly after that.
“We are still training in small groups, but it has been nice to see a few different faces and to work with the coaches because one feels like you are part of a rugby system again.”
The speedster was thrilled about the possibility that rugby could potentially resume early to mid-September and said: “I am really looking forward to getting back on the field and facing other teams.
“I have made many friends during my career, and I cannot wait to cross paths with some of them on the field. The guys know I will do best to get past them, and if I do, they won’t hear the end of it,” he joked.
“There is a big emphasis on work rate within the group, both on attack and defence, and that is something which we see as being part of our DNA as a team.”