Tasman Makos lock Quinten Strange will play for the team he grew up supporting, the Crusaders in the 2017 Super Rugby competition. Photo Jacob Page.

Quinten Strange, man on the rise

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Tasman lock Quinten Strange’s stocks continue to rise with the 20-year-old capping off a remarkable year with selection in the Crusaders 2017 Super Rugby squad last week.

The 1.99m lock was a standout for Nelson College before earning selection for the New Zealand Under-20s World Cup team this year and becoming a vital part of the Makos team which made it to the final of the Mitre 10 Cup premiership.

While game-time might be limited for the Crusaders, Quinten believes he will be in the best place to learn his craft given the franchise has three All Black locks in Sam Whitelock, Luke Romano and Scott Barrett.

“My first season will be a chance for me to get around those guys and learn, work hard on my game and work on my size and fitness in the gym – just become a better all-round player.”

Quinten has been mentored by former All Black and Makos lock Chris Jack and believes he and TRU’s Kahu Marfell as major influences in his professional rugby development.

Quinten grew up the youngest of three boys in a rugby mad family in Collingwood.

He followed his older brothers, Steve, Jay and Kent, into the game with the Collingwood club when he played under-8s on a Friday night.

“It was rugby all the time with me and my brothers, on the back lawn, in the hallway, everywhere.”

Quinten then played No 8 throughout his teenage years before reverting back to lock.

He says the call-up had happened sooner than he’d expected, but he was keen to make the most of the opportunity.

“To play for the team I grew up watching (and supporting) is exciting and to be surrounded by Makos’ teammates will be good.”

Quinten says he always admired the style of play of former All Black hard-man Brad Thorn.

“Hopefully there’s some of his style in me and more to come,” Quinten says. “I don’t have the height like Brodie Rettalick so I’ll have to be more physical and explosive.”

Quentin is on light duties for the month on November before reporting to Crusaders training camp on December 1.

“It’s a case of staying fit.

“I’ll look to go to the Marlborough Sounds with my brother and relax.”

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