The Southern Kings clash with the Cell C Sharks on Saturday 21 May 2016 from 17h10 in the Growthpoint Kings Park Stadium, Durban. The match will be officiated by referee Quinton Immelman assisted by Rodney Boneparte and Archie Sehlako.
Southern Kings head coach Deon Davids has announced that Steven Sykes will return to captain the team to take on the Cell C Sharks in Durban on Saturday.
Davids also confirmed that Schalk Ferreira will also return having missed two games due to injury.
“Unfortunately Edgar Marutlulle is sick with flu and the doctor has recommended that he sits this game out. Martin Ferreira takes his place and Martin Bezuidenhout comes up on the bench,” said Davids.
Davids also confirmed that JC Astle would move onto the bench with Schalk Oelofse starting alongside Sykes.
“JC has played nearly 80 minutes every game, so this is a chance just to manage him a bit better,” he said.
Davids said the decision to bring in Stefan Willemse, and Jacques Engelbrecht at flank was to match the physicality of the Sharks pack.
At the back, Davids has brought JP du Plessis on at outside centre to fill in for Stefan Watermeyer, who is out with a tendon injury to his foot.
Cornell Hess comes up onto the bench to fill the spot opened up by Oelofse starting.
Davids said the loss of Sykes, Velleman and Cloete was a big blow to the team but also meant opportunities for the other players.
Davids also pointed out the rotation of Jacobie Adriaanse and Tom Botha.
Davids said he was happy to have both Sykes and Schalk Ferreira, two of the most experienced players, back ahead of the game against the Sharks, but was confident that the team would provide bring their all to the game.
“I think all the players have the ability to make an impact. for example, I think that, while we have lost both CJ Velleman and Chris Cloete, Stefan Willemse and Aidon Davis have both shown that they can make an impact,” he said.
Davids said that they team would be focusing on getting the basics and making the right decisions throughout the game.
The Cell C Sharks Chiliboy Ralepelle will make his first start in the No 2 jersey, while captain Beast Mtawarira has been rested as part of the rotation policy. In fact the entire front row – including replacements – have been given a full rotation.
Lourens Adriaanse and Dale Chadwick will start alongside Ralepelle, while Kyle Cooper, Juan Schoeman and Thomas du Toit are on the bench. Mtawarira, Franco Marais and Coenie Oosthuizen are all rested.
More forward changes will see Jean-Luc du Plessis joining his brother Daniel in the loose trio in place of the injured Jean Deysel, who suffered a neck injury last week in Argentina. At lock Etienne Oosthuizen switches with Lubabalo Mtyanda to start in the No 4 jersey.
A new halfback pairing sees captain, Patrick Lambie, joined by Michael Claassens at No 9, with Stefan Ungerer providing cover.
Springbok wing JP Pietersen switches wings as Odwa Ndungane drops to the bench, allowing for the return of fellow Springbok Lwazi Mvovo to the starting line-up.
Cell C Sharks Director of Rugby, Gary Gold said; “We had work to do after our performance against the Jaguares, but we are happy with the character shown to dig deep and find a way to win in tough conditions, at what was an unfamiliar venue for the majority of our players.
“Every week you need to be at your best in this competition and our match against the Kings is no exception. They have been working hard and improving each week and they will be ready for the fight this weekend.”
- This will be only the fourth clash between these teams; the Cell Sharks have won all three previous meetings by a combined 122-33 score line.
- The Durban side have won three and drawn one of their last five games against South African opponents, though they’ve not scored more than 18 points in any of their last three such fixtures.
- The Cell C Sharks have been forced to make 127 tackles per game so far this season, the second most of any team in the competition, yet they still boast the third best tackle success of any side (86%).
- The Cell Sharks have averaged the fewest carries of any team this season (85.2 per game), however the Kings have gained the fewest metres on average (324).
- Cell C Sharks: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Paul Jordaan, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Patrick Lambie (captain), 9 Michael Claassens, 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Keegan Daniel, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Mahlatse Ralepelle, 1 Dale Chadwick. Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Juan Schoeman, 18 Thomas du Toit, 19 Lubabalo Mtyanda, 20 Lubabalo Mthembu, 21 Stefan Ungerer, 22 Garth April, 23 Odwa Ndungane.
- Southern Kings: 15 Jurgen Visser, 14 Lukhanyo Am, 13 JP du Plessis, 12 Shane Gates, 11 Luzuko Vulindlu, 10 Louis Fouche 9 Ntando Kebe, 8 Aidon Davis, 7 Thembelani Bholi, 6 Stefan Willemse, 5 Schalk Oelofse, 4 Steven Sykes (captain), 3 Jacobie Adriaanse, 2 Martin Ferreira, 1 Schalk Ferreira. Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Justin Ackerman, 18 Tom Botha, 19 JC Astle, 20 Jacques Engelbrecht, 21 Kevin Luiters, 22 Elgar Watts, 23 Leighton Eksteen.
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