Pedrie Wannenburg: Former Ulster & South Africa flanker, 41, killed in car accident

Former Ulster and South Africa flanker Pedrie Wannenburg has died aged 41 following a car accident in Texas.

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Wannenburg played 20 times for the Springboks between 2002 and 2007 and spent two years at Ulster from 2010 to 2012.

According to local media, he died after a driver led police on a high-speed chase and crashed into the back of Wannenburg’s vehicle at a junction.

Wannenburg’s son was taken to a hospital for surgery.

His wife and daughter were also in the car with him but did not sustain life-threatening injuries.

Wannenburg won three Super Rugby titles with the Bulls, and became the first player to make 100 appearances for the Pretoria-based team, before leaving them to join Ulster in 2010.

During his time in Belfast he helped Ulster reach the 2012 Heineken Cup final before moving to Castres in France later that year.

He also played for Oyonnax in France before moving to the United States in 2016.

‘A naturally talented number eight’

Wannenburg’s former Ulster team-mate, Ireland international Dan Tuohy.

“Pedrie was ever-so talented and when he turned it on, wow, he could really play.

“He wasn’t big into going into the gym and lifting weights, he wasn’t an overly explosive player he just read the game really well.

“A naturally gifted number eight. He contributed an awful lot to the team when he was with Ulster, and very fondly thought of among the players.

“It’s difficult to imagine really. It’s such a sudden death it’s difficult to comprehend to be honest and I know he’ll be sorely missed.

“He was an honest grafter of a player. He was just a great guy to be around, a warm character always with a smile on his face.”

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