The announcement that occasional DHL Stormers flyhalf Brandon Thomson has been released from his contract so he can further his career in Scotland can be seen as the first confirmation that the Cape franchise’s flyhalf pool will change shape next year.

The 22-year-old Thomson has made seven appearances for the Stormers, most of them as a replacement, and has never let the team down. But although he was a Junior Springbok in 2015, there is currently a bit of a logjam in front of him, particularly now that Damian Willemse has confirmed his potential to be the future at No 10.

Thomson has been released by Western Province Rugby to take up a two-year contract with Glasgow Warriors. His father was born in Scotland, so it isn’t difficult to figure out that the intention is probably for him to in time join another current Stormers player, centre Huw Jones, in the Scotland Six Nations team.

However, according to the press release announcing Thomson’s departure, he will not be released until Robert du Preez returns to full fitness, which is expected to be in September. Du Preez injured his shoulder playing for the Stormers overseas in May and was ruled out for three months.

That means that Thomson could still have a role to play in the initial stages of WP’s Currie Cup campaign, although the smart money should be on Willemse wearing the No 10 if he remains fit, and Kurt Coleman backing him up.

Ironically, it seems unlikely that Du Preez will play again for the Stormers as it is understood that he is poised to move back to Durban to play for the Sharks, where his father is the coach, in 2018. The anticipated emergence of Willemse should offset the losses, and Stormers coach Robbie Fleck will also be hoping that Jean-Luc du Plessis, who was chosen to be the flyhalf in the first Super Rugby game but was then injured, will recover from the series of operations he has undergone this year.

Referring to Thomson, WP director of rugby Gert Smal said that his emergence as a top player was an indication that the talent identification and development aspect of the union was working, which he found encouraging.

“Brandon still has an important role to play for us before he leaves, but this is a great opportunity for him and we wish him all the best,” said Smal.

Thomson played well as a second half replacement for the WP team that won the Supersport Challenge quarterfinal against a Free State XV in cold Greenpoint this past Sunday, and is likely to play a similar role when Province face the Blue Bulls in the semifinal in East London this coming Sunday.